Popular Science articles about Physics & Chemistry

The researchers designed this 3-D-printed model based on the design of a seahorse tail.
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Liquids on fibers -- slipping or flowing?

Thin fibers play a tremendous role in many areas of our daily life, from the use of glass fibers in ultra-fast data transmission to textile fibers in our clothing. In...

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New nanogenerator harvests power from rolling tires

Xudong Wang has developed a new way to harvest energy from rolling tires.Madison engineers and a collaborator from China have developed a nanogenerator that harvests energy from a car's rolling tire friction.

Electrical engineers break power and distance barriers for fiber optic communication

A wideband frequency comb ensures that the crosstalk between multiple communication channels within the same optical fiber is reversible.Electrical engineers have broken key barriers that limit the distance information can travel in fiber optic cables and still be accurately deciphered by a receiver. Photonics researchers at the University...

The quantum spin Hall effect is a fundamental property of light

In a paper that crystalizes knowledge from a variety of experiments and theoretical developments, scientists from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science in Japan have demonstrated that the quantum...

Mirror-like display creates rich color pixels by harnessing ambient light

Using a simple structure comprising a mirror and an absorbing layer to take advantage of the wave properties of light, researchers at Qualcomm MEMS Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm...

Staying cool: Saharan silver ants

Left: Sahara silver ants forage in the midday sun and look like droplets of mercury rolling on the desert surface. Right: The silvery appearance is created by a dense array of uniquely shaped hairs.Nanfang Yu, assistant professor of applied physics at Columbia Engineering, and colleagues from the University of Zürich and the University of Washington, have discovered two key strategies that enable Saharan...

Study finds a way to prevent fires in next-generation lithium batteries

These illustrations show deposits that form on the cathode of a lithium metal battery. When lithium nitrate is added to the electrolyte (green image), destructive 'fingers' of lithium metal, known as dendrites, grow on the surface. When lithium polysulfide is added as well, harmless pancake-like deposits form instead.In a study that could improve the safety of next-generation batteries, researchers discovered that adding two chemicals to the electrolyte of a lithium metal battery prevents the formation of dendrites...

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Bacteria could help clean groundwater contaminated by uranium ore processing

A strain of bacteria that "breathes" uranium may hold the key to cleaning up polluted groundwater at sites where uranium ore was processed to make nuclear weapons.

Just add water: Stanford engineers develop a computer that operates on water droplets

Computers and water typically don't mix, but in Manu Prakash's lab, the two are one and the same. Prakash, an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford, and his students have...

Research reveals key interaction that opens the channel into the cell's nucleus

Cells have devised many structures for transporting molecular cargo across their protective borders, but the nuclear pore complex, with its flower-like, eight-fold symmetry, stands out. Monstrously large by cellular standards,...

UT Arlington team develops new storage cell for solar energy storage, nighttime conversion

Dong Liu (left), Zi Wei (center) and Fuqiang Liu, an assistant professor in the UT Arlington Materials Science and Engineering Department are shown.A University of Texas at Arlington materials science and engineering team has developed a new energy cell that can store large-scale solar energy even when it's dark.

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Producing spin-entangled electrons

A team from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science, along with collaborators from several Japanese institutions, have successfully produced pairs of spin-entangled electrons and demonstrated, for the first time,...

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Making new materials with micro-explosions: ANU media release

From left are: Professor Jim Williams, Professor Andrei Rode and Associate Professor Jodie Bradbury with the complex electron diffraction patterns.Scientists have made exotic new materials by creating laser-induced micro-explosions in silicon, the common computer chip material.

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Helium 'balloons' offer new path to control complex materials

Inserting helium atoms (visualized as a red balloon) into a crystalline film (gold) allowed Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers to control the material's elongation in a single direction.Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a new method to manipulate a wide range of materials and their behavior using only a handful of...

Nanowires could be the LEDs of the future

The X-ray images of each nanowire show the distribution of the scattering intensity and the mechanical strain in the core of gallium-nitride and the shell of indium-gallium-nitride. The strain shows that the shell fits perfectly with the core.The latest research from the Niels Bohr Institute shows that LEDs made from nanowires will use less energy and provide better light. The researchers studied nanowires using X-ray microscopy and...

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Could we one day control the path of lightning?

Lightning dart across the sky in a flash. And even though we can use lightning rods to increase the probability of it striking at a specific location, its exact path...

Mantis shrimp inspires new body armor and football helmet design

This is a mantis shrimp in the lab of David Kisailus.RIVERSIDE, Calif. -- The mantis shrimp is able to repeatedly pummel the shells of prey using a hammer-like appendage that can withstand rapid-fire blows by neutralizing certain frequencies...

Renewable energy from evaporating water

Eva, the first evaporation-powered car, has a turbine engine that rotates as water evaporates from the wet paper lining the walls of the engine.An immensely powerful yet invisible force pulls water from the earth to the top of the tallest redwood and delivers snow to the tops of the Himalayas. Yet despite the...

MIT team creates ultracold molecules

The air around us is a chaotic superhighway of molecules whizzing through space and constantly colliding with each other at speeds of hundreds of miles per hour. Such erratic molecular...

Stanford engineers develop state-by-state plan to convert US to 100 percent renewable energy

One potential way to combat ongoing climate change, eliminate air pollution mortality, create jobs and stabilize energy prices involves converting the world's entire energy infrastructure to run on clean, renewable...

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Tiny but precise: The most accurate quantum thermometers

Scientists have defined the smallest, most accurate thermometer allowed by the laws of physics -- one that could detect the smallest fluctuations in microscopic regions, such as the variations within...

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