Researchers Discover Four New Galaxy Clusters

Caption: Perseus galaxy cluster. [D. W. Hogg/M. Blanton/SDSS Collaboration].

Caption: Perseus galaxy cluster. [D. W. Hogg/M. Blanton/SDSS Collaboration].

Four unknown galaxy clusters each potentially containing thousands of individual galaxies have been discovered some 10 billion light years from Earth.

An international team of astronomers, led by Imperial College London, used a new way of combining data from the two European Space Agency satellites, Planck and Herschel, to identify more distant galaxy clusters than has previously been possible. The researchers believe up to 2000 further clusters could be identified using this technique, helping to build a more detailed timeline of how clusters are formed. Read More →

Photosynthesis Simulated on the Quantum Level

Dipole-mediated energy transport of Rydberg-excitations (glowing balls) in an atomic sea – artist impression. Picture credits: S. Whitlock / G. Günter

Dipole-mediated energy transport of Rydberg-excitations (glowing balls) in an atomic sea – artist impression. Picture credits: S. Whitlock / G. Günter

Physicists discover new properties of energy transport in experiments on “atomic giants”

By realizing an artificial quantum system, physicists at Heidelberg University have simulated key processes of photosynthesis on a quantum level with high spatial and temporal resolution. In their experiment with Rydberg atoms the team of Prof. Dr. Matthias Weidemüller and Dr. Shannon Whitlock discovered new properties of energy transport. Read More →

The World’s Most Powerful Terahertz Quantum Cascade Laser

QCL Bild_1

Christoph Deutsch, Martin Brandstetter and Michael Krall in the cleanroom at TU Vienna.

Whether used in diagnostic imaging, analysis of unknown substances or ultrafast communication – terahertz radiation sources are becoming more and more important. A recent Vienna University of Technology breakthrough has been made in this important area [Citations below]. Terahertz waves are invisible, but incredibly useful; they can penetrate many materials which are opaque to visible light and they are perfect for detecting a variety of molecules. Read More →

Fireballs in Jupiter’s Atmosphere

The first of these collisions was observed by A. Wesley from Australia and C. Go from Philippines on June, 3 2010. The second object was observed by three Japanese amateur observers (M. Tachikawa, K. Aoki and M. Ichimaru) on August, 20 that year and a third collision was observed by G. Hall from USA on September, 10 2012 after a report of a visual observation from D. Petersen from USA. Credit: Hueso/Wesley/Go/Tachikawa/Aoki/Ichimaru/Petersen

The first of these collisions was observed by A. Wesley from Australia and C. Go from Philippines on June, 3 2010. The second object was observed by three Japanese amateur observers (M. Tachikawa, K. Aoki and M. Ichimaru) on August, 20 that year and a third collision was observed by G. Hall from USA on September, 10 2012 after a report of a visual observation from D. Petersen from USA. Credit: Hueso/Wesley/Go/Tachikawa/Aoki/Ichimaru/Petersen

The solar system is crowded with small objects like asteroids and comets. Most have stable orbits which keep them out of harm’s way, but a small proportion of them are in orbits that risk them colliding with planets. Read More →

Newborn Stars and their Effect on the Universe

Star Cluster

When galaxies form new stars, they sometimes do so in frantic episodes of activity known as starbursts. These events were commonplace in the early Universe, but are rarer in nearby galaxies. Read More →

Herschel and Keck take Census of the Invisible Universe

Image Credits: ESA–C. Carreau/C. Casey (University of Hawai’i); COSMOS field: ESA/Herschel/SPIRE/HerMES Key Programme; Hubble images: NASA, ESA

By combining the observing powers of ESA’s Herschel space observatory and the ground-based Keck telescopes, astronomers have characterised hundreds of previously unseen starburst galaxies, revealing extraordinary high star-formation rates across the history of the Universe. Read More →

Marketers Reading Your Mind [Video]

Researchers in New York have shown that measuring human brain waves could help marketers develop more effective advertising campaigns. The team monitored brain wave activity in volunteers to determine what types of film scenes elicited universal responses. They say their data shows that the method could be far more effective than conventional market research techniques. Thoughts?

 

Learning From Other Species

A long-held assumption confirmed

Researchers at the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics and the EMBL-European Bioinformatics Institute have confirmed the long-held belief that studying the genes we share with other animals is useful. The study (cited below), published today in the open access journal PLoS Computational Biology, shows how bioinformatics makes it possible to test the fundamental principles on which life science is built. Read More →

A 100 Gbps Highway for Science

Climate researchers are producing some of the fastest growing datasets in science. Five years ago, the amount of information generated for the Nobel Prize-winning United Nations International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report was 35 terabytes—equivalent to the amount of text in 35 million books, occupying a bookshelf 248 miles (399 km) long. By 2014, when the next IPCC report is published, experts predict that 2 petabytes of data will have been generated for it—that’s a 580 percent increase in data production. Read More →

Seeing Inside the Nose of an Aircraft

This terahertz measurement system for non-destructive testing measures the thickness of multi-layered plastic films at a rate of 40 times per second. © Fraunhofer IPM

The planned arrival time, the request to land or the landing direction – this is the kind of information pilots discuss via radio with ground staff in the control tower. The nose of the aircraft, the „radar dome“, receives incoming radio signals and transmits radio signals sent by the pilot as well. It is made of a fiberglass composite. But if even tiniest imperfections arise during production – if, for instance, little foreign particles, drops of water or air bubbles become enclosed in the resin – over time they can cause fine cracks through which moisture can seep. This causes interference in radio traffic through the aircraft nose, introducing static into the signal. Read More →