Physics

Taken from the March 2020 issue of Physics World. Members of the Institute of Physics can enjoy the full issue via the Physics World app. Libby Jackson is human exploration programme manager at the UK Space Agency. Jackson is one of 10 physicists profiled in the March issue of Physics World to launch our new Ask Me
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A new type of nanoelectromechanical relay for reliable high-temperature, non-volatile memory. Courtesy: Dinesh Pamunuwa A new type of relay that retains its state even when the power is switched off could be used to make a reliable high-temperature non-volatile digital memory. The device, developed by researchers at the University of Bristol in the UK, could
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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
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Giampaolo Pitruzzello is a postdoctoral research assistant in biophotonics at the University of York, UK. This post is part of a series on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the personal and professional lives of physicists around the world. If you’d like to share your own perspective, please contact us at pwld@ioppublishing.org. Giampaolo Pitruzzello, in
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Taken from the March 2020 issue of Physics World. Members of the Institute of Physics can enjoy the full issue via the Physics World app. (Courtesy: Priyamvada Natarajan) What skills do you use every day in your job? My research revolves around building testable physical models of cosmic phenomena that are guided by current observational data,
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Geyser-free zone: Zihua Zhu prepares his lithium-ion battery for in situ liquid secondary ion mass spectrometry. (Courtesy:Andrea Starr/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory) What happens in a lithium-ion battery when it first starts running? A complex series of events, it turns out – from electrolytic ion reorganization to a riot of chemical reactions. To explore this early
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Non-learner: the white-tipped plantcutter. (Courtesy: Allan Drewitt/ CC BY 2.5) The characteristics of the white-tipped plantcutter’s song are directly linked to its body size, a new study shows. A team of physicists and ornithologists in Argentina and Germany, including Gonzalo Uribarri at the University of Buenos Aires, discovered the relationship through a detailed analysis of
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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
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Pengfei Song, an assistant professor at the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois, used ultrasound localization microscopy to visualize oxygen levels in tumours. (Courtesy: Doris Dahl, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) The centres of tumours often experience oxygen deprivation as the blood supply struggles to keep up
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Sensing from the inside. A mock-up of an ingestible pill containing the wireless transceiver. (Courtesy: Imec) Researchers at Imec, a Leuven, Belgium-based centre for nanoelectronics and digital technologies, have developed a wireless receiver and transmitter small enough to fit inside a millimetre-scale capsule. The transceiver, which was presented at the International Solid-State Circuits conference in
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Taken from the March 2020 issue of Physics World. Members of the Institute of Physics can enjoy the full issue via the Physics World app. Is “biodynamic wine” is stuff or nonsense? In this article (originally published in Lateral Thoughts, Physics World’s regular column of humorous and offbeat essays, puzzles, crosswords, quizzes and comics, which
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Caught in a trap: Honeywell says it will soon be releasing a powerful new quantum computer. (Courtesy: Honeywell) Honeywell says that it will release the world’s most powerful commercial quantum computer by mid-2020. The US-based manufacturer of scientific and commercial equipment says that the device is based on trapped ions, which is a different technology
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