Physics

Chemical and biomolecular engineering researchers Johnny Ching-Wei Lee, left, professor Simon Rogers and collaborators are challenging previous assumptions regarding polymer behavior with their newly developed laboratory techniques that measure polymer flow at the molecular level. Credit: L. Brian Stauffer Before designing the next generation of soft materials, researchers must first understand how they behave during
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Quantum sensors could transform a range of areas from atomic clocks and the way we measure electromagnetic radiation. Image credit – Heiko Grandel for the institute of quantum optics from Ulm. Credit: Universität Ulm / Heiko Grandel When you hear the word ‘quantum,” you may imagine physicists working on a new ground breaking theory. Or
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Scientists have discovered an unexpectedly simple formula that governs one of the most seemingly unknowable limits in physics: determining how much of an electric field a water droplet can withstand before it will burst. This infinitesimal phenomenon has been studied by physicists for decades, but while the overall concept may be easy to imagine, discerning
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Transport of a droplet with tracer particles on a mechanowetting surface of the traveling wave device. Credit: Science Advances, doi: 10.1126/sciadv.aaw0914 Modern applications use self-cleaning strategies and digital microfluids to control individual droplets of fluids on flat surfaces but existing techniques are limited by the side-effects of high electric fields and high temperatures. In a
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Credit: CC0 Public Domain Symmetry is a fundamental characteristic in nature. Understanding the mechanisms that break symmetries is essential to scientific research. Spontaneous symmetry breaking (SSB), in particular, occurs when thermal or quantum fluctuations drive a system from a symmetric state into an ordered state, as it occurs when a liquid turns into a solid.
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Credit: CC0 Public Domain In classical computing, debugging programs is one of the most time-consuming tasks in software development. Successful debugging relies on software development tools and also on the experience of the programmer. In quantum computing, researchers predict debugging will be an even greater challenge. In a paper soon to appear at the ACM/IEEE
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Electron diffraction pattern of the 600°C heat-treated silica-doped hafnia coating showing the coating to still be amorphous. This pattern is representative of those measured at lower heat-treatment temperatures. Credit: Physical Review Letters (2019). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.231102 A team of researchers from the University of Glasgow, the University of Strathclyde and Hobart and William Smith Colleges has
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Credit: CC0 Public Domain Researchers at the University of Chicago published a novel technique for improving the reliability of quantum computers by accessing higher energy levels than traditionally considered. Most prior work in quantum computation deals with “qubits,” the quantum analogue of binary bits that encode either zero or one. The new work instead leverages
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A domain wall (gray panel at center) separates regions with different spin orientations (green and blue arrows). MIT researchers discovered that a magnetic field applied at one particular angle through a single crystal of a new magnetic quantum material makes it harder for electrons to cross this domain wall. Credit: Leon Balents In many materials,
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Diagram of NIST’s ion trap used for reversible ‘quantum squeezing’ to amplify and measure ion motion. The ion (white ball) is confined 30 micrometers above the trap surface by voltages applied to the eight gold electrodes and the two red electrodes. Squeezing — which reduces the uncertainty of motion measurements — is achieved by applying
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Credit: CC0 Public Domain Researchers have developed a new laser-based method that can detect electric charges and chemicals of interest with unprecedented sensitivity. The new approach could one day offer a way to scan large areas for radioactive material or hazardous chemicals for safety and security applications. The new technique, called mid-infrared picosecond laser-driven electron
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Researchers from NIST and the University of Maryland are using neutrons to improve simulated DNA and RNA structures for broad medical and pharmaceutical applications. From left, Christina Bergonzo, Chad Lawrence, Roderico Acevedo, and Alexander Grishaev. Credit: U.S. Dept. of Energy; ORNL/Genevieve Martin Scientists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University
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