American Physical Society

DIY particle physics

A team of two undergraduate students and their adviser at Missouri Southern State University has built a type of particle detector usually found only at large research organizations like CERN.

dateApr 10, 2015 in General Physics
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A molecular compass for bird navigation

Each year, the Arctic Tern travels over 40,000 miles, migrating nearly from pole to pole and back again. Other birds make similar (though shorter) journeys in search of warmer climes. How do these birds manage ...

dateFeb 27, 2015 in Plants & Animals
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Flexible, stretchable fire-ant rafts

What do Jell-O, toothpaste, and floating fire-ant rafts have in common? All are so-called "viscoelastic" materials, meaning that they can both resist flow under stress, like honey, and they can bounce back ...

dateNov 26, 2013 in General Physics
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Better combustion through plasma

Mix together air, fuel, and heat and you get combustion, the chemical reaction that powers most engines in planes, trains and automobiles. And if you throw in some ionized gas (plasma), it turns out, you can sustain combustion ...

dateNov 26, 2013 in Plasma Physics
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The physics of beer tapping

An old, hilarious if somewhat juvenile party trick involves covertly tapping the top of someone's newly opened beer bottle and then standing back as the suds foam out onto the floor.

dateNov 24, 2013 in General Physics
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