Category: physics

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Wash your hands, it’s always good advice.

Freeman J. Dyson (1923–2020), Scientist and Writer, Who Dreamt Among the Stars, Dies at 96:

RIP Freeman Dyson, one of the last giants of the 20th century Physics. 😢


Dyson sphere

Institute for Advanced Study obituary:

Freeman J. Dyson (1923–2020), Scientist and Writer, Who Dreamt Among the Stars, Dies at 96

Fragile topology: Two new studies explain the strange electron flow

in future materials.

“…topological insulators have an uncommon property:

their interiors are insulators—where electrons cannot flow—but their surfaces are perfect conductors, where electrons flow without resistance […]

That was the picture until the discovery two years ago that some topological materials are actually unable to conduct current on their surface, a phenomenon that earned the name fragile topology.”

Caption: “

Remarkable materials known as topological insulators have a fragile side. Credit: Zhi-Da Song, Princeton University.


(arXiv preprintPDF)

Researchers build a particle accelerator that fits on a chip

Caption. This image, magnified 25,000 times, shows a section of a prototype accelerator-on-a-chip. The segment shown here are one-tenth the width of a human. The oddly shaped gray structures are nanometer-sized features carved in to silicon that focus bursts of infrared laser light, shown in yellow and purple, on a flow of electrons through the center channel. As the electrons travel from left to right, the light focused in the channel is carefully synchronized with passing particles to move them forward at greater and greater velocities. By packing 1,000 of these acceleration channels onto an inch-sized chip, Stanford researchers hope to create an electron beam that moves at 94 percent of the speed of light, and to use this energized particle flow for research and medical applications.

Credit: Neil Sapra



On-chip integrated laser-driven particle accelerator (Science, arXiv preprintPDF)

Quantum Bullshit Detector, pretty much needed today I fear.

“…The Non-Member State Summer Student Programme represents a unique opportunity for students from around the world, especially from less advantaged countries, to spend their next summer getting involved in some of the world’s biggest scientific experiments at CERN. For most of the students, their summer at CERN will represent a lot of firsts. The first time they will travel abroad, the first time they will work in a fully-equipped physics laboratory, the first time they will meet fellow students from different cultural backgrounds.”

Tip of the iceberg by Henry Pollack

Physics of icebergs buoyancy. Spoiler: the situation depicted in the image does not exist in nature.

Source: Physics Today – Image by

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