Physics & Astronomy News

<p>Schematic view of a bubble implosion, which is an envisioned picture showing the whole main events integrated, i.e., laser illumination, hot electron spread, implosion, and proton flash. (credit/ M. Murakami)</p>
Laser-driven Implosion
Scientists have discovered a novel particle acceleration mechanism called ‘micro-bubble implosion’
<p>Owens Valley Solar Array (EOVSA)</p>
New Insights into Solar Flares
New insights into solar flares' explosive energy releases were released by the Owens Valley Solar Array (EOVSA)

<p>In this illustration, the grid in the background represents the computational lattice that theoretical physicists used to calculate a particle property known as nucleon axial coupling. This property determines how a W boson (white wavy line) interacts with one of the quarks in a neutron (large transparent sphere in foreground), emitting an electron (large arrow) and antineutrino (dotted arrow) in a process called beta decay. This process transforms the neutron into a proton (distant transparent sphere). (Credit: Evan Berkowitz/Jülich Research Center, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory)</p>
Life and Death of a Neutron
Experiments that measure the lifetime of neutrons reveal a perplexing and unresolved discrepancy.
<p>Precision assembly and mechanical technician Ryan Wilkinson inspects MOMA during thermal vacuum testing at Goddard</p>

<p>Credits: NASA</p>
Looking for Signs Life on Mars
Scientists have created a tiny chemistry lab for a rover that will drill beneath the Martian surface looking for signs of past or present life.

Massive Black Hole Devours a Star
Scientist create new models of Tidal Disruption Events - rare, but extremely forceful events taking place in the center of galaxies.
Dark Matter Limit Established
Experimental results from the XENON1T dark matter detector limit the effective size of dark matter particles to 4.1X10-47 square centimeters.
Water is not the same as water
Researchers have succeeded in separating the two forms of water to show that they can exhibit different chemical reactivities.

Science Facts

The World's Largest Laser

by Irving Stowers and

The target chamber inside which NIF In a rural community in Northern California, in a building spanning the length of two football fields scientists are creating the world's largest laser. The National Ignition Facility project, know as NIF, is being developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy.

When complete, the facility will house 192 laser beams in two bays. The beams will generate a peak power of 1000 times the electric generating power of the entire United States, although only for a few billionths of a second. When fired, the laser light from the beams will travel through tubes almost the length of the entire building, and pass through giant crystals that will covert the infrared light of the lasers to ultraviolet light. The ultraviolet light from the 192 lasers will then converge on a 10-meter diameter target chamber that looks nothing but out of this world. The ultimate target is inside this chamber; a BB-sized plastic sphere, holding fusion fuel. The hydrogen fuel will reach temperatures of 100 million degrees and will be converted to helium with the release of fusion energy.

The goal of this ambitious project is national defense and research in the areas of energy creation through fusion power, nuclear reactions, astrophysics, and material sciences.

The Fourth State of Matter

There are three classic states of matter: solid, liquid, and gas; however, plasma is considered by some scientists to be the fourth state of matter. The plasma state is not related to blood plasma, th ...
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Jumping Starlight

'Twinkle, twinkle, little star, how I wonder what you are,' says the song by Jane Taylor. But stars don’t really twinkle; their light reaches the earth in a steady way. Why then do we see them flicker ...
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Exercising In Space

What did astronaut Shannon Lucid like least about her six months on Space Station Mir? The daily exercise. 'It was just downright hard,' she wrote in Scientific American (May 1998). 'I had to put on a ...
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'Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.'

Albert Einstein

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