Researchers have demonstrated that the 1935 Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen quantum mechanics paradox may be extended to more than two optical systems, paving the way for exploration of larger quantum networks. The experiment also identified properties that may be useful in establishing secure quantum communication networks where shared sequences of numbers created between two parties need to be kept secret from a third party.
The speckled object depicted here is Callisto, Jupiter’s second largest moon. This image was...
A quantum network requires efficient interfaces over which information can be transferred from...
Topology, a branch of mathematics classifying geometric objects, has been exploited by physicists to predict and describe unusual quantum phases: the topological states of matter. These intriguing phases, generally accessible at very low temperature, exhibit unique conductivity properties, which are particularly robust against external perturbations, suggesting promising technological applications.
How many stars like our sun host planets like our Earth? NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope continuously monitored more than 150,000 stars beyond our solar system and, to date, has offered scientists an assortment of more than 4,000 candidate planets for further study — the 1,000th of which was recently verified.
Although Hubble has taken many breathtaking images of the universe, one snapshot stands out from the rest: the iconic view of the so-called Pillars of Creation. The jaw-dropping 1995 photo revealed never-before-seen details of giant columns of cold gas bathed in the scorching UV light from a cluster of young, massive stars. In celebration of its 25th anniversary, Hubble has revisited the pillars, providing a sharper, wider view.
High-energy jets powered by supermassive black holes can blast away a galaxy’s star-forming fuel, resulting in so-called "red and dead" galaxies: those brimming with ancient red stars yet containing little or no hydrogen gas to create new ones. However, astronomers using ALMA have discovered that black holes don’t have to be nearly so powerful to shut down star formation. They have detected a “perfect storm” of turbulence ...
Prospects of developing computing and communication technologies based on quantum properties of light and matter may have taken a major step forward. In a pioneering study, researchers were able to discover half-light, half-matter particles in atomically thin semiconductors consisting of a 2-D layer of molybdenum and sulfur atoms arranged similar to graphene.
NASA's planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft makes a comeback with the discovery of the first exoplanet found using its new mission — K2. The discovery was made when astronomers and engineers devised an ingenious way to repurpose Kepler for the K2 mission and continue its search of the cosmos for other worlds.
Engineers have invented a revolutionary coating material that can help cool buildings, even on sunny days, by radiating heat away from the buildings and sending it directly into space. The heart of the invention is an ultrathin, multilayered material that deals with light, both invisible and visible, in a new way.
Researchers have discovered an invisible shield some 7,200 miles above Earth that blocks so-called killer electrons, which whip around the planet at near-light speed and have been known to threaten astronauts, fry satellites and degrade space systems during intense solar storms. The barrier to the particle motion was discovered in the Van Allen radiation belts, two doughnut-shaped rings above Earth filled with high-energy electrons and...
Using an experiment carried into space on a NASA suborbital rocket, astronomers have detected a diffuse cosmic glow that appears to represent more light than that produced by known galaxies in the universe. The researchers say the best explanation is that the cosmic light originates from stars that were stripped away from their parent galaxies and flung out into space as those galaxies collided and merged with other galaxies.
Projecting images on curved screens poses a dilemma. The sharper the image, the darker it is. A novel optical approach brings brightness and sharpness together for the first time on screens of any curvature — and additionally allows about 10,000-times faster projection rates. Researchers have applied a proven approach used with cameras.
In our vain struggle to kill flies, hands and swatters often come up lacking. This is due to no fault of our own, but rather to flies’ compound eyes. Arranged in a hexagonal, convex pattern, compound eyes consist of hundreds of optical units called ommatidia, which together bestow upon flies a nearly 360-degree field of vision. With this capability in mind, researchers are drawing on this structure to create miniature light-emitting devices
It may look like fresh blood and flow like fresh blood, but the longer blood is stored, the less it can carry oxygen into the tiny microcapillaries of the body. Using advanced optical techniques, the researchers measured the stiffness of the membrane surrounding red blood cells over time.
NASA's Voyager 2 spacecraft gave humanity its first glimpse of Neptune and its moon Triton in the summer of 1989. This picture of Neptune was produced from the last whole planet images taken through the green and orange filters on the Voyager 2 narrow angle camera. The images were taken on August 20, 1989, at a range of 4.4 million miles from the planet, 4 days and 20 hours before closest approach on August 25.
Taking center stage in this new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is a galaxy known as NGC 3081, set against an assortment of glittering galaxies in the distance. Located in the constellation of Hydra (The Sea Serpent), NGC 3081 is located over 86 million light-years from us. It is known as a type II Seyfert galaxy, characterized by its dazzling nucleus.
NASA technologists have hurdled a number of significant challenges in their quest to improve a revolutionary observing technology originally created for the James Webb Space Telescope. This image shows a close-up view of the next-generation microshutter arrays — designed to accommodate the needs of future observatories — during the fabrication process.
What if computer screens had glasses instead of the people staring at the monitors? That concept is not too far afield from technology being developed by UC Berkeley computer and vision scientists. The researchers are developing computer algorithms to compensate for an individual’s visual impairment, and creating vision-correcting displays that enable users to see text and images clearly without wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Fifteen years ago, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory was launched into space aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia. Since its deployment, Chandra has helped revolutionize our understanding of the universe through its unrivaled X-ray vision. Chandra, one of NASA's current "Great Observatories," along with the Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Space Telescope, is specially designed to detect X-ray emission from hot and energetic regions.
Thanks to NASA's Kepler and Spitzer Space Telescopes, scientists have made the most precise measurement ever of the radius of a planet outside our solar system. The size of the exoplanet, dubbed Kepler-93b, is now known to an uncertainty of just 74 miles (119 kilometers) on either side of the planetary body.
In 1054 AD, Chinese astronomers and others around the world noticed a new bright object in the sky. This “new star” was, in fact, the supernova explosion that created what is now called the Crab Nebula. At the center of the Crab Nebula is an extremely dense, rapidly rotating neutron star left behind by the explosion.
Sandia National Laboratories has come up with an inexpensive way to synthesize titanium-dioxide nanoparticles and is seeking partners who can demonstrate the process at industrial scale for everything from solar cells to light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Titanium-dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles show great promise as fillers to tune the refractive index of anti-reflective coatings ...
Real invisibility cloaks are rather complex and work in certain situations only, but physicists have now succeeded in manufacturing with relatively simple means and testing an ideal invisibility cloak for diffusive light-scattering media, such as fog or milk.
BELLINGHAM, WA — A new special section on Human Vision in the current issue of Optical Engineering showcases optics and optical engineering research into new techniques and approaches for the study of human vision and the design of novel imaging systems. Put into practice, these new...
LEGO has announced that a female minifigure set, featuring three scientists along with their lab gear, will be released as the next LEGO Ideas set. This “Research Institute” model is an official set of all-female scientist figures — a paleontologist, an astronomer and a chemist — made with regular LEGO minifigures.
Astronomers announced that they have discovered a new type of planet — a rocky world weighing 17 times as much as Earth. Theorists believed such a world couldn't form because anything so hefty would grab hydrogen gas as it grew and become a Jupiter-like gas giant. This planet, though, is all solids and much bigger than previously discovered "super-Earths," making it a "mega-Earth."
If future generations were to live and work on the moon or on a distant asteroid, they would probably want a broadband connection to communicate with home bases back on Earth. They may even want to watch their favorite Earth-based TV show. That may now be possible thanks to a team of researchers from MIT's Lincoln Laboratory who, working with NASA last fall, demonstrated for the first time that a data communication technology exists ...
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