Physics and Astronomy News Archive: August 2008
Scientists have uncovered the first experimental evidence for why the transition temperature of high-temperature superconductors cannot simply be elevated by increasing the electrons' binding energy.
Quantum 'Traffic Jam' in High-Temperature Superconductors
Source: BNL Posted: 8/28/08
Engineers have created a tiny motorized positioning device, called a monolithic comb drive, which can be used as a 'nanoscale manipulator' that precisely moves or senses movement and forces.
New 'Nano-Positioners' May Have Atomic-Scale Precision
Source: Purdue Posted: 8/28/08
Oxygen is constantly leaking out of Earth’s atmosphere and into space. Now, ESA’s formation-flying quartet of satellites, Cluster, has discovered the physical mechanism that is driving the escape.
Cluster Watches Earth’s Leaky Atmosphere
Source: ESA Posted: 8/28/08
The field of particle physics is poised to enter unknown territory with the startup of a massive new accelerator--the Large Hadron Collider (LHC)--in Europe this summer. On September 10, LHC scientists will attempt to send the first beam of protons speeding around the accelerator.
Large Hadron Collider Set To Unveil A New World Of Particle Physics
Source: UCSC Posted: 8/28/08
Laboratory tests aboard NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander have identified water in a soil sample. The lander's robotic arm delivered the sample Wednesday to an instrument that identifies vapors produced by the heating of samples.
NASA Spacecraft Confirms Martian Water, Mission Extended
Source: JPL/NASA Posted: 8/1/08
Scientists have devised a way to squeeze light into tighter spaces than ever thought possible, potentially opening doors to new technology in the fields of optical communications, miniature lasers and optical computers.
New Technique To Compress Light Discovered
Source: Berkeley Posted: 8/1/08
A new computer simulation now offers the most detailed picture yet of how first stars came into existence after Big Bang about 13.7 billion years ago.
The First Stars
Source: CfA Harvard Posted: 8/1/08
In a revolutionary leap that could transform solar power from a marginal, boutique alternative into a mainstream energy source, MIT researchers have overcome a major barrier to large-scale solar power: storing energy for use when the sun doesn't shine.
Major Discovery May Unleash Solar Revolution
Source: MIT Posted: 8/1/08