Physical Sciences

Closest star flyby of the solar system occurred 70,000 years ago

Images of a red dwarf star, the type of star that was involved in the flyby.
Source: Wikimedia Commons

A group of astronomers from the US, Europe, South Africa, and Chile have determined that, approximately 70,000 years ago, a recently discovered star is likely to have passed through the Oort Cloud, a region at the edge of the solar system from which comets arise (1). Its average distance at...

 
 

Blacklist for fossil fuels revealed to limit global warming

A recent analysis reveals which nations should especially refrain from exploiting much of their carbon-based energy reserves when limiting global warming temperature to 2 °C, Michael Jakob and Jerome Hilaire reported online in the journal Nature on January 7, 2015. Source: http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/03/on-unburnable-carbon-and-the-specter-of-a-carbon-bubble/?_r=0

A recent analysis reveals which nations should especially refrain from exploiting much of their carbon-based energy reserves when limiting global warming temperature to 2 °C, Michael Jakob and Jerome Hilaire reported online in the journal Nature on January 7, 2015. Source: http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/03/on-unburnable-carbon-and-the-specter-of-a-carbon-bubble/?_r=0 In 2010, governments from around the world gathered...

 
 

New Research Re-Creates Planets in the Lab

Researchers have re-created conditions of 'super-Earths' in the lab, planets with masses five times that of the Earth. 
Source: Wikimedia Commons

New laser-based compression experiments by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Bayreuth University, and the University of California, Berkeley, have recreated conditions of cores of super-Earths, planets with masses five times that of the Earth. Through a combination of laser-driven shock compression, a technique that uses lasers to send a strong...

 
 

Researchers Create Tiny Quantum Laser

An example of CdTe quantum dots of different sizes as visualized by luminescence spectra

Scientists at Princeton University have managed to create an extremely small laser that could have implications for the creation of quantum computers in the near future. The device draws approximately ten billion times less current than a typical light bulb and is about the size of a grain of rice....

 
 

2014: The Hottest Year Yet

High temperatures in 2014 helped contribute to the California drought.

The past year was the hottest on record since at least 1891, the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) announced on January 5th. The JMA reports that the average temperature was 0.27°C warmer than the 1981 to 2010 baseline average. (1) This finding was not unexpected. In December 2014, the United Nations’...

 
 
 
 
 

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