Archive for the ‘particle physics’ category: Page 3

Nov 9, 2023

In a first, MIT researchers successfully trap electrons in 3D crystal

Posted by in categories: materials, particle physics

Previous attempts at trapping them in 2D had failed.

Successful electron trapping in 3D

The MIT team looked for materials that could be used to work out 3D lattices in kagome patterns and came across pyrochlore — a mineral with highly symmetric atomic arrangements. In 3D, pyrochlore’s atoms formed a repeating pattern consisting of cubes in a kagome-like lattice.

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Nov 9, 2023

Innovative photoresist materials pave the way for smaller, high performance semiconductor chips

Posted by in categories: computing, nanotechnology, particle physics

For more than 50 years, the semiconductor industry has been hard at work developing advanced technologies that have led to the amazing increases in computing power and energy efficiency that have improved our lives. A primary way the industry has achieved these remarkable performance gains has been by finding ways to decrease the size of the semiconductor devices in microchips. However, with semiconductor feature sizes now approaching only a few nanometers—just a few hundred atoms—it has become increasingly challenging to sustain continued device miniaturization.

To address the challenges associated with fabricating even smaller microchip components, the is currently transitioning to a more powerful fabrication method—extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. EUV lithography employs light that is only 13.5 nanometers in wavelength to form tiny circuit patterns in a photoresist, the light-sensitive material integral to the lithography process.

The photoresist is the template for forming the nanoscale circuit patterns in the silicon semiconductor. As EUV lithography begins paving the way for the future, scientists are faced with the hurdle of identifying the most effective resist materials for this new era of nanofabrication.

Nov 7, 2023

From supersolid to microemulsion: Exploring spin-orbit coupled Bose-Einstein condensates

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

In a new study, researchers from the University of California, Santa Barbara, (UCSB) have reported the discovery of a spin microemulsion in two-dimensional systems of spinor Bose-Einstein condensates, shedding light on a novel phase transition marked by the loss of superfluidity, complex pseudospin textures, and the emergence of topological defects.

A Bose-Einstein (B-E) condensate is a that occurs at , where bosons, such as photons, become indistinguishable and behave as a single quantum entity, forming a superfluid or superconducting state.

B-E condensates can exhibit unique quantum properties, such as a spin microemulsion. When the internal spin states of atoms in a B-E condensate are coupled to their motion, a unique called a spin microemulsion can emerge.

Nov 6, 2023

Energy efficient particle collider concept could revolutionize physics

Posted by in categories: cosmology, nuclear energy, particle physics

“There is a whole new discussion at least posing the question of the carbon footprint of particle physics.”

A particle collider, sometimes referred to as an atom smasher, is a type of high-energy physics apparatus used to investigate the fundamental particles and forces that exist in the cosmos. Subatomic particles, such as protons, electrons, or other charged particles, are accelerated to extremely high speeds and collide at extremely high energies in particle colliders.

Scientists use them to study the core components of matter and the fundamental forces of existence such as the nature of dark matter, the properties of quarks and leptons as well as the strong nuclear force, the weak nuclear… More.

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Nov 5, 2023

World’s most sensitive force sensor measures in ‘quectonewtons’

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

The quantum behaviours of extremely cold rubidium atoms can be used to detect forces smaller than a tenth of what is needed to lift a single electron.

By Karmela Padavic-Callaghan

Nov 4, 2023

Fastest ever semiconductor could massively speed up computer chips

Posted by in categories: computing, particle physics

A record-breaking superatomic semiconductor material allows particles to traverse it between 100 and 1,000 times faster than electrons pass through a silicon chip.

By Matthew Sparkes

Nov 2, 2023

Simulating spins, spirals and shrinking devices for new classes of energy-efficient materials

Posted by in categories: materials, particle physics

The diamond in an engagement ring, the wonder-material graphene and the lead in a humble pencil are all formed from carbon, but display profoundly different characteristics. Carbon materials such as these are among the most famous examples of how diverse properties can emerge in materials, based only on the rearrangement of the structure of atoms.

The goal of the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science (CEMS) in Saitama, Japan, is to develop materials for new, energy-efficient technologies. The usual approach to synthesizing new materials involves looking for improved properties such as strength and durability, or enhanced conduction of electricity and heat.

But CEMS is pioneering an alternative approach that turns that standard approach on its head. First, we think of the properties needed for a new device, use data from RIKEN’s new repository and simulation platform to calculate the atomic structure that provides these features and then build the bespoke material.

Nov 2, 2023

Why do fusion reactors take on a doughnut-like shape?

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, particle physics

Nuclear fusion holds the promise to generate energy in a clean, safe, and nearly inexhaustible way. The physical idea of fusion involves confining fuels at unearthly temperatures of approximately 150,000,000 degree Celsius which fusion reactions between atomic nuclei can happen. The fuels of interest, deuterium and tritium (isotopes of hydrogen), exist in the state of plasma. Clearly, containing these extremely hot plasmas with solid walls is unfeasible.

A plasma is an ionised gas comprising charged particles, both ions and electrons. Fortunately, the dynamics of charge particles are subject to constraints along magnetic field lines. This insight forms the basis of our current approach: constructing a magnetic bottle using powerful magnetic fields that effectively trap the plasma along these intangible field lines.

One of the most iconic magnetic confinement machine designs is the tokamak — a toroidally-shaped device, often likened to a doughnut. The name ‘tokamak’ is derived from the Russian acronym for ‘to roidal cha mber with ma gnetic c oils.’

Nov 2, 2023

Scientists manipulate quantum fluids of light, bringing us closer to next-generation unconventional computing

Posted by in categories: computing, particle physics, quantum physics

In a quantum leap toward the future of unconventional computing technologies, a team of physicists made an advancement in spatial manipulation and energy control of room-temperature quantum fluids of light, aka polariton condensates, marking a pivotal milestone for the development of high-speed, all-optical polariton logic devices that have long held the key to next-generation unconventional computing, according to a recently published paper in Physical Review Letters.

Polaritons, hybrid particles formed by the coupling of light and matter, are usually described as a quantum fluid of light that one can control through its matter component. Now, researchers have taken a monumental step forward by introducing a novel approach for active spatial control of liquid light condensates at room temperature.

What sets this development apart is the ability to manipulate polariton condensates without relying on the commonly utilized excitation profiles of polaritons. The scientists accomplished this feat by introducing an additional layer of copolymer within the cavity—a weakly coupled layer that remains nonresonant to the cavity mode. This seemingly simple yet incredibly ingenious move has opened the door to a wealth of possibilities.

Nov 2, 2023

Observation of a Single Top Quark and a Photon

Posted by in category: particle physics

The Large Hadron Collider’s ATLAS Collaboration observes, for the first time, the coincident production of a photon and a top quark.

In the ever-evolving landscape of particle physics, a field that explores the nature of the Universe’s fundamental building blocks, nothing generates a buzz quite like a world’s first. Such a first is exactly what CERN’s ATLAS Collaboration has now achieved with its observation of the coincident production of single top quarks and photons in proton–proton collisions at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) [1] (Fig. 1). This discovery provides a unique window into the intricate nature of the so-called electroweak interaction of the top quark, the heaviest known fundamental particle.

The standard model of particle physics defines the laws governing the behavior of elementary particles. Developed 50 years ago [2, 3], the model has—to date—withstood all experimental tests of its predictions. But the model isn’t perfect. One of the model’s biggest problems is a theoretical one and relates to how the Higgs boson gives mass to other fundamental particles. The mechanism by which the Higgs provides this mass is known as electroweak symmetry breaking, and while the standard model gives a reasonable description of the mechanism, exactly how electroweak symmetry breaking comes about remains a mystery.

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