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Physics News

Digital Journal's top science stories of 2014 Special

2014 has seen a myriad of fascinating science news. Digital Journal looks back at the year in science and selects the 12 most interesting stories that have impacted people's lives around the world.

Earth's magnetic field could flip within a human lifetime

Berkeley - Could the world turn upside down — magnetically speaking that is? The answer is yes according to a new joint study by researchers from Europe and America — and a flip of Earth’s magnetic field could occur within our lifetimes.

Super fast lasers break world record

London - Researchers have engineered a record-breaking laser that accelerates the interaction between light and matter by over 10 times.

Graphene sandwich bites for next-gen electronics

Manchester - Researchers have discovered that sandwiching layers of grey graphene with white graphene together could produce materials capable of creating high-frequency electronic devices.

New advancement with graphene

Scientists have reported the first experimental observation of ultra-fast charge transfer in grapehene based semiconductors. The recorded charge transfer time was under 50 femtoseconds. This sounds fast, but was does it mean?

Scientists detect echoes of Big Bang

Washington - In a major discovery for understanding the origins of the universe, US scientists said Monday they have detected echoes of the Big Bang 14 billion years ago.

Oldest known star discovered by Australian astronomers

Australian astronomers have discovered the oldest known star in the universe through what the lead researcher describes as a "needle-in-a-haystack" situation.

Super, bendy glass invented

A research group have created a new type of glass that is "super tough." When dropped onto the floor the glass does not shatter, it simply bends.

What makes a kettle whistle?

What causes the sound when the water in a kettle on a hob boils and turns to steam? The answer in many physics text books might be wrong, according to a study.

Op-Ed: Life as a Hologram — We're all just projections

It may be news to you and it may need an explanation, but here it is: You are a hologram. And while this second statement may not appear to be as speculative, it still needs to be said considering the first statement: You are real.

New compound cools down as it heats up

The headline may read a little odd, but the compound vanadium dioxide does indeed become cooler as heat is applied. This insight means that it could be used to disguise soldiers from infrared sensors.

Attempts to understand 'dark matter' fall flat

Dark matter, the substance that is thought to make up more than a quarter of the universe, remains a greater mystery. Scientists have now stated that earlier findings, seemingly discovering dark matter particles, are not correct.

Science explains why Usain Bolt is the world's fastest man

Usain Bolt is the world's fastest man. But what makes him so fast? Scientists have said that they can explain Bolt's extraordinary speed through the use of a mathematical model.

New technique for detecting landslides

Researchers have developed a way to remotely detect the events using energy unleashed by landslides. This is similar, in principle, to the way that geologists identify earthquakes using waves of energy.

Has dark matter finally been detected? AMS scientists drop a hint

Researchers have hinted "big news" for the world in the search for dark matter. The physicist in charge of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) experiment dropped a hint at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Physicists: Earth may be breaking through dark matter walls

University of Victoria physicists concluded earth may be traveling through dark matter walls, on its way through a universe of force fields dividing dark matter bubbles created after the big bang, and detecting this should be possible with today's tools.

Scientists record hottest temperature ever measured

Scientists have measured the hottest recorded temperature ever. Paradoxically this highest ever temperature is actually expressed as a negative value. The finding will be useful for understanding theoretical dark matter in the universe.

Video: The science of love and caring of 'Wright's Law'

Louisville - Mr. Jeffrey Wright, a physics teacher at the Louisville Male Traditional High School, is one of those memorable and inspirational teachers. He was the subject of a short film called "Wright's Law" made by a former student.

Japanese physicists grow helium crystals in zero gravity

Helium crystals are grown under zero gravity conditions by a team of Japanese physicists with the help of a phenomenon called parabolic flight.

How to build the perfect sandcastle?

How to build the perfect sandcastle is a question that many children and adults consider during the summer. The answer to the question, as put forward by scientists, is water.

Canadian scientists are the first to measure the antimatter atom

Burnaby - A team of Canadian physicists have measured an antimatter atom for the first time. The research could prove to be important in understanding the Big Bang and the creation of the universe.

Evidence of Higgs boson found in U.S. collider data

Batavia - Recently analyzed data from a defunded American particle collider in Batavia, IL shows that the elusive Higgs boson, the smallest theorized particle of matter, may have been found.

ESA's ATVs named to tell space science history while stocking ISS

The European Space Agency announced its fifth Automated Transfer Vehicle has been named Georges Lemaître, after the Belgian scientist who provided the first observational estimation of the Hubble constant, which was later called the Big Bang theory.

Op-Ed: Top space stories of 2011 – Many more to come in 2012

Toronto - Every day, physicists, astronomers and scientists discover something new about the universe we live – and beyond. What were some of the top out-of-this-world space stories of the year?

Discovered – black holes large enough to swallow a galaxy

Astronomers have unexpectedly discovered two of the largest black holes ever seen in the universe. The black holes are millions of times larger and denser than any previously recorded: large enough to swallow out solar system many times over.

Black hole devours star one million times the mass of our sun

Washington - Two studies are researching a supermassive black hole that devoured a star that ventured too close to the monster. The star was one million times the mass of our sun and light from the ordeal took 3.9 billion years to reach Earth.

Hong Kong physicists prove time travel is impossible

Professor Shengwang Du and a team of physicists at at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) claim they proved a single photon cannot travel faster than light-speed, upholding Einstein's causality theory and nixing time travel.

LHC matter dethrones neutron star as super-dense king

Scientists announced this week that they have found the densest form of matter in the known universe. This exotic material may be the parent of all known matter.

Online Archive of Physicist Interviews: valuable new resource

The American Institute of Physics’ Niels Bohr Library and Archives has launched an online database of historical interviews with 20th century physicists.

Inspirational stories from 2010 Lindau meeting of Nobel laureates

The annual Lindau meeting of young scholars with Nobel laureates concluded its 60th edition in 2010. To celebrate this milestone, Nature has come out with a supplement.
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Yvonne Brill, rocket scientist
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