Physics

Biophysicists zoom in on pore-forming toxin

A new study by Rice University biophysicists offers the most comprehensive picture yet of the molecular-level action of melittin, the principal toxin in bee venom. The research could aid in the development of new drugs that use a similar mechanism as melittin's to attack cancer and bacteria.

Binding together repelling atoms

Basic chemistry tells us that a bond between atoms can form if it is energetically more favorable for the atoms to stick together than staying apart. This fundamentally requires an attractive force between the atoms. However, new theoretical predictions show that the combination of a repelling force and controlled noise from an environment can also have the surprising effect of leading to a bound state, although one with quite exotic properties.

Teleported by electronic circuit: Physicists 'beam' information

Researchers cannot "beam" humans or objects through space yet, a feat sometimes alluded to in science fiction movies. They managed, however, to teleport information from A to B -- for the first time in an electronic circuit.

The Strong Magnetic Field Around Our Galaxy's Black Hole

Even though they're among the most compelling topics to study, black holes are still mysterious to astronomers. Since its discovery nearly 40 years ago, the black hole at the center of our galaxy has eluded most close scrutiny because (unsurprisingly) black holes emit so little light.

Luckily, a recently discovered star near the supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy is now helping scientists learn about these cosmic conundrums’ eating habits.
A Special Kind of Star
The sta

Using high-performance computing to gain new insights into turbulence

A major national project, led by the University of Southampton, is providing new insights into the complex nature of turbulence.

Growth of disorder of electrons measured in dual temperature system

Researchers at Aalto University and the University of Tokyo have succeeded for the first time in experimentally measuring a probability distribution for entropy production of electrons.

Small, fast and not so demanding: Breakthrough in memory technologies could bring faster computing, smaller memory devices and lower power consumption

Researchers have developed a simple magnetization progress that could lead to a new generation of faster, smaller and less expensive memory technologies. “Magnetless spin memory” eliminates the need for permanent magnets in memory devices, opening the door to many technological applications.

Better batteries? Going beyond the surface of oxide films

Better batteries, catalysts, electronic information storage and processing devices are among potential benefits of an unexpected discovery made by scientists using samples isolated from the atmosphere.

Super-fast quantum computers? Scientists find asymmetry in topological insulators

New research shows that a class of materials being eyed for the next generation of computers behaves asymmetrically at the sub-atomic level. This research is a key step toward understanding the topological insulators that may have the potential to be the building blocks of a super-fast quantum computer that could run on almost no electricity.

NASA Hosts Kepler Spacecraft Status Teleconference

NASA will host a news teleconference at 2 p.m. EDT Thursday, Aug. 15, to discuss the status of the agency's Kepler Space Telescope.

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