Physics

When sand-slithering snakes behave like light waves

Desert snakes slithering across the sand at night can encounter obstacles such as plants or twigs that alter the direction of their travel. While studying that motion to learn how limbless animals control their bodies in such environments, researchers discovered that snakes colliding with these obstacles mimic aspects of light or subatomic particles when they encounter a diffraction grating.

Entangling photons of different colors

Researchers have developed a novel way to entangle two photons -- one with a wavelength suitable for quantum-computing devices and the other for fiber-optics transmissions.

When a superconductor truly becomes super

A research team has confirmed the existence of a phase transition in copper-oxide-based (or cuprate) superconductors. The team believes that it could be during this 'quantum critical point,' when superconductivity actually occurs.

Mini-tornadoes of spores illuminated during raindrop impact

Plant diseases are a significant threat to our food security. Rain provides fresh water to our crops, but splashing drops may also contribute to the spread of plant disease. Raindrop impact is known to be a mechanism for dispersing microscopic spores of pathogens, which infect staple crops and devastate crop yields.

New periodic table of droplets could help solve crimes

Liquid droplets assume complex shapes and behave in different ways, each with a distinct resonance—like a drum head or a violin string—depending on the intricate interrelationship of the liquid, the solid it lands on and the gas surrounding it.

New NASA mission could find more than 1,000 planets

A NASA telescope that will give humans the largest, deepest, clearest picture of the universe since the Hubble Space Telescope could find as many as 1,400 new planets outside Earth's solar system, new research suggests.

Faster method to read quantum memory

Scientists have developed a faster way to read information out of qubits, the basic building blocks of a quantum computer.

Laser drill leads to world record in plasma acceleration

Scientists have set a new world record for plasma accelerators: In a plasma tube only 20 centimeters long, the team has accelerated electrons to an energy of 7.8 billion electron volts (GeV).

It's all in the twist: Physicists stack 2D materials at angles to trap particles

Physicists report that they have developed a new system to trap individual excitons -- bound pairs of electrons and their associated positive charges. Their system could form the basis of a novel experimental platform for monitoring excitons with precision and potentially developing new quantum technologies.

A new spin in nano-electronics

In recent years, electronic data processing has been evolving in one direction only: the industry has downsized its components to the nanometer range. But this process is now reaching its physical limits. Researchers are therefore exploring spin waves -- a promising alternative for transporting information in more compact microchips. Cooperating with international partners, they have successfully generated and controlled extremely short-wavelength spin waves. The physicists achieved this feat by harnessing a natural magnetic phenomenon.

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