Three ways to travel at (nearly) the speed of light

One hundred years ago today, on May 29, 1919, measurements of a solar eclipse offered verification for Einstein's theory of general relativity. Even before that, Einstein had developed the theory of special relativity, which ...

Coffee machine helps physicists to make more efficient ion traps

Scientists from ITMO University have developed and applied a new method for analyzing the electromagnetic field inside ion traps. For the first time, they explained the field deviations inside nonlinear radio-frequency traps. ...

Gamma-ray blazars in the sky

When the supermassive black holes at the center of galaxies accrete material, they can eject powerful jets of charged particles at speeds approaching that of light. These particles in turn emit radiation across the electromagnetic ...

Intelligent metamaterials behave like electrostatic chameleons

A chameleon can flexibly change its colour to match its surroundings. And a similar phenomenon can now be seen in a new class of smart materials called metamaterials. The trouble is that these metamaterials lack the ability ...

Putting a new spin on Majorana fermions

The combination of different phases of water—solid ice, liquid water, and water vapor—would require some effort to achieve experimentally. For instance, if you wanted to place ice next to vapor, you would have to continuously ...

Transmit your sound recording from Mars to the Earth

An exciting new competition is giving citizens of planet Earth the opportunity to get their voices to Mars in the next phase of the ExoMars programme. The ExoMars rover and platform will launch to the Red Planet in 2020.

Lightning's electromagnetic fields may have protective properties

Lightning was the main electromagnetic presence in the Earth's atmosphere long before the invention of electricity. There are some 2,000 thunderstorms active at any given time, so humans and other organisms have been bathed ...

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