A Polish team has shown how, by measuring the vibrations of molecules, it is possible to determine the spatial orientation of the molecules and prepare an unprecedentedly accurate 3D map of almost any material. This can be useful in work on new materials, electronic devices, and even in cancer therapy.
X-ray laser pulses can be used to study the structure of matter with unprecedented accuracy, but the pulses destroy the sample. Physicists from the Polish-Japanese team believe that with sufficiently short laser pulses, it will be possible to view an undisturbed structure of matter. They have demonstrated that atoms of certain crystal react to an avalanche of photons with a delay.
Here's the scientific equivalent of 'Look at the images and find 10 differences': finding the differences between matter and antimatter. There is a lot at stake: it is the answer to the question of why we exist. Now, physicists, working as part of the LHCb experiment at the European nuclear facility CERN, has made another (but not yet the last) difference.
Do you have a problem finding out how much you really weigh, because the bathroom scale shows a slightly different result every time you step on it? Scientists from the ALICE experiment at CERN determined the mass of the charm quark - an elementary particle that weighs about half a million billion billionth part of gram and is released only for a fraction of a second at huge temperatures in the collisions of particles inside the Large Hadron Collider.
Water is a fantastic liquid that has inspired scientists for centuries, and despite intensive studies of its complex nature, it still evades full understanding. When two droplets are brought together, they eventually settle into each other, merging and forming a larger, yet simpler, structure—a bigger droplet, while uniformly mixing. The same happens in foams, where tiny bubbles connect and eventually form larger bubbles. These phenomena occur because water tends to minimize its surface energy. A new study conducted by researchers from the Institute of the Physical Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, led by dr. Guzowski shows how droplets, instead of merging, unexpectedly form increasingly complex structures. Let's take a closer look at their discovery.
They are everywhere, around us and within us. Phenomena lasting trillionths of a second form the core of chemistry and biology. It is only recently that we have begun to try to accurately record their actual course, with moderate success. However, physicists from Cracow have proven that the new window to the world of attophysics can be built, offering a very promising view.