New theory broadens phase transition exploration

In a paper recently published in Physical Review Letters, Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers offer a new theory that predicts defect density across a variety of phase transitions. The research opens new routes for ...

Researchers invent 100% biodegradable 'barley plastic'

A biofriendly new material made from barley starch blended with fiber from sugarbeet waste—a strong material that turns into compost should it end up in nature—has been created at the University of Copenhagen. In the ...

New method enhances X-ray microscopy for detecting tiny defects

X-ray microscopes are essential for examining components and materials because they can be used to detect changes and details in the material. Until now, however, it has been difficult to detect small cracks or tiny inclusions ...

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In philosophy, the theory of materialism holds that the only thing that exists is matter; that all things are composed of material and all phenomena (including consciousness) are the result of material interactions. In other words, matter is the only substance. To many philosophers, not only is 'physicalism' synonymous with 'materialism', but they use both words to describe a position that supports ideas from physics which may not be matter in the traditional sense (like anti-matter or gravity). Therefore much of the generally philosophical discussion below on materialism may be relevant to physicalism. Also related are the ideas of methodological naturalism (i.e. "let's at least do science as though physicalism is true") and metaphysical naturalism (i.e. "philosophy and science should operate according to the physical world, and that's all that exists"). The philosophical alternatives to materialism are some forms of monism (besides the materialistic monism), dualism and idealism.

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