This trick to show how invisible air moves seems like magic

This is called Schlieren optics, a cool technique that allows us to see how invisible air moves. Thanks to the difference of density between hot and cold air, light changes speed, bends, and creates visual distortions. Exactly the same thing that happens in the mirages but captured in a controlled environment. » 11/24/14 9:00pm 11/24/14 9:00pm

Inventors of the Blue LED Inside Nearly Every Device You Own Win Nobel

There's pretty good chance you have a piece of this year's physics Nobel prize-winning invention in your pocket. The blue light-emitting diode (LED) is found in the screens of millions of phones as well as our bright, new energy-efficient LED lightbulbs. Today, the Nobel Prize in physics was awarded to the three… » 10/07/14 12:30pm 10/07/14 12:30pm

Physicists Figure Out How to Take Photographs In Near-Total Darkness

Tens of thousands of photons go into making up each pixel in your standard cat photo. That's because existing cameras—even infrared night-vision ones—rely on many, many photons of light to create an image. But now physicists have photographed in almost pitch blackness, where there on average is less than one photon of… » 9/02/14 1:30pm 9/02/14 1:30pm

This Super-Efficient Lightbulb Uses Tesla Tech for an Incandescent Glow

Despite their inefficiency, old-school incandescent lightbulbs sure did put out a pleasant, natural-looking light. The folks at Finally Light Bulb missed that light, so they brought it back with an efficient, affordable bulb using technology Nikola Tesla once patented. The team visited Gizmodo's NYC office to show us… » 7/24/14 11:39am 7/24/14 11:39am

Scientist find that 80 percent of all light in the Universe is missing

According to observations made by the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph on board the Hubble Space Telescope, the Universe is missing 80 percent of all its light. Astronomers are completely baffled: "We still don't know for sure what it is, but at least one thing we thought we knew about the present day universe isn't true." » 7/10/14 7:24pm 7/10/14 7:24pm

The Breathtaking Beauty of Los Angeles at Night

Has Los Angeles finally found an answer to the title sequence of Woody Allen's Manhattan? Revealing the beauty of nighttime L.A. in all its glory, Colin Rich's mesmerizing time lapse video "City Lights" plays off the interaction between two kinds of night light: the twinkling stars above the horizon and the pulsating… » 5/08/14 7:50pm 5/08/14 7:50pm

Magic material is both a reflecting mirror and a see through window

No, it's not a one way mirror. It's much cooler than that. MIT scientists have invented a new invisible mirror that can show reflections like a typical mirror but also be see through like a window. The magic is in the alternating 84 ultra thin layers typical glass and tantalum oxide. It's a mirror but when you spin… » 4/19/14 1:35am 4/19/14 1:35am

Using X-Rays To Peer Inside Ancient Art Objects

Photographer David Maisel—widely known for his incredible aerial work, including a breath-taking project recently shot in Spain—has opened a new show in New York exploring the otherwise invisible insides of culturally important art objects. Called History's Shadow, it is on display at the Yancey Richardson Gallery » 4/13/14 6:00pm 4/13/14 6:00pm

A Simple Photographic Trick Lets You See Invisible Things

The world is full of things you can't see: the heat coming off your hand, the spray of a sneeze, even the sound of two hands clapping. But a simple camera trick called Schlieren flow visualization turns those invisible waves of light into beautiful plumes of movement. With this trick you can literally see invisible… » 4/09/14 4:00pm 4/09/14 4:00pm

Hey look a weird bright light was spotted on Mars

Do you see it? There's a little beacon of light in the photograph of Mars above. It's on the left side of the photo and it's pretty darn bright. What could it be? More importantly, what do we want it to be? A Martian signal keeping track of the Curiosity rover? An alien laser beam? A key to a secret portal in the… » 4/09/14 12:03am 4/09/14 12:03am