Physics and math

Nuclear bomb testing in the 1950’s charged the atmosphere and caused changes in weather patterns thousands of miles from the test sites.

Scientists say that nuclear bomb testing during the 1950's and 1960's Cold War changed rainfall patterns thousands of miles from the detonation sites. The electric charge released by nuclear radiation impacted rainclouds, causing them to thicken and produce 24% more rain. Radioactivity ionizes the air and releases an electric charge. The massive electric charge created by an atomic bomb causes water droplets in the atmosphere to collide and combine making even larger water droplets. Scientists were able to confirm this by studying historical weather patterns compared to nuclear testing activities. Sources: Eurekalert

Scientist captures picture of a single atom using a normal DSLR camera.

David Nadlinger, a quantum physicist at the University of Oxford, has done the impossible. He captured a picture of a single atom using a normal DSLR digital camera. The atom in the picture comes from strontium, an alkaline earth metal. To capture the photo, Nadlinger captured the particle between two electrodes then bombarded it with light from a blue laser to cause it to glow. Below we have magnified the part of the photo that contains the single-atom image.

Listen up. Scientist create sound so loud, it instantly boils water

Bang your head! Scientists at Stanford University created a sound that measures a whopping 270 decibels. The sound was created underwater and is believed to be the limit of how loud a sound can be. Ready to put on a pair of earplugs and give the sound a listen? Not so fast. Scientists say earplugs would do no good. The sound is so loud, eardrums, heart, lungs, and other internal organs would instantly rupture.

Why do grapes in a microwave burst into brilliant, violent, white flames? It’s plasma, baby!

Cut a grape in half but leave the skin of one side intact, Place the grape in the microwave and crank up the microwave radiation. Viola, the grape bursts into a brilliant, white-hot flame. The same effect occurs with two grapes in a microwave that touch each other. The flame you see is plasma – a hot mixture of electrons and electrically charged atoms, or ions. Scientists only recently discovered why the grapes burst into flames. They used to think grapes acted like antennas, collecting microwaves. Now they understand that grapes in a microwave act as resonators, not antennas. Like a musical instrument that resonant sound waves, a grape in a microwave resonates microwave radiation. In other words, the waves of radiation get trapped inside the

Get the thought that all tiny particles in our universe are shaped like little round balls out of your head!

Scientists have worked for a very long time trying to figure out a theory called quantum field theory. Quantum field theory is a body of laws that describe how the tiny little particles all around us interact – particles tinier than atoms, protons, electrons, and neutrons. We’re talking super tiny particles with names like baryons, quarks, muons, and likely many more that we don’t know about yet. Whatever the particle, we tend to think of these objects as little dots, spheres, or tiny circles. Even the models in books illustrate these particles as tiny little balls. Turns out that scientists thought of them that way too – and when they looked at these in a different perspective, suddenly their work in quantum field theory became

Large Hadron Collider may rewrite physics if contact with parallel universe is successful

The staggering complex Large Hadron Collider (aka Atom smasher) in Geneva is already running at its highest level.  Thus far, it has discovered the God particle (aka Higgs boson particle) but this week, it could transform our understanding of the universe as well as open up a portal to something, or somewhere, beyond human comprehension. If the experiment is successful, an entirely new universe will be revealed. Mir Faizal, one of the three-strong team of physicists behind the experiment, told reporters: “Just as many parallel sheets of paper, which are two dimensional objects [breadth and length] can exist in a third dimension [height], parallel universes can also exist in higher dimensions. We predict that gravity can leak into extra dimensions, and if it does, then miniature black

Scientists capture first ever photo of light behaving as both a particle and a wave – and it’s a beauty

  Scientists have long believed that light can behave as both a particle and a wave but until today – it’s been a bit difficult to visualize and impossible to photograph. Now, researchers in Switzerland have taken the first ever picture of light as both a wave and a particle - and it's a beauty! To capture the historic photograph, researchers shot laser pulses at a tiny metallic nanowire and watched as the light moved in different directions along the metal wire (more accurately, they watched the emissions of electrons that occurs when light hits a metal surface). Then when the waves ran into each other, they snapped the historic photograph using a new ultrafast microscope. Quantum mechanics tells us that light can behave simultaneously as a particle

Bowling ball and feather falling in world’s largest vacuum chamber

BBC ran a great segment demonstrating two objects falling in a vacuum at the same rate. The experiment was conducted in NASA’s Space Power Facility in Ohio and used a bowling ball and a feather to demonstrate the remarkable principle of physics. The facility used for this experiment, a space simulation chamber, is the world’s largest vacuum chamber. Originally built to be a nuclear test chamber, the huge room has thick concrete and aluminum walls and a huge series of pumps used to create the outerspace-like environment. To create the vacuum, the doors to the facility are sealed and air is pumped out until only about 2 grams of air are left inside the gigantic chamber (yep, there’s no oxygen in that room so entering without

Scientific research reveals how to win at Rock-Paper-Scissors

  Regular visitors to Reeko’s Mad Scientist Lab know that on occasion, Reeko likes to pull their leg (meaning he tricks them). Reeko doesn’t do this to confuse the little scientists but rather, to make sure they stay on their toes (meaning walking around on your toes makes it harder to have your leg pulled). What follows is a true news story and not one of Reeko's sneaky tricks. Chinese discover there is more to Rock-Paper-Scissors than meets the eye Scientists in China have studied the Rock-Paper-Scissors game and released findings that indicate the game is more than a simple game of chance. Indeed, there is a strategy that can be used to win at Rock-Paper-Scissors. Seriously, we’re not making this stuff up. We could discuss the ins and