Archive for the ‘particle physics’ category: Page 7

Jan 24, 2024

Particle Accelerators in the Sky: NASA’s IXPE Explores “Microquasar” Mechanics

Posted by in categories: cosmology, particle physics

Insights from NASA ’s IXPE mission have transformed our understanding of particle acceleration in black holes, using the microquasar SS 433 as a case study to reveal aligned magnetic fields within its jets.

The powerful gravity fields of black holes can devour whole planets’ worth of matter – often so violently that they expel streams of particles traveling near the speed of light in formations known as jets. Scientists understand that these high-speed jets can accelerate these particles, called cosmic rays, but little is definitively known about that process.

Recent findings by researchers using data from NASA’s IXPE (Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer) spacecraft give scientists new clues as to how particle acceleration happens in this extreme environment. The observations came from a “microquasar,” a system comprised of a black hole siphoning off material from a companion star.

Jan 24, 2024

The Periodic Table Just Got a Cheat Sheet: Discover the Ten Electron Rule

Posted by in categories: chemistry, computing, particle physics

The ‘ten electron’ rule provides guidance for the design of single-atom alloy catalysts for targeted chemical reactions.

A collaborative team across four universities have discovered a very simple rule to design single-atom alloy catalysts for chemical reactions. The ‘ten electron rule’ helps scientists identify promising catalysts for their experiments very rapidly. Instead of extensive trial and error experiments of computationally demanding computer simulations, catalysts’ composition can be proposed simply by looking at the periodic table.

Single-atom alloys are a class of catalysts made of two metals: a few atoms of reactive metal, called the dopant, are diluted in an inert metal (copper, silver, or gold). This recent technology is extremely efficient at speeding up chemical reactions but traditional models don’t explain how they work.

Jan 24, 2024

Liquid lithium on the walls of a fusion device helps the plasma within maintain a hot edge

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, particle physics

Emerging research suggests it may be easier to use fusion as a power source if liquid lithium is applied to the internal walls of the device housing the fusion plasma.

Plasma, the fourth state of matter, is a hot gas made of electrically charged particles. Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) are working on solutions to efficiently harness the power of fusion to offer a cleaner alternative to fossil fuels, often using devices called tokamaks, which confine plasma using magnetic fields.

“The purpose of these devices is to confine the energy,” said Dennis Boyle, a staff research physicist at PPPL. “If you had much better energy confinement, you could make the machines smaller and less expensive. That would make the whole thing a lot more practical, and cost-effective so that governments and industry want to invest more in it.”

Jan 23, 2024

New Superconductor With Highest Critical Current for Its Type of Superconductor

Posted by in categories: chemistry, particle physics

A research team from Hefei Institutes of Physical Science (HFIPS), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), discovered a new superconducting material called (InSe2)xNbSe2, which possesses a unique lattice structure. The superconducting transition temperature of this material reaches 11.6 K, making it the transition metal sulfide superconductor with the highest transition temperature under ambient pressure.

TMD materials have received lots of attention due to the numerous applications in the fields of catalysis, energy storage, and integrated circuit. However, the relatively low superconducting transition temperatures of TMD superconductors have limited their potential use.

In this study, scientists successfully fabricated a new superconducting material with the chemical formula (InSe2)xNbSe2. Unlike the conventional conditions where isolated atoms are inserted into the van de Waals gaps of low dimensional materials, in (InSe2)xNbSe2 the intercalated indium atoms were found to form InSe2-bonded chains.

Jan 23, 2024

Chemists tie a knot using only 54 atoms

Posted by in categories: chemistry, particle physics

A trio of chemists at the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, working with a colleague from the University of Western Ontario, has tied the smallest knot ever, using just 54 atoms. In their study, published in the journal Nature Communications, Zhiwen Li, Jingjing Zhang, Gao Li and Richard Puddephatt accidentally tied the knot while trying to create metal acetylides in their lab.

The researchers were attempting to create types of alkynes called metal acetylides as a means to conduct other types of organic reactions. More specifically, they were attempting to connect carbon structures to gold acetylides—typically, such work results in the creation of simple chains of gold known as caternames.

But, unexpectedly, the result of one reaction created a chain that knotted itself into a trefoil knot with no loose ends. Trefoil knots are used in making pretzels and play a major role in . The researchers noted that the knot had a backbone crossing ratio (BCR) of 23. Knot BCRs are a measure of the strength of the knot. Most organic knots, the team notes, have a BCR somewhere between 27 and 33.

Jan 23, 2024

Breakthrough Method Opens New Window to the Quantum World

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

Researchers at HZB have created an innovative technique to precisely measure minuscule temperature variations as small as 100 microkelvin in the thermal Hall effect, overcoming previous limitations caused by thermal noise. By applying this technique to terbium titanate, the team showcased its effectiveness in producing consistent and dependable outcomes. This advancement in measuring the thermal Hall effect sheds light on the behavior of coherent multi-particle states in quantum materials, particularly their interactions with lattice vibrations, known as phonons.

The laws of quantum physics apply to all materials. However, in so-called quantum materials, these laws give rise to particularly unusual properties. For example, magnetic fields or changes in temperature can cause excitations, collective states, or quasiparticles that are accompanied by phase transitions to exotic states. This can be utilised in a variety of ways, provided it can be understood, managed, and controlled: For example, in future information technologies that can store or process data with minimal energy requirements.

The thermal Hall effect (THE) plays a key role in identifying exotic states in condensed matter. The effect is based on tiny transverse temperature differences that occur when a thermal current is passed through a sample and a perpendicular magnetic field is applied (see Figure 2). In particular, the quantitative measurement of the thermal Hall effect allows us to separate the exotic excitations from conventional behavior.

Jan 22, 2024

Scientists trap krypton atoms to form gas in nanotubes

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, particle physics

Learn how researchers utilized advanced transmission electron microscopy to observe krypton atoms joining together inside nano test tubes.

Nanotechnology is in full form as scientists successfully trap individual krypton atoms inside carbon nanotubes, forming a one-dimensional gas.

Jan 22, 2024

The Invisible Dance Of Particles

Posted by in categories: alien life, mathematics, particle physics

In 1,827, botanist Robert Brown studied pollen particles’ motion as they were suspended in water. These little grains seemed to jitter around randomly. Brown performed as variety of tests on them and realized that all small particles, not just pollen, exhibited the same motion when suspended in water. Something other than the presence of life was causing these little particles to move around. Mathematicians took note and quickly developed a theory describing this process and named it Brownian Motion in his honor.

This theory has expanded well beyond its original context and become a beautiful subfield of mathematics called Stochastic Processes. Nowhere was this influence illustrated better than in 1905 when Albert Einstein used the theory of Brownian Motion to verify the existence of atoms. The makeup of our universe’s tiniest particles was highly debated at the time, and Einstein’s work helped solidify atomic theory.

Wow, that’s quite the leap! In order to understand how we got from pollen grains to confirming atomic theory, we’re going to have to learn some background about Brownian Motion. In this article, I’ll spend some time talking about the basics. This includes some cool videos that demonstrate the patterns of Brownian Motion and the statistics going on behind the scenes. We’ll then dive into Einstein’s version which came as one of his extremely influential series of papers in 1905. There’s a lot of ground to cover, so let’s get started!

Jan 22, 2024

Reaching the quantum ground state of sound in waveguides: Scientists move a step closer

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

A team of scientists at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light led by Dr. Birgit Stiller has succeeded in cooling traveling sound waves in waveguides considerably further than has previously been possible using laser light. This achievement represents a significant move towards the ultimate goal of reaching the quantum ground state of sound in waveguides.

Unwanted noise generated by the acoustic waves at can be eliminated. This experimental approach both provides a deeper understanding of the transition from classical to quantum phenomena of and is relevant to quantum communication systems and future quantum technologies.

The quantum ground state of an acoustic wave of a certain frequency can be reached by completely cooling the system. In this way, the number of quantum particles, the so-called acoustic phonons, which cause disturbance to , can be reduced to almost zero and the gap between classical and bridged.

Jan 22, 2024

Unlocking the secrets of the universe through neutrinoless double beta decay

Posted by in category: particle physics

The discovery that neutrinos have mass was groundbreaking. However, their absolute mass remains unknown. Neutrinoless double beta decay experiments aim to determine whether neutrinos are their own antiparticles and, if so, provide a means to determine the mass of the neutrino species involved.

Determining the mass through neutrinoless double beta decay experiments using 76 Ge is only possible if scientists understand the properties of the decay of 76 Ge into selenium-76 (76 Se). A study published in Physical Review C provides key input for these kinds of experiments.

Germanium-based neutrinoless double beta decay (0νββ) experiments hold great promise for unraveling the mysteries surrounding neutrinos. The observation of this rare decay process not only offers the prospect of determining the nature of these enigmatic particles, but also the determination of their , provided the probability governing the decay is reliably known.

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