Popular Science articles about Physics & Chemistry

Advance in quantum error correction

Quantum computers are largely theoretical devices that could perform some computations exponentially faster than conventional computers can. Crucial to most designs for quantum computers is quantum error correction, which helps preserve the fragile quantum states on which quantum computation depends.

Robotic sonar system inspired by bats

A new robot sonar prototype is inspired by the movable ears and noses that make up the echolocation systems of horseshoe bats.Engineers at Virginia Tech have taken the first steps toward building a novel dynamic sonar system inspired by horseshoe bats that could be more efficient and take up less space...

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Computing at the speed of light

The overhead view of a new beamsplitter for silicon photonics chips that is the size of one-fiftieth the width of a human hair.University of Utah engineers have taken a step forward in creating the next generation of computers and mobile devices capable of speeds millions of times faster than current machines.

Revolutionary discovery could help tackle skin and heart conditions

Scientists at The University of Manchester have made an important discovery about how certain cells stick to each other to form tissue.

Out with heavy metal

PNNL's process joins (white line) a thicker gauge of aluminum near the door hinge, where additional strength is needed, to a thinner gauge used throughout the rest of the door panel, resulting in a 62 percent reduction in weight.Researchers have demonstrated a new process for the expanded use of lightweight aluminum in cars and trucks at the speed, scale, quality and consistency required by the auto industry. The...

Magic wavelengths

Rubidium atoms are held in place using a pair of laser beams at a wavelength of 1064 nm.  Two other beams, promote the atoms from their ground state (5s) first to the 5p state and then to the still higher 18 s state.  - See more at: http://jqi.umd.edu/news/magic-wavelengths#sthash.GGwhXrVu.dpufRydberg atoms, atoms whose outermost electrons are highly excited but not ionized, might be just the thing for processing quantum information. These outsized atoms can be sustained for a long...

New device could greatly improve speech and image recognition

Clockwise are: photo of the prototype device; schematic of the eight-terminal magnonic holographic memory prototype; and a collection of experimental data obtained for two magnonic matrixes.Researchers at the University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering and the Russian Academy of Sciences have successfully demonstrated pattern recognition using a magnonic holographic memory device, a development...

Electrons corralled using new quantum tool

Researchers have succeeded in creating a new "whispering gallery" effect for electrons in a sheet of graphene -- making it possible to precisely control a region that reflects electrons within...

A 'super-cool' way to deliver drugs

Water, when cooled below 32°F, eventually freezes -- it's science known even to pre-schoolers. But some substances, when they undergo a process called "rapid-freezing" or "supercooling," remain in liquid form...

Artificial muscles created from gold-plated onion cells

The concept of artificial muscle made from onion epidermal cell.Just one well-placed slice into a particularly pungent onion can send even the most seasoned chef running for a box of tissues. Now, this humble root vegetable is proving its...

Bringing high-energy particle detection in from the cold

This is a schematic for a Tl6SI4 detector and the crystal structure of Tl6SI4.Radiation detectors, which monitor high-energy particles such as those produced by nuclear decay and cosmic radiation, are being used increasingly in medical imaging, petroleum well logging, astronomy and national security....

This image shows a never before seen highly periodic magnetic 'cells' or 'domains' in iron-gallium alloys responsible for non-Joulian magnetism.

Tunable liquid metal antennas

This image shows the antenna, feed, and reservoir.Researchers have held tremendous interest in liquid metal electronics for many years, but a significant and unfortunate drawback slowing the advance of such devices is that they tend to require...

'Supercool' material glows when you write on it

A new material developed at the University of Michigan stays liquid more than 200 degrees Fahrenheit below its expected freezing point, but a light touch can cause it to form...

A metal composite that will (literally) float your boat

The first metal matrix syntactic foam is so light it can float, strong enough to withstand the rigors of a marine environment, and resistant to heat, which makes it a candidate for automakers seeking to shed weight to improve fuel economy. The composite was the work of NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering Professor Nikhil Gupta and Deep Springs Technology (DST) in collaboration with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory.Researchers have demonstrated a new metal matrix composite that is so light that it can float on water. A boat made of such lightweight composites will not sink despite damage...

Researchers theoretically demonstrate detection of spin of atoms at room temperature

For the first time, a researcher at the University of Waterloo has theoretically demonstrated that it is possible to detect a single nuclear spin at room temperature, which could pave...

An important step in artificial intelligence

This is an artist's concept of a neural network.In what marks a significant step forward for artificial intelligence, researchers at UC Santa Barbara have demonstrated the functionality of a simple artificial neural circuit. For the first time, a...

A turning point in the physics of blood

Mike Graham knows that fluid dynamics can reveal much about how the flow of blood helps and hinders individual blood cells as they go about their work.

Chemistry student in sun harvest breakthrough

Saving sunshine for a rainy day is not trivial. Now a University of Copenhagen student has managed a breakthrough on the way to non-toxic and non-polluting molecules suitable for storing climate neutral solar energy.The Sun is a huge source of energy. In just one hour planet Earth is hit by so much sunshine that humankind could cover its energy needs for an entire...

Scientists X-ray chocolate

With DESY's bright X-ray source PETRA III the scientists could follow the migration of liquid fat (yellow) through chocolate live for the first time. The characteristic X-ray pattern (right) reveal details down to nanometre sizes.An X-ray study carried out at DESY allows to improve the quality of chocolate. The study offers new insights into the formation of fat bloom, an unwelcome white layer that...

Improving organic transistors that drive flexible and conformable electronics

Schematic of wrinkled rubrene single-crystal field-effect transistor. Wrinkles are obtained when in-plane compressive strain is applied on the elastomeric substrate. Electric current between gold (Au) electrodes is modulated by the deformation imposed by the wrinkles.A revolution is coming in flexible electronic technologies as cheaper, more flexible, organic transistors come on the scene to replace expensive, rigid, silicone-based semiconductors, but not enough is known about...

New chip architecture may provide foundation for quantum computer

A photograph of the completed BGA trap assembly. The trap chip is at the center, sitting atop the larger interposer chip that fans out the wiring. The trap chip surface area is 1mm x 3mm, while the interposer is roughly 1 cm square.Quantum computers are in theory capable of simulating the interactions of molecules at a level of detail far beyond the capabilities of even the largest supercomputers today. Such simulations could...

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