Creating self-constructed folded macrocycles with low symmetry The synthesis and self-organization of biological macromolecules is essential for life on earth. Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich chemists now report the spontaneous emergence of complex ring-shaped macromolecules with low degrees of symmetry in the laboratory.
Galaxy encounter violently disturbed Milky Way, study finds The spiral-shaped disk of stars and planets is being pulled, twisted and deformed with extreme violence by the gravitational force of a smaller galaxy—the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC).
Researchers debut superfast exoplanet camera In the years since astronomers discovered the first exoplanet—a planet that orbits a star outside the solar system—more than 4,000 have been observed. Usually, their presence is given away by the slight effects they have on their parent stars, which vastly outshine them. For a decade and half, scientists have been trying to image exoplanets directly, but the Earth's atmosphere presents a major impediment when they attempt to leverage large ground-based telescopes.
Scientists characterize second known minimoon Astronomers using data collected with the Lowell Discovery Telescope (LDT) have helped to characterize only the second known minimoon of Earth, a newly discovered asteroid with the designation 2020 CD3, or CD3 for short. The LDT observations helped to clarify both the rotation rate and the orbit of this diminutive body, the latter of which helped prove that CD3 is a natural body and not some relic piece of human-made space junk.
A planet-forming disk still fed by the mother cloud Stellar systems like our own form inside interstellar clouds of gas and dust that collapse producing young stars surrounded by protoplanetary disks. Planets form within these protoplanetary disks, leaving clear gaps, which have been recently observed in evolved systems, at the time when the mother cloud has been cleared out. ALMA has now revealed an evolved protoplanetary disk with a large gap still being fed by the surrounding cloud via large accretion filaments. This shows that accretion of material onto the protoplanetary disk is continuing for times longer than previously thought, affecting the evolution of the future planetary system.
Nature is widely adapted to current climate—making it harder to adjust to a new one To do the right thing at the right time, organisms need to glean cues from their environment. With ongoing climate change, the timing of these cues, like the accumulation of warm days, is rapidly shifting. Now a network of researchers working on an unprecedentedly large dataset of seasonal events has shown that the timing of species' activity fail to keep up with their cues, and that how quickly activity shifts reflects past evolution.
Synopsis: Hints of Cosmic Birefringence?
Author(s): Matteo Rini
A new analysis of the cosmic microwave background shows that its polarization may be rotated by exotic effects indicating beyond-standard-model physics.
[Physics 13, s149] Published Mon Nov 23, 2020
Viewpoint: Imperfections Lower the Simulation Cost of Quantum Computers
Author(s): Jordi Tura
Classical computers can efficiently simulate the behavior of quantum computers if the quantum computer is imperfect enough.
[Physics 13, 183] Published Mon Nov 23, 2020
Focus: Watching Wood Dry
Author(s): Ruma Arabatti
Combining x-ray and MRI techniques leads to a microscopic explanation for the process by which water escapes from wood.
[Physics 13, 182] Published Fri Nov 20, 2020
Synopsis: The Sounds of Levitating Water Droplets
Author(s): Erika K. Carlson
Leidenfrost drops suspended above a hot surface by a thin layer of vapor emit periodic sounds in a similar way to pipe organs.
[Physics 13, s148] Published Thu Nov 19, 2020
Research News: AI Tools Boost Simple Technologies in a Shared World
Author(s): Rachel Berkowitz
Bicycles and indoor lighting are among many everyday features that can benefit from recent advances in artificial intelligence.
[Physics 13, 180] Published Thu Nov 19, 2020
Synopsis: Affirming the Bott Index
Author(s): Jessica Thomas
A useful metric for characterizing the topological behavior of fermions can be extended to bosonic systems as well.
[Physics 13, s147] Published Wed Nov 18, 2020
Q&A: Bringing Quantum to Machine Learning
Author(s): Katherine Wright
Maria Schuld reflects on the open questions about quantum machine-learning algorithms.
[Physics 13, 179] Published Wed Nov 18, 2020
His Dark Materials review: Season 2 is spine-chillingly excellent An exceptional cast continues to make His Dark Materials a brilliant show. The introduction of a character who studies the secrets of the cosmos is the cherry on top, says Emily Wilson
Why the vast emptiness of space isn't really that empty after all Space-time may seem empty, but the expanse between stars is filled with more interesting stuff than you may think, writes Chanda Prescod-Weinstein
UK's spherical nuclear fusion reactor tests new heat-reducing exhaust Researchers have successfully tested a new £55 million nuclear fusion machine in the UK which could help tackle problems caused by the super high temperatures involved in fusion reactions
Carlo Rovelli’s new book: Eclectic essays on physics, history and more Carlo Rovelli’s bestsellers saw him dubbed the poet of physics and showed a mind seeking knowledge for its own sake. His new book, There Are Places in the World Where Rules Are Less Important Than Kindness, reminds us why we need more minds like his
Carlo Rovelli: Where does the stuff that falls into a black hole go? What happens to matter in a black hole? The question has spawned many paradoxes, and in an extract from his latest book, physics superstar Carlo Rovelli proposes an answer
Mathematicians have found the shortest route to visit 2 million stars The travelling salesman problem – finding the shortest route between many locations – is notoriously tough, but it has now been solved for a map of over 2 million stars
Ball lightning is so strange it might just come from another dimension Mysterious floating orbs of light have puzzled scientists for centuries, inspiring no end of creative explanations. A new idea suggests they aren't entirely of this world
Physicists beat Lorentz reciprocity for microwave transmission New device could boost telecommunications and be adapted for photonics
Japan’s SuperKEKB set for first particle collisions Revamped accelerator will soon be smashing electrons and positrons together
Wood-based 'supermaterial' is stronger and tougher than steel New material is made by compressing treated wood
Three photons bind together to make a ‘molecule’ of light Technique could be used to create quantum-information systems
Nuclear excitation by electron capture seen at long last Breakthrough could lead to new type of energy source
Pistachio trees 'talk' to their neighbours, reveals statistical physics Ising model could account for nut production of pistachio orchards
US National Science Foundation clamps down on misconduct Agency will now require every grantee organization to report cases of sexual harassment