Physics

Features

NASA Administrator Remembers Apollo-Era Astronaut Edgar Mitchell

The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden on the passing of NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell:

Four Legs Good, Two Legs Better for Hurdling Obstacles

Although lizards mostly scurry on all fours, certain species can run on two legs when the mood strikes. What's the benefit to this human-like running style? For one thing, it seems to let lizards get over obstacles without slowing down. They just have to make sure not to tip over.

Georgia Southern University biologist Lance McBrayer and graduate student Seth Parker studied running in a handsome little reptile called Sceloporus woodi, or the Florida scrub lizard. McBrayer says there's been

Super-resolution microscope allows visualization of the mechanism that maintains cell polarity: The key is to repeatedly establish temporary polarity

Cells are not uniform spheres; they generally come in a variety of disparate shapes. In the broadest sense, this variation in shapes is known as cell polarity, and it is an essential property for a variety of cell functions. Growth in accordance with their polarity allows cells to shape themselves in forms appropriate to their function.

Partitioning by collision

An ensemble consisting of a binary mixture of particles of equal size can partition itself into its component fractions - provided that the two species differ in their diffusion constants.

The iron stepping stones to better wearable tech without semiconductors

The way to better wearable electronics is dotted with iron steppingstones. Check out how nanotubes bridge the gap with quantum tunneling.

Magnets levitate above a superconductor: New properties of superconductors discovered

New findings may eventually lead to a theory of how superconductivity initiates at the atomic level, a key step in understanding how to harness the potential of materials that could provide lossless energy storage, levitating trains and ultra-fast supercomputers.

Walking on water: Researchers unravel science of skipping spheres

It takes a perfect flick of the wrist and just the right angle to get a disk-shaped stone to skip across the surface of the water multiple times. So why is it so easy to get such impressive water-skipping performance from an elastic ball with only a mediocre launch?

Metal oxide sandwiches: New option to manipulate properties of interfaces

Scientists have discovered a new option to control properties of the interface between the two layers, for instance the amount of charge transferred from one layer to the other or the emergence of ferromagnetism. Their insights might help to create new properties at the interface, not present in the primary materials, maybe even novel forms of High Tc superconductivity.

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope Primary Mirror Fully Assembled

The 18th and final primary mirror segment is installed on what will be the biggest and most powerful space telescope ever launched. The final mirror installation Wednesday at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland marks an important milestone in the assembly of the agency’s James Webb Space Telescope.

A versatile optical sensor for the characterization of fluids

Laser self-mixing is a technique usually used for the measurement of low velocities and vibrations. In a paper that has just been published in the journal Nuclear Instruments and Methods A, researchers from the Cockcroft Institute/University of Liverpool present how these measurements can be extended to velocities of fluids using additional seeding particles. Parameters of fluids such as velocity and the concentration of seeding particles were under study to understand the effect on the performance of the sensor for possible future use on gas jets.

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