Physics

By Allison Kubo Hutchsion  Although humans first witnessed nuclear reactors in 1942 with the development of the Chicago-Pile by Enrico Fermi, natural fission reactors existed billions of years ago. Fission is the process of breaking apart atoms of heavy elements such as uranium. Energy is released during fission in the form of heat and can
0 Comments
NASA image of a dust storm from 1998. Provided by the SeaWiFS Project, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, and ORBIMAGE – NASA Visible Earth, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=402743 By Jeremiah O’Mahony The Canary Islands spent a few days of March 2018 shrouded in Saharan dust. Calimas, two-to three-day-long gusts of sand and warm wind named for the haze they
0 Comments
By: Hannah Pell On September 22, 2020, NASA and the U. S. Space Command announced that they were tracking an unidentified piece of space debris that appeared to be hurtling toward the International Space Station (ISS). It was predicted to pass by within only a few kilometers, dangerously too close to chance, at 5:21 p.m.
0 Comments
By: Hannah Pell On 23 January 2020, the Doomsday Clock was calibrated to 100 seconds before midnight — the closest it has even been — by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the organization in charge of the clock. Because the Doomsday Clock is set no sooner than annually, this decision was made even before
0 Comments
Originally written for https://www.tamiawilliams.com/blog  - TamiaWilliams  Image: 5 Year Old Drip (Bobo hair ties, Clear skin & Sunday’s best), 2001  This is my mom’s favorite picture of me as a child. On the back, it’s dated Oct/Nov 2001 – Tamia – 5yrs old. I have no recollection of this day, when the picture was taken
0 Comments
 What makes skin so tough? Originally published: May 4 2015 – 11:45am, Inside Science News Service By: Lisa Marie Potter, Contributor (Inside Science) — Skin has to be flexible enough to jump, crawl, and kick with us. It also has to be resilient enough to withstand our falls, scrapes, and cuts. Scientists have marveled at skin’s strength for
0 Comments
By Allison Kubo Hutchison  Comparison of Earth, the Moon, and Ceres. Image by Gregory Revera NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA. Ceres is the largest body in the asteroid belt. It represents the history of our solar system as a protoplanet, a planetary embryo which formed 4.56 billion years ago. Earth itself is made of the agglomeration of several planetary
0 Comments
By: Hannah Pell On September 20th, 2019 — one year ago today as I write this — the infamous Three Mile Island (TMI) nuclear power plant was permanently shut down. TMI Unit-2 has been shuttered since the partial meltdown in 1979, an event described as the “most serious accident in U.S. commercial nuclear power plant
0 Comments
At sports venues designed to maximize crowd atmosphere, beware of hearing loss. Originally published: Apr 14 2014 – 2:45pm, Inside Science News Service By: Brian Owens, ISNS Contributor (ISNS) — The roar of the crowd is a major part of the excitement of attending a sporting event. A noisy, engaged crowd makes for a better experience for fans,
0 Comments
By Hannah Pell Alice and Bob are recurring characters in science. They can usually be found chatting over the phone or playing games of chance with each other, such as poker or flipping coins. But no matter Alice’s and Bob’s thought-experiment scenario, there is always some sort of a communication problem at the core of
0 Comments
By Allison Kubo Graphene is a comprised of a one-atom-thick layer of carbon atoms arranged in a honeycomb structure. This sheet can be wrapped into fullerenes, rolled into nanotubes, or stacked to form graphite the same thing uses ing pencils. All of these are made of carbon: diamonds, graphite, graphene are all different arrangements of
0 Comments
This x-ray map is much more than a beautiful desktop background. By Allison Kubo On June 19, the eRosita instrument aboard the Russian-German “Spectrum-Roentgen-Gamma” (SRG) mission finished cataloging more that 1 million high energy x-ray sources more than had ever been recorded before this study. The image above shows our sky illuminated in x-rays, the
0 Comments
By: Hannah Pell “The American Physical Society (APS) has a vision of the future of physics publishing, in 2020 or so.” So begins a 1993 Science article titled “Publication by Electronic Mail Takes Physics by Storm.” Burton Richter, then-president of APS and former head of the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC), elaborated: “Any physicist, any
0 Comments
The Case for Fahrenheit vs Celsius in terms of human comfort.  By Allison Kubo Hutchison Scientists have to know how to speak the languages of many units. Improper unit conversions have caused much heartache and suffering in the past, including the loss of a $125 million dollar Mars orbiter. In general, peer-reviewed science journals only
0 Comments
By: Hannah Pell Graphic from shutdownSTEM.com. Recently I started rereading When Physics Became King by Iwan Rhys Morus, a historian of science at Aberystwyth University in Wales. Published in 2005, Morus traces the development of physics through the nineteenth century, as the field gradually evolved from its roots in natural philosophy and mathematics to later
0 Comments
3 Groundbreaking Experiments Happening Aboard the ISS Right Now https://www.nasa.gov/image-feature/christina-koch-activates-the-new-biofabrication-facility NASA astronaut Christina Koch activates the BioFabrication Facility aboard the ISS in August 2019. Credit: NASA Astronauts often leave Earth with plenty of fanfare, but spacecraft bound for the International Space Station (ISS) also routinely carry components for on-orbit experimentation, known as payloads. These systems
0 Comments
Combatting the COVID-19 pandemic has become an international challenge and charge. It has highlighted the positive consequences of science operating on a global scale. It has shown how answers can be found quickly when scientists share results at unprecedented speed and research becomes increasingly open-access. It has shown that we must rely on scientists from
0 Comments
We’ve all wished for weightlessness at some point in our lives—that fantastical quality that powers the magic of flying broomsticks and fuels our fascination with space travel. Although we’re a long way from floating down the street, physicists have developed ways to mitigate the effect of gravity, from carefully aligning sound waves to mimicking free
0 Comments
The electromagnetic spectrum, an assortment of energy wiggling throughout space and time, is overwhelmingly underappreciated in our lives. There is no combination of existence that could happen without it. To celebrate the role that light plays in our lives, our ecosystem, and the operation of the universe, UNESCO declared March 16th as the International Day
0 Comments
UUltrasound is a powerful tool for looking inside the body. The scans see through layers of tissue to reveal pumping hearts, developing fetuses, troublesome blood clots, and injured muscles. They are relatively low-cost, portable, and have few side effects. Patients aren’t exposed to ionizing radiation or confined in a small space. They are, however, slathered
0 Comments
If you’re on the receiving end of a snapping shrimp’s attack, prepare to be stunned. Also known as pistol shrimp, these little crustaceans shoot lethal rounds at predators and prey at highway speeds—a direct hit can be outright fatal or shock the recipient into submission. It’s not just the force of the attack that’s stunning
0 Comments
The novel coronavirus outbreak has quickly become the largest pandemic in recent history, but it’s not unprecedented. The outbreak of the so-called “Spanish Flu”, an avian influenza virus, spread worldwide, infecting one-third of the population. While scientists are still learning how the coronavirus operates, we have lots of tools at our disposal to fight it.
0 Comments
Antoine Riaud might need to take his wife on a second honeymoon. You’re supposed to spend that first romantic getaway obsessing over your new spouse, not how cells behave in an acoustics experiment. But when inspiration calls…well, it can be hard to ignore. For some time Riaud had been working on an idea for a
0 Comments
“Bacteria always find new ways to manipulate their environment to protect themselves,” says Harshitha Kotian, a PhD candidate at the Indian Institute of Science. Like many physics students, Kotian once thought research on bacteria and antibiotics should be left to the biologists and chemists. Now she’s part of an interdisciplinary research team that recently uncovered
0 Comments
Until something disrupts the rhythm of life (or you’re in the car with a five-year-old), most of us don’t stop to analyze why things are the way they are. We’re too busy navigating life to step back and ponder our reality. But let’s try it for a few minutes. Photo by Mike Kononov on Unsplash. We live in
0 Comments
The future of clothing is electronic. Along with color and size, you’ll probably be able to choose clothes based on what they do—as determined by the sensors, indicators, and power sources embedded within them. Many researchers expect that such “smart clothing” will revolutionize at least some aspects of medicine and fashion. But in the age
0 Comments
Lucy and her Tesla Junior High classmates take a trip from Indiana to LIGO in Hanford, WA. Due to an unforeseen event, the laser goes offline right before the birth of a supernova. Follow spectra as she doubles up to undergo her biggest mission yet to collect gravitational waves from a rare exploding star. Spectra
0 Comments
Fields of gently sloping sand dunes may look quiet and passive in photographs, but the serene patterns may be defined by turbulent negotiations. That’s the conclusion reached by scientists from the University of Cambridge in the UK who have spent the last few years studying how dunes interact with one another. The findings, published in
0 Comments