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The cosmic start of lightning

Even though lightning is a common phenomenon, the exact mechanism triggering a lightning discharge remains elusive. Scientists at the Dutch national research institute for mathematics CWI, the University ...

date3 hours ago in General Physics
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Using lasers to see the shape of molecules

A scientist in a crisp, white lab coat and protective eye goggles sits behind a safety shield, controller in hand. In front of him is a powerful titanium-sapphire laser, aimed at a crystal lens. His thumb gently squeezes ...

dateJun 24, 2015 in General Physics
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Could we one day control the path of lightning?

Lightning dart across the sky in a flash. And even though we can use lightning rods to increase the probability of it striking at a specific location, its exact path remains unpredictable. At a smaller scale, ...

Scientists film shock waves in diamond

Researchers have used ultra-short pulses of X-rays to film shock waves in diamonds. The study headed by DESY scientists opens up new possibilities for studying the properties of materials. Thanks to the extremely ...

The physics of badminton

(—When it comes to flying projectiles, the badminton shuttlecock or "birdie" is unusual in that it flips on impact with a racket so that it always flies cork-first. This flipping motion arises ...

The protein problem

The importance of proteins is difficult to overstate; they play a critical role in countless biological processes. An enhanced understanding of their structure and function is essential to advancing the state ...

OPERA detects its fifth tau neutrino

The OPERA (Oscillation Project with Emulsion-tRacking Apparatus) experiment at the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) at Gran Sasso in Italy has detected the fifth occurrence of a tau neutrino ...

A new and game-changing magnetoresistance

More than 150 years ago, William Thomson, later Lord Kelvin, discovered the magnetoresistive effect. Today, this finding enables sensors to measure the rotational speed of a car wheel, and is also used in ...

3D potential through laser annihilation

Whether in the pages of H.G. Wells, the serial adventures of Flash Gordon, or that epic science fiction saga that is Star Wars, the appearance of laser beams—or rays or phasers or blasters—ultimately ...

A novel source of X-rays for imaging purposes

Physicists at LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics have validated a novel laser-driven means of generating bright and highly energetic X-ray beams. The method opens up new ways of imaging ...

How DNA protects itself from UV light

X-rays from the Linac Coherent Light Source were used to measure the ultrafast response of DNA nucleobases to ultraviolet light. Researchers found that the UV excited state in the nucleobase thymine decays ...

Producing spin-entangled electrons
Fin regenerative capability abates during aging
Autonomous Robird is one step closer
Radar guards against space debris
Metal encapsulation optimizes chemical reactions
Miniature pump regulates internal ocular pressure
Revealing faded frescos
Four reasons why the Terminator is already here
Algorithm detects nudity in images, offers demo page
NGC 2367: Buried in the heart of a giant
How oversized atoms could help shrink
Self-assembly of molecular Archimedean polyhedra
Live imaging reveals how wound healing influences cancer
New method can make cheaper solar energy storage
Why human egg cells don't age well

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