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Your search has returned 138 articles:
  • Cool Jobs: Getting to know volcanoes

    Something was wrong with Ben Kennedy’s pumice. He had placed the porous, volcanic rock into an autoclave. The high temperature and pressure inside this device would imitate the interior of a volcano. But when the scientist opened the door to take out the rock, it had shrunk. It was now only about half its original size.

    Kennedy didn’t think it had simply melted. “The weird thing was, it...

    07:15 AM, May 12, 2016 STEM Careers, Earth, Physics
    Readability Score: 7.3
  • Insects can patch their broken ‘bones’

    When a person breaks a leg, they might get a splint, cast or boot to cradle the bone as it heals. But what happens when a locust breaks a limb? Instead of a cast on the outside, the insect will patch itself up from the inside. These patches can restore up to 66 percent of a leg’s former strength, a new study finds.

    The data also suggest new ideas for mending various types of pipes — from...

    07:00 AM, May 9, 2016 Animals, Materials Science, Physics
    Readability Score: 6.7
  • Possibility of strange new particle surprises physicists

    Last winter physicists detected hints of a potential new subatomic particle. It appeared to exceed their wildest dreams. Soon they may learn for sure if it exists at all. “I’m not aware of anybody who’d predicted the existence of such a particle,” says John Ellis. He’s a theoretical physicist in England at King’s College London.

    He likens the new data, he says, to “a dish on the table...

    07:00 AM, May 6, 2016 Physics, Light & Radiation
    Readability Score: 8.1
  • Sunlight + gold = steaming water (no boiling needed)

    A new, extremely black material can turn water into steam using only sunlight. And it can do this without bringing that water to a boil. The trick: using gold nanoparticles in a mix of sizes, each just tens of billionths of a meter wide. This mix of sizes allows the material to absorb 99 percent of all visible light and some infrared (heat) light as well. In fact, that’s why the material is...

    07:00 AM, April 22, 2016 Physics, Materials Science
    Readability Score: 8.1
  • Feeling objects that aren't there

    Imagine this. You wake up in the morning to the irritating buzz of your alarm. Instead of fumbling for a snooze button, you wave your hand in the air in the general direction of the clock. There, in mid-air, you find it: an invisible button. It’s an illusion you can feel, like a hologram for your fingers. One swipe at the button, and the alarm shuts off. You’re free to sleep for a few more...

    07:15 AM, April 14, 2016 Technology, Computers & Electronics, Light & Radiation, Physics
    Readability Score: 6.9
  • Why Paralympic sprinters have trouble with curves

    Curves tend to put the brakes on human runners. They’re even harder for amputees using an artificial limb. Research now shows that even which leg the prosthesis is on can affect how fast someone can take a curve.

    Two important forces are in play when a sprinter rounds a bend. First, working against gravity slows a runner. But centripetal (Sen-TRIP-eh-tul) force also is at work. It pulls...

    07:00 AM, April 11, 2016 Body functions, Physics
    Readability Score: 7.3
  • Smash hit: Making 'diamond' that's harder than diamonds

    Scientists suspected that if a meteorite smashed into Earth hard enough, it could change a type of soft, pure carbon — the graphite in pencil lead — into a mineral harder than diamond. Now, scientists say they have confirmed that can happen. They witnessed it from front-row seats.

    No, they didn’t have to dodge an incoming space rock. Standing in for the meteorite was a high-energy laser...

    07:00 AM, April 6, 2016 Chemistry, Physics, Earth
    Readability Score: 7.8
  • Black hole smashup sent out ‘yottawatts’ of power

    A black hole collision, detected last September, served as the basis for confirming the existence of gravity waves. Scientists were only able to see those waves, or the effects they had on space-time, because they came from an explosion that blasted out such an intensely big amount of power. That energy is measured in watts. And the black-hole smashup released a mind-blowing amount.

    The...

    12:00 PM, April 5, 2016 Physics, Space
    Readability Score: 7.6
  • Scrubbing bubbles: Secret to ouch-free dental cleanings?

    People with sensitive teeth often hate visiting the dentist. One reason: Having their teeth cleaned and polished can hurt. Now, scientists have taken a close-up look at the tool that dentists use for that cleaning — and the tiny bubbles it creates. They think their work could lead to a new tool that can clean teeth without ever touching them. It would simply let the bubbles do the scrubbing....

    07:00 AM, March 28, 2016 Physics, Technology
    Readability Score: 6.9
  • Blowing bubbles for science

    There’s a science behind the art of blowing soap bubbles. It’s not the thickness of the soapy film that matters. Rather, the speed of the blowing gust of air determines whether bubbles will emerge, scientists now report.

    “We have all blown soap bubbles,” says study coauthor Laurent Courbin. He is a physicist at the University of Rennes in France. “It’s nice to be able to explain simple...

    07:00 AM, March 11, 2016 Physics
    Readability Score: 7.0

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