Physics

A high order for a low dimension

Spintronics refers to a suite of physical systems which may one day replace many electronic systems. To realize this generational leap, material components that confine electrons in one dimension are highly sought after. For the first time, researchers created such a material in the form of a special bismuth-based crystal known as a high-order topological insulator.

Scrambled supersolids: Soft form of a solid discovered

Supersolids are fluid and solid at the same time. Physicists have for the first time investigated what happens when such a state is brought out of balance. They discovered a soft form of a solid of high interest for science. Researchers report that they were also able to reverse the process and restore supersolidity.

Scrambled supersolids: Researchers discover a soft form of a solid

Supersolids are materials that are fluid and solid at the same time. Physicists from Innsbruck and Geneva have for the first time investigated what happens when such a state is brought out of balance. They discovered a soft form of a solid of great interest for science. As the researchers led by Francesca Ferlaino and Thierry Giamarchi report in Nature Physics, they were also able to reverse the process and restore supersolidity.

What Would Earth Look Like to Alien Astronomers?

A new paper asks which exoplanets could find Earth. Such worlds could be targets for SETI searches.

Space: 2021

Whatever craziness may be happening on Earth, the coming year promises to be a spectacular one across the solar system.

Lonely Pair of Mystifying Space Objects Found Traversing the Void

The heavenly orbs are not quite stars and not quite planets.

Stretching diamond for next-generation microelectronics

Diamond is the hardest material in nature. It also has great potential as an excellent electronic material. A research team has demonstrated for the first time the large, uniform tensile elastic straining of microfabricated diamond arrays through the nanomechanical approach. Their findings have shown the potential of strained diamonds as prime candidates for advanced functional devices in microelectronics, photonics, and quantum information technologies.

Spontaneous robot dances highlight a new kind of order in active matter

Researchers have proposed a new principle by which active matter systems can spontaneously order, without need for higher level instructions or even programmed interaction among the agents. And they have demonstrated this principle in a variety of systems, including groups of periodically shape-changing robots called 'smarticles.'

The Search for Life on Mars Begins in February

NASA's Perseverance rover will look for biosignatures on Mars and its landing site looks remarkably similar to Earth-based sites that contain ancient fossilized cells.

The map of nuclear deformation takes the form of a mountain landscape

Until recently, scientists believed that only very massive nuclei could have excited zero-spin states of increased stability with a significantly deformed shape. Meanwhile, an international team of researchers from Romania, France, Italy, the USA and Poland showed in their latest article that such states also exist in much lighter nickel nuclei. Positive verification of the theoretical model used in these experiments allows describing the properties of nuclei unavailable in Earth laboratories.

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