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Physics - Computer Science - 22.09.2021
Simplifying quantum systems
Simplifying quantum systems
If only it were less prone to error, quantum physics might already be giving us instant solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems. researchers are therefore working to develop systems that are more robust. In crude terms, our digitally driven information society is based on a simple binary opposition: 0 or 1.

Physics - Chemistry - 22.09.2021
The whole is the truth
Quantum physics opens our eyes to the holistic nature of reality. Nothing can be observed in isolation - and everything is governed by chance. We generally assume that the objects around us exist independently of us and of other objects. We can observe a glass as a well-defined object and investigate its chemical or physical properties in the lab.

Computer Science - Physics - 22.09.2021
Computer scientists take on the quantum challenge
Computer scientists take on the quantum challenge
For a long time, the development of quantum computers was concerned with theoretical and hardware aspects. But as the focus shifts towards programming, software and security issues, the classical computer sciences are coming back into play. Physicists had long nurtured the ambition to build a quantum computer.

Chemistry - Physics - 10.09.2021
The mystery of the flexible shell
The mystery of the flexible shell
An international research team with participation of the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI has revealed a secret about a marine animal's shell: The researchers have deciphered why the protective cover of the brachiopod Discinisca tenuis becomes extremely soft in water and gets hard again in the air. The study appears today .

Physics - Earth Sciences - 10.09.2021
Acoustic illusions
Acoustic illusions
Researchers have devised an ingenious method of using acoustics to conceal and simulate objects. When listening to music, we don't just hear the notes produced by the instruments, we are also immersed in its echoes from our surroundings. Sound waves bounce back off the walls and objects around us, forming a characteristic sound effect - a specific acoustic field.

Physics - 09.09.2021
An insulator made of two conductors
An insulator made of two conductors
At researchers have observed a new state of matter: in graphene layers twisted relative to each other, two electrical conductors team up to form an insulator. Ohm's law is well-known from physics class. It states that the resistance of a conductor and the voltage applied to it determine how much current will flow through the conductor.

Astronomy / Space Science - Physics - 08.09.2021
Surprise: the Milky Way is not homogeneous
Surprise: the Milky Way is not homogeneous
Astronomers from the UNIGE have observed the composition of the gases in our galaxy and have shown that, contrary to the models established until now, they are not homogeneously mixed. In order to better understand the history and evolution of the Milky Way, astronomers are studying the composition of the gases and metals that make up an important part of our galaxy.

Physics - Materials Science - 02.09.2021
Photovoltaic perovskites can detect neutrons
Photovoltaic perovskites can detect neutrons
A simple and cheap device for detecting neutrons has been developed by a team of researchers and their collaborators. The device, based on a special class of crystalline compounds called perovskites, could be used to quickly detect neutrons coming from radioactive materials, e.g. a nuclear reactor that has been damaged or that is being transported nefariously, the researchers say.

Chemistry - Physics - 30.08.2021
Charging stations can combine hydrogen production and energy storage
Charging stations can combine hydrogen production and energy storage
Scientists have developed a new system that addresses two top priorities of the energy transition: clean hydrogen production and large-scale energy storage. Their technology could be particularly useful in transportation applications. The need for reliable renewable energy is growing fast, as countries around the world - including Switzerland - step up their efforts to fight climate change, find alternatives to fossil fuels and reach the energy-transition targets set by their governments.

Physics - Chemistry - 26.08.2021
Light-matter interactions propel quantum technologies forward
Light-matter interactions propel quantum technologies forward
Physicists at EPFL have found a way to get photons to interact with pairs of atoms for the first time. The breakthrough is important for the field of cavity quantum electrodynamics (QED), a cutting-edge field leading the way to quantum technologies. Image:A collection of atom pairs inside an optical cavity formed by a pair of mirrors facing each other.

Computer Science - Physics - 25.08.2021
Optical technology can slash the energy required by AI
Optical technology can slash the energy required by AI
EPFL engineers are pioneering an energy-saving technology that uses fiber optics to boost the performance of supercomputers. Optical technology is used for transmitting, storing, displaying and identifying data. It provides the processing speed that data centers need by offering efficient means for communication and analysis operations.

Physics - Astronomy / Space Science - 19.08.2021
Researchers from IRSOL and IAC solve twenty-year-old paradox in solar physics
Researchers from IRSOL and IAC solve twenty-year-old paradox in solar physics
In 1998, the journal Nature published a seminal letter concluding that a mysterious signal, which had been recently discovered analysing the polarization of sunlight, implies that the solar chromosphere (a very important layer of the solar atmosphere) is practically unmagnetised, in sharp contradiction with common wisdom.

Physics - 17.08.2021
Scientific reasoning requires the irrationality of intuition
SUMMER SERIE: HOW SCIENCE WORKS Science is based on coherent reasoning, while intuition follows a more disjointed path. But scientific research couldn't succeed if scientists didn't listen to their gut feelings every once in a while. Science by definition relies on logic, reasoning and rigor. But we've all heard about Archimedes' famous Eureka! moment when, while taking a bath, he suddenly understood what came to be known as Archimedes' principle.

Physics - Chemistry - 05.08.2021
A promising breakthrough: Nanocrystals made of amalgam
A promising breakthrough: Nanocrystals made of amalgam
Researchers at ETH have managed to produce nanocrystals made of two different metals using an amalgamation process whereby a liquid metal penetrates a solid one. This new and surprisingly intuitive technique makes it possible to produce a vast array of intermetallic nanocrystals with tailored properties for diverse applications. Nanocrystals are nanometre-sized spheres consisting of regularly arranged atoms.

Physics - Chemistry - 29.07.2021
High-precision frequency measurement
High-precision frequency measurement
Many scientific experiments require highly precise time measurements with the help of a clearly defined frequency. Now, a new approach allows the direct comparison of frequency measurements in the lab with the atomic clock in Bern, Switzerland. For many scientific experiments, today's researchers require a precise reference frequency that allows them to calibrate the time measurements made by their equipment.

Physics - Astronomy / Space Science - 26.07.2021
On eternal imbalance
On eternal imbalance
Some physical systems, especially in the quantum world, do not reach a stable equilibrium even after a long time. An ETH researcher has now found an elegant explanation for this phenomenon. If you put a bottle of beer in a big bathtub full of ice-cold water, it won't be long before you can enjoy a cold beer.

Physics - Chemistry - 20.07.2021
Laser improves the time resolution of CryoEM
Scientists have devised a new method that can speed up the real-time observation capabilities of cryo-electron microscopy. In 2017, Jacques Dubochet, Joachim Frank, and Richard Henderson won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their contributions to cryo-electron microscopy (cryoEM), an imaging technique that can capture pictures of biomolecules such as proteins with atomic precision.

Physics - 19.07.2021
Understanding the physics in new metals
Understanding the physics in new metals
Researchers from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and the Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), working in an international team, have developed a new method for complex X-ray studies that will aid in better understanding so-called correlated metals. These materials could prove useful for practical applications in areas such as superconductivity, data processing, and quantum computers.

Physics - Chemistry - 14.07.2021
Nanosphere at the quantum limit
Nanosphere at the quantum limit
Researchers at ETH Zurich have trapped a tiny sphere measuring a hundred nanometres using laser light and slowed down its motion to the lowest quantum mechanical state. Based on this, one can study quantum effects in macroscopic objects and build extremely sensitive sensors. Why can atoms or elementary particles behave like waves according to quantum physics, which allows them to be in several places at the same time?

Physics - Chemistry - 13.07.2021
Molecules in collective ecstasy
Molecules in collective ecstasy
When fluorescent dye molecules nestle perfectly together, something completely new is created: an excited state distributed over many molecules. Such collective excitations can be used in a variety of ways - for organic solar panels, in sensors, for ultrafast data transmission or in microscopy, for example.
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