Physics and Astronomy

This area deals with the fundamental laws and building blocks of nature and how they interact, the properties and the behavior of matter, and research into space and time and their structures.

innovations-report provides in-depth reports and articles on subjects such as astrophysics, laser technologies, nuclear, quantum, particle and solid-state physics, nanotechnologies, planetary research and findings (Mars, Venus) and developments related to the Hubble Telescope.

New study shows how black holes get their ’kicks’

RIT professor researches black-hole mergers

When black holes collide, look out! An enormous burst of gravitational radiation results as they violently merge into one massive black hole. The “kick” that occurs during the collision could knock the black hole clear out of its galaxy.

A new study describes the consequences of such an intergalactic collision.

Astrophysicist David Merritt, professor at Rochester Institute of Technology, and co-authors Milos Milosavljevic

Astronomers unravel a mystery of the Dark Ages

Undergraduates’ work blames comet for 6th-century ’nuclear winter’

Scientists at Cardiff University, UK, believe they have discovered the cause of crop failures and summer frosts some 1,500 years ago – a comet colliding with Earth.

The team has been studying evidence from tree rings, which suggests that the Earth underwent a series of very cold summers around 536-540 AD, indicating an effect rather like a nuclear winter.

The scientists in the School of Physics and

Corrupted Echoes From the Big Bang?

Are Galaxy Clusters Corrupting the Echoes from the Big Bang?

In recent years, astronomers have obtained detailed measurements of the cosmic microwave background radiation – the ‘echo’ from the birth of the Universe during the Big Bang.

These results appear to indicate with remarkable precision that our Universe is dominated by mysterious ‘cold dark matter’ and ‘dark energy’. But now a group of UK astronomers has found evidence that the primordial microwave echoes may have be

Oxygen and carbon discovered in exoplanet atmosphere ’blow-off’

The well-known extrasolar planet HD 209458b, provisionally nicknamed ’Osiris’, has surprised astronomers again. Oxygen and carbon have been found in its atmosphere, evaporating at such an immense rate that the existence of a new class of extrasolar planets – ‘the chthonian planets’ or ‘dead’ cores of completely evaporated gas giants – has been proposed.

Oxygen and carbon have been detected in the atmosphere of a planet beyond our Solar System for the first time. Scientists using th

Counting atoms that aren’t there, in stars that no longer exist

Argonne researchers use specialized instrument

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory have reached for the stars – and seen what’s inside.

Argonne scientists, in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Chicago, Washington University and the Universita di Torino in Italy, examined stardust from a meteorite and found remnants of now-extinct technetium atoms made in stars long ago.

The stardust grains are tiny bit

NIST/University of Colorado Scientists create new form of matter: A fermionic condensate

Scientists at JILA, a joint laboratory of the Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado at Boulder (CU-Boulder) report the first observation of a “fermionic condensate” formed from pairs of atoms in a gas, a long-sought, novel form of matter. Physicists hope that further research with such condensates eventually will help unlock the mysteries of high-temperature superconductivity, a phenomenon with the potential to improve energy ef

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