Archive for the ‘physics’ category: Page 2

Jun 10, 2019

How To Build A Real Lightsaber

Posted by in categories: energy, physics, weapons

As even casual Star Wars fans will know, lightsabers are probably the coolest weapon ever to make an appearance on the big screen. Lightsaber fights are so elegant that they are almost hypnotic and, even though not all of us might have a strong enough flow of Force running through our veins, a lightsaber in the right hand is by far the deadliest weapon to be found in the universe.

The idea behind a lightsaber is simple genius: a light-weight and immensely powerful tool that uses a blade of energy to not only slice up disciples of the Dark Side in a single blow but also act as an effective shield against laser blasts. So why don’t we have working lightsabers in real life? Surely physicists must be smart enough (and big enough Star Wars fans) to be able to produce one of these incredible objects.

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Jun 8, 2019

Priority to US09/443,527

Posted by in categories: computing, physics

A gravitational wave generating device comprising an energizing means such as magnetrons, which act upon energizable elements such as film bulk acoustic resonators or FBARs. A computer that controls the magnetrons’ phase. A gravitational wave generation device that exhibits directivity and forms a gravitational-wave beam. The utilization of a medium in which the gravitational wave speed is reduced in order to effect refraction of the gravitational wave and be a gravitational wave lens. A gravitational wave generator device that can be directed in order to propel an object by its momentum or by changing the gravitational field nearby the object to urge it in a preferred direction and be a propulsion means.

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Jun 7, 2019

The Elusive Theory of Everything

Posted by in category: physics

Physicists have long sought to find one final theory that would unify all of physics. Instead they may have to settle for several.

  • By Stephen Hawking, Leonard Mlodinow on October 1, 2010

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Jun 6, 2019

Physicists Debate Hawking’s Idea That the Universe Had No Beginning

Posted by in categories: physics, space

A recent challenge to Stephen Hawking’s biggest idea — about how the universe might have come from nothing — has cosmologists choosing sides.

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Jun 6, 2019

Black Hole Computers

Posted by in categories: computing, cosmology, physics

In keeping with the spirit of the age, researchers can think of the laws of physics as computer programs and the universe as a computer.

  • By Seth Lloyd, Y. Jack Ng on April 1, 2007

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Jun 6, 2019

Black Hole Propulsion as Technosignature

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

When he was considering white dwarfs and neutron stars in the context of what he called ‘gravitational machines,’ Freeman Dyson became intrigued by the fate of a neutron star binary. He calculated in his paper of the same name (citation below) that gradual loss of energy through gravitational radiation would bring the two neutron stars together, creating a gravitational wave event of the sort that has since been observed. Long before LIGO, Dyson was talking about gravitational wave detection instruments that could track the ‘gravitational flash.’

Image: Artist conception of the moment two neutron stars collide. Credit: LIGO / Caltech / MIT.

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Jun 4, 2019

Making metal with the lightness of air

Posted by in category: physics

Gold, silver and copper are heavy metals, but LLNL scientists can now make them nearly as light as air—in a form so tiny it can ride on a mosquito’s back.

The groundbreaking science, part of a joint NIF/Physical and Life Sciences (PLS) project supported by the Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program, created these ultra-low density to give physicists better X-ray sources to employ in experiments that support NIF’s Stockpile Stewardship mission.

The foam is the product of a nearly decade-long research effort by members of the Lab’s NIF and PLS directorates for use on inertial confinement fusion (ICF) experiments at NIF, the world’s most energetic laser system.

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Jun 3, 2019

Something’s Hiding in Our Outer Solar System, But It Might Not Be Planet Nine

Posted by in categories: physics, space

Somewhere in the outer reaches of the Solar System, beyond the orbit of Neptune, something wonky is happening. A few objects are orbiting differently from everything else, and we don’t know why.

A popular hypothesis is that an unseen object called Planet Nine could be messing with these orbits; astronomers are avidly searching for this planet. But earlier this year physicists came up with an alternative explanation they think is more plausible.

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Jun 3, 2019

Researchers can now predict properties of disordered polymers

Posted by in categories: engineering, physics

Thanks to a team of researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, scientists are able to read patterns on long chains of molecules to understand and predict behavior of disordered strands of proteins and polymers. The results could, among other things, pave the way to develop new materials from synthetic polymers.

The lab of Charles Sing, assistant professor of chemical and at Illinois, provided the theory behind the discovery, which was then verified through experiments conducted in the lab of Sarah Perry, assistant professor of chemical engineering at UMass Amherst, and Illinois alumna. The collaborators detailed their findings in a paper titled “Designing Electrostatic Interactions via Polyelectrolyte Monomer Sequence” published in ACS (American Chemical Society) Central Science.

The colleagues set out to understand the physics behind the precise sequence of charged monomers along the chain and how it affects the polymer’s ability to create self-assembling liquid called complex coacervates.

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May 31, 2019

Supersymmetric ‘Sleptons’ Might Exist. But They’d Have to Be Huge

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

The biggest, most expensive science experiment in the world might be losing all its dark matter. But physicists are looking on the bright side.

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