1/60 minute. 1/3,600 hour. 1/86,400 day. 1/1 hertz. The duration of 9,192,631,770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of a 133 55Cs caesium isotope corresponds to one second. But what does it look like? And where might you find a second? Continue reading Just a Second…
Deep down, in huge subterranean caverns… Underneath the Franco-Swiss border… 300 feet underground… lies a beast of unprecedented power… and mystery. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) that man summons to explore the uncharted corners of the sub-atomic realm… After two years of a deep slumber, the mighty beast has awoken… Continue reading Physics at 13 TeV – Cranking Up the LHC
The Standard Model of Particle Physics describes the fundamental particles and their interactions via the strong, electromagnetic and weak forces, providing precise predictions for measurable quantities that can be tested experimentally. Here’s the latest!! It’s hot!!! It’s exciting!!! At least, if you’re a particle physicist… Continue reading Rare Beauty Decays at CERN
Should you ever have wondered what the Higgs boson sounds like… It’s… “AS LOUD AS A RIFF BY JOE SATRIANI. WHAT?! IT’S AS LOUD… AS A…” Oh, wait!! Here it is. Continue reading The Sound of Physics
“Dark matter?” You cannot see it. But there is something there. As for what it is, it’s anybody’s guess! Dark matter does not interact with light. At all. Which makes it difficult to detect. “But if you cannot see it? How do you know it is in fact there?” Well, it does interact with gravity, and as it does so it bends the path of any light ray passing nearby... “And did it really kill the dinosaurs…?” Continue reading That Mysterious Missing Matter – Cocktail Party Physics
Four states of matter can be seen in everyday life: solid, liquid, gas, and – somewhat more exotically – plasma. As a tightly bound combination of oxygen and hydrogen atoms, a water molecule is nothing out of the ordinary. Liquid water, steam or ice are still just water. Yet, it is intriguing to see how the very same building blocks of matter are capable of producing such broadly distinct states. Continue reading Changing States – Fundamental Phases of Matter
Take one second and divide it a million times. Then, take one millionth of that second and divide it again… by a billion! All you’re left with is a femtosecond. That’s how fast the Linac laser at Palo Alto can deliver burst of X-rays and track chemical reactions in living systems… as they happen. Continue reading Stanford’s Linac X-Rays capture Molecular Matter in Motion
Ever since Francis Crick and James Watson brought Physics and Biology together in 1953 to unveil the molecular structure of DNA, the boundary between the two disciplines has continued to become increasingly blurred. In this genomic new era, ever more principles from Physics are being applied to living systems in an attempt to understand complexity at all levels. Although sometimes the best solution to a Physics problem lies in the macroscopic world of Biology… Continue reading When Biology Met Physics…
What happened at time T = 0? is still anybody’s guess. At least, earlier observations of Planck’s radiation had suggested the first generation of stars were bursting into life by about 420 million years after the Big Bang. However, scientists from Europe’s Planck satellite mission now say the first stars lit up the Universe later than was previously thought… Continue reading Planck’s Time and the “Oldest Light” in the Cosmos
Our planet has existed for 4.5 billion years, and it has been a busy lifetime. From amazing leaps and bounds forward into evolution to devastating asteroid impacts and other episodic extinctions, here are the biggest milestones in Earth’s history – the eventful journey that shaped our World today. Continue reading Earth Creation – The Story So Far…
I don’t do politics – much. I just blog here… I have an honest opinion. Mostly, I tend to disagree with all those who try to suppress opinions, ideas, and attempt to stifle creativity and common sense… whoever they may be. Unfortunately, once in a while, events are so traumatic that I simply forget that I don’t do politics… Voilà!
I am not sure how many of you out there actually knew those Charlie Hebdo cartoons, but if you’re easily offended… DON’T read further!! Continue reading Don’t Shoot, I Just Blog Here! – I Am Charlie.
Ever since French physicist Louis de Broglie first described the wave-particle duality in 1926, scientists have struggled to come to terms with this strange particularity of our natural World when observed at the quantum level. Waves can be particles, and particles can be waves. But are entities waves AND particles all at the same time?