Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

Raspberry Pi 2 + Quantum Physics = One Camera Shy Computer

The Raspberry Pi 2 Computer

The new Raspberry Pi 2 mini-computer has a problem: it’s camera shy. Or at least only when it’s flashed. If a camera’s flash is directed at the tiny-yet-powerful computer it reboots.
But how can light force a computer to reboot without any kind of sensor or camera to detect that light? As the BBC reports here, quantum physics has the answer.

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

What if the Earth had rings like Saturn?

The Earth with rings like Saturn

Imagine that the Earth had a belt of rock, ice and general space-debris encompassing it like the colossal gas giant, Saturn.

What would it look like?

How would it appear to us mere mortals down here on the surface?

Having a Moon that waxes and wanes and occasionally makes for pretty moonlit nights is one thing but to be encircled entirely by rings of rock and ice, as this article describes, takes things to a completely different level!

(Warning: contains a lot of cool artist impressions).

There are more mock-up images and some brief explanations in this YouTube video:

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Broken Photon

A group of physicists at Glasgow University  have demonstrated that the speed of light is not quite so fixed as it’s believed to be.

Read about their impossible discovery in this BBC News article.

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

The Fourth State of Matter

A Plasma Globe

Solids, liquids and gases aren’t the only states of matter ‘things’ can exist in as this brief article explains, and it’s more abundant than you may think.

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

The ‘Philae’ has landed!

Yesterday history was made when the ESA’s robotic lander, Philae, successfully landed on a comet after having travelled through space with the spacecraft, Rosetta, for over 10 years. This has never been done before and represents a major progression in our space-faring technologies. Philae‘s mission is to examine everything about the comet’s composition and physicality.

You can find out more about Philae and Rosetta at the ESA’s website by following this link here.

Below is a gif summarising the successful voyage and landing sequence:

spacetravelco: Updated xkcd coverage of the #CometLanding via Tanya Harrison

Source: ScienceJunkie

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

DIY Musical Instruments: Clarinet

You can make musical instruments out of almost anything. See how a humble carrot can be turned into a surprisingly well-sounding clarinet!

Source: link

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Which lands first: the chicken or the egg?

Galileo’s famous experiment recreated and explained using a chicken and an egg.

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

Separating cells using sound waves

Credit: Illustration Christine Daniloff/MIT

Researchers have discovered a useful way of separating cells using sound waves which could be used by doctors to catch tumour-spreading cells circulating in the bloodstream of cancer patients.

X. Ding, Z. Peng, S.-C. S. Lin, M. Geri, S. Li, P. Li, Y. Chen, M. Dao, S. Suresh, T. J. Huang. Cell separation using tilted-angle standing surface acoustic waves. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2014; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1413325111


Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

The Rochester ‘invisibility’ Cloak

The Rochester Cloak

A new ‘invisibility cloak’ – the Rochester Cloak – named in a very round-about way after our very own fine city, has been developed at the University of Rochester, NY.

Read more here on CNET, where you can also find a video showing how the cloak works and instructions on how to make your own!

Monday, September 29th, 2014

If the Earth was a cherry tomato…

An interesting infographic taken from a childrens’ book  about space (linked) showing the relative sizes of the planets in the solar system in an easy-to-understand way.

Source: Explore

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