Physics

Plasmon-powered upconversion nanocrystals for enhanced bioimaging and polarized emission

Rare-earth-doped nanocrystals have become sought-after materials for cellular bioprobes because of their long emission lifetimes and low cytotoxicity. Researchers have now discovered how to make these probes even brighter by coupling them to gold nanorods materials that can induce field-enhanced fluorescence through surface plasmon resonances. They optimized this effect by systematically varying the thickness of a protective silica coating sandwiched between the gold nanorods and the doped nanocrystals.

A 'wearable' brain scanner for studies of human interaction, dementia, movement disorders, and more

Patients undergoing a positron emission tomography (PET) scan in today's bulky, donut-shaped machines must lie completely still. Because of this, scientists cannot use the scanners to unearth links between movement and brain activity. What goes on up there when we nod in agreement or shake hands? How are the brains of people struggling to walk after a stroke different from those who can?

In a neutron-rich tin nucleus, electromagnetism can win over the strong force

The atomic nucleus offers a unique opportunity to study the competition between three of the four fundamental forces known to exist in nature, the strong nuclear interaction, the electromagnetic interaction and the weak nuclear interaction. Only the much weaker gravitational force is irrelevant for the description of nuclear properties. Although in general the decay of an excited nuclear state follows the hierarchy of these forces, there are sometimes exceptions.

XENON1T, the most sensitive detector on Earth searching for WIMP dark matter, releases its first result

"The best result on dark matter so far—and we just got started." This is how scientists behind XENON1T, now the most sensitive dark matter experiment world-wide, commented on their first result from a short 30-day run presented today to the scientific community.

NASA Highlights Science on Next Resupply Mission to International Space Station

NASA will host a media teleconference at 10 a.m. EDT Friday, May 26, to discuss select science investigations launching on the next SpaceX commercial resupply flight to the International Space Station.

NASA Selects Facilities Operations, Maintenance Support Services Contractor

NASA has selected URS Federal Services Inc. of Germantown, Maryland, to provide facilities operations and maintenance support services at the agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Deconstructing osmosis provides insight for medical and industrial use

Osmosis, the fluid phenomenon responsible for countless slug deaths at the hands of mischievous children, is fundamentally important not only to much of biology, but also to engineering and industry. Most simply put, osmosis refers to the flow of fluid across a membrane driven by a (solute) concentration difference—like water from a salted slug's cells or absorbed by the roots of plants.

Scientists perform first basic physics simulation of spontaneous transition of the edge of fusion plasma to crucial high-confinement mode

Physicists have simulated the spontaneous transition of turbulence at the edge of a fusion plasma to the high-confinement mode that sustains fusion reactions. The research was achieved with the extreme-scale plasma turbulence code XGC.

ATLAS releases new results in search for weakly-interacting supersymmetric particles

Supersymmetry is an extension to the Standard Model that may explain the origin of dark matter and pave the way to a grand unified theory of nature. For each particle of the Standard Model, supersymmetry introduces an exotic new "super-partner," which may be produced in proton-proton collisions. Searching for these particles is currently one of the top priorities of the LHC physics program.

Nanophysics: Saving energy with a spot of silver

Tomorrow’s computers will run on light, and gold nanoparticle chains show much promise as light conductors. Now scientists have demonstrated how tiny spots of silver could markedly reduce energy consumption in light-based computation.

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