Microscopic glass blowing used to make tiny optical lenses

Inserting air into hot glass to form a bubble has been used to make glass objects since Roman times. In new work, researchers apply these same glass blowing principles on a microscopic scale to make specialized miniature ...

How to bend waves to arrive at the right place

Waves do not always spread uniformly into all directions, but can form a remarkable "branched flow." At TU Wien (Vienna) a method has now been developed to control this phenomenon.

Laser method promising for detecting trace chemicals in air

Researchers have developed a new laser-based method that can detect electric charges and chemicals of interest with unprecedented sensitivity. The new approach could one day offer a way to scan large areas for radioactive ...

Quantum music to my ears

It sounds like an old-school vinyl record, but the distinctive crackle in the music streamed into Chris Holloway's laboratory is atomic in origin. The group at the National Institute for Standards and Technology, Boulder, ...

An interaction of slipping beams

Accelerators generate beams of subatomic particles for cutting-edge science. The greater a beam's intensity, the more opportunities there are to study particle interactions. One way to increase the intensity is to merge two ...

Electron beam strengthens recyclable nanocomposite

Polymers reinforced with carbon fibers combine strength and low weight. They also boast significant green credentials as they are less resource-intensive during production and use, and they are readily recycled. While the ...

Pulsed electron beams shed light on plastics production

Plastics are all around us—they make up our water bottles, trash bags, packing materials, toys, containers, and more. About 300 million tons of plastic are produced worldwide each year, yet the details of what goes on at ...

Multicolored light twists in new knotted ways

Around age six, we start learning how to tie our shoelaces, making knots that look like ribbons—or possibly more complex forms, if we are a little clumsy. We use knots every day, but the type of knots we generally use are ...

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