American Institute of Physics

Magnetic shielding of ion beam thruster walls

Electric rocket engines known as Hall thrusters, which use a super high-velocity stream of ions to propel a spacecraft in space, have been used successfully onboard many missions for half a century. Erosion of the discharge ...

Feb 13, 2013
4.9 / 5 (15) 4 | with audio podcast

Acoustic levitation made simple

A team of researchers at the University of São Paulo in Brazil has developed a new levitation device that can hover a tiny object with more control than any instrument that has come before.

Jan 05, 2015
4.8 / 5 (15) 1

Densest array of carbon nanotubes grown to date

Carbon nanotubes' outstanding mechanical, electrical and thermal properties make them an alluring material to electronics manufacturers. However, until recently scientists believed that growing the high density ...

Sep 20, 2013
5 / 5 (14) 0 | with audio podcast

Japanese team creates new lithium battery

The long life of lithium ion batteries makes them the rechargeable of choice for everything from implantable medical devices to wearable consumer electronics. But lithium ion batteries rely on liquid chemistries ...

May 20, 2014
4.6 / 5 (14) 1

Disorder + disorder = more disorder?

If you took the junk from the back of your closet and combined it with the dirty laundry already on your floor, you would have an even bigger mess. While this principle will likely always hold true for our ...

Nov 04, 2014
4.5 / 5 (13) 4

Return of the vacuum tube

Vacuum tubes have been retro for decades. They almost completely disappeared from the electronics scene when consumers exchanged their old cathode ray tube monitors for flat screen TVs. Their replacement – the semiconductor ...

May 18, 2012
5 / 5 (11) 3

Wrangling flow to quiet cars and aircraft

Plasmas are a soup of charged particles in an electric field, and are normally found in stars and lightning bolts. With the use of high voltage equipment, very small plasmas can be used to manipulate fluid ...

Oct 18, 2013
5 / 5 (11) 1 | with audio podcast