Physicists Just Cooled Molecules to a Hair Above Absolute Zero

Many scientists say that reaching absolute zero is a lot like traveling at the speed of light: impossible. Well, some MIT scientists almost pulled a Doc Brown and got a lot closer to the impossible goal by cooling a molecule to 500 nanokelvins. That’s just above absolute zero and about a million times colder than… »6/16/15 1:20pm6/16/15 1:20pm

Scientists Use World's Largest Laser To Recreate Jupiter's Core

It is not pleasant inside the core of Jupiter—or any other planet for that matter. However, gaining a better understanding of what's going on in there is key for understanding how these planets form. That's why a team of scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory recently used diamonds and lasers to recreate »7/18/14 11:21am7/18/14 11:21am

Bizarre Soviet-Era Theory About New State of Matter Is Actually Right

Here's your dose of mind-bending physics for the day. In 1970, a young Soviet physicist named Vitaly Efimov proposed a trio of ultracold particles could arrange themselves in an "infinite nesting-doll configuration." Scientists have now published compelling evidence that this state of matter, once dismissed by… »5/27/14 6:40pm5/27/14 6:40pm

Scientists Figured Out a Way to Cheat Newton's Third Law

Ever since the late 17th century, it's been understood that to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. That's Newton's Third Law of Motion. But a group of German scientists recently came up with a trick that appears to break that law, one that lets light accelerate all by itself. And it could bring us… »10/15/13 7:00pm10/15/13 7:00pm

How Quantum Mechanics Was Born From the Need For a Better Lightbulb

Some of mankind's most remarkable scientific discoveries came to light as a result of research that had nothing to do with the breakthrough itself. And such was the case with quantum mechanics. Back in the early 1890s the German Bureau of Standards asked Max Planck to design a lightbulb that produced the maximum… »10/15/12 8:28am10/15/12 8:28am

D-Wave Quantum Computer to Span Multiple Universes Next Tuesday?

Propellerheads at D-Wave are saying they've developed the world's first quantum computer, and the wild thing is they say they're going to show it actually working next Tuesday. Hey, wait a minute. This first foray into the strange-but-maybe-true world of quantum mechanics wasn't expected by scientists until 20 years… »2/09/07 8:17am2/09/07 8:17am

Beam Me Up, Scotty: Scientists Transport a Hunk of Matter 18 Inches

Scientists in Copenhagen took one more step toward the Star Trek transporter, figuring out how to teleport groups of billions of atoms from one place to another using light, quantum mechanics, magnetism and a concept they call "entanglement." Professor Eugene Polzik and his team managed to move an object about 18… »10/05/06 10:59am10/05/06 10:59am