Laser light makes a comeback (literally)

Straight-line constant-speed propagation in free space is a basic characteristic of light. In a recent study published in Communications Physics, researchers from Osaka University discovered the phenomenon of reciprocating propagation of laser pulse intensity in free space.   Spati

Explosive gas from a gun can mask crime scene blood spatter patterns

Inspired by a famous murder case, a team of researchers has figured out how the gas coming from a gun that has just fired can affect blood spatter in close-range shootings. Not only can this vortex of gas slow down blood droplets, it can even turn their trajectories around completely. Alexander Y

Researchers find bubbles speed up energy transfer

Energy flows through a system of atoms or molecules by a series of processes such as transfers, emissions, or decay. You can visualize some of these details like passing a ball (the energy) to someone else (another particle), except the pass happens quicker than the blink of an eye, so fast that t

Scientists create a new electronegativity scale

Skoltech chemists have proposed a new electronegativity scale and published their findings in Nature Communications.   The concept of electronegativity introduced in the 1930s by Linus Pauling, a great American chemist, refers to the ability of an atom to attract electron

Physicists have measured gravity on the smallest scale ever

Physicists have measured the gravitational field of a smaller object than ever before, a gold sphere with a mass of about 90 milligrams. This could help us understand how gravity fits together with quantum mechanics on the smallest scales. We have long known that our understanding of gravity is m

Researchers find evidence of elusive Odderon particle

For 50 years, the research community has been hunting unsuccessfully for the so-called Odderon particle. Now, a Swedish-Hungarian research group has discovered the mythical particle with the help of extensive analysis of experimental data from the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Switzerland. &nb

'Magnetic graphene' forms a new kind of magnetism

Researchers have identified a new form of magnetism in so-called magnetic graphene, which could point the way toward understanding superconductivity in this unusual type of material.   The researchers, led by the University of Cambridge, were able to control the conductivity and ma

New type of atomic clock could help scientists detect dark matter and study gravity's effect on time

Atomic clocks are the most precise timekeepers in the world. These exquisite instruments use lasers to measure the vibrations of atoms, which oscillate at a constant frequency, like many microscopic pendulums swinging in sync. The best atomic clocks in the world keep time with such precision that,

New constraints on alternative gravity theories that could inform dark matter research

While particle theories are currently the most favored explanations for dark mater, physicists have still been unable to detect dark matter particles in ways that would confirm or contradict these theories. Some theorists have thus been exploring new theories of gravity that clearly account for an

Physicists observe the emergence of collective behaviour

Phase transitions describe dramatic changes in properties of a macroscopic system—like the transition from a liquid to a gas. Starting from individual ultracold atoms, Heidelberg University physicists were able to observe the emergence of such a transition with an increasing number of partic

Air-filled fiber cables capable of outperforming standard optical fibers

The next generation of optical fiber could be a step closer as a new study has shown that fibers with a hollowed out center, created in Southampton, could reduce loss of power currently experienced in standard glass fibers.   The COVID-19 crisis has seen people all over the world rapidl

Supersized wind turbines generate clean energy—and surprising physics

Twenty years ago, wind energy was mostly a niche industry that contributed less than 1% to the total electricity demand in the United States. Wind has since emerged as a serious contender in the race to develop clean, renewable energy sources that can sustain the grid and meet the ever-rising glob

Searching for axion dark matter conversion signals in the magnetic fields around neutron stars

According to theoretical predictions, axion dark matter could be converted into radio frequency electromagnetic radiation when it approaches the strong magnetic fields that surround neutron stars. This radio signature, which would be characterized by an ultranarrow spectral peak at a frequency tha

Going beyond the anti-laser may enable long-range wireless power transfer

Ever since Nikola Tesla spewed electricity in all directions with his coil back in 1891, scientists have been thinking up ways to send electrical power through the air. The dream is to charge your phone or laptop, or maybe even a healthcare device such as a pacemaker, without the need for wires an

Researchers describe fundamental processes behind movement of magnetic particles

The motion of magnetic particles as they pass through a magnetic field is called magnetophoresis. Until now, not much was known about the factors influencing these particles and their movement. Now, researchers from the University of Illinois Chicago describe several fundamental processes associat

Dark matter candidate could display stringy effects in the lab

A hypothetical particle that could solve one of the biggest puzzles in cosmology just got a little less mysterious. A RIKEN physicist and two colleagues have revealed the mathematical underpinnings that could explain how so-called axions might generate string-like entities that create a strange vo

CCNY team in quantum algorithm breakthrough

Researchers led by City College of New York physicist Pouyan Ghaemi report the development of a quantum algorithm with the potential to study a class of many-electron quantums system using quantum computers. Their paper, entitled "Creating and Manipulating a Laughlin-Type ν=1/3 Fractional Quant

New tractor beam has potential to tame lightning

Lightning never strikes twice, so the saying goes, but new technology may allow us to control where it hits the ground, reducing the risk of catastrophic bushfires.   Many of Australia's devastating 2019-20 bushfires were caused by dry lightning strikes. An international team