It feels like the Large Hadron Collider has just barely started doing science (and it's not even at full strength yet), but already plans are underway for its successor: the International Linear Collider, or ILC. The ILC will likely cost between $10 and $20 billion, and it's now looking like the host country will probably be Japan.
It must be nice having a Large Hadron Collider to mess about with. One day you're just minding your own business, running lead-proton collisions for reference in order to subtract out background noise from the lead-lead collisions that you actually care about, and then poof, you accidentally create a new form of matter called a color-glass condensate. Nice.
As you've probably suspected all along, there's a slim but real possibility that the entire universe is just one big simulation being run on the computers of hyper-intelligent pan-dimensional beings. Seriously. This is coming from scientists, people! The good news: there may be a way that we can find out.
Looks like today's the day to head out to the garage and build yourself a perpetual motion machine, since Japanese physicists have just shown how to smash the classical second law of thermodynamics to smithereens using quantum entanglement.
When water and cornstarch are mixed, something quite odd happens — it acts like a liquid when poured and like a solid when force is applied. Check out the video below to see it in action.
Physics doesn't lie, kids. It's bad news for fans of the Dark Knight: four physics students have proven that while the construction of the bat cape would allow Batman to glide from tall buildings, unfortunately it would do little to slow his rapid descent and eventually drop him on the pavement like a ton of bricks.
On Wednesday, CERN is expected to announce that the Large Hadron Collider has found evidence that the Higgs boson exists with something on the order of 99.99% certainty. The Standard Model of particle physics has predicted the existence of the Higgs since 1967, so why is finding it such a big deal?
Quantum cryptography may be theoretically secure, but in practice, there are certain limitations that allow clever attackers to read encrypted messages. A new system that ditches quantum mechanics for classical mechanics may prove to be even more secure, backed up by the Second Law of Thermodynamics.
Shut the windows, lock the doors, and prepare to use your children as human shields, because the Germans have gone and developed a quantum rainbow photon gun. That shoots quantum rainbow photons. EVERYBODY RAINBOW PANIC!
Electrons are generally known as "fundamental particles," meaning they're not made up of anything: you can't smash an electron to bits, because there are no bits to smash it into. Under the right circumstances, electrons can be broken up into quasiparticles, and the third one of these has just been identified: the orbiton.