Posts tagged physics

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Video: ‘tractor beam’ created in water.

Physicists at The Australian National University have created a tractor beam on water, providing a radical new technique that could confine oil spills, manipulate floating objects or explain rips at the beach.

Using a ping-pong ball in a wave tank, the group worked out the size and frequency of the waves required to move the ball in whichever direction they want.

Advanced particle tracking tools, developed by team members Dr Nicolas Francois and Dr Hua Xia, revealed that the waves generate currents on the surface of the water.

“We found that above a certain height, these complex three-dimensional waves generate flow patterns on the surface of the water,” Professor Shats said. “The tractor beam is just one of the patterns, they can be inward flows, outward flows or vortices.”

The team also experimented with different shaped plungers to generate different swirling flow patterns.

As yet no mathematical theory can explain these experiments, Dr Punzmann said.

“It’s one of the great unresolved problems, yet anyone in the bathtub can reproduce it. We were very surprised no one had described it before.”

'Optical cable' created from thin air

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A University of Maryland team has detailed how they created an effect similar to a fiber cable out of thin air.

Key fusion goal reached for the first time

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The National Ignition Facility in the US has has announced they’ve reached a key step towards creating energy using nuclear fusion.

14,000 ton neutrino detector being built in Minnesota.
The US Department of Energy’s Fermilab along with the University of Minnesota are building the enormous plastic structure to try and learn how neutrinos change while they travel, to better understand the makeup of the universe.
The detector - which is made of over 300,000 individual detecting cells - will capture neutrinos shot from a cannon over 500 miles away, making the trip in only 3 milliseconds.
Fermilab has a video up of the construction here.

14,000 ton neutrino detector being built in Minnesota.

The US Department of Energy’s Fermilab along with the University of Minnesota are building the enormous plastic structure to try and learn how neutrinos change while they travel, to better understand the makeup of the universe.

The detector - which is made of over 300,000 individual detecting cells - will capture neutrinos shot from a cannon over 500 miles away, making the trip in only 3 milliseconds.

Fermilab has a video up of the construction here.

NASA to create the coldest spot in the known universe on the ISS.

NASA researchers plan to create the coldest spot in the known Universe—inside the International Space Station. The device, known as the Cold Atom Lab, could discover new forms of matter and novel quantum phenomena.

Scientists make ‘bullets’ out of light.

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A European team has found a way to create beams of light that focus more intensely as they travel, forming what looks like a bullet out of light.

This is the coldest known place in the Universe.
Scientists working at Chile’s ALMA observatory have found that the Boomerang Nebula - about 5,000 light years away in the Centaurus constellation - is the coldest known place in the Universe, with temperatures of only one degree Kelvin, or one degree above absolute zero.
The reason for the cold temperature is the rapid expansion of the area, which loses energy in the process, allowing it to remain colder that the fain afterglow of the big bang. which is the normal background temperature of space.

This is the coldest known place in the Universe.

Scientists working at Chile’s ALMA observatory have found that the Boomerang Nebula - about 5,000 light years away in the Centaurus constellation - is the coldest known place in the Universe, with temperatures of only one degree Kelvin, or one degree above absolute zero.

The reason for the cold temperature is the rapid expansion of the area, which loses energy in the process, allowing it to remain colder that the fain afterglow of the big bang. which is the normal background temperature of space.

Image: Solar flares captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.
After emitting its first significant solar flares since June 2013 earlier in the week, the sun continued to produce mid-level and significant solar flares on Oct. 27 and Oct. 28, 2013.
Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth’s atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however — when intense enough — they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

Image: Solar flares captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

After emitting its first significant solar flares since June 2013 earlier in the week, the sun continued to produce mid-level and significant solar flares on Oct. 27 and Oct. 28, 2013.

Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth’s atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however — when intense enough — they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

Nuclear fusion milestone reached

The BBC is reporting that the National Ignition Facility has conducted a fusion experiment where for the first time in the world, the amount of energy released through a fusion reaction has exceeded the amount of energy being absorbed by the fuel.

BBC