Saturday, October 19, 2019

Quantum Paradox Experiment May Lead to More Accurate Clocks and Sensors

A clock moving in superposition of different speeds would measure a superposition of different elapsing times — in a quantum version of the famous ’twin paradox’ of special relativity. Credit: M. Zych.

More accurate clocks and sensors may result from a recently proposed experiment, linking an Einstein-devised paradox to quantum mechanics. University of Queensland physicist Dr Magdalena Zych said the international collaboration aimed to test Einstein’s twin paradox using quantum particles in a ‘superposition’ state.

Soil on Moon and Mars Likely to Support Crops

Total aboveground combined dry biomass production for ten different crops, garden cress, rocket, tomato, radish, rye, quinoa, spinach, chives, pea and leek on Mars and Moon soil simulant and Earth organic soil (control). Different letters indicate significant differences (n=3, p< 0.05)

Researchers at Wageningen University & Research in the Netherlands have produced crops in Mars and Moon soil simulant developed by NASA. The research supports the idea that it would not only be possible to grow food on Mars and the Moon to feed future settlers, but also to obtain viable seed from crops grown there.

Friday, October 18, 2019

Astronomers Use Giant Galaxy Cluster as X-ray Magnifying Lens

Researchers have for the first time used a massive cluster of galaxies as a huge magnifying lens to detect a small, star-forming dwarf galaxy.  Image: Felice Frankel and Christine Daniloff, MIT

Astronomers at MIT and elsewhere have used a massive cluster of galaxies as an X-ray magnifying glass to peer back in time, to nearly 9.4 billion years ago. In the process, they spotted a tiny dwarf galaxy in its very first, high-energy stages of star formation.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Black Holes Stunt Growth of Dwarf Galaxies

NGC 1569 is a star-forming galaxy. Credit: HST/NASA/ESA

Astronomers at the University of California, Riverside, have discovered that powerful winds driven by supermassive black holes in the centers of dwarf galaxies have a significant impact on the evolution of these galaxies by suppressing star formation.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Study Suggests Ice on Lunar South Pole May Have More than One Source

Shackleton Crater, the floor of which is permanently shadowed from the sun, appears to be home to deposits of water ice. A new study sheds light on how old these and other deposits on the Moon's south pole might be. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

The discovery of ice deposits in craters scattered across the Moon’s south pole has helped to renew interest in exploring the lunar surface, but no one is sure exactly when or how that ice got there. A new study published in the journal Icarus suggests that while a majority of those deposits are likely billions of years old, some may be much more recent.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Milky Way Kidnapped Several Tiny Galaxies from Its Neighbor

Visualization of the simulations used in the study. Top left shows dark matter in white. Bottom right shows a simulated Large Magellanic Cloud-like galaxy with stars and gas, and several smaller companion galaxies. (UCR/Ethan Jahn)

Just like the moon orbits the Earth, and the Earth orbits the sun, galaxies orbit each other according to the predictions of cosmology. For example, more than 50 discovered satellite galaxies orbit our own galaxy, the Milky Way. The largest of these is the Large Magellanic Cloud, or LMC, a large dwarf galaxy that resembles a faint cloud in the Southern Hemisphere night sky.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Liquifying a Rocky Exoplanet

Artist’s impression of the interior of a hot, molten rocky planet (with labels). © University of Bern, illustration: Thibaut Roger

Rocky exoplanets that are around Earth-size are comparatively small, which makes them incredibly difficult to detect and characterize using telescopes. What are the optimal conditions to find such small planets that linger in the darkness?

Physicists Have Found a Way to 'Hear' Dark Matter

The researchers propose a new instrument for searching dark matter axions using tunable plasmas. Illustration: Alexander Millar/Stockholm University

Physicists at Stockholm University and the Max Planck Institute for Physics have turned to plasmas in a proposal that could revolutionize the search for the elusive dark matter.