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May 20, 2024

Scientists Uncover Unique New 1D Superconducting State

Posted by in categories: materials, quantum physics

A team led by Chen Xianhui and Professor Xiang Ziji from the CAS Key Laboratory of Strongly-Coupled Quantum Matter Physics and the Department of Physics at the University of Science and Technology of China, uncovered a unique superconducting state characterized by one-dimensional superconducting stripes. This state is induced by the ferromagnetic proximity effect in an oxide heterostructure made up of ferromagnetic EuO and (110)-oriented KTaO3 (KTO). Their findings were published in Nature Physics.

The academic community concurs that the emergence of unconventional superconducting pairings is intricately linked to magnetism, particularly in copper oxides and iron-based high-temperature superconductors. Magnetic fluctuations are deemed pivotal in the genesis of high-temperature superconductivity, where the interplay between superconductivity and magnetism gives rise to superconducting states exhibiting unique spatial modulation. Superconducting oxide heterostructures encompassing magnetic structural units emerge as an optimal platform for investigating such superconducting states.

Building upon their prior achievements, the research team delved deeper into the superconductivity of this system and its relationship with the ferromagnetic proximity effect, meticulously adjusting the carrier concentration of the two-dimensional electron gas residing at the interface. They uncovered an intriguing in-plane anisotropy in superconductivity among samples with low carrier concentrations, which nevertheless vanished in samples exhibiting higher carrier concentrations.

May 20, 2024

Beyond Hydrogen: Discovery of Tiny New Atom Tauonium With Massive Implications

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

Recent discoveries in quantum physics have revealed simpler atomic structures than hydrogen, involving pure electromagnetic interactions between particles like electrons and their antiparticles. This advancement has significant implications for our understanding of quantum mechanics and fundamental physics, highlighted by new methods for detecting tauonium, which could revolutionize measurements of particle physics.

The hydrogen atom was once considered the simplest atom in nature, composed of a structureless electron and a structured proton. However, as research progressed, scientists discovered a simpler type of atom, consisting of structureless electrons (e-), muons (μ-), or tauons (τ-) and their equally structureless antiparticles. These atoms are bound together solely by electromagnetic interactions, with simpler structures than hydrogen atoms, providing a new perspective on scientific problems such as quantum mechanics, fundamental symmetry, and gravity.

Discovery of Electromagnetic Interaction Atoms.

May 20, 2024

Karmela Padavic-Callaghan

Posted by in categories: education, mathematics, quantum physics

Karmela Padavic-Callaghan is a science writer reporting on physics, materials science and quantum technology. Karmela earned a PhD in theoretical condensed matter physics and atomic, molecular and optical physics from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Their research has been published in peer-reviewed journals, including Physical Review Letters and New Journal of Physics.

They studied ultracold atomic systems in novel geometries in microgravity and the interplay of disorder and quasiperiodicity in one-dimensional systems, including metamaterials. During their doctoral training, they also participated in several art-based projects, including co-developing a course on physics and art and serving as a production manager for a devised theatre piece titled Quantum Voyages.

Before joining New Scientist, Karmela was an assistant professor at Bard High School Early College in New York City, where they taught high school and college courses in physics and mathematics. Karmela’s freelance writing has been featured in Wired, Scientific American, Slate, MIT Technology Review, Quanta Magazine and Physics World.

May 20, 2024

Life’s Secret Ingredient? USC Scientist Discovers New “Rule of Biology”

Posted by in categories: biological, law

University of Southern California Dornsife molecular biologist John Tower suggests that while living things generally prefer stability to conserve energy and resources, instability may also play a crucial role.

A molecular biologist at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences may have found a new “rule of biology.”

A rule of biology, sometimes called a biological law, describes a recognized pattern or truism among living organisms. Allen’s rule, for example, states that among warm-blooded animals, those found in colder areas have shorter, thicker limbs (to conserve body heat) than those in hotter regions, which need more body surface area to dissipate heat.

May 20, 2024

New Findings on WASP-107 b Challenge Assumptions About Gas Giant Composition

Posted by in categories: chemistry, evolution, space

“The planet has a hot core, and that heat source is changing the chemistry of the gases deeper down, but it’s also driving this strong, convective mixing bubbling up from the interior,” said Zafar Rustamkulov.

Gas giant planets within our solar system and exoplanets outside our solar system are known to possess large amounts of gas and small cores, but what if an exoplanet was found to exhibit opposite characteristics? This is what a study published today in Nature hopes to address as a team of international researchers investigated the physical and atmospheric characteristics of WASP-107 b, which is located just over 200 light-years from Earth and has been found to have unique interior characteristics compared to previously discovered exoplanets. These unique findings hold the potential to challenge our understanding of the formation and evolution of gas giant exoplanets, which continue to demonstrate stark contrasts to planets within our solar system.

For the study, the researchers used NASA’s powerful James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) to observe WASP-107 b, discovering that while its radius is slightly less than Jupiter, its mass is only 10 percent of the largest planet in our solar system. Additionally, WASP-107 b possesses methane levels that are one thousand times less than what astronomers anticipated finding, along with having a core whose mass is 12 times larger than the Earth.

Continue reading “New Findings on WASP-107 b Challenge Assumptions About Gas Giant Composition” »

May 20, 2024

Emulating Biology For Robots With Rolling Contact Joints

Posted by in categories: biological, robotics/AI

Joints are an essential part in robotics, especially those that try to emulate the motion of (human) animals. Unlike the average automaton, animals are not outfitted with bearings and similar types of joints, but rather rely sometimes on ball joints and a lot on rolling contact joints (RCJs). These RCJs have the advantage of being part of the skeletal structure, making them ideal for compact and small joints. This is the conclusion that [Breaking Taps] came to as well while designing the legs for a bird-like automaton.

These RCJs do not just have the surfaces which contact each other while rotating, but also provide the constraints for how far a particular joint is allowed to move, both in the forward and backward directions as well as sideways. In the case of the biological version these contact surfaces are also coated with a constantly renewing surface to prevent direct bone-on-bone contact. The use of RCJs is rather common in robotics, with the humanoid DRACO 3 platform as detailed in a 2023 research article by [Seung Hyeon Bang] and colleagues in Frontiers in Robotics and AI.

Continue reading “Emulating Biology For Robots With Rolling Contact Joints” »

May 20, 2024

How ImageNet, AlexNet and GPUs Changed AI Forever

Posted by in categories: information science, robotics/AI

In 2006, Feifei Li aimed to address the limitations of AI algorithms, which were hampered by small, non-diverse datasets.

And the unbending faith! A behind-the-scenes look at the unlikely ingredients that fueled the 2000s AI boom.

May 20, 2024

Investigating ChatGPT-4’s performance in solving physics problems and its potential implications for education

Posted by in categories: education, physics, robotics/AI

Chat gpt 4 is really excellent in physics work aiding the user very well much like wolfram alpha has done.

Artificial intelligence (AI) technologies have been consistently influencing the progress of education for an extended period, with its impact becoming more significant especially after the launch of ChatGPT-3.5 at the end of November 2022. In the field of physics education, recent research regarding the performance of ChatGPT-3.5 in solving physics problems discovered that its problem-solving abilities were only at the level of novice students, insufficient to cause outstanding alarm in the field of physics education. However, the release of ChatGPT-4 presented substantial improvements in reasoning and conciseness. How does this translate to performance in solving physics problems, and what kind of impact might it have on education?

May 20, 2024

Scientists Awaken Deep Sea Bacteria After 100 Million Years

Posted by in categories: biological, life extension

Year 2020 This holds promise for near infinite lifespans for humans still in the first stages but still very promising for immortality and so much more.

The microbes had survived on trace amounts of oxygen and were able to feed and multiply once revived in the lab.

May 20, 2024

A connectomic study of a petascale fragment of human cerebral cortex

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing, neuroscience

We acquired a rapidly preserved human surgical sample from the temporal lobe of the cerebral cortex. We stained a 1 mm3 volume with heavy metals, embedded it in resin, cut more than 5,000 slices at ∼30 nm and imaged these sections using a high-speed multibeam scanning electron microscope. We used computational methods to render the three-dimensional structure containing 57,216 cells, hundreds of millions of neurites and 133.7 million synaptic connections. The 1.4 petabyte electron microscopy volume, the segmented cells, cell parts, blood vessels, myelin, inhibitory and excitatory synapses, and 104 manually proofread cells are available to peruse online. Many interesting and unusual features were evident in this dataset. Glia outnumbered neurons 2:1 and oligodendrocytes were the most common cell type in the volume. Excitatory spiny neurons comprised 69% of the neuronal population, and excitatory synapses also were in the majority (76%). The synaptic drive onto spiny neurons was biased more strongly toward excitation (70%) than was the case for inhibitory interneurons (48%). Despite incompleteness of the automated segmentation caused by split and merge errors, we could automatically generate (and then validate) connections between most of the excitatory and inhibitory neuron types both within and between layers. In studying these neurons we found that deep layer excitatory cell types can be classified into new subsets, based on structural and connectivity differences, and that chandelier interneurons not only innervate excitatory neuron initial segments as previously described, but also each other’s initial segments. Furthermore, among the thousands of weak connections established on each neuron, there exist rarer highly powerful axonal inputs that establish multi-synaptic contacts (up to ∼20 synapses) with target neurons. Our analysis indicates that these strong inputs are specific, and allow small numbers of axons to have an outsized role in the activity of some of their postsynaptic partners.

The authors have declared no competing interest.

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