Physical Sciences

First Potentially Habitable Earth-sized Planet Confirmed

Image Courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

Researchers at the Keck Observatory and the Gemini Observatory have discovered a planet that could very much resemble our own. Every star has a zone on its orbit in which water may exist in liquid form. This is deemed the “habitable zone” because it is thought that life cannot thrive...


Voyager 1 Reaches Interstellar Space

Don Gurnett, on the left, during his talk at the Dartmouth physics colloquium. Photo: Merritt Losert '17

On Friday, April 4, Don Gurnett, a professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Iowa, gave a talk about the history and science of the Voyager missions. The Voyager probes have been two of the most important ever launched. They explored the far reaches of the solar system,...


The Chelyabinsk Asteroid

The Chelyabinsk Asteroid

This February, the largest asteroid since 1908 impacted the planet’s surface near the city of Chelyabinsk in the Urals region of Russia (Figure 1). In an article published in Nature, Quirin Schiermeier reported that the asteroid shone 30 times brighter than the Sun and moved through the Earth’s upper atmosphere...


Nanoparticles: Designing Medicine at the Molecular Level

Nanoparticles: Designing Medicine at the Molecular Level

The greatest problem with traditional cancer treatments is lack of specificity. Treatments such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy kill healthy cells along with tumor cells, causing negative side effects in patients (1). Scientists believe that nanotechnology-based treatments can solve the issue of specificity. Nanoparticles used to treat cancer are approximately...


Lewis Acids Find a Role in Fluorocarbon Remediation

Lewis Acids Find a Role in Fluorocarbon Remediation

Caputo et al. recently developed a Lewis acid, [(C6F5)3 PF]+, which has proven highly effective in hydrodefluorination, the conversion of a carbon-fluorine bond into a carbon-hydrogen bond. A Lewis acid is any substance which can accept an electron pair, while a Lewis base is any substance which can donate an...


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