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Aug 14, 2018

Researcher accurately determines energy difference between two quantum states

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

A kiwi physicist has discovered the energy difference between two quantum states in the helium atom with unprecedented accuracy, a ground-breaking discovery that contributes to our understanding of the universe and space-time and rivals the work of the world’s most expensive physics project, the Large Hadron Collider.

Our understanding of the universe and the forces that govern it relies on the Standard Model of particle physics. This model helps us understand space-time and the fundamental forces that hold everything in the universe in place. It is the most accurate scientific theory known to humankind.

But the Standard Model does not fully explain everything, for example it doesn’t explain gravity, dark matter, dark energy, or the fact that there is way more matter than antimatter in the universe.

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Aug 14, 2018

Scientists find way to make mineral which can remove CO2 from atmosphere

Posted by in categories: economics, sustainability

Scientists have found a rapid way of producing magnesite, a mineral which stores carbon dioxide. If this can be developed to an industrial scale, it opens the door to removing CO2 from the atmosphere for long-term storage, thus countering the global warming effect of atmospheric CO2. This work is presented at the Goldschmidt conference in Boston.

Scientists are already working to slow by removing dioxide from the atmosphere, but there are serious practical and economic limits on developing the technology. Now, for the first time, researchers have explained how magnesite forms at low temperature, and offered a route to dramatically accelerating its crystallization. A tonne of naturally-occurring magnesite can remove around half a tonne of CO2 from the atmosphere, but the rate of formation is very slow.

Project leader, Professor Ian Power (Trent University, Ontario, Canada) said:

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Aug 14, 2018

Einstein’s equivalence principle updated with a dash of quantum

Posted by in category: quantum physics

New, highly sensitive experiments required to find potential violations.

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Aug 14, 2018

The Perfect Can Wait: Good Solutions to the ‘Drone Swarm’ Problem

Posted by in categories: drones, military

The nearly successful drone assassination attempt on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro earlier this month highlighted yet again a persistent worry for U.S. defense planners: the possibility that a swarm of cheap drone-borne bombs might overwhelm the sophisticated defenses a U.S. base or ship. While the defense industry has seized upon this concern and is currently at work developing new high-tech solutions to this problem, the Department of Defense can’t rely on those alone. It makes sense to develop such solutions, but the Department of Defense procurement process is long and the threat is now. With a little ingenuity, there is much that can be done with existing technology to defend effectively against drone threats. Accordingly, this article focuses on the measures the Department of Defense can employ now, with existing technology, to mitigate the threat of drone swarms.

The Current Problem

The drone swarm threat to U.S. naval installations and ships is already quite serious. Only a small amount of explosives and shrapnel would be required to cause significant damage to many of the most important radars, cameras, and important flight systems on ships, missiles, and aircraft. Damaging critical equipment would put military platforms out of action for several weeks or even months and put intense pressure on naval logistics chains and maintenance organizations at a time when they are already hard pressed to keep up with current demands. Even more importantly, such an attack orchestrated on a grand scale could leave U.S. forces unable to respond to critical events around the world in sufficient time to fulfill U.S. defense commitments to allies and friends.

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Aug 14, 2018

This Two Billion Year-Old Natural Reactor May Hold The Key To Safe Nuclear Waste Disposal

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

By studying the particular geological conditions found in a two-billion-year-old ‘natural nuclear reactor’ scientists are hoping to find a safe way to dispose of our modern radioactive waste.

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Aug 14, 2018

How Did The Mayans Disappear? Researchers Think They Finally Know

Posted by in category: futurism

Sediment samples from Lake Chichancanab in Mexico show that annual rainfall decreased by more than 50 percent at the end of Mayan civilization.

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Aug 14, 2018

What would it take to become a trillionaire?

Posted by in category: futurism

Apple has crossed over into the four-comma club – what would it take for a person to do the same?

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Aug 14, 2018

Our Families Succumb

Posted by in categories: life extension, transportation

Everyone can find plenty of examples from his or her own life of what aging is doing to us all.


A few days ago, I wrote an article while on a plane. I’m an expat, and I was flying back to my home country. I’m now in my hometown, where I lived until I was 18. I come back here only seldom, and the last time I visited was four years ago.

For the vast majority of the time I lived at my parents’ house, I was a child. My most vivid memories of the place are from my childhood, when everything looked so much larger. So, even though I did live here as a grown-up as well, every time I come back here after years of absence, every room in the house looks far less spacious. Things have changed a bit since I left. Furniture has changed place and function; ornaments and knick-knacks have been moved, added, or removed; predictably, even the town has changed somewhat over the years.

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Aug 14, 2018

R&D Special Report: Federally Funded Research Labs

Posted by in category: military

Concept art: Air Force

National Defense magazine asked research laboratories involved in national security programs: “What is your organization’s number one R&D ‘big bet,’ (in other words: a high-risk, high-reward technology investment) that you believe will have the biggest payoff for those in the military or national security realm? Why? And in what ways do you think it will benefit the end users?”

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Aug 14, 2018

Renewable Energy Could Basically Be Free by 2030, According to New Analysis

Posted by in categories: economics, energy, sustainability

A research analyst at Swiss investment bank UBS believes the cost of energy renewables could be so near to zero by 2030 “it will effectively be free,” according to a projections published on Monday. If renewables could soon be cheaper than all the alternative energy sources, and that this “is great news for the planet, and probably also for the economy.”

The analysis, published in the Financial Times, explains that solar and wind farms are getting bigger, and that the potential of this sort of cheap, green energy is far-reaching and will only get cheaper. “In 2010, using solar power to boil your kettle would have cost you about £0.03,” the analyst writes in FT. “By 2020, according to estimates by our research team at UBS, the cost will have fallen to half a penny.” And just ten years later, the costs will be so minuscule, it will practically be free.

See also: 7 Massive Corporations Going Green to Boost Their Bottom Lines.

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