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This page is dedicated to My Grandson Brandon.

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Technion - Back to the Future, Full Length Version

Full Length version (12.5 mins.) includes interviews. Technion City in the 3rd millennium, a world renowned research university pursuing teaching and research in the sciences, engineering, management, medicine, and architecture... a powerhouse of pure thought where the decision makers, researchers and great minds of today are charting the future
Film made by Cadenza Film Productions


http://www.cadenza.co.il/
***IN STOCK***
 HOLOGRAPHIC

UNIVERSE

by Chuck Missler

DVD

PRICE R 159.00

 

 

 

 

This DVD includes notes in PDF format and M4A files.


This briefing pack contains 2 hours of teachings

Available in the following formats

Session 1

• Epistemology 101: How do we “know”?

– Scientific Myths of the Past

– Scientific Myths of the Present

• The Macrocosm: The Plasma Universe: Gravitational Presumption?

• The Microcosm: The Planck Wall

• The Metacosm: Fracture of Hyperspace?

Session 2


• The Holographic Model: David Bohm

• GEO 600 “Noise”

• The Black Hole Paradox

– String Theorists examine the elephant

• A Holographic Universe:

– Distances are synthetic (virtual) images

– A Geocentric Cosmology?

– Some Scriptural Perspective(s)

 

 

“One can’t believe impossible things,”

Alice laughed.

“I daresay you haven’t had much practice,”

said the Queen.

“When I was your age, I always did it for

half-an-hour a day.

Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many

as six impossible things before breakfast.”

Through the Looking Glass

Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson)
 

DVD:

1 Disc
2 M4A Files
Color, Fullscreen 16:9, Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo, Region  This DVD will be viewable in other countries WITH the proper DVD player and television set.)
 

M4A File Video

Can be burned to disc and played on MP4 compatible DVD players.
Playable on iPod, iPhone, iPod Touch
Playable on any MP4 player
1 PDF Notes File
2 MP3 Files


 

 

 

 

 

 

Featured Briefing

A Holographic Universe?

by Dr. Chuck Missler

Are we actually living in a holographic universe? Are the distant galaxies only a virtual illusion? In a hologram, distances are synthetic! How does this impact our concepts of time and space?

There seems to be growing evidence to suggest that our world and everything in it may be only ghostly images, projections from a level of reality so beyond our own that the real reality is literally beyond both space and time.1

The Cosmos As a Super-Hologram?

An initiating architect of this astonishing idea was one of the world’s most eminent thinkers: University of London physicist David Bohm, a protégé of Einstein’s and one of the world’s most respected quantum physicists. Bohm’s work in plasma physics in the 1950s is considered a landmark. Earlier, at the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory, he noticed that in plasmas (ionized gases) the particles stopped behaving as individuals and started behaving as if they were part of a larger and interconnected whole. Moving to Princeton University in 1947, there, too, he continued his work in the behavior of oceans of ionized particles, noting their highly organized overall effects and their behavior, as if they knew what each of the untold trillions of individual particles was doing.

One of the implications of Bohm’s view has to do with the nature of location. Bohm’s interpretation of quantum physics indicated that at the subquantum level location ceased to exist. All points in space become equal to all other points in space, and it was meaningless to speak of anything as being separate from anything else. Physicists call this property “nonlocality”. The web of subatomic particles that compose our physical universe—the very fabric of “reality” itself—possesses what appears to be an undeniable “holographic” property. Paul Davis of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, England, observed that since all particles are continually interacting and separating, “the nonlocal aspects of quantum systems is therefore a general property of nature.”2

The Nature of Reality

One of Bohm’s most startling suggestions was that the tangible reality of our everyday lives is really a kind of illusion, like a holographic image. Underlying it is a deeper order of existence, a vast and more primary level of reality that gives birth to all the objects and appearances of our physical world in much the same way that a piece of holographic film gives birth to a hologram. Bohm calls this deeper level of reality the implicate (“enfolded”) order and he refers to our level of existence the explicate (unfolded) order.3 This view is not inconsistent with the Biblical presentation of the physical (“explicate”) world as being subordinate to the spiritual (“implicate”) world as the superior reality.4

The Search for Gravity Waves

Gravitational waves are extremely small ripples in the structure of spacetime caused by astrophysical events like supernovae or coalescing massive binaries (neutron stars, black holes). They had been predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916, but not yet directly observed.

GEO 600 is a gravitational wave detector located near Sarstedt, Germany, which seeks to detect gravitational waves by means of a laser interferometer of 600 meter arms’ length. This instrument, and its sister interferometric detectors, are some of the most sensitive gravitational wave detectors ever designed. They are designed to detect relative changes in distance of the order of 10-21, about the size of a single atom compared to the distance from the Earth to the Sun! Construction on the project began in 1995.

Mystery Noise

On January 15, 2009, it was reported in New Scientist that some yet unidentified noise that was present in the GEO 600 detector measurements might be because the instrument is sensitive to extremely small quantum fluctuations of space-time affecting the positions of parts of the detector. This claim was made by Craig Hogan, a scientist from Fermilab, on the basis of his theory of how such fluctuations should occur motivated by the holographic principle.5 Apparently, the gravitational wave detector in Hannover may have detected evidence for a holographic Universe!

Gravitational Wave Observatories Join Forces

A number of major projects will now pool their data to analyze it, jointly boosting their chances of spotting a faint signal that might otherwise be hidden by detector noise. Using lasers, they measure the length between mirrored test masses hung inside tunnels at right angles to each other. Gravitational waves decrease the distance between the masses in one tunnel and increase it in the other by a tiny, but detectable amount. Combining the data will also make it possible to triangulate to find the source of any gravitational waves detected. These include: Laser Interferometer Gravitational Observatory based in Hanford, Washington and Livingston, Louisiana; Virgo Observatory, Pisa Italy; and, of course, the GEO 600 Observatory near Hanover, Germany.

The most ambitious of them is the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA), a joint mission between NASA and the European Space Agency to develop and operate a space-based gravitational wave detector sensitive at frequencies between 0.03 mHz and 0.1 Hz. LISA seeks to detect gravitational-wave induced strains in space-time by measuring changes of the separation between fiducial masses in three spacecraft 5 million kilometers apart.

Cosmic Implications

Are we actually living in a holographic universe? Are the distant galaxies only a virtual illusion? In a hologram, distances are synthetic! How does this impact our concepts of time and space?

It gets even worse: Could our universe be geocentric? The implications are too staggering to embrace. The holographic paradigm is still a developing concept and riddled with controversies. For decades, science has chosen to ignore evidences that do not fit their standard theories. However, the volume of evidence has now reached the point that denial is no longer a viable option.

Clearly, 20th-century science has discovered that our “macrocosm”—studies of largeness—is finite, not infinite. Our universe is finite and had a beginning, and that’s what has led to the “big bang” speculations. We also realize that gravity is dramatically eclipsed by electromagnetic considerations when dealing with galaxies, etc. The plasma physicists have been trying to tell astronomers that for decades but no one was listening.

What is even more shocking has been the discoveries in the “microcosm”—studies of smallness—that run up against the “Planck Wall” of the non-location of subatomic particles, and the many strange paradoxes of quantum physics. We now discover that we are in a virtual reality that is a digital, simulated environment. The bizarre realization that the “constants” of physics are changing indicates that our “reality” is “but a shadow of a larger reality,”6 and that’s what the Bible has maintained all along!7

The Bible is, of course, unique in that it has always presented a universe of more than three dimensions,8 and revealed a Creator that is transcendent over His creation. It is the only “holy book” that demonstrates these contemporary insights. It’s time for us to spend more time with the handbook that the Creator has handed to us. It is the ultimate adventure, indeed!

For background information on the Holographic Universe, see our briefing series, The Beyond Collection, available on DVD and other formats, in the Christmas catalog insert in this issue.


Notes

  1. We explore the limitations of the Macrocosm, the Microcosm, and the super-embracing “Metacosm” in our Beyond Series.
  2. Paul Davis, Superforce, Simon & Schuster, New York, 1948, p.48.
  3. This is reminiscent of the Red King’s dream in Through the Looking Glass, in which Alice finds herself in deep metaphysical waters when the Tweedle brothers defend the view that all material objects, including ourselves, are only “sorts of things” in the mind of God.
  4. 2 Corinthians 4:18.
  5. Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), located just outside Batavia, Illinois, near Chicago, is a US Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics. (Craig Hogan was then put in charge…)
  6. Scientific American, June 2005, “The Inconstancy of Constants”.
  7. Hebrews 11:3; John 1:1-3; et al.
  8. Ephesians 3:18. Nachmonides, writing in the 13th century, concluded, from his studies of the Genesis texts, that our universe has ten dimensions, of which only four are directly “knowable”.
 

Although the newest galactic image captured by a NASA telescope is being reported widely, there’s a major irony in the name given to the remarkable photograph – the “Hand of God.”

Today’s scientific establishment is largely secular, even atheistic, so naming the image of an exploding star – captured by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR – the “Hand of God” seems just a rare and whimsical acknowledgement of God, since the image does bear an unmistakable resemblance to a giant, cosmic “hand.”

However, renowned scientist Arthur Robinson, commenting on the photo’s name, tells WND that until the current historical era, everything in nature was considered by scientists to be evidence of the “hand of God.”

“Scientists during most of history have recognized that the vast natural beauty they are privileged to see and study could only have been the product of an awesome Creator,” Robinson said.

The new NASA photo resulted when the NuSTAR telescope X-rayed the explosion of a star and subsequent ejection of a huge cloud of matter that shows up as blue in the image.

In a press release, NuSTAR telescope principal investigator Fiona Harrison, of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, said, “NuSTAR’s unique viewpoint, in seeing the highest-energy X-rays, is showing us well-studied objects and regions in a whole new light.”

Robinson, a former CalTech professor and co-founder with Nobel laureate Linus Pauling of the Linus Pauling Institute, and later of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, assured WND that while science has become increasingly atheistic, “many scientists today still recognize the hand of God in the natural world.”

In “The Marketing of Evil,” author and WND Managing Editor David Kupelian points out a few other scientists who see the “Hand of God” everywhere:

“This ubiquitous natural wonderland caused man to acknowledge and honor the Creator of creation, as Copernicus did when he wrote, ‘[The world] has been built for us by the Best and Most Orderly Workman of all.’ Or as Galileo wrote, ‘God is known … by Nature in His works and by doctrine in His revealed word.’ Or as Pasteur confessed, ‘The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator.’ Or Isaac Newton: ‘When I look at the solar system, I see the earth at the right distance from the sun to receive the proper amounts of heat and light. This did not happen by chance.’”

Newton, interestingly, is universally regarded as one of the most important scientists in history, and his 1687 book, “Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy,” is considered perhaps the most influential science book of all time, laying out the basis for classical mechanics.

But Newton also wrote another book many people have never heard about: “Observations Upon the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John.” In fact, a devout Christian, Newton spent a significant amount of his time researching and studying the Bible.

With views like that, which by today’s academic standards might be regarded as “unscientific,” it is questionable whether Sir Isaac Newton, history’s most famous scientist, could have landed a professorship at a modern secular university.

Here are a few other images that scientists of past eras, had they been privileged to view them, would certainly have regarded as the handiwork of a divine Creator.

A star swirl:

Two interacting galaxies called Arp 273. It is thought that the smaller galaxy has actually passed through the larger one. (NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA))

The Mystic Mountain:

This craggy fantasy mountaintop enshrouded by wispy clouds looks like a bizarre landscape from Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings." (NASA, ESA, M. Livio and the Hubble 20th Anniversary Team (STScI))

A Butterfly:

This celestial butterfly is far from serene. What resemble dainty butterfly wings are actually roiling cauldrons of gas heated to nearly 20,000 degrees Celsius. The gas is tearing across space at more than 950,000 kilometers per hour – fast enough to travel from Earth to the Moon in 24 minutes! (NASA, ESA and the Hubble SM4 ERO Team)

The Sombrero:

The Hubble Space Telescope has trained its razor-sharp eye on one of the universe's most stately and photogenic galaxies, the Sombrero galaxy, Messier 104 (M104). (NASA/ESA and The Hubble Heritage Team STScI/AURA))

Crab Nebula:

This is among the largest images produced with the Earth-orbiting observatory – an shows theh entire Crab Nebula. (NASA, ESA and Allison Loll/Jeff Hester (Arizona State University). Acknowledgement: Davide De Martin (ESA/Hubble))

Horsehead:

Part of the constellation of Orion (The Hunter). Rising like a giant seahorse from turbulent waves of dust and gas is the Horsehead Nebula, otherwise known as Barnard 33. (NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (AURA/STScI))

In his book, “God and the Astronomers,” world-renowned astrophysicist Robert Jastrow, founding director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, explains the “fear of faith” many of today’s scientists experience.

There is a kind of religion in science, it is the religion of a person who believes there is order and harmony in the universe, and every effect must have its cause; [but] there is no First Cause. …

“No First Cause,” however, means there is no Creator, no God. As Jastrow continues:

This religious faith of the scientist is violated by the discovery that the world had a beginning under conditions in which the known laws of physics are not valid, and as a product of forces or circumstances we cannot discover. When that happens, the scientist has lost control. If he really examined the implications, he would be traumatized. As usual when faced with trauma, the mind reacts by ignoring the implications – in science this is known as “refusing to speculate” – or trivializing the origin of the world by calling it the Big Bang, as if the Universe were a firecracker.

Consider the enormity of the problem. Science has proven that the universe exploded into being at a certain moment. It asks, What cause produced this effect? Who or what put the matter and energy into the Universe? Was the Universe created out of nothing, or was it gathered together out of pre-existing materials? And science cannot answer these questions …

“Now,” Jastrow continues, “we would like to pursue that inquiry farther back in time, but the barrier to further progress seems insurmountable. It is not a matter of another year, another decade of work, another measurement, or another theory; at this moment it seems as though science will never be able to raise the curtain on the mystery of creation.”

The famed scientist’s ultimate conclusion is astonishingly candid, particularly in light of his own professed agnosticism: “For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountain of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”

 

Space News from SpaceDaily.com
Space News From SpaceDaily.Com
 
 

Veggie Will Expand Fresh Food Production on ISS

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Kennedy Space Center FL (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
A plant growth chamber bound for the International Space Station inside the Dragon capsule on the SpaceX-3 resupply mission may help expand in-orbit food production capabilities in more ways than one, and offer astronauts something they don't take for granted, fresh food. NASA's Veg-01 experiment will be used to study the in-orbit function and performance of a new expandable plant growth f
 

NASA Signs Deal With German, Canadian Partners To Test New Fuels

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
NASA has signed separate agreements with the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) to conduct a series of joint flight tests to study the atmospheric effects of emissions from jet engines burning alternative fuels. The Alternative Fuel Effects on Contrails and Cruise Emissions (ACCESS II) flights are set to begin May 7 and will be flown from NASA's
 

Study Tests Theory that Life Originated at Deep Sea Vents

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Cape Cod MA (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
One of the greatest mysteries facing humans is how life originated on Earth. Scientists have determined approximately when life began (roughly 3.8 billion years ago), but there is still intense debate about exactly how life began. One possibility has grown in popularity in the last two decades - that simple metabolic reactions emerged near ancient seafloor hot springs, enabling the leap from a n
 

How Mighty Jupiter Could Have Changed Earth's Habitability

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Moffett Field CA (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
Is Jupiter a friendly planet, Earth's enemy, or perhaps both? For decades, scientists have talked about how the giant gas planet keeps some asteroids from striking our small world, while others have pointed out that Jupiter's gravity could send some civilization-shattering asteroids our way. While that debate goes on, a subtler question arises about how influential Jupiter was in the early
 

NASA Ames Launches Nanosatellites, Science Experiments on SpaceX Rocket

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Moffett Field CA (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., will launch a variety of experiments into space aboard NASA's next commercial cargo resupply flight of the Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) Dragon spacecraft to the International Space Station. These experiments include a next-generation smartphone satellite, 100 stamp-sized nanosatellites and life science experiments to better o
 

NASA Engineers Prepare Game Changing Cryotank for Testing

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Huntsville AL (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
NASA and Boeing engineers are inspecting and preparing one of the largest composite rocket propellant tanks ever manufactured for testing. The composite cryotank is part of NASA's Game Changing Development Program and Space Technology Mission Directorate, which is innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in NASA's future missions. NASA focused on this technology because
 

Faraway Moon or Faint Star? Possible Exomoon Found

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (JPL) Apr 11, 2014
Titan, Europa, Io and Phobos are just a few members of our solar system's pantheon of moons. Are there are other moons out there, orbiting planets beyond our sun? NASA-funded researchers have spotted the first signs of an "exomoon," and though they say it's impossible to confirm its presence, the finding is a tantalizing first step toward locating others. The discovery was made by watching
 

Recycling astronaut urine for energy and drinking water

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
On the less glamorous side of space exploration, there's the more practical problem of waste - in particular, what to do with astronaut pee. But rather than ejecting it into space, scientists are developing a new technique that can turn this waste burden into a boon by converting it into fuel and much-needed drinking water. Their report, which could also inspire new ways to treat municipal
 

Gusev Crater once held a lake after all

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Tempe AZ (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
If desert mirages occur on Mars, "Lake Gusev" belongs among them. This come-and-go body of ancient water has come and gone more than once, at least in the eyes of Mars scientists. Now, however, it's finally shifting into sharper focus, thanks to a new analysis of old data by a team led by Steve Ruff, associate research professor at Arizona State University's Mars Space Flight Facility in t
 

Reporters See NASA's Latest High Tech Exploration Tool Before Testing

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
On April 9 reporters got a chance to don "bunny suits" (protective apparel that sometimes makes people look like large rabbits) and enter a NASA clean room at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. In the room is NASA's latest technology for landing large payloads on planets like Mars or Earth, being processed for shipping prior to testing next June. NASA's Low-Density
 

Join in the Cassini Name Game

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (JPL) Apr 11, 2014
As NASA's Cassini mission approaches its 10th anniversary at Saturn, its team members back here on Earth are already looking ahead to an upcoming phase. Starting in late 2016, the Cassini spacecraft will repeatedly climb high above Saturn's north pole, flying just outside its narrow F ring. Cassini will probe the water-rich plume of the active geysers on the planet's intriguing moon Encela
 

Scientists reconstruct ancient impact that dwarfs dinosaur-extinction blast

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
Picture this: A massive asteroid almost as wide as Rhode Island and about three to five times larger than the rock thought to have wiped out the dinosaurs slams into Earth. The collision punches a crater into the planet's crust that's nearly 500 kilometers (about 300 miles) across: greater than the distance from Washington, D.C. to New York City, and up to two and a half times larger in diameter
 

Avionics System for SLS Boosters Gets 'Boost' of Its Own on Path to Space

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Huntsville AL (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
The avionics that will guide NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) boosters on the rocket's trip to deep space missions will get a big "boost" toward being ready for flight through an extensive test series now being conducted at ATK's Avionics Lab in Clearfield, Utah. The avionics system is responsible for igniting, steering and jettison of the two, five-segment solid rocket boosters for the SL
 

Construction to Begin on NASA Spacecraft Set to Visit Asteroid in 2018

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Apr 11, 2014
NASA's team that will conduct the first U.S. mission to collect samples from an asteroid has been given the go-ahead to begin building the spacecraft, flight instruments and ground system, and launch support facilities. This determination was made Wednesday after a successful Mission Critical Design Review (CDR) for NASA's Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Re
 

A new twist for better steel

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:12:00 AMGo to full article
Providence RI (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
Researchers from Brown University and universities in China have found a simple technique that can strengthen steel without sacrificing ductility. The new technique, described in Nature Communications, could produce steel that performs better in a number of structural applications. Strength and ductility are both crucial material properties, especially in materials used in structural appli
 

Russian cargo ship docks to space station

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Moscow (AFP) April 10, 2014
A Russian cargo ship has successfully docked with the International Space Station Thursday, bringing the crew crucial supplies and water, Russia's space agency said. The unmanned Progress M-23M ship, which was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, docked with the ISS at 2114 GMT, two minutes later than scheduled, the Roscosmos agency said. The station was flyi
 

India's mission to Mars crosses half-way mark

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Bangalore, India (AFP) April 09, 2014
India's first mission to Mars successfully crossed the half-way mark on Wednesday, four months after leaving on an voyage to the Red Planet scheduled to take 11 months, the space agency said. "The spacecraft crossed the half-way mark Wednesday at 9:50am on its journey to Mars," the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said in a statement from the southern city of Bangalore. "The spa
 

Journey to Mars Only Possible With International Cooperation

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Mexico City (RIA Novosti) Apr 09, 2014
Dmitry Znamensky - No single country has the resources to carry out an expedition to Mars, but together mankind does have the technological capability required to realize such an endeavor, according to Russian professor Vyacheslav Turyshev, speaking at Astronautics Week dedicated to the April 12 anniversary of Yury Gagarin's historic first manned spaceflight. "These tasks cannot be tackled
 

Searching High and Low for Dark Matter

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
There's more to the cosmos than meets the eye. In late February, dark matter hunters from around the world gathered at the University of California, Los Angeles for "Dark Matter 2014." The annual conference is one of the largest of its kind aimed at discussing the latest progress in the quest to identify dark matter, the unknown stuff that makes up more than a quarter of the universe yet r
 

Webb Telescope's Heart Complete, Final Instrument Installed

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
The last piece of the James Webb Space Telescope's heart was installed inside the world's largest clean room at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. What looked like a massive black frame covered with wires and aluminum foil, the heart or Integrated Science Instrument Module (ISIM) now contains all four of Webb's science instruments. Together, these instruments will help un
 

Fifth Boeing GPS IIF Satellite Joins Global Positioning System

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
El Segundo, CA (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
The accuracy of the Global Positioning System (GPS) has been improved with the recent handover of a fifth Boeing GPS IIF satellite to the U.S. Air Force. The newest addition to the GPS constellation increases the precision of position, navigation and timing data sent to users around the world. The satellite was launched Feb. 20. The Air Force, which operates the GPS system, and Boeing have
 

ESA to continue space cooperation with Russia unlike NASA

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Apr 09, 2014
The European Space Agency (ESA) has no intentions at all of reviewing its space cooperation with Russia, despite the latter's merger with Crimea and NASA's recent announcement of pulling out from joint projects with Moscow, SpaceNews.com weekly reported referring to ESA Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain. Last week, the US space agency posted on its Twitter and Facebook accounts a state
 

NASA's LRO Mission and North America to Experience Total Lunar Eclipse

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
When people in North America look up at the sky in the early morning hours of April 15, they can expect the moon to look a little different. A total lunar eclipse is expected at this time, a phenomenon that occurs when the Earth, moon and sun are in perfect alignment, blanketing the moon in the Earth's shadow. Although lunar eclipses happen multiple times in a year during a full moon, this
 

Lockheed Martin and NewSat Achieve Significant Program Milestone on Jabiru-1 Satellite

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Denver CO (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
Lockheed Martin and NewSat Limited have completed a comprehensive technical review of Jabiru-1, Australia's first commercial Ka-band satellite. Jabiru-1 will deliver high-powered communications to meet the growing demand from oil, gas, mining, government and carrier-grade telecommunications customers in the world's emerging economies. To achieve this milestone, Lockheed Martin completed th
 

Russian Federal Space Agency is elaborating Moon exploration program

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Apr 09, 2014
The Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has created a team of specialists, which will elaborate the Moon program. The scientists plan to launch three spacecraft - two landing and one orbital - to the Moon to the end of this decade. Roscosmos is about to begin creation of a carrier rocket that will be launched from the Vostochny Cosmodrome. The agency is also elaborating a carrier rock
 

Russian Astronaut Misurkin Dreams of Going to the Moon, Mars

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Mexico City (RIA Novosti) Apr 09, 2014
A Russian astronaut Alexander Misurkin thinks humankind should not stop at the exploration of near-Earth space but rather go further in the universe, the explorer told RIA Novosti Tuesday. "I think, we shouldn't limit ourselves to exploring the Earth's orbit. I, personally, would be interested in going to the outer space, exploring the asteroids, the Moon, and Mars. It's a natural developm
 

Images From NASA Mars Rover Include Bright Spots

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (JPL) Apr 09, 2014
Images taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover on April 2 and April 3 include bright spots, which might be due to the sun glinting off a rock or cosmic rays striking the camera's detector. The rover took the image just after arriving at a waypoint called "the Kimberley." The bright spot appears on a horizon, in the same west-northwest direction from the rover as the afternoon sun. "In t
 

Vanguard Space Technologies Antenna Reflectors on Amazonas Satellite Launch

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
San Diego CA (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
Vanguard Space Technologies, Inc. (Vanguard) today announced that it supplied mission-critical components to Orbital Sciences Corporation (ORB) for the Amazonas 4A telecommunications satellite that was recently launched aboard Arianespace's Ariane 5 ECA rocket from Kourou, French Guiana. The Amazonas 4A spacecraft, which was designed, manufactured and tested by Orbital and built for Hispas
 

Mars Exploration in a Deep Mine

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Paris, France (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
This week, twenty European scientists will gather at Boulby mine in the UK to begin testing technologies for the exploration of Mars and hunting for deep subsurface life that will aid scientists in their search for extraterrestrial life. The scientists are part of an exciting new European space exploration programme called MASE (Mars Analogues for Space Exploration) which will investigate
 

CSU Researcher to Examine Health Impacts of Space Travel in NASA-Funded Twin Study

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:20:17 AMGo to full article
Fort Collins CO (SPX) Apr 09, 2014
When NASA sends an identical twin to the International Space Station next year, a Colorado State University researcher will be among just a few hand-picked scientists studying him and his brother to measure impacts of space travel on the human body. Susan Bailey, an associate professor in CSU's Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences, is heading one of only 10 projects
 

Space superiority remains vital to national security

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:16:49 PMGo to full article
Washington DC (AFNS) Apr 08, 2014
Gen. William Shelton, the commander of Air Force Space Command, highlighted a successful satellite launch to the House Armed Services Committee's subcommittee on strategic forces during a budget hearing for national security space activities here, April 3. "Just this morning, we had a very successful Defense Meteorological Satellite Program launch out of Vandenberg Air Force Base, (Calif.)
 

Russia warns Ukraine against missile technologies proliferation

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Moscow (XNA) Apr 08, 2014
Russia on Monday drew Kiev's attention over media reports that a Ukrainian military-space enterprise had allegedly been negotiating with third countries on missile technology sale. Referring to the Yuzhmash plant based in the city of Dnepropetrovsk in eastern Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Ministry reminded that Ukraine is a participant of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and a s
 

Northrop Grumman to Build Five More MQ-8C Fire Scouts for the US Navy

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
San Diego CA (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
Northrop Grumman will build five additional U.S. Navy MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopters, which allow ship commanders to extend their intelligence-gathering capabilities far beyond the horizon. Final assembly of the aircraft will take place at the company's Unmanned Systems Center in Moss Point, Miss. The MQ-8C is based on a larger helicopter airframe that provides greater range, endura
 

LockMart and US Navy Demonstrate Airborne Autonomy Technology

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
National Harbor MD (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
As autonomous technologies continue to develop and grow within the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Navy, Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR) successfully demonstrated the Lockheed Martin OPTIMUS mission system's ability to accomplish an autonomous approach and landing in an unprepared environment. The system enhances the onboard intelligence of the vehicle and
 

Intelsat and L-3 Test Protected Air Force Tactical Technology on Ku-band

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Bethesda MD (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
Intelsat General Corp. and L-3 Communication Systems-West (L-3 CS-West) announced the successful demonstration of new U.S. Air Force Protected Tactical Waveform technology over Ku-band transponders on the Intelsat fleet. The demonstrations and performance characterization were conducted at the Intelsat teleport in Ellenwood, GA, during the week of March 4th. Engineers conducting the tests
 

Remote Troops Closer to Having High-Speed Wireless Networks Mounted on UAVs

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
Missions in remote, forward operating locations often suffer from a lack of connectivity to tactical operation centers and access to valuable intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) data. The assets needed for long-range, high-bandwidth communications capabilities are often unavailable to lower echelons due to theater-wide mission priorities. DARPA's Mobile Hotspots program ai
 

Headwall Extends Global Reach in Asia/Pac and Israel

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Fitchburg MA (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
Headwall has responded to rapidly growing demand for its advanced hyperspectral sensors by adding reseller partners in both Singapore/Asia-Pac and Israel. The moves come as Headwall is poised to unveil new hyperspectral sensors that address key market opportunities. Both markets represent rapidly growing ones for Headwall, explained CEO David Bannon. "The hyperspectral sensor market is gro
 

Hyperspectral Software Announced for Airborne Applications

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Fitchburg MA (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
Headwall has released its new Hyperspec III application software featuring a powerful set of hyperspectral data acquisition management tools. The enhanced software suite represents an easy-to-use platform for controlling hyperspectral sensors across applications ranging from manned aircraft to UAV airborne remote sensing. The software is compatible with Headwall's award-winning Hyperspec f
 

Navy to fly drone helicopters from tablet app

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Apr 08, 2014
The Pentagon is pushing the envelope yet again with a new $100 million, five-year program that aims to turn assorted military helicopters into a fleet of autonomous unmanned choppers. When all is said and done, the program is expected to give United States troops another advantage in the battlefield by allowing them the ability to fly in choppers hauling valuable cargo without risking the
 

Math modeling integral to synthetic biology research

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Houston TX (SPX) Apr 07, 2014
A long-standing challenge in synthetic biology has been to create gene circuits that behave in predictable and robust ways. Mathematical modeling experts from the University of Houston (UH) collaborated with experimental biologists at Rice University to create a synthetic genetic clock that keeps accurate time across a range of temperatures. The findings were published in a recent issue of the P
 

Materials and electronics that dissolve when triggered

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Ames, IA (SPX) Apr 07, 2014
A medical device, once its job is done, could harmlessly melt away inside a person's body. Or, a military device could collect and send its data and then dissolve away, leaving no trace of an intelligence mission. Or, an environmental sensor could collect climate information, then wash away in the rain. It's a new way of looking at electronics: "You don't expect your cell phone to dissolve
 

Japan orders to shoot down any new N Korea ballistic missile launches

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Apr 07, 2014
Japan has ordered a destroyer in the Sea of Japan to strike any ballistic missiles that may be launched by North Koreain the coming weeks after Pyongyang fired a Rodong medium-range missile over the sea, a government source said on Saturday. According to the Reuters report citing an unidentified government source, Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera issued the order on Thursday, but
 

New algorithm aids in both robot navigation and scene understanding

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Boston MA (SPX) Apr 07, 2014
Suppose you're trying to navigate an unfamiliar section of a big city, and you're using a particular cluster of skyscrapers as a reference point. Traffic and one-way streets force you to take some odd turns, and for a while you lose sight of your landmarks. When they reappear, in order to use them for navigation, you have to be able to identify them as the same buildings you were tracking before
 

Chemists develop gold coating that dims glare

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
Irvine CA (SPX) Apr 07, 2014
All that's gold does not glitter, thanks to new work by UC Irvine scientists that could reduce glare from solar panels and electronic displays and dull dangerous glints on military weapons. "We found that a very simple process and a tiny bit of gold can turn a transparent film black," said UC Irvine chemistry professor Robert Corn, whose group has created a patterned polymer material based
 

Groundbreaking optical device could enhance optical information processing, computers

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:45:07 AMGo to full article
St. Louis MO (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
At St. Paul's Cathedral in London, a section of the dome called the Whispering Gallery makes a whisper audible from the other side of the dome as a result of the way sound waves travel around the curved surface. Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis have used the same phenomenon to build an optical device that may lead to new and more powerful computers that run faster and cooler.
 

Progress Departs, New Cargo Ships Awaiting Launch

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:43:59 PMGo to full article
Houston TX (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
A Russian space freighter filled with trash departed the International Space Station on time Monday at 9:58 a.m. EDT. The ISS Progress 54 will orbit Earth 11 days for engineering tests before finally deorbiting over the Pacific Ocean for a fiery disposal. A new space delivery awaits its launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan inside the ISS Progress 55 spacecraft. Liftoff is sche
 

Progress M-22M to be undocked from ISS and sent on science mission

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:43:59 PMGo to full article
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Apr 08, 2014
On Monday, the Progress M-22M cargo spacecraft docked with the ISS will be sent on a monitored independent flight until 18 April to take part in the Radar-Progress scientific experiment, the mission control centre told RIA Novosti. The undocking is scheduled for 17:58 pm Moscow time (13:58 GMT) on 7 April. At 19:43 pm Moscow time (15:43 GMT) on 18 April the spacecraft is expected to leave
 

DMCii help Dutch company eLEAF provide much needed crop information to African farmers

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:43:59 PMGo to full article
Guildford UK (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
eLEAF, a Netherlands-based high-tech company that supplies reliable, quantitative data on water and vegetation in order to support sustainable water use, increase food production, and protect environmental systems have recently called upon DMCii satellite imagery to provide satellite images of four pilot areas located in West- Noubaria (Egypt) Arata Chufa irrigation scheme, Oromiya (Ethiopia), t
 

Satellite Navigation Failure Confirms Urgent Need for Backup

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:43:59 PMGo to full article
Canberra, Australia (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
The world's global positioning industry watched in disbelief on April 2, 2014, as all of the 24 GLONASS satellites that make up Russia's equivalent of the GPS system failed at once. This unprecedented and deeply worrying total disruption of what is one half of the world's operational global navigation satellite constellations shook the industry, and unequivocally confirmed the public warnings th
 

Airbus Wins Major ESA Weather Satellite Contract

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:43:59 PMGo to full article
Bethesda MD (SPX) Apr 08, 2014
The European Space Agency (ESA) has reportedly won the contract to build Europe's next generation polar-orbiting meteorological satellites. According to Space News, Airbus Defence and Space was selected over a team consisting of Thales Alenia and OHB AG. Final confirmation of the selection is expected to come from ESA's Industrial Policy Committee on April 11. ESA, which consists of 20 member states

 

 
News About Time And Space
 
 

Watching for a black hole to gobble up a gas cloud

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Chicago IL (SPX) Apr 08, 2014 - Right now a doomed gas cloud is edging ever closer to the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. These black holes feed on gas and dust all the time, but astronomers rarely get to see mealtime in action.

Northwestern University's Daryl Haggard has been closely watching the little cloud, called G2, and the black hole, called Sgr A*, as part of a study that should eventually help solve one of the outstanding questions surrounding black holes: How exactly do they achieve such supermassive proportions?

She will discuss her latest data at a press briefing, "Advances in Astrophysics," to be held at 11 a.m. EDT Sunday, April 6, in Gwinnett Room of the Savannah International Convention Center. The briefing is part of the American Physical Society (APS) April Meeting in Savannah, Ga.

The closest approach between the black hole and gas cloud is predicted to occur any day now. Haggard has been using two world-class observatories, the Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Very Large Array, to gather data on this potentially spectacular encounter.

"Our most recent Chandra observation does not show enhanced emission in the X-rays," Haggard said. "From the X-ray perspective, the gas cloud is late to the party, but it remains to be seen whether G2 is fashionably late or a no show."

At the APS meeting, she also will make a presentation, "Hot News from the Milky Way's Central Black Hole," as part of the session "Hot Topics in Astrophysics" from 3:30 to 5:18 p.m. EDT Sunday, April 6, in Chatham Ballroom C of the convention center.

"This work is fascinating because it will teach us about the growth and feeding of supermassive black holes," said Haggard, a postdoctoral fellow in Northwestern's Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA). "We know they are big, and we know they are out there -- in vast numbers -- but we aren't sure in detail how they get their mass.

"Do they grow rapidly when they are young, like our kids do, or do they grow in fits and starts, whenever fuel becomes available? In watching the encounter between Sgr A* and G2 we may catch a massive black hole in the act of snatching its next meal," she said.

In her presentation, Haggard will show recent data from Chandra (X-rays) and the VLA (radio waves), including the largest flare ever seen from Sgr A*.

"Sgr A* and the newly discovered magnetic neutron star, SGR J1745-29, which appears to be in orbit around the black hole, are dishing out lots of interesting science," Haggard said.

"We've detected the brightest X-ray flare yet observed from Sgr A* and gathered data that are causing us to overhaul of our understanding of the neutron star population in the galactic center."

 

 

BOSS quasars track the expanding universe -- most precise measurement yet

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Berkeley CA (SPX) Apr 08, 2014 - The Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS), the largest component of the third Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS-III), pioneered the use of quasars to map density variations in intergalactic gas at high redshifts, tracing the structure of the young universe. BOSS charts the history of the universe's expansion in order to illuminate the nature of dark energy, and new measures of large-scale structure have yielded the most precise measurement of expansion since galaxies first formed.

The latest quasar results combine two separate analytical techniques. A new kind of analysis, led by physicist Andreu Font-Ribera of the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and his team, was published late last year. Analysis using a tested approach, but with far more data than before, has just been published by Timothee Delubac, of EPFL Switzerland and France's Centre de Saclay, and his team. The two analyses together establish the expansion rate at 68 kilometers per second per million light years at redshift 2.34, with an unprecedented accuracy of 2.2 percent.

"This means if we look back to the universe when it was less than a quarter of its present age, we'd see that a pair of galaxies separated by a million light years would be drifting apart at a velocity of 68 kilometers a second as the universe expands," says Font-Ribera, a postdoctoral fellow in Berkeley Lab's Physics Division. "The uncertainty is plus or minus only a kilometer and a half per second." Font-Ribera presented the findings at the April 2014 meeting of the American Physical Society in Savannah, GA.

BOSS employs both galaxies and distant quasars to measure baryon acoustic oscillations (BAO), a signature imprint in the way matter is distributed, resulting from conditions in the early universe. While also present in the distribution of invisible dark matter, the imprint is evident in the distribution of ordinary matter, including galaxies, quasars, and intergalactic hydrogen.

"Three years ago BOSS used 14,000 quasars to demonstrate we could make the biggest 3-D maps of the universe," says Berkeley Lab's David Schlegel, principal investigator of BOSS. "Two years ago, with 48,000 quasars, we first detected baryon acoustic oscillations in these maps. Now, with more than 150,000 quasars, we've made extremely precise measures of BAO."

The BAO imprint corresponds to an excess of about five percent in the clustering of matter at a separation known as the BAO scale. Recent experiments including BOSS and the Planck satellite study of the cosmic microwave background put the BAO scale, as measured in today's universe, at very close to 450 million light years - a "standard ruler" for measuring expansion.

BAO directly descends from pressure waves (sound waves) moving through the early universe, when particles of light and matter were inextricably entangled; 380,000 years after the big bang, the universe had cooled enough for light to go free. The cosmic microwave background radiation preserves a record of the early acoustic density peaks; these were the seeds of the subsequent BAO imprint on the distribution of matter.

Quasars extend the standard ruler
Previous work from BOSS used the spectra of over a million galaxies to measure the BAO scale with a remarkable one percent accuracy. But beyond redshift 0.7 (roughly six billion light years distant), galaxies become fainter and more difficult to see. For much higher redshifts like those in the present studies, averaging 2.34, BOSS pioneered the "Lyman-alpha forest" method of using spectra from distant quasars to calculate the density of intergalactic hydrogen.

As the light from a distant quasar passes through intervening hydrogen gas, patches of greater density absorb more light. The absorption lines of neutral hydrogen in the spectrum (Lyman-alpha lines) pinpoint each dense patch by how much they are redshifted. There are so many lines in such a spectrum, in fact, that it resembles a forest - the Lyman-alpha forest.

With enough good quasar spectra, close enough together, the position of the gas clouds can be mapped in three dimensions - both along the line of sight for each quasar and transversely among dense patches revealed by other quasar spectra. From these maps the BAO signal is extracted.

Although introduced by BOSS only a few years ago, this method of using Lyman-alpha forest data, called autocorrelation, by now seems almost traditional. The just-published autocorrelation results by Delubac and his colleagues employ the spectra of almost 140,000 carefully selected BOSS quasars.

Font-Ribera and his colleagues determine BAO using even more BOSS quasars in a different way. Quasars are young galaxies powered by massive black holes, extremely bright, extremely distant, and thus highly redshifted. Instead of comparing spectra to other spectra, Font-Ribera's team correlated quasars themselves to the spectra of other quasars, a method called cross-correlation.

"Quasars are massive galaxies, and we expect them to be in the denser parts of the universe, where the density of the intergalactic gas should also be higher," says Font-Ribera. "Therefore we expect to find more of the absorbing gas than average when we look near quasars." The question was whether the correlation would be good enough to see the BAO imprint.

Indeed the BAO imprint in cross-correlation was strong. Delubac and his team combined their autocorrelation results with the cross-correlation results of Font-Ribera and his team, and they converged on narrow constraints for the BAO scale. Autocorrelation and cross-correlation also converged in the precision of their measures of the universe's expansion rate, called the Hubble parameter. At redshift 2.34, the combined measure was equivalent to 68 plus or minus 1.5 kilometers per second per million light years.

"It's the most precise measurement of the Hubble parameter at any redshift, even better than the measurement we have from the local universe at redshift zero," says Font-Ribera. "These results allow us to study the geometry of the universe when it was only a fourth its current age. Combined with other cosmological experiments, we can learn about dark energy and put tight constraints on the curvature of the universe - it's very flat!"

David Schlegel remarks that when BOSS was first getting underway, the cross-correlation technique had been suggested, but "some of us were afraid it wouldn't work. We were wrong. Our precision measures are even better than we optimistically hoped for."

"Quasar-Lyman a Forest Cross-Correlation from BOSS DR11: Baryon Acoustic Oscillations," by Andreu Font-Ribera, David Kirkby, Nicolas Busca, Jordi Miralda-Escude, Nicholas P. Ross, Anze Slosar, Eric Aubourg, Stephen Bailey, Vaishali Bhardwaj, Julian Bautista, Florian Beutler, Dmitry Bizyaev, Michael Blomqvist, Howard Brewington, Jon Brinkmann, Joel R. Brownstein, Bill Carithers, Kyle S. Dawson, Timothee Delubac, Garrett Ebelke, Daniel J. Eisenstein, Jian Ge, Karen Kinemuchi, Khee-Gan Lee, Viktor Malanushenko, Elena Malanushenko, Moses Marchante, Daniel. Margala, Demitri Muna, Adam D. Myers, Pasquier Noterdaeme, Daniel Oravetz, Nathalie Palanque-Delabrouille, Isabelle Paris, Patrick Petitjean, Matthew M. Pieri, Graziano Rossi, Donald P. Schneider, Audrey Simmons, Matteo Viel, Christophe Yeche, and Donald G. York, has been submitted to the Journal of Cosmology and Astropartical Physics and is now available online at arxiv.org/abs/1311.1767.

 

 

New Zealand physicists split and collide ultracold atom clouds

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Dunedin, New Zealand (SPX) Apr 03, 2014 - Physicists at New Zealand's University of Otago have pushed the frontiers of quantum technology by developing a steerable 'optical tweezers' unit that uses intense laser beams to precisely split minute clouds of ultracold atoms and to smash them together.

The Otago researchers' feat is set to enhance efforts to understand the mysterious ways that atoms interact at temperatures of less than a millionth of a degree above absolute zero. Its potential applications include new tools for probing microscopic structures or for sensors that can map minute variations in magnetic fields, says lead researcher Dr Niels Kjaergaard.

A description of their cutting-edge system is published in the April 1 issue of the US journal Optics Letters. It details an experiment in which the researchers used the technology to split a single ultracold cloud of rubidium atoms sequentially into 32 daughter clouds, spreading them out over nearly half a centimetre.

"This sort of precise control of these atoms is like being able to pull a delicate snowflake into two clean halves with your bare hands. It's quite remarkable that we are able to manipulate such minute and fragile samples while moving them such a comparatively large distance," Dr Kjaergaard says.

The experimental setup involves steering horizontal and vertical laser beams around through their interaction with precisely controlled travelling acoustic waves. These steerable laser beams confine and move the atoms. As well as splitting atom clouds, the system allows them to be collided.

"Tongue-in-cheek, we like to refer to our setup as the 'Littlest Hadron Collider'. In some ways it's the complete opposite of what is the world's largest and most powerful particle collider, because instead of using extreme acceleration, we smash our atom clouds together at a pedestrian pace of up to a metre per second," Kjaergaard says.

The steerable optical tweezers unit was constructed as part of Kris Roberts' Honour's thesis project in Dr Kjaergaard's research group at the Jack Dodd Centre for Quantum Technology at the Department of Physics, while the control system for the acoustic waves was built by Master's student Thomas McKellar.

"For researchers who are still students, these are quite notable achievements and I'm very proud of their work. It demonstrates the fantastic training opportunities that Otago can offer in its Physics programme," Dr Kjaergaard says.

 

 

Notre Dame researchers provide new insights into quantum dynamics and quantum chaos

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Notre Dame IN (SPX) Apr 04, 2014 - A team of researchers led by University of Notre Dame physicist Boldizsar Janko has announced analytical prediction and numerical verification of novel quantum rotor states in nanostructured superconductors.

The international collaborative team points out that the classical rotor, a macroscopic particle of mass confined to a ring, is one of the most studied systems in classical mechanics.

In a paper appearing in the April 1 issue of the journal Nature Scientific Reports, Janko and colleagues Shi-Hsin Lin, Milorad Milosevic, Lucian Covaci and Francois Peeters of the Universiteit Antwerpen in Belgium described how the quantum dynamics of quasiparticles in several classes of nanostructured superconductors can be mapped onto a quantum rotor.

These results are the culmination of a nearly decade-long collaboration started in 2005, when Milosevic, Covaci and Peeters were visiting fellows of Notre Dame's Institute for Theoretical Sciences and Lin was a graduate student in Notre Dame's Department of Physics.

Besides being a remarkable example of a quantum analogue of a classical system, the superconducting rotor has a number of significant characteristics. It can be realized in a broad range of superconducting systems and has a tunable inertia and gravitational field. It also can be externally manipulated through effective tilt, pulsed gravity and pivot oscillations and can be converted to a quantum pendulum or be driven to a chaotic regime.

This realization of the quantum rotor therefore has the potential to provide insights into a variety of phenomena, which will be the focus of further experimental and theoretical investigation, possibly leading to practical applications such as advanced detectors.

 

 

Quantum Photon Properties Revealed in Another Particle-the Plasmon

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (SPX) Apr 04, 2014 - For years, researchers have been interested in developing quantum computers-the theoretical next generation of technology that will outperform conventional computers. Instead of holding data in bits, the digital units used by computers today, quantum computers store information in units called "qubits."

One approach for computing with qubits relies on the creation of two single photons that interfere with one another in a device called a waveguide. Results from a recent applied science study at Caltech support the idea that waveguides coupled with another quantum particle-the surface plasmon-could also become an important piece of the quantum computing puzzle.

The work was published in the print version of the journal Nature Photonics the week of March 31.

As their name suggests, surface plasmons exist on a surface-in this case the surface of a metal, at the point where the metal meets the air. Metals are conductive materials, which means that electrons within the metal are free to move around. On the surface of the metal, these free electrons move together, in a collective motion, creating waves of electrons.

Plasmons-the quantum particles of these coordinated waves-are akin to photons, the quantum particles of light (and all other forms of electromagnetic radiation).

"If you imagine the surface of a metal is like a sea of electrons, then surface plasmons are the ripples or waves on this sea," says graduate student Jim Fakonas, first author on the study.

These waves are especially interesting because they oscillate at optical frequencies. Therefore, if you shine a light at the metal surface, you can launch one of these plasmon waves, pushing the ripples of electrons across the surface of the metal. Because these plasmons directly couple with light, researchers have used them in photovoltaic cells and other applications for solar energy. In the future, they may also hold promise for applications in quantum computing.

However, the plasmon's odd behavior, which falls somewhere between that of an electron and that of a photon, makes it difficult to characterize.

"According to quantum theory, it should be possible to analyze these plasmonic waves using quantum mechanics"-the physics that governs the behavior of matter and light at the atomic and subatomic scale-"in the same way that we can use it to study electromagnetic waves, like light," Fakonas says. However, in the past, researchers were lacking the experimental evidence to support this theory.

To find that evidence, Fakonas and his colleagues in the laboratory of Harry Atwater, Howard Hughes Professor of Applied Physics and Materials Science, looked at one particular phenomenon observed of photons-quantum interference-to see if plasmons also exhibit this effect.

The applied scientists borrowed their experimental technique from a classic test of quantum interference in which two single, identical photons are launched at one another through opposite sides of a 50/50 beam splitter, a device that acts as an imperfect mirror, reflecting half of the light that reaches its surface while allowing the the other half of the light to pass through.

If quantum interference is observed, both identical photons must emerge together on the same side of the beam splitter, with their presence confirmed by photon detectors on both sides of the mirror.

Since plasmons are not exactly like photons, they cannot be used in mirrored optical beam splitters. Therefore, to test for quantum interference in plasmons, Fakonas and his colleagues made two waveguide paths for the plasmons on the surface of a tiny silicon chip. Because plasmons are very lossy-that is, easily absorbed into materials that surround them-the path is kept short, contained within a 10-micron-square chip, which reduces absorption along the way.

The waveguides, which together form a device called a directional coupler, act as a functional equivalent to a 50/50 beam splitter, directing the paths of the two plasmons to interfere with one another. The plasmons can exit the waveguides at one of two output paths that are each observed by a detector; if both plasmons exit the directional coupler together-meaning that quantum interference is observed-the pair of plasmons will only set off one of the two detectors.

Indeed, the experiment confirmed that two indistinguishable photons can be converted into two indistinguishable surface plasmons that, like photons, display quantum interference.

This finding could be important for the development of quantum computing, says Atwater. "Remarkably, plasmons are coherent enough to exhibit quantum interference in waveguides," he says.

"These plasmon waveguides can be integrated in compact chip-based devices and circuits, which may one day enable computation and measurement schemes based on quantum interference."

Before this experiment, some researchers wondered if the photon-metal interaction necessary to create a surface plasmon would prevent the plasmons from exhibiting quantum interference. "Our experiment shows this is not a concern," Fakonas says.

We learned something new about the quantum mechanics of surface plasmons. The main thing is that we were able to validate the theoretical prediction; we showed that this type of interference is possible with plasmons, and we did a pretty clean measurement," he says.

"The quantum interference displayed by plasmons appeared to be almost identical to that of photons, so I think it would be very difficult for someone to design a different structure that would improve upon this result."

The work was published in a paper titled "Two-plasmon quantum interference." In addition to Fakonas and Atwater, the other coauthors are Caltech undergraduate Hyunseok Lee and former undergraduate Yousif A. Kelaita (BS '12). The work was supported by funding from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, and the waveguide was fabricated at the Kavli Nanoscience Institute at Caltech.

 

 

Black hole makes 'String of Pearls' clusters

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Melbourne, Australia (SPX) Apr 03, 2014 - Huge young star clusters resembling a string of pearls around a black hole in the centre of a galaxy 120 million light-years away have been discovered by researchers at Swinburne University of Technology. The galaxy, called NGC2110, is in the constellation of Orion.

Using the giant Keck telescopes in Hawaii, the researchers, Professor Jeremy Mould and PhD student Mark Durre from Swinburne's Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, found four star clusters, very close (in astronomical terms) to a black hole.

"These star clusters hadn't been seen before because they are hidden by dust clouds around the black hole and because they appear very tiny, but they can be observed in infrared radiation that penetrates the clouds," Mr Durre said.

"The Keck telescope also uses 'adaptive optics', which removes the atmospheric shimmer that blurs images."

Supermassive black holes - condensations of matter so dense that not even light can escape from its gravity - are thought to be at the centre of all large galaxies.

"Our own galaxy, the Milky Way, has a black hole that is almost four million times the mass of our Sun," Mr Durre said. "NGC2110 has a black hole about 100 times bigger."

The black hole produces huge amounts of energy that comes from gas and dust falling into it. As the material streams in, it hits an accretion disk - a spinning ring of superheated gas around the black hole's equator. Enormous quantities of radiation shine out and some of the matter also gets spewed out in jets, which are most clearly observed by radio telescopes.

Tides from the black hole and other features of the galaxy can help form star clusters - collections of thousands of stars which are all formed together from a gas and dust cloud. In turn, gas out-streaming from the young stars in the clusters can feed and energise the black hole.

"The jets can compress gas around them to start this star cluster formation, but they can also stop the process by blowing the gas completely out of the galaxy. The fine details of how the matter is funnelled in and how the black hole affects the galaxy around it remain fascinating questions for astronomers as they try to work out how galaxies form."

Mr Durre said that according to computer simulations, star clusters should form like beads or pearls on a string in a ring around the black hole - and this is just what the researchers have observed.

"After many millions of years, these clusters will be torn apart, again by tidal forces, and gradually settle into a central collection closer around the black hole." Mr Durre said.

This research has been published in the Astrophysical Journal.

 

 

Cosmic barometer' could reveal violent events in universe's past

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
London, UK (SPX) Apr 01, 2014 - Exploding stars, random impacts involving comets and meteorites, and even near misses between two bodies can create regions of great heat and high pressure.

Researchers from Imperial College London have now developed a method for analysing the pressure experienced by tiny samples of organic material that may have been ejected from dying stars before making a long journey through the cosmos. The researchers have investigated a type of aromatic hydrocarbon called dimethylnaphthalene, which should enable them to identify violent events in the history of the universe.

Samples of dimethylnaphthalene are found in meteorites. Previously, scientists have only had the ability to investigate how they have been affected by heat. The Imperial researchers say their method for detecting periods when dimethylnaphthalenes have experienced high pressure will now allow for a much more comprehensive analysis of organic materials.

Dr Wren Montgomery, co-author from the Department of Earth Science and Engineering at Imperial College London, says: "The ability to detect high pressure environments in space has tremendous implications for our ability to learn more about the formation of our solar system and the universe. Dimethylnaphthalenes are like microscopic barometers and thermometers recording changes in pressure and heat as they travel through space. Understanding these changes lets us probe their history, and with that, the history of the galaxy."

In the study, the researchers placed a sample of dimethylnaphthalene, the width of a human hair, between the vice like grip of two anvils made out of gem-quality diamonds in a laboratory at the Swiss Light Source.

They then applied pressure, recreating the type of high pressure environment that dimethylnaphthalene could experience in space. Using an infrared light from the synchrotron at the facility, Dr Montgomery and her colleagues were able to clearly determine the alterations that happen to the molecular structure of dimethylnaphthalene when experiencing high pressure.

By applying different pressures, the team were able to vary the change in the molecular structure of dimethylnaphthalene, giving an insight into how different types of pressures in space would alter the molecular structure of the organic material.

The researchers also recreated the experiments at the Paul Scherrer Institut in Switzerland and SOLEIL Synchrotron in France to verify their research.

The next step will see the team carrying out more lab work where they will be subjecting other types of aromatic hydrocarbons to a range of pressures experienced in space. Dimethylnaphthalene may not always be present in rock samples, so the researchers say it is important to build up a comprehensive catalogue of all aromatic hydrocarbons to understand more about high pressure zones.

This catalogue would be used by scientists in the field to detect molecular markers in their samples that indicate a particular pressure range. Combined with data about the mineralogy and chemistry of the space rock that the aromatic hydrocarbons are encased in, scientists could then deduce the types of violent events that the sample may have been exposed to many millions or billions of years ago on its way to Earth.

The team also believe that their new technique could be applied on Mars, potentially using the existing technology on-board roving laboratories such as the one on the Mars Science Laboratory Mission to glean information about sources of organic matter on the red planet. Recognising the pressures recorded in the aromatic hydrocarbons can help to reveal whether it came from processes generated from ancient living organisms.

Professor Mark Sephton, co-author from the Department of Earth Science and Engineering at Imperial, says: "We now have another instrument to add to our celestial toolbox, which will help us to learn more about high pressure environments in space. Massive heat and pressure waves arcing out through space from cataclysmic events leave an indelible record in these cosmic barometers. It is really exciting to know that we now have a technique at our disposal that will help to reveal pivotal moments in the universe's history."

"An organic cosmo-barometer: distinct pressure and temperature effects for methyl substituted polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons", The Astrophysical Journal, published in hard copy on Tuesday 1 April 2014.

 

 

Creating virtual universes

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Melbourne, Australia (SPX) Mar 31, 2014 - Swinburne University of Technology has launched a free online astronomy virtual laboratory that will allow scientists to build complex customised views of the Universe, all from the comfort of their own computer.

The Theoretical Astrophysical Observatory (TAO), funded by the Australian Government's $48 million NeCTAR project, draws on the power of Swinburne's gSTAR GPU supercomputer to allow astronomers to simulate the Universe and see how it would look through a wide range of telescopes.

"TAO lets researchers take the data from massive cosmological simulations and map it onto an observer's viewpoint, to test theories of how galaxies and stars form and evolve," TAO project scientist, Swinburne Associate Professor Darren Croton, said.

"TAO makes it easy and efficient for any astronomer to create these virtual universes. It's the culmination of years of effort that is now at the fingertips of scientists around the world.

"Using TAO it might take a few minutes to create a mock catalogue of galaxies, versus months or even years of development previously."

Swinburne worked with eResearch company Intersect Australia Ltd, who designed the web interface with simplicity and user-friendliness in mind.

Associate Professor Croton said that it was important to create a service that could be used by any astronomer regardless of their area of expertise, "because that accelerates the pace of science and boosts the chance of breakthroughs".

As new survey telescopes and instruments become available, they can be modelled within TAO to maintain an up-to-date set of observatories.

"TAO could be especially useful for comparing theoretical predictions against observations coming from next-generation survey telescopes, like the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) in Western Australia, and the SkyMapper Telescope run by the Australian National University (ANU).

"These will cover large chunks of the sky and peer back into the early stages of the Universe and are tasked with answering some of the most fundamental questions know to humankind."

TAO is the theory node of the All Sky Virtual Observatory (ASVO) that is being created by Astronomy Australia Limited, Swinburne University of Technology, the ANU, National Computational Infrastructure, and Intersect Australia Ltd. The ASVO will bring together both theory and observation. This includes a portal to the most detailed digital and sensitive map of the southern sky from the SkyMapper telescope.

TAO is supported by Astronomy Australia Limited, Swinburne University of Technology and by the Australian Government through the Education Investment Fund, the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy, and the National eResearch Collaboration Tools and Resources (NeCTAR) Project.

 

 

The Search for Seeds of Black Holes

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (JPL) Mar 31, 2014 - How do you grow a supermassive black hole that is a million to a billion times the mass of our sun? Astronomers do not know the answer, but a new study using data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, has turned up what might be the cosmic seeds from which a black hole will sprout. The results are helping scientists piece together the evolution of supermassive black holes -- powerful objects that dominate the hearts of all galaxies.

Growing a black hole is not as easy as planting a seed in soil and adding water. The massive objects are dense collections of matter that are literally bottomless pits; anything that falls in will never come out. They come in a range of sizes. The smallest, only a few times greater in mass than our sun, form from exploding stars.

The biggest of these dark beasts, billions of times the mass of our sun, grow together with their host galaxies over time, deep in the interiors. But how this process works is an ongoing mystery.

Researchers using WISE addressed this question by looking for black holes in smaller, "dwarf" galaxies. These galaxies have not undergone much change, so they are more pristine than their heavier counterparts. In some ways, they resemble the types of galaxies that might have existed when the universe was young, and thus they offer a glimpse into the nurseries of supermassive black holes.

In this new study, using data of the entire sky taken by WISE in infrared light, up to hundreds of dwarf galaxies have been discovered in which buried black holes may be lurking. Infrared light, the kind that WISE collects, can see through dust, unlike visible light, so it's better able to find the dusty, hidden black holes.

The researchers found that the dwarf galaxies' black holes may be about 1,000 to 10,000 times the mass of our sun -- larger than expected for these small galaxies.

"Our findings suggest the original seeds of supermassive black holes are quite massive themselves," said Shobita Satyapal of George Mason University, Fairfax, Va. Satyapal is lead author of a paper published in the March issue of Astrophysical Journal.

Daniel Stern, an astronomer specializing in black holes at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., who was not a part of the new study, says the research demonstrates the power of an all-sky survey like WISE to find the rarest black holes.

"Though it will take more research to confirm whether the dwarf galaxies are indeed dominated by actively feeding black holes, this is exactly what WISE was designed to do: find interesting objects that stand out from the pack."

The new observations argue against one popular theory of black hole growth, which holds that the objects bulk up in size through galaxy collisions. When our universe was young, galaxies were more likely to crash into others and merge. It is possible the galaxies' black holes merged too, accumulating more mass. In this scenario, supermassive black holes grow in size through a series of galaxy mergers.

The discovery of dwarf galaxy black holes that are bigger than expected suggests that galaxy mergers are not necessary to create big black holes. Dwarf galaxies don't have a history of galactic smash-ups, and yet their black holes are already relatively big.

Instead, supermassive black holes might form very early in the history of the universe. Or, they might grow harmoniously with their host galaxies, feeding off surrounding gas.

"We still don't know how the monstrous black holes that reside in galaxy centers formed," said Satyapal. "But finding big black holes in tiny galaxies shows us that big black holes must somehow have been created in the early universe, before galaxies collided with other galaxies."

Other authors of the study include: N.J. Secrest, W. McAlpine and J.L. Rosenberg of George Mason University; S.L. Ellison of the University of Victoria, Canada; and J. Fischer of the Naval Research Laboratory, Washington.

WISE was put into hibernation upon completing its primary mission in 2011. In September 2013, it was reactivated, renamed NEOWISE and assigned a new mission to assist NASA's efforts to identify the population of potentially hazardous near-Earth objects. NEOWISE will also characterize previously known asteroids and comets to better understand their sizes and compositions.

 

 

Record quantum entanglement of multiple dimensions

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:38:27 AMGo to full article
Barcelona, Spain (SPX) Mar 31, 2014 - The states in which elementary particles, such as photons, can be found have properties which are beyond common sense. Superpositions are produced, such as the possibility of being in two places at once, which defies intuition.

In addition, when two particles are entangled a connection is generated: measuring the state of one (whether they are in one place or another, or spinning one way or another, for example) affects the state of the other particle instantly, no matter how far away from each other they are.

Scientists have spent years combining both properties to construct networks of entangled particles in a state of superposition. This in turn allows constructing quantum computers capable of operating at unimaginable speeds, encrypting information with total security and conducting experiments in quantum mechanics which would be impossible to carry out otherwise.

Until now, in order to increase the "computing" capacity of these particle systems, scientists have mainly turned to increasing the number of entangled particles, each of them in a two-dimensional state of superposition: a qubit (the quantum equivalent to an information bit, but with values which can be 1, 0 or an overlap of both values). Using this method, scientists managed to entangle up to 14 particles, an authentic multitude given its experimental difficulty.

The research team was directed by Anton Zeilinger and Mario Krenn from the Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information of the Austrian Academy of Sciences.

It included the participation of Marcus Huber, researcher from the Group of Quantum Information and Quantum Phenomena from the UAB Department of Physics, as well as visiting researcher at the Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO). The team has advanced one more step towards improving entangled quantum systems.

In an article published this week in the journal Proceedings (PNAS), scientists described how they managed to achieve a quantum entanglement with a minimum of 103 dimensions with only two particles.

"We have two Schrodinger cats which could be alive, dead, or in 101 other states simultaneously", Huber jokes, "plus, they are entangled in such a way that what happens to one immediately affects the other". The results implies a record in quantum entanglements of multiple dimensions with two particles, established until now at 11 dimensions.

Instead of entangling many particles with a qubit of information each, scientists generated one single pair of entangled photons in which each could be in more than one hundred states, or in any of the superpositions of theses states; something much easier than entangling many particles. These highly complex states correspond to different modes in which photons may find themselves in, with a distribution of their characteristic phase, angular momentum and intensity for each mode.

"This high dimension quantum entanglement offers great potential for quantum information applications. In cryptography, for example, our method would allow us to maintain the security of the information in realistic situations, with noise and interference. In addition, the discovery could facilitate the experimental development of quantum computers, since this would be an easier way of obtaining high dimensions of entanglement with few particles", explains UAB researcher Marcus Huber.

Now that the results demonstrate that obtaining high dimension entanglements is accessible, scientists conclude in the article that the next step will be to search how they can experimentally control these hundreds of spatial modes of the photons in order to conduct quantum computer operations.

 

 

Hunt for an unidentified electron object

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:41 AMGo to full article
Cambridge, UK (SPX) Mar 25, 2014 - Researchers have developed a new mathematical framework capable of describing motions in superfluids - low temperature fluids that exhibit classical as well as quantum behavior. The framework was used to lift the veil of mystery surrounding strange objects in superfluid helium (detected ten years ago at Brown University).

The study, conducted by an international collaboration of researchers from the UK, Russia and France is published today in the journal Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

The quantum nature of superfluids manifests itself in the form of quantized vortices, tiny twisters, with the core sizes of the order of an Angstrom (0.1nm - approximately the diameter of an atom) that move through fluid severing and coalescing, forming bundles and tangles.

To make these processes even more intricate and distinct from motions in usual classical fluids, these tiny twisters live on the background consisting of a mixture of viscous and inviscid fluid components that constitute superfluid. The mathematical modelling of such complex systems that involve a range of scales is a notoriously difficult problem.

The international team of researchers - Natalia Berloff of the University of Cambridge and Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, Marc Brachet of Universite Pierre-et-Marie-Curie and Nick Proukakis of Joint Quantum Centre Durham-Newcastle - came up with a novel framework for achieving this task. The team applied their method to elucidate an intriguing phenomenon in liquid helium research.

Electrons immersed in superfluid helium are useful experimental probes. As they move through superfluid they form soft bubbles of about 2 nm in diameter that get trapped by quantized vortices quite similar to how houses and cars become trapped and transported by a tornado.

A research team from Brown University led by Professor Humphrey Maris has studied the effect of oscillating pressures on electron bubbles. As pressure decreases below the criticality, the bubble expands and explodes, reaching micron sizes, with the bubble trapped by a vortex exploding at a pressure larger than that for the free bubble.

Maris' team also discovered another class of object that existed at very low temperatures only and exploded at even larger pressures. They termed these "unidentified electron objects".

The new approach published in PNAS today allowed the researchers to look at the processes as oscillating pressure was applied to a quantum fluid containing a vortex ring at a range of temperatures. The researchers discovered a novel mechanism of vortex multiplication: the vortex core expands and then contracts, forming a dense array of new vortex rings during the contraction stage.

They conjectured that it becomes quite likely that the electron bubble becomes trapped by more than one vortex line, furthermore reducing the pressure change needed for consequent explosions. They have also shown that the mechanism of vortex multiplication is suppressed at higher temperatures, explaining why such objects were found experimentally only at lower temperatures.

Professor Berloff who led the team commented: "It is fascinating to have a tool to look at the dynamics of processes that occur on the Angstrom lengthscales and at ultra-low temperatures in quantum fluids. The mystery of an unidentified electron object is just a teaser problem; we are ready for other challenges."

"Understanding the intricate features of behavior of quantized vortices is one of the grand unsolved problems that can be tackled with this framework," added Professor Proukakis.

 

 

Researchers see Kelvin wave on quantum 'tornado' for first time

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:41 AMGo to full article
College Park MD (SPX) Mar 25, 2014 - Draining the water from a bathtub causes a spinning tornado to appear. The downward flow of water into the drain causes the water to rotate, and as the rotation speeds up, a vortex forms that obeys the laws of classical mechanics. However, if the water is extremely cold liquid helium, the fluid will swirl around an invisible line to form a vortex that obeys the laws of quantum mechanics.

Sometimes, two of these quantum tornadoes flex into curved lines, cross over one another to form a letter X shape, swap ends, and then violently retract from one another-a process called reconnection.

Computer simulations have suggested that after the vortexes snap away from each other, they develop ripples called "Kelvin waves" to quickly get rid of the energy caused by the connection and relax the system. However, the existence of these waves had never been experimentally proven.

Now, for the first time, researchers provide visual evidence confirming that the reconnection of quantum vortexes launches Kelvin waves. The study, which was conducted at the University of Maryland, will be published the week of March 24, 2014 in the online early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The research was supported by the National Science Foundation.

"We weren't surprised to see the Kelvin waves on the quantum vortex, but we were excited to see them because they had never been seen before," said Daniel Lathrop, a UMD physics professor. "Seeing the Kelvin waves provided the first experimental evidence that previous theories predicting they would be launched from vortex reconnection were correct."

Understanding turbulence in quantum fluids, such as ultracold liquid helium, may offer clues to neutron stars, trapped atom systems and superconductors. Superconductors, which are materials that conduct electricity without resistance below certain temperatures, develop quantized vortices. Understanding the behavior of the vortices may help researchers develop superconductors that remain superconducting at higher current densities.

Physicists Richard Feynman and Lars Onsager predicted the existence of quantum vortices more than a half-century ago. However, no one had seen quantum vortices until 2006.

In Lathrop's laboratory at UMD, researchers prepared a cylinder of supercold helium-at 2 degrees Celsius above absolute zero-injected with frozen tracer particles made from atmospheric air and helium gases. When they shined a laser into the cylinder, the researchers saw the particles trapped on the vortices like dew drops on a spider web.

"Kelvin waves on quantized vortices had been predicted, but the experiments were challenging because we had to conduct them at lower temperatures than our previous experiments," explained Lathrop.

Since 2006, the researchers have used the same technique to further examine quantum vortexes. During an experiment in February 2012, they witnessed a unique reconnection event. One vortex reconnected with another and a wave propagated down the vortex. To quantitatively study the wave's motion, the researchers tracked the position of the particles on the vortex. The resulting waveforms agreed generally with theories of Kelvin waves propagating from quantum vortexes.

"These first observations of Kelvin waves will surely lead to exciting new experiments that push the limits of our knowledge of these exotic quantum motions," added Lathrop.

In the future, Lathrop plans to use florescent nanoparticles to investigate what happens near the transition to the superfluid state.

Lathrop conducted the current study with David Meichle, a UMD physics graduate student; Enrico Fonda, who was a research scholar at UMD and graduate student at the University of Trieste when the study was performed and is now a postdoctoral researcher at New York University; Nicholas Ouellette, who was a visiting assistant professor at UMD when the study was performed and is now an associate professor in mechanical engineering and materials science at Yale University; and Sahand Hormoz, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California, Santa Barbara's Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics.

The research paper, "Direct observation of Kelvin waves excited by quantized vortex reconnections," Enrico Fonda, David P. Meichle, Nicholas T. Ouellette, Sahand Hormoz, and Daniel P. Lathrop, will be published the week of March 24, 2014 in the online early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

 

 

Plugging the hole in Hawking's black hole theory

 
‎01 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:43:12 AMGo to full article
East Lansing MI (SPX) Mar 26, 2014 - Recently physicists have been poking holes again in Stephen Hawking's black hole theory - including Hawking himself. For decades physicists across the globe have been trying to figure out the mysteries of black holes - those fascinating monstrous entities that have such intense gravitational pull that nothing - not even light - can escape from them. Now Professor Chris Adami, Michigan State University, has jumped into the fray.

The debate about the behavior of black holes, which has been ongoing since 1975, was reignited when Hawking posted a blog on Jan. 22, 2014, stating that event horizons - the invisible boundaries of black holes - do not exist.

Hawking, considered to be the foremost expert on black holes, has over the years revised his theory and continues to work on understanding these cosmic puzzles.

One of the many perplexities is a decades-old debate about what happens to information - matter or energy and their characteristics at the atomic and subatomic level - in black holes.

"In 1975, Hawking discovered that black holes aren't all black. They actually radiate a featureless glow, now called Hawking radiation," Adami said. "In his original theory, Hawking stated that the radiation slowly consumes the black hole and it eventually evaporates and disappears, concluding that information and anything that enters the black hole would be irretrievably lost."

But this theory created a fundamental problem, dubbed the information paradox.

Now Adami believes he's solved it.

"According to the laws of quantum physics, information can't disappear," Adami said. "A loss of information would imply that the universe itself would suddenly become unpredictable every time the black hole swallows a particle. That is just inconceivable. No law of physics that we know allows this to happen."

So if the black hole sucks in information with its intense gravitational pull, then later disappears entirely, information and all, how can the laws of quantum physics be preserved?

The solution, Adami says, is that the information is contained in the stimulated emission of radiation, which must accompany the Hawking radiation - the glow that makes a black hole not so black. Stimulated emission makes the black hole glow in the information that it swallowed.

"Stimulated emission is the physical process behind LASERS (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation). Basically, it works like a copy machine: you throw something into the machine, and two identical somethings come out.

"If you throw information at a black hole, just before it is swallowed, the black hole first makes a copy that is left outside. This copying mechanism was discovered by Albert Einstein in 1917, and without it, physics cannot be consistent," Adami said.

Do others agree with Adami's theory that stimulated emission is the missing piece that solves the information paradox?

According to Paul Davies, cosmologist, astrobiologist and theoretical physicist at Arizona State University, "In my view Chris Adami has correctly identified the solution to the so-called black hole information paradox. Ironically, it has been hiding in plain sight for years. Hawking's famous black hole radiation is an example of so-called spontaneous emission of radiation, but it is only part of the story. There must also be the possibility of stimulated emission -- the process that puts the S in LASER."

With so many researchers trying to fix Hawking's theory, why did it take so long if it was hiding in plain sight?

"While a few people did realize that the stimulated emission effect was missing in Hawking's calculation, they could not resolve the paradox without a deep understanding of quantum communication theory," Adami said. Quantum communication theory was designed to understand how information interacts with quantum systems, and Adami was one of the pioneers of quantum information theory back in the '90s.

Trying to solve this information paradox has kept Adami awake many nights as demonstrated by his thick notebooks filled with 10 years of mathematical calculations.

So where does this leave us, according to Adami?

"Stephen Hawking's wonderful theory is now complete in my opinion. The hole in the black hole theory is plugged, and I can now sleep at night," he said.

Adami may now sleep well at night, but his theory is sure to keep other physicists up trying to confirm whether he has actually solved the mystery.

The study was co-authored by Greg Ver Steeg, University of Southern California and is published online in the journal Classical and Quantum Gravity.

 

 

Now it is more likely than ever: There must be particles out there smaller than Higgs particle

 
‎01 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:43:12 AMGo to full article
Odense, Denmark (SPX) Mar 25, 2014 - Now it is more likely than ever: There must be particles out there smaller than Higgs particle. Nobody has seen them yet; particles that are smaller than the Higgs particle. However theories predict their existence, and now the most important of these theories have been critically tested. The result: The existence of the yet unseen particles is now more likely than ever.

"I gave them a very critical review ", says Thomas Ryttov, particle physicist and associate professor at the Center for Cosmology and Particle Physics Phenomenology (CP3 - Origins), University of Southern Denmark.

He refers to the theories, that over the last app. five years have been put forward ??for the existence of particles in the universe that are smaller than the Higgs particle. Having given these theories a critical review, he finds no new signs of weakness in them:

"There seems to be no new or unseen weaknessess. My review just leaves them just stronger", he says.

Over the past 5-8 years, a handful of theories have drawn particular interest from particle physicists. They all predict that there must be one or more types of particles that are even smaller than the Higgs particle. So far it has however not been possible to prove their existence.

"Here at CP3 - Origins, we are interested in the pursuit of such as yet unknown particles. We know that there must be a force that binds them together so that they together can create something bigger than themselves, something composite; a Higgs particle. It must happen similarly to quarks binding together to form protons and neutrons. If we can understand this force, we can explain and predict new physical phenomena like new particles", explains Thomas Ryttov.

The strong force
This force is called the strong force. It cannot be compared to gravity, which also has the ability to keep two objects close together. The effect of gravity depends on the fact that the two objects are not too far from each other, and the closer they are to each other the stronger the force of gravity will be. The strong force has the opposite effect: It is weak when two particles are close to each other, but strong - extremely strong - if you try to pull them apart.

Thomas Ryttov and his colleagues at CP3 - Origins believe that the so-called techni-quarks can be the yet unseen particles, smaller than the Higgs particle. If techni-quarks exist they will form a natural exention of the Standard Model which includes three generations of quarks and leptons. These particles together with the fundamental forces form the basis of the observed matter in the universe.

Ref: Infrared fixed points in the minimal momentum subtraction scheme, Phys. Rev. D 89, 056001, 5. marts 2014

 

 

NASA Technology Views Birth of the Universe

 
‎01 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:43:12 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (JPL) Mar 18, 2014 - Astronomers are announcing today that they have acquired the first direct evidence that gravitational waves rippled through our infant universe during an explosive period of growth called inflation. This is the strongest confirmation yet of cosmic inflation theories, which say the universe expanded by 100 trillion trillion times, in less than the blink of an eye.

The findings were made with the help of NASA-developed detector technology on the BICEP2 telescope at the South Pole, in collaboration with the National Science Foundation.

"Operating the latest detectors in ground-based and balloon-borne experiments allows us to mature these technologies for space missions and, in the process, make discoveries about the universe," said Paul Hertz, NASA's Astrophysics Division director in Washington.

Our universe burst into existence in an event known as the Big Bang 13.8 billion years ago. Moments later, space itself ripped apart, expanding exponentially in an episode known as inflation. Telltale signs of this early chapter in our universe's history are imprinted in the skies, in a relic glow called the cosmic microwave background.

Recently, this basic theory of the universe was again confirmed by the Planck satellite, a European Space Agency mission for which NASA provided detector and cooler technology.

But researchers had long sought more direct evidence for inflation in the form of gravitational waves, which squeeze and stretch space.

"Small, quantum fluctuations were amplified to enormous sizes by the inflationary expansion of the universe. We know this produces another type of waves called density waves, but we wanted to test if gravitational waves are also produced," said project co-leader Jamie Bock of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., which developed the BICEP2 detector technology. Bock has a joint appointment with the California Institute of Technology, also in Pasadena.

The gravitational waves produced a characteristic swirly pattern in polarized light, called "B-mode" polarization. Light can become polarized by scattering off surfaces, such as a car or pond. Polarized sunglasses reject polarized light to reduce glare. In the case of the cosmic microwave background, light scattered off particles called electrons to become slightly polarized.

The BICEP2 team took on the challenge to detect B-mode polarization by pulling together top experts in the field, developing revolutionary technology and traveling to the best observing site on Earth at the South Pole. The collaboration includes major contributions from Caltech; JPL; Stanford University, Stanford, Calif.; Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.; and the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

As a result of experiments conducted since 2006, the team has been able to produce compelling evidence for the B-mode signal, and with it, the strongest support yet for cosmic inflation. The key to their success was the use of novel superconducting detectors. Superconductors are materials that, when chilled, allow electrical current to flow freely, with zero resistance.

"Our technology combines the properties of superconductivity with tiny structures that can only be seen with a microscope. These devices are manufactured using the same micro-machining process as the sensors in cellphones and Wii controllers," said Anthony Turner, who makes these devices using specialized fabrication equipment at JPL's Microdevices Laboratory.

The B-mode signal is extremely faint. In order to gain the necessary sensitivity to detect the polarization signal, Bock and Turner developed a unique array of multiple detectors, akin to the pixels in modern digital cameras but with the added ability to detect polarization. The whole detector system operates at a frosty 0.25 Kelvin, just 0.45 degrees Fahrenheit above the lowest temperature achievable, absolute zero.

"This extremely challenging measurement required an entirely new architecture," said Bock. "Our approach is like taking a camera and building it on a printed circuit board."

The BICEP2 experiment used 512 detectors, which sped up observations of the cosmic microwave background by 10 times over the team's previous measurements. Their new experiment, already making observations, uses 2,560 detectors.

These and future experiments not only help confirm that the universe inflated dramatically, but are providing theorists with the first clues about the exotic forces that drove space and time apart.

The results of this study have been submitted to the journal Nature.

 

 

Major discovery bolsters Big Bang theory of universe

 
‎01 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎03:43:12 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) March 17, 2014 - Waves of gravity that rippled through space right after the Big Bang have been detected for the first time, in a landmark discovery that adds to our understanding of how the universe was born, US scientists said Monday.

The waves were produced in a rapid growth spurt 14 billion years ago, and were predicted in Albert Einstein's nearly century-old theory of general relativity but were never found until now.

The first direct evidence of cosmic inflation -- a theory that the universe expanded by 100 trillion trillion times in barely the blink of an eye -- was announced by experts at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

The detection was made with the help of a telescope called BICEP2, stationed at the South Pole, that measures the oldest light in the universe.

If confirmed by other experts, some said the work could be a contender for the Nobel Prize.

The waves that move through space and time have been described as the "first tremors of the Big Bang."

Their detection confirms an integral connection between Einstein's theory of general relativity and the stranger conceptual realm of quantum mechanics.

NASA said the findings "not only help confirm that the universe inflated dramatically, but are providing theorists with the first clues about the exotic forces that drove space and time apart."

John Kovac, leader of the BICEP2 collaboration at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, said years of observations using the telescope at the South Pole preceded Monday's announcement.

"Detecting this signal is one of the most important goals in cosmology today. A lot of work by a lot of people has led up to this point."

- 'Mind-boggling' find -

The telescope targeted a specific area of sky known as the "Southern Hole" outside the galaxy where there is little dust or extra galactic material to interfere with what humans could see with the potent sky-peering tool.

By observing the cosmic microwave background, or a faint glow left over from the Big Bang, small fluctuations gave scientists new clues about the conditions in the early universe.

The gravitational waves rippled through the universe 380,000 years after the Big Bang, and these images were captured by the telescope.

"It's mind-boggling to go looking for something like this and actually find it," Clem Pryke, associate professor at the University of Minnesota, told reporters at an event in Boston to announce the findings.

Rumors of a major discovery began to circulate Friday, when the press conference was first announced.

However, scientists said they spent three years analyzing their data to rule out any errors.

"This has been like looking for a needle in a haystack, but instead we found a crowbar," said Pryke.

- New insights to why we exist -

Harvard theorist Avi Loeb said the findings provide "new insights into some of our most basic questions: Why do we exist? How did the universe begin?

"These results are not only a smoking gun for inflation, they also tell us when inflation took place and how powerful the process was," Loeb said.

John Womersley, chief executive of the Science and Technology Facilities Council, which funds British research into cosmology, said the advance adds to our knowledge of one of the three key pillars of modern cosmology -- inflation, dark matter and dark energy.

"Without inflation we would not be here," he said.

According to theoretical physicist Alan Guth, who proposed the idea of inflation in 1980, described the latest study as "definitely worthy of a Nobel Prize."

Chris Lintott, an astrophysicist at the University of Oxford, said that finding evidence of this super-fast inflation the would be considered "most significant cosmological discovery in nearly two decades, and a huge triumph for physics."

"It's like all our Christmases at once," he said.

"I doubt many cosmologists will get much sleep tonight."

 

 

These aren't the voids you're looking for

 
‎30 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎01:58:20 AMGo to full article
Perth, Australia (SPX) Mar 13, 2014 - Australian astronomers have shown galaxies in the vast empty regions of the Universe are actually aligned into delicate strings in research published today in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

A team of astronomers based at The University of Western Australia node of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) has found short strings of faint galaxies in what were previously thought to be extremely empty parts of space.

The Universe is full of vast collections of galaxies that are arranged into an intricate web of clusters and nodes connected by long strings. This remarkably organized structure is often called the 'cosmic web', with busy intersections of galaxies surrounding vast spaces, empty of anything visible to us on Earth.

"The spaces in the cosmic web are thought to be staggeringly empty," said Dr Mehmet Alpaslan, who led the research. "They might contain just one or two galaxies, as opposed to the hundreds that are found in big clusters."

These huge, empty regions are called voids, and for years, astronomers have been trying to understand the small population of galaxies that inhabit them.

Using data from the Galaxy and Mass Assembly (GAMA) survey, Alpaslan and his colleagues found that the small number of galaxies inside these voids are arranged in a new way never seen before.

"We found small strings composed of just a few galaxies penetrating into the voids, a completely new type of structure that we've called 'tendrils'," said Alpaslan.

To discover tendrils, the GAMA team created the largest ever galaxy census of the southern skies using observations from the Anglo-Australian Telescope in NSW, Australia.

"Our new catalogue has looked deeper into space and mapped each patch of sky up to ten times to make sure it's as thorough as possible," said Dr Aaron Robotham from The University of Western Australia node of ICRAR.

"We weren't sure what we'd find when we looked at voids in detail, but it was amazing to find so many of these tendrils lurking in regions that have previously been classified as empty," said Robotham.

"This means that voids might be much smaller than we previously thought, and that galaxies that were previously thought to be in a void might just be part of a tendril," said Alpaslan.

The GAMA team plan to catalogue more tendrils for further study as their detailed map of the Universe expands.

ICRAR is a joint venture between Curtin University and The University of Western Australia that receives funding from the State Government of Western Australia. Mehmet Alpaslan is a PhD candidate at St Andrews University, Scotland and is supervised by Professor Simon Driver and Dr Aaron Robotham at The University of Western Australia node of ICRAR.

 

 

Some galaxies in the early universe grew up quickly

 
‎30 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎01:58:20 AMGo to full article
Pasadena CA (SPX) Mar 13, 2014 - Some galaxies grew up in a hurry. Most of the galaxies that have been observed from the early days of the universe were young and actively forming stars. Now, an international team of astronomers, including Carnegie's Eric Persson and Andy Monson, have discovered galaxies that were already mature and massive in the early days.

Fifteen mature galaxies were found at a record-breaking average distance of 12 billion light years, when the universe was just 1.6 billion years old. Their existence at such an early time raises new questions about what forced them to grow up so quickly. The finding is published by The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Today the universe is filled with galaxies that have largely stopped forming stars, a sign of galactic maturity. But in the distant past, galaxies were still actively growing by consuming gas and turning it into stars. This means that mature galaxies should have been almost non-existent when the universe was still young.

Together with lead author Caroline Straatman and principal investigator Ivo Labbe, both of Leiden University, the astronomers used deep images at near-infrared wavelengths to search for galaxies in the early universe with red colors. The characteristic red colors indicate the presence of old stars and a lack of active star formation.

The galaxies are barely detectable at visual wavelengths and are easily overlooked. But in the new near-infrared light images they are easily measured, from which it can be inferred that they already contained as many as 100 billion stars on average per galaxy.

The mature galaxies have masses similar to that of the Milky Way, which still forms new stars at a slow rate. The newly discovered galaxies must have formed very rapidly in roughly 1 billion years, with explosive rates of star-formation. The rate of star formation must have been several hundred times larger than observed in the Milky Way today.

The finding raises new questions about how these galaxies formed so rapidly and why they stopped forming stars so early. It is an enigma that these galaxies seem to come out of nowhere. Another big question is what caused the galaxies to mature at such a young age and if some dramatic event might have caused premature aging.

The galaxies were discovered after 40 nights of observing with the FourStar camera on the Magellan Baade Telescope at Carnegie's Las Campanas Observatory in Chile and combined with data from Hubble's Cosmic Assembly Near-infrared Deep Extragalactic Legacy Survey and the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey. Using special filters to produce images that are sensitive to narrow slices of the near-infrared spectrum, the team was able to measure accurate distances to thousands of distant galaxies at a time, providing a 3-D map of the early universe.

 

 

Chandra and XMM-Newton Provide Direct Measurement of Distant Black Hole's Spin

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Mar 09, 2014 - Astronomers have used NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the European Space Agency's (ESA's) XMM-Newton to show a supermassive black hole six billion light years from Earth is spinning extremely rapidly. This first direct measurement of the spin of such a distant black hole is an important advance for understanding how black holes grow over time.

Black holes are defined by just two simple characteristics: mass and spin. While astronomers have long been able to measure black hole masses very effectively, determining their spins has been much more difficult.

In the past decade, astronomers have devised ways of estimating spins for black holes at distances greater than several billion light-years away, meaning we see the region around black holes as they were billions of years ago. However, determining the spins of these remote black holes involves several steps that rely on one another.

"We want to be able to cut out the middle man, so to speak, of determining the spins of black holes across the universe," said Rubens Reis of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, who led a paper describing this result that was published online Wednesday in the journal Nature.

Reis and his colleagues determined the spin of the supermassive black hole that is pulling in surrounding gas, producing an extremely luminous quasar known as RX J1131-1231 (RX J1131 for short). Because of fortuitous alignment, the distortion of space-time by the gravitational field of a giant elliptical galaxy along the line of sight to the quasar acts as a gravitational lens that magnifies the light from the quasar.

Gravitational lensing, first predicted by Einstein, offers a rare opportunity to study the innermost region in distant quasars by acting as a natural telescope and magnifying the light from these sources.

"Because of this gravitational lens, we were able to get very detailed information on the X-ray spectrum - that is, the amount of X-rays seen at different energies - from RX J1131," said co-author Mark Reynolds also of Michigan. "This in turn allowed us to get a very accurate value for how fast the black hole is spinning."

The X-rays are produced when a swirling accretion disk of gas and dust that surrounds the black hole creates a multimillion-degree cloud, or corona near the black hole. X-rays from this corona reflect off the inner edge of the accretion disk. The strong gravitational forces near the black hole alter the reflected X-ray spectrum. The larger the change in the spectrum, the closer the inner edge of the disk must be to the black hole.

"We estimate that the X-rays are coming from a region in the disk located only about three times the radius of the event horizon, the point of no return for infalling matter," said Jon M. Miller of Michigan, another author on the paper. "The black hole must be spinning extremely rapidly to allow a disk to survive at such a small radius."

For example, a spinning black hole drags space around with it and allows matter to orbit closer to the black hole than is possible for a non-spinning black hole.

By measuring the spin of distant black holes researchers discover important clues about how these objects grow over time. If black holes grow mainly from collisions and mergers between galaxies, they should accumulate material in a stable disk, and the steady supply of new material from the disk should lead to rapidly spinning black holes.

In contrast, if black holes grow through many small accretion episodes, they will accumulate material from random directions. Like a merry go round that is pushed both backwards and forwards, this would make the black hole spin more slowly.

The discovery that the black hole in RX J1131 is spinning at over half the speed of light suggests this black hole, observed at a distance of six billion light years, corresponding to an age about 7.7 billion years after the Big Bang, has grown via mergers, rather than pulling material in from different directions.

The ability to measure black hole spin over a large range of cosmic time should make it possible to directly study whether the black hole evolves at about the same rate as its host galaxy. The measurement of the spin of the RX J1131-1231 black hole is a major step along that path and demonstrates a technique for assembling a sample of distant supermassive black holes with current X-ray observatories.

Prior to the announcement of this work, the most distant black holes with direct spin estimates were located 2.5 billion and 4.7 billion light-years away.

 

 

Extraordinary momentum and spin discovered in evanescent light waves

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
Tokyo, Japan (SPX) Mar 13, 2014 - A team of researchers from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science (CEMS) in Japan has identified unexpected dynamic properties of a type of light wave called evanescent waves. These surprising findings contrast sharply with previous knowledge about light and photons.

The study carried out in the Quantum Condensed Matter Research Group (CEMS, RIKEN, Japan) led by Dr. Franco Nori is published in the journal Nature Communications.

Energy, momentum, and angular momentum are the main dynamic characteristics of physical objects. It is well known that light propagating as an electromagnetic wave or photon carries momentum along the direction of the wave's propagation, and that this momentum is independent of polarization. In addition, light can carry an intrinsic angular momentum, called spin, that is proportional to the degree of circular polarization (helicity), and aligned with the propagation direction.

The RIKEN team analysed the momentum and spin of evanescent electromagnetic waves - a type of light waves that travel close to the surface of material objects and whose intensity decreases exponentially, rather than varying sinusoidally, from the interface where they were formed.

Surprisingly, the researchers found that evanescent waves carry momentum and spin components that are orthogonal to the direction of wave propagation. Moreover, the transverse spin turns out to be independent of polarization and helicity, while the transverse momentum is proportional to the wave helicity.

"Such extraordinary properties, revealed in very basic objects, offer a unique opportunity to investigate and observe fundamental physical features, which were previously hidden in usual propagating light and were considered impossible," says Dr. Konstantin Bliokh, first author of the study. "In addition to a detailed theoretical analysis, we propose and simulate numerically four novel experiments for the detection of the unusual momentum and spin properties of evanescent waves via their interaction with small probe particles," he adds.

These results add a new chapter to the physics of momentum and spin of classical and quantum fields, and predict a number of novel light-matter interaction effects involving evanescent waves.

Extraordinary momentum and spin in evanescent waves; Konstantin Y. Bliokh, Aleksandr Y. Bekshaev, Franco Nori; Nature Communications, 2014 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms4300

 

 

Crystals ripple in response to light

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
San Diego CA (SPX) Mar 13, 2014 - Light can trigger coordinated, wavelike motions of atoms in atom-thin layers of crystal, scientists have shown. The waves, called phonon polaritons, are far shorter than light waves and can be "tuned" to particular frequencies and amplitudes by varying the number of layers of crystal, they report in the early online edition of Science March 7.

These properties - observed in this class of material for the first time - open the possibility of using polaritons to convey information in tight spaces, create images at far finer resolution than is possible with light, and manage the flow of heat in nanoscale devices.

"A wave on the surface of water is the closest analogy," said Dimitri Basov, professor of physics at the University of California, San Diego, who led the project. "You throw a stone and you launch concentric waves that move outward. This is similar. Atoms are moving. The triggering event is illumination with light."

The team used infrared light to launch phonon polaritons across a material called hexagonal boron nitride - crystals that form sheet-like layers held together by the weakest of chemical bonds.

Siyuan Dai, a graduate student in Basov's research group who was responsible for much of the experimental work and is the first author of the report, focused an infrared laser on the tip of an atomic-force microscope as it scanned across this material, registering motions in the crystalline lattice.

The measurements revealed interference patterns created as the traveling waves reached edges of the material and reflected back. The amplitude and frequency of the waves depended on the number of layers in the crystal. Both properties will prove useful in the design of nanodevices.

"You can bounce these waves off edges. You can bounce them off defects. You can play all sorts of cool tricks with them. And of course, you can design the wavelength and amplitude of these oscillations in a way that suits your purpose," Basov said.

The finding was something of a surprise. Boron nitride is an insulator used as a support structure for other materials, like graphene, which this group recently showed could support waves of electron densities called plasmon polaritons. Although similarly compact, plasmon polaritons rapidly dissipate.

"Because these materials are insulators, there is no electronic dissipation. So these waves travel further," Basov said. "We didn't expect them to be long-lived, but we are pleased that they are. It's becoming kind of practical."

Additional authors include Z. Fei, A.S. McLeod, M.K. Liu, M. Thiemens and M.M. Fogler of UC San Diego; Q. Ma and P. Jarillo-Herrero of MIT; A.S. Rodin of Boston University; W. Gannet, W. Regan and A. Zettl of UC Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; K. Watanabe and T. Taniguchi of the National Institute for Materials Science in Japan; Gerardo Dominguez of California State University, San Marcos; A.H. Castro Neto of Boston University and the National University of Singapore; and F. Keilmann of the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. The U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Naval Research, Air Force Office of Scientific Research funded this work. Additional support for participating researchers came from NASA, NSF, and the National Research Programme. Keilmann is a co-founder of Neaspec, producer of the scanning nearfield optical microscope used in this study.

 

 

Up-Converted Radio

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
College Park MD (SPX) Mar 13, 2014 - Ever worry about losing your mobile-phone reception? The problem is a weak microwave signal. The same problem hampers cosmologists looking at the early universe, a glimpse embodied in the cosmic microwave background. Or take a pressing earthly example: oncologists often locate and identify tumors using MRI scans. All three of these efforts---communications, cosmology, medicine---depend on discriminating weak microwave or radio signals from a noisy environment.

A new approach to this important problem provides a clean, all-optical detection of microwaves and radiowaves featuring noise mitigation a thousand times better than existing methods. The new detector was just developed by a collaboration of scientists from the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen, the Technical University of Denmark, and the Joint Quantum Institute.

The building and testing of this first all-optical detection of radio waves is reported in the 6 March 2014 issue of the journal Nature. QUANTUM MICROPHONES The detector works like this: radio waves strike an antenna which constitutes one element in an electronic circuit. Another element in that circuit is a capacitor, one of whose electrodes consists of a flexible membrane.

Light at visible frequencies reflects off the back side of this membrane. Depending on the radio signal arriving just then at the antenna, the silicon-nitride membrane (coated with a 50-nm-thick film of silver) mechanically alters its shape accordingly. This in turn modulates the visible light waves in a consistent way.

Thus a radio signal, typically in the megahertz range (106 Hz), can be converted into an optical signal, typically in the hundreds of terahertz range (1014 Hz). This up-conversion from radio to optical has several advantages. First, it allows a radio signal to be transduced into light and shot down an optical fiber rather than being sent down a copper wire, where it would suffer considerable energy loss.

The radio-optical conversion will also help facilitate the development of devices that handle quantum information. In a regular microphone, sound is converted into electrical signals sent down a wire.

In the analogous quantum microphone, quantum information could be interconverted between radio and optical waves alternatively for transport or processing. NOISE ABATEMENT Second, and no less important, is the mitigation of noise. Radio waves were a boon for communications, starting with Marconi and the first "wireless" transmission of information in the early 20th century.

As radio electronics grew in sophistication scientists and engineers became more and more concerned with Johnson noise, the ubiquitous radio noise present by virtue of the simple fact that Earth's surface is a warm place; our world positively glows in radio waves. Named for Bell Labs researcher John B. Johnson, this thermal noise competes with whatever radio signals are being processed in devices.

One can amplify a weak signal, but the noise gets amplified along with the signal. Even more unwanted noise is added in the amplifiers that bring the signal to a level at which it can be processed.

For years special transistors have accomplished this task. One major drawback of this approach has been the need to chill the converters to cryogenic temperatures to reach their best performance.

One example of this kind of device is the one used on the orbiting Planck Telescope, which maps the microwave background. When the craft's coolant is depleted, the mission ends. The new device not only produces a much higher degree of noise reduction but it does this at room temperature, thus obviating the need for cryogenics. The development is based upon prior theoretical work by the same collaboration.

"This device is the first room-temperature transducer of radio waves to optical waves at the quantum level and the first to entail a threefold electrical-mechanical-optical conversion. Previous efforts have bridged the electrical and mechanical or the mechanical and optical, but not all three realms," said the lone JQI participant, theorist Jacob Taylor.

Taylor says that the whole up-conversion process can be done in reverse. Again for the purpose of quantum communication, there might be occasion to convert microwave or radio signals into optical form and then back into radio after transmission from one quantum device to another.

A team leader on the new detector effort is Albert Schliesser of the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen. He describes the detector this way: "In the first place, this is a completely new way to measure electrical signals: making them excite a tiny membrane which we monitor with laser light. It may sound surprising, but this approach is so sensitive that it can out-perform conventional electronic amplifiers.

That means, for example, that it could be a new way of getting clearer MRI images, or maps of the sky recorded by radio telescopes. We are currently trying to extend our work---which so far is really just a demonstrator of the concept---to attain a smaller detector which is more sensitive and capable of handling a wider band of radio signals."

"Optical detection of radio waves through a nanomechanical transducer," T. Bagci, A. Simonsen, S. Schmid, L.G. Villanueva, E. Zeuthen, J. Appel, J.M. Taylor, A. Sorensen, K. Usami, A. Schliesser, E.S. Polzik, Nature, , (2014)

 

 

New fast and furious black hole found

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
Perth, Australia (SPX) Mar 06, 2014 - A team of Australian and American astronomers have been studying nearby galaxy M83 and have found a new superpowered small black hole, named MQ1, the first object of its kind to be studied in this much detail.

Astronomers have found a few compact objects that are as powerful as MQ1, but have not been able to work out the size of the black hole contained within them until now.

The team observed the MQ1 system with multiple telescopes and discovered that it is a standard-sized small black hole, rather than a slightly bigger version that was theorised to account for all its power.

Curtin University senior research fellow Dr Roberto Soria, who is part of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) and led the team investigating MQ1, said it was important to understand how stars were formed, how they evolved and how they died, within a spiral shaped galaxy like M83.

"MQ1 is classed as a microquasar - a black hole surrounded by a bubble of hot gas, which is heated by two jets just outside the black hole, powerfully shooting out energy in opposite directions, acting like cosmic sandblasters pushing out on the surrounding gas," Dr Soria said.

"The significance of the huge jet power measured for MQ1 goes beyond this particular galaxy: it helps astronomers understand and quantify the strong effect that black hole jets have on the surrounding gas, which gets heated and swept away.

"This must have been a significant factor in the early stages of galaxy evolution, 12 billion years ago, because we have evidence that powerful black holes like MQ1, which are rare today, were much more common at the time."

"By studying microquasars such as MQ1, we get a glimpse of how the early universe evolved, how fast quasars grew and how much energy black holes provided to their environment."As a comparison, the most powerful microquasar in our galaxy, known as SS433, is about 10 times less powerful than MQ1.

Although the black hole in MQ1 is only about 100 kilometres wide, the MQ1 structure - as identified by the Hubble Space Telescope - is much bigger than our Solar System, as the jets around it extend about 20 light years from either side of the black hole.

Black holes vary in size and are classed as either stellar mass (less than about 70 times the mass of our Sun) or supermassive (millions of times the mass of our Sun, like the giant black hole that is located in the middle of the Milky Way).

MQ1 is a stellar mass black hole and was likely formed when a star died, collapsing to leave behind a compact mass.

The discovery of MQ1 and its characteristics is just one of the results of the comprehensive study of galaxy M83, a collection of millions of stars located 15 million light years away from Earth.

M83, the iconic Southern-sky galaxy, is being mapped with the Hubble Space and Magellan telescopes (detecting visible light), the Chandra X-ray Observatory (detecting light in X-ray frequencies), the Australia Telescope Compact Array and the Very Large Array (detecting radio waves).

ICRAR is a joint venture between Curtin University and The University of Western Australia which receives funding from the State Government of Western Australia.

'Super-Eddington Mechanical Power of an Accreting Black Hole in M83' published in Science 27/2/2014.

 

 

Probing the edge of chaos

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
Heidelberg, Germany (SPX) Mar 03, 2014 - The edge of chaos-right before chaos sets in-is a unique place. It is found in many dynamical systems that cross the boundary between a well-behaved dynamics and a chaotic one.

Now, physicists have shown that the distribution-or frequency of occurrence-of the variables constituting the physical characteristics of such systems at the edge of chaos has a very different shape than previously reported distributions.

The results, by Miguel Angel Fuentes from the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico, USA, and Universidad del Desarrollo, Chile, and Alberto Robledo from the National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico City, are published in EPJ B. This could help us better understand natural phenomena with a chaotic nature.

In probability theory, the central limit theorem was first developed by an 18th century French mathematician named Abraham de Moivre.

It applies to independent random physical quantities or variables, each with a well-defined expected value and well-defined way of varying. This theorem states that once iterated a sufficiently large number of times, these variable physical quantities will be approximately distributed along a central limit-also referred to as the attractor. In chaotic and standard random systems, such distribution is in the shape of a bell curve.

Now, new central limit theorems are emerging for more complex physical processes, such as natural phenomena. In this study, the authors took existing knowledge of the specific position of the attractor at the edge of chaos.

To do so, they employed a mathematical formula called the logistic map as a particular example of the dynamic system under study. They found that the distribution of physical properties of such dynamic systems at this specific point at the edge of chaos has a fractal structure not previously known.

M. A. Fuentes and A. Robledo (2014), Sums of variables at the onset of chaos, European Physical Journal B, DOI 10.1140/epjb/e2014-40882-1

 

 

Optimising custody is child's play for physicists

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎08:36:52 PMGo to full article
Heidelberg, Germany (SPX) Feb 26, 2014 - Physics can provide insights into societal trends. Problems involving interactions between people linked in real-life networks can be better understood by using physical models.

As a diversion from his normal duties as a theoretical physicist, Andres Gomberoff from the Andres Bello University in Santiago, Chile, set out to resolve one of his real-life problems: finding a suitable weekend for both partners in his recomposed family to see all their children at the same time.

He then joined forces with a mathematician and a complex systems expert. This resulted in a study published in EPJ B, showing that solving this problem essentially equates to minimising the energy in a material model.

The authors assume that they deal with a network of people who are connected, either because they are in a current relationship or because they are ex-partners. Another assumption is that all involved in the network are willing to cooperate and communicate in an open manner.

They then attempt to verify whether it is possible to find a custody arrangement whereby all parents see all of their children together every other weekend, thus satisfying the expectations of all members of the network. The answer is that it is not possible, in general, to have such an agreement.

However, they also found that it is possible to have an arrangement in which one of the parents gets to see all of their children every other weekend. They also found an algorithm to maximise the level of contentment of members of this extended family network.

Maximising the number of parents spending time with their own children and those of their current partners was akin to minimising the energy of a particular magnetic material called a spin glass. Who said that physics can't have real-life applications?

A. Gomberoff, V. Munoz, and P. P. Romagnoli (2014), The physics of custody, European Physical Journal B, DOI 10.1140/epjb/e2014-40666-7 in a study published in EPJ B

 

 

Scientists complete the top quark puzzle

 
‎17 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎04:34:31 PMGo to full article
Chicago IL (SPX) Feb 27, 2014 - Scientists on the CDF and DZero experiments at the U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory have announced that they have found the final predicted way of creating a top quark, completing a picture of this particle nearly 20 years in the making.

The two collaborations jointly announced on Friday, Feb. 21, that they had observed one of the rarest methods of producing the elementary particle - creating a single top quark through the weak nuclear force, in what is called the "s-channel."

For this analysis, scientists from the CDF and DZero collaborations sifted through data from more than 500 trillion proton-antiproton collisions produced by the Tevatron from 2001 to 2011. They identified about 40 particle collisions in which the weak nuclear force produced single top quarks in conjunction with single bottom quarks.

Top quarks are the heaviest and among the most puzzling elementary particles. They weigh even more than the Higgs boson - as much as an atom of gold - and only two machines have ever produced them: Fermilab's Tevatron and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.

There are several ways to produce them, as predicted by the theoretical framework known as the Standard Model, and the most common one was the first one discovered: a collision in which the strong nuclear force creates a pair consisting of a top quark and its antimatter cousin, the anti-top quark.

Collisions that produce a single top quark through the weak nuclear force are rarer, and the process scientists on the Tevatron experiments have just announced is the most challenging of these to detect. This method of producing single top quarks is among the rarest interactions allowed by the laws of physics. The detection of this process was one of the ultimate goals of the Tevatron, which for 25 years was the most powerful particle collider in the world.

"This is an important discovery that provides a valuable addition to the picture of the Standard Model universe," said James Siegrist, DOE associate director of science for high energy physics. "It completes a portrait of one of the fundamental particles of our universe by showing us one of the rarest ways to create them."

Searching for single top quarks is like looking for a needle in billions of haystacks. Only one in every 50 billion Tevatron collisions produced a single s-channel top quark, and the CDF and DZero collaborations only selected a small fraction of those to separate them from background, which is why the number of observed occurrences of this particular channel is so small. However, the statistical significance of the CDF and DZero data exceeds that required to claim a discovery.

"Kudos to the CDF and DZero collaborations for their work in discovering this process," said Saul Gonzalez, program director for the National Science Foundation. "Researchers from around the world, including dozens of universities in the United States, contributed to this important find."

The CDF and DZero experiments first observed particle collisions that created single top quarks through a different process of the weak nuclear force in 2009. This observation was later confirmed by scientists using the Large Hadron Collider.

Scientists from 27 countries collaborated on the Tevatron CDF and DZero experiments and continue to study the reams of data produced during the collider's run, using ever more sophisticated techniques and computing methods.

"I'm pleased that the CDF and DZero collaborations have brought their study of the top quark full circle," said Fermilab Director Nigel Lockyer. "The legacy of the Tevatron is indelible, and this discovery makes the breadth of that research even more remarkable."

 

 

Bullying black holes force galaxies to stay red and dead

 
‎11 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎03:56:32 PMGo to full article
Paris (ESA) Feb 26, 2014 - Herschel has discovered massive elliptical galaxies in the nearby Universe containing plenty of cold gas, even though the galaxies fail to produce new stars. Comparison with other data suggests that, while hot gas cools down in these galaxies, stars do not form because jets from the central supermassive black hole heat or stir up the gas and prevent it from turning into stars.

Giant elliptical galaxies are the most puzzling type of galaxy in the Universe. Since they mysteriously shut down their star-forming activity and remain home only to the longest-lived of their stars - which are low-mass ones and appear red - astronomers often call these galaxies 'red and dead'.

Up until now, it was thought that red-and-dead galaxies were poor in cold gas - the vital raw material from which stars are born. While cold gas is abundant in spiral galaxies with lively star formation, the lack of it in giant ellipticals seemed to explain the absence of new stars.

Astronomers have long been debating the physical processes leading to the end of their star formation. They speculated that these galaxies somehow expelled the cold gas, or that they had simply used it all to form stars in the past. Although the reason was uncertain, one thing seemed to have been established: these galaxies are red and dead because they no longer possess the means to sustain the production of stars.

This view is being challenged by a new study based on data from ESA's Herschel Space Observatory. The results are published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

"We looked at eight giant elliptical galaxies that nobody had looked at with Herschel before and we were delighted to find that, contrary to previous belief, six out of eight abound with cold gas", explains Norbert Werner from Stanford University in California, USA, who led the study.

This is the first time that astronomers have seen large amounts of cold gas in red-and-dead galaxies that are not located at the centre of a massive galaxy cluster.

The cold gas manifested itself through far-infrared emissions from carbon ions and oxygen atoms. Herschel's sensitivity at these wavelengths was instrumental to the discovery.

"While we see cold gas, there is no sign of ongoing star formation," says co-author Raymond Oonk from ASTRON, the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy.

"This is bizarre: with plenty of cold gas at their disposal, why aren't these galaxies forming stars?"

The astronomers proceeded to investigate their sample of galaxies across the electromagnetic spectrum, since gas at different temperatures shines brightly at different wavelengths. They used optical images to probe the warm gas - at slightly higher temperatures than the cold one detected with Herschel, and X-ray data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory to trace the hot gas, up to tens of millions of K.

"In the six galaxies that are rich in cold gas, the X-ray data show tell-tale signs that the hot gas is cooling," says Werner.

This is consistent with theoretical expectations: once cooled, the hot gas would become the warm and cold gas that are observed at longer wavelengths. However, in these galaxies the cooling process somehow stopped, and the cold gas failed to condense and form stars.

In the other two galaxies of the sample - the ones without cold gas - the hot gas does not appear to be cooling at all.

"The contrasting behaviour of these galaxies may have a common explanation: the central supermassive black hole," adds Oonk.

In some theoretical models, the level of a black hole's activity could explain why gas in a galaxy is able - or not able - to cool and form stars. And this seems to apply for the galaxies studied by Werner and his colleagues, too.

While the six galaxies with plenty of cold gas harbour moderately active black holes at their centres, the other two show a marked difference. In the two galaxies without cold gas, the central black holes are accreting matter at frenzied pace, as confirmed by radio observations showing powerful jets of highly energetic particles that stem from their cores.

The jets could be an effect of the hot gas cooling down, and flowing towards the centre of the galaxies. This inflow of cold gas can boost the black hole's accretion rate, launching the jets that are observed at radio wavelengths.

The jets, in turn, have the potential to reheat the galaxy's reservoir of cold gas - or even to push it beyond the galaxy's reach. This scenario can explain the absence of star formation in all the galaxies observed in this study and, at the same time, the lack of cold gas in those with powerful jets.

"These galaxies are red, but with the giant black holes pumping in their hearts, they are definitely not dead," comments Werner.

"Once again, Herschel has detected something that was never seen before: significant amounts of cold gas in nearby red-and-dead galaxies," notes Goran Pilbratt, Herschel Project Scientist at ESA, "nevertheless, these galaxies do not form stars, and the culprit seems to be the black hole."

N. Werner, et al., "The origin of cold gas in giant elliptical galaxies and its role in fuelling radio-mode AGN feedback", 2014, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, doi: 10.1093/mnras/stu006.

 

 

Researchers say distant quasars could close a loophole in quantum mechanics

 
‎11 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎03:56:32 PMGo to full article
Boston MA (SPX) Feb 26, 2014 - In a paper published this week in the journal Physical Review Letters, MIT researchers propose an experiment that may close the last major loophole of Bell's inequality - a 50-year-old theorem that, if violated by experiments, would mean that our universe is based not on the textbook laws of classical physics, but on the less-tangible probabilities of quantum mechanics.

Such a quantum view would allow for seemingly counterintuitive phenomena such as entanglement, in which the measurement of one particle instantly affects another, even if those entangled particles are at opposite ends of the universe. Among other things, entanglement - a quantum feature Albert Einstein skeptically referred to as "spooky action at a distance"- seems to suggest that entangled particles can affect each other instantly, faster than the speed of light.

In 1964, physicist John Bell took on this seeming disparity between classical physics and quantum mechanics, stating that if the universe is based on classical physics, the measurement of one entangled particle should not affect the measurement of the other - a theory, known as locality, in which there is a limit to how correlated two particles can be. Bell devised a mathematical formula for locality, and presented scenarios that violated this formula, instead following predictions of quantum mechanics.

Since then, physicists have tested Bell's theorem by measuring the properties of entangled quantum particles in the laboratory. Essentially all of these experiments have shown that such particles are correlated more strongly than would be expected under the laws of classical physics - findings that support quantum mechanics.

However, scientists have also identified several major loopholes in Bell's theorem. These suggest that while the outcomes of such experiments may appear to support the predictions of quantum mechanics, they may actually reflect unknown "hidden variables" that give the illusion of a quantum outcome, but can still be explained in classical terms.

Though two major loopholes have since been closed, a third remains; physicists refer to it as "setting independence," or more provocatively, "free will."

This loophole proposes that a particle detector's settings may "conspire" with events in the shared causal past of the detectors themselves to determine which properties of the particle to measure - a scenario that, however far-fetched, implies that a physicist running the experiment does not have complete free will in choosing each detector's setting. Such a scenario would result in biased measurements, suggesting that two particles are correlated more than they actually are, and giving more weight to quantum mechanics than classical physics.

"It sounds creepy, but people realized that's a logical possibility that hasn't been closed yet," says MIT's David Kaiser, the Germeshausen Professor of the History of Science and senior lecturer in the Department of Physics. "Before we make the leap to say the equations of quantum theory tell us the world is inescapably crazy and bizarre, have we closed every conceivable logical loophole, even if they may not seem plausible in the world we know today?"

Now Kaiser, along with MIT postdoc Andrew Friedman and Jason Gallicchio of the University of Chicago, have proposed an experiment to close this third loophole by determining a particle detector's settings using some of the oldest light in the universe: distant quasars, or galactic nuclei, which formed billions of years ago.

The idea, essentially, is that if two quasars on opposite sides of the sky are sufficiently distant from each other, they would have been out of causal contact since the Big Bang some 14 billion years ago, with no possible means of any third party communicating with both of them since the beginning of the universe - an ideal scenario for determining each particle detector's settings.

As Kaiser explains it, an experiment would go something like this: A laboratory setup would consist of a particle generator, such as a radioactive atom that spits out pairs of entangled particles. One detector measures a property of particle A, while another detector does the same for particle B.

A split second after the particles are generated, but just before the detectors are set, scientists would use telescopic observations of distant quasars to determine which properties each detector will measure of a respective particle. In other words, quasar A determines the settings to detect particle A, and quasar B sets the detector for particle B.

The researchers reason that since each detector's setting is determined by sources that have had no communication or shared history since the beginning of the universe, it would be virtually impossible for these detectors to "conspire" with anything in their shared past to give a biased measurement; the experimental setup could therefore close the "free will" loophole.

If, after multiple measurements with this experimental setup, scientists found that the measurements of the particles were correlated more than predicted by the laws of classical physics, Kaiser says, then the universe as we see it must be based instead on quantum mechanics.

"I think it's fair to say this [loophole] is the final frontier, logically speaking, that stands between this enormously impressive accumulated experimental evidence and the interpretation of that evidence saying the world is governed by quantum mechanics," Kaiser says.

Now that the researchers have put forth an experimental approach, they hope that others will perform actual experiments, using observations of distant quasars.

"At first, we didn't know if our setup would require constellations of futuristic space satellites, or 1,000-meter telescopes on the dark side of the moon," Friedman says. "So we were naturally delighted when we discovered, much to our surprise, that our experiment was both feasible in the real world with present technology, and interesting enough to our experimentalist collaborators who actually want to make it happen in the next few years."

Adds Kaiser, "We've said, 'Let's go for broke - let's use the history of the cosmos since the Big Bang, darn it.' And it is very exciting that it's actually feasible."

 

 

Clouds seen circling supermassive black holes

 
‎06 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎09:00:24 AMGo to full article
San Diego CA (SPX) Feb 21, 2014 - Astronomers see huge clouds of gas orbiting supermassive black holes at the centers of galaxies. Once thought to be a relatively uniform, fog-like ring, the accreting matter instead forms clumps dense enough to intermittently dim the intense radiation blazing forth as these enormous objects condense and consume matter, they report in a paper to be published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, available online now.

Evidence for the clouds comes from records collected over 16 years by NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer, a satellite in low-earth orbit equipped with instruments that measured variations in X-ray sources. Those sources include active galactic nuclei, brilliantly luminous objects powered by supermassive black holes as they gather and condense huge quantities of dust and gas.

By sifting through records for 55 active galactic nuclei Alex Markowitz, an astrophysicist at the University of California, San Diego and the Karl Remeis Observatory in Bamberg, Germany and colleagues found a dozen instances when the X-ray signal dimmed for periods of time ranging from hours to years, presumably when a cloud of dense gas passed between the source and satellite.

Mirko Krumpe of the European Southern Observatory in Garching, Germany and Robert Nikutta, of Andres Bello University in Santiago, Chile co-authored the report, which confirms what recent models of these systems have predicted.

The clouds they observed orbit a few light-weeks to a few light-years from the center of the active galactic nuclei. One, in a spiral galaxy in the direction of the constellation Centaurus designated NGC 3783, appeared to be in the midst of being torn apart by tidal forces.

Video depicting the swirling clouds is posted to YouTube

 

 

A forgotten model of the universe

 
‎06 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎09:00:24 AMGo to full article
Heidelberg, Germany (SPX) Feb 21, 2014 - A paper published in EPJ H provides the first English translation and an analysis of one of Albert Einstein's little-known papers, "On the cosmological problem of the general theory of relativity." Published in 1931, it features a forgotten model of the universe, while refuting Einstein's own earlier static model of 1917.

In this paper, Einstein introduces a cosmic model in which the universe undergoes an expansion followed by a contraction. This interpretation contrasts with the monotonically expanding universe of the widely known Einstein-de Sitter model of 1932.

The authors, Cormac O'Raifeartaigh and Brendan McCann from the Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland, provide insights into Einstein's view of cosmology. At that time, the first pieces of evidence for an expanding universe emerged, among others, stemming from Hubble's observations of the expanding universe.

Einstein was keen to investigate whether a relativistic model could account for the new observations, by removing the so-called cosmological constant introduced in his 1917 cosmological model. Einstein sets the constant to zero. He then arrives at a model of a universe that first expands and then contracts. This model is also characterised by singularity-like behaviour at either end.

In this paper, the authors also discuss Einstein's view of issues such as the curvature of space and the timespan of the expansion, while also uncovering some anomalies in Einstein's calculations. For example, they highlight a numerical error in the calculation of the present radius and matter density of the universe.

They also believe that Einstein's estimate of the age of the universe is based on a questionable calculation of Friedmann's analysis of a relativistic universe of spherical curvature and time-varying radius. Finally, they argue that Einstein's model is not periodic, contrary to what is often claimed.

Reference: C. O'Raifeartaigh and B. McCann (2014), Einstein's cosmic model of 1931 revisited, European Physical Journal H, DOI 10.1140/epjh/e2013-40038-x

 

 

 

 

 

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Behind The Research To Engineer Human Vaginal Organs

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:17:14 AMGo to full article
0 Anthony Atala, M.D., director of the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, describes the research to engineer human vaginal organs.

Credit: Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine
 

Earth From Space: Rocks And Salt

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:46:25 AMGo to full article
0 Earth from Space is presented by Kelsea Brennan-Wessels from the ESA Web-TV virtual studios. A dried-up salt marsh near the northeast Caspian Sea in Kazakhstan is pictured in the one-hundred-first edition.

Credit: ESA
 

Research Shows Climate Change Drove Evolution Of Ice Age Predators

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:22:24 AMGo to full article
0 Concerns about climate change and its impact on the world around us are growing daily. New scientific studies at the La Brea Tar Pits are probing the link between climate warming and the evolution of Ice Age predators, attempting to predict how animals will respond to climate change today.
 

MisTable: A Peek Through The Mist Shows Technology Of The Future

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎08:56:58 AMGo to full article
0 University of Bristol researchers present MisTable, a tabletop system that combines a conventional horizontal interactive surface with personal screens between the user and the tabletop surface. These personal screens, built using fog, are both see-through and reach-through. Being see-through provides direct line of sight of the personal screen and the elements behind it on the tabletop. Being reach-through allows the user to switch from interacting with the personal screen to reaching through it to interact with the tabletop or the space above it. The personal screen allows a range of customizations and novel interactions such as presenting 2D personal contents on the screen, 3D contents above the tabletop or augmenting and relighting tangible objects differently for each user. Besides, having a personal screen for each user allows us to customize the view of each of them according to their identity or preferences. Finally, the personal screens preserve all well-established tabletop interaction techniques like touch and tangible interactions.
 

Can A Pet Make You More Sociable?

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:23 AMGo to full article
0 A new study from Tufts University found that young adults who take care of a pet have stronger social relationships and bonds to their communities. In a survey of 500 volunteers between 18 and 26, those who looked after animals reported participating in more “contribution” activities like volunteering in their community or helping friends and family. There was a direct correlation between pets and contribution—the more they looked after a pet, the higher the contribution score. Also, those with a pet connection exhibited more empathy, self-assurance and feeling in touch with other people.

[ Read the Article: Taking Care of Pets Boosts Mental Health And Social Relationships ]
 

IceBridge: Video Postcard From Greenland

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:38 AMGo to full article
0 NASA researchers are spending March through May 2014 in -- and above -- Greenland, studying the ice from the air. This "video postcard" shows some in-flight vignettes from early April.

IceBridge, a six-year NASA mission, is the largest airborne survey of Earth's polar ice ever flown. It will yield an unprecedented three-dimensional view of Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, ice shelves and sea ice. These flights will provide a yearly, multi-instrument look at the behavior of the rapidly changing features of the Greenland and Antarctic ice.

Data collected during IceBridge will help scientists bridge the gap in polar observations between NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) -- in orbit since 2003 -- and ICESat-2, planned for early 2016. ICESat stopped collecting science data in 2009, making IceBridge critical for ensuring a continuous series of observations.

Credit: NASA
 

Space Potty: Using The Bathroom In Space

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:17 AMGo to full article
0 Astronaut Suni Williams gives a tour of the toilet facilities on the space station and answers the question, "How do you potty in space?"

Credit: NASA

[ Read the Article: New Process Could Turn Astronaut Urine Into Fuel, Drinking Water ]
 

Testing A Supersonic Parachute For Landing On Mars

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:51 AMGo to full article
0 NASA tests a supersonic parachute under Mars-like conditions for future exploration.

Credit: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

[ Read the Article: Reporters See NASA’s Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Before Testing ]
 

Ozone-Rich Air Descends From On High

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:47 AMGo to full article
0 Ozone in the stratosphere usually stays up there and protects us from UV rays but sometimes the gas enters the lower part of Earth's atmosphere, affecting ground-level ozone and human health.

Credit: NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center
 

Escape Maneuver Of A Flying Fly

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:02:37 PMGo to full article
0 When startled by predators, tiny fruit flies respond like fighter jets -- employing screaming-fast banked turns to evade attacks, according to new findings led by University of Washington researchers.

Watch the fly's body roll as it executes a banked turn after seeing a looming shadow (off camera). The video has been slowed down 300 times. The maneuver is also depicted in two animated sequences, the final segment can be viewed in 3-D with red/cyan glasses.

Credit: F. Muijres / University of Washington
 

Ancient Harvestman Arachnid Images Reveal Secrets

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:40:54 PMGo to full article
0 This is a video showing a 305-million-year-old harvestman fossil.

Credit: Paris NHM / Russell Garwood

[ Read the Article: Scientists Find Four Eyes In 305M-Year-Old Daddy Longlegs Fossil ]
 

NASA Celebtrates 50 Years Of Disney's "It's A Small World"

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:03:43 PMGo to full article
0 On April 10, Disney Parks is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the iconic song "It's a Small World" and its namesake attraction that opened as a tribute to UNICEF's work for children around the world at the 1964 New York World's Fair. NASA is recognizing the anniversary with a video of the International Space Station and crew members that highlights the Earth observations, space exploration, scientific experiments, technology testing and international cooperation that takes place aboard the orbiting laboratory. This unique vantage point 260 miles above Earth shows it really is a small world after all.
 

Does Your Nose Make You Eat More?

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:32 AMGo to full article
0 Scientists from the University of Bordeaux say that the type 1 cannabinoid receptor in the olfactory bulb in the brain could cause you to eat more at the smell of food. They discovered what links hunger and increased smell perception the brain. They found that CB1 cannabinoid receptors control a circuit that connects the olfactory bulb to the cerebral cortex. When hunger is felt, it activates the olfactory circuit. They also found that in mice, the role of the CB1 receptor lead to increased food intake. Scientists hope that by better understanding this smell/food intake connection, they can develop treatments for obesity and eating disorders through the olfactory system.

[ Read the Article: Brain Mechanism Discovered Linking Food Smell And How Much We Eat ]
 

NIRSpec Instrument Gets Integrated Into Webb's ISIM

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:05 AMGo to full article
0 Engineers install the Near Infrared Spectrometer (NIRSpec) onto the Webb Telescope's Integrated Science Instrument Module (ISIM) in NASA Goddard Space Flight Center cleanroom. This delicate procedure took place during March 24 and March 25, 2014 in preparation for the cryogenic test of a fully integrated ISIM structure to occur this summer.

Credit: NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center

[ Read the Article: Heart Of The James Webb Space Telescope Complete ]
 

Understanding Lunar Eclipses

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:23 AMGo to full article
0 It's not often that we get a chance to see our planet's shadow, but a lunar eclipse gives us a fleeting glimpse. During these rare events, the full Moon rapidly darkens and then glows red. Though a lunar eclipse can be seen only at night, it's worth staying up to catch the show. The next lunar eclipse visible from the western hemisphere will take place in the early morning hours of April 15, 2014, from about 2:00 am - 5:30 am Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).

Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

[ Read the Article: NASA Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Prepped For Upcoming Eclipse ]
 

The $5 Chemistry Set

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:13 AMGo to full article
0 Manu Prakash won The Science Play and Research Kit Competition (SPARK) to develop the 21st century chemistry set. His version, based on a toy music box, is small, robust, programmable and costs $5. It can inspire young scientists and also address developing world problems like water quality and health.

Credit: Stanford University

[ Read the Article: Stanford Scientist Creates $5 Chemistry Set Inspired By Music Box ]
 

NASA What's Up For April 2014

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:07 AMGo to full article
0 Mars at opposition, a lunar eclipse and April's Lyrid meteor shower.

Credit: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
 

Panning Across The Planetary Nebula Abell 33

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:19:10 AMGo to full article
0 This pan video gives a close-up look at an eye-catching new image of planetary nebula Abell 33 taken using ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile. Created when an aging star blew off its outer layers, this beautiful blue bubble is, by chance, aligned with a foreground star, and bears an uncanny resemblance to a diamond engagement ring. This cosmic gem is unusually symmetric, appearing to be almost perfectly circular on the sky.

Credit: ESO / Digitized Sky Survey 2. Music: movetwo

[ Read the Article: Celestial Diamond Ring Created By Chance Meeting ]
 

Zooming In On The Planetary Nebula Abell 33

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:14:39 AMGo to full article
0 This zoom sequence starts with a broad view showing part of the long thin constellation of Hydra (The Female Water Snake). Towards the end a ghostly blue bubble can be seen, with a bright star on its edge, making it look like a diamond ring. This is the planetary nebula Abell 33.

Credit: ESO / Digitized Sky Survey 2 / M. Kornmesser. Music: movetwo

[ Read the Article: Celestial Diamond Ring Created By Chance Meeting ]
 

Brain Edits Past Memories

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:51 AMGo to full article
0 Researchers at Northwestern University say that our brains act like an editing suite, cutting and splicing past events based on present circumstances. Researchers studied subjects via MRI as they were administered memory tests that simulated the creation of past and present memories and their interaction. They found that the editing happens in the hippocampus and that participants often edited their original memories based on new circumstances, keeping their memory up-to-date. Researchers said this makes the idea of a “perfect memory” nothing more than a myth.

[ Read the Article: Brain Edits, Splices Past Memories With Current Events ]
 

This Game Controller Can Read Your Emotions

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:25 AMGo to full article
0 Stanford engineers have developed what could be the next big thing in interactive gaming: handheld game controllers that measure the player's physiology and alter the gameplay to make it more engaging.

Credit: Stanford University

[ Read the Article: New Video Game Controller Can Sense Player Emotions ]
 

A Lunar Eclipse And The LRO

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:28 AMGo to full article
0 On April 15th, 2014 there will be a total lunar eclipse visible from North America. Noah Petro, LRO Deputy Project Scientist, discusses this unique event and what effect it will have on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO).

Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

[ Read the Article: NASA Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Prepped For Upcoming Eclipse ]
 

Voluntary Training With Spinal Stimulation

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:42 AMGo to full article
0 In the first segment of the video, study participant Kent Stephenson does voluntary training with spinal stimulation. In the last segment, study participant Rob Summers tosses the medicine ball with research staff member Paul Criscola. Studies were conducted at the Human Locomotion Research Center laboratory, a part of the University of Louisville's Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Research Center, Frazier Rehab Institute, Louisville Kentucky.

Credit: University of Louisville

[ Read the Article: Spinal Stimulation Reactivates Paralyzed Limbs ]
 

ScienceCasts: Separated At Launch

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:46 AMGo to full article
0 Next year, with the assistance of the world's only twin astronauts, NASA will conduct an unprecedented experiment in human biology. While one twin remains on the ground, the other will circle Earth onboard the International Space Station for a full year. Will the twins still be identical when they are re-united? The answer could help NASA make space travel safer for generations of astronauts to come.

Credit: NASA
 

Height Is Definitely A Factor In Romance

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:09 AMGo to full article
0 A new study from Rice University and the University of North Texas looked at how “height” factors into mate preference. Taking data from Yahoo! personal dating advertisements, they found that nearly half of women tended to care about a man’s height, whereas for men it wasn’t nearly as important at 13.5%. Further study of university students confirmed that finding with 55% of women wanting a taller man and 37% of men wanting a shorter woman. Come on guys, us tall girls need love too! One female participant said “as a girl, I like to feel delicate and secure all the time. There’s something to be said about wearing high heels and still being shorter.”

[ Read the Article: Study Shows That Height Matters For A Woman ]
 

Arid Areas Absorb Unexpectedly Large Amounts Of Carbon

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:37 AMGo to full article
0 Researchers led by a Washington State University biologist have found that arid areas, among the biggest ecosystems on the planet, take up an unexpectedly large amount of carbon as levels of carbon dioxide increase in the atmosphere. The findings give scientists a better handle on the earth's carbon budget - how much carbon remains in the atmosphere as CO2, contributing to global warming, and how much gets stored in the land or ocean in other carbon-containing forms.

Credit: Washington State University / Lynn Fenstermaker, Desert Research Institute

[ Read the Article: Arid Regions Absorb Unexpectedly Large Amounts Of Atmospheric CO2 ]
 

New SDO Video Shows Graceful Solar Eruption

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:09 AMGo to full article
0 A mid-level flare, an M6.5, erupted from the sun on April 2, 2014, peaking at 10:05 a.m. EDT. This video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory shows the flare in a blend of two wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light: 304 Angstroms and 171 Angstroms, colorized in yellow and red, respectively.

Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
 

ESA's Sentinel-1 Gets Its Own Theme Music

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:12 AMGo to full article
0 Sentinel-1A, the first satellite for Europe’s environmental monitoring Copernicus program, is being launched from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana on April 3, 2014. It will be lofted into orbit on a Soyuz rocket.

This animation shows some of the critical stages delivering Sentinel-1 into orbit around Earth. After separating from the Fregat upper stage, the satellite takes around 10 hours to deploy its 12 m-long radar and two 10m-long solar wings. This deployment sequence is unique, choreographed to ensure that both deploy in the safest possible way. This approach also allows power from the wings to be available as soon as possible so that the satellite is independent.

Delivering vital information for numerous operational services, from monitoring ice in the polar oceans to tracking land subsidence, Sentinel-1 will play a key role in the largest civil Earth-observation program ever conceived.

The animation is set to a track called Sentinel by Mike Oldfield, a world-renowned musician and big space fan.

Credit: ESA/ATG medialab; Music written by M. Oldfield/copyright EMI Virgin
 

Tomorrow's Discoveries: The COMPASS Engineering Lab

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:21 AMGo to full article
0 Designing spacecraft is a complex endeavor. There is a lot to consider, from power requirements, scientific purpose, payload limits, and more. Also complicating the matter is that it is not always clear what projects will have priority, and will receive funding.

It used to take months of designing, revising, and planning just to reach a viable proposal. This would cost significant resources, not to mention tie-up the valuable time of the NASA scientists and engineers working on the project. And, in the end, most of the proposed missions would never receive the funding necessary to enter the next phase of development.

That is why NASA has taken a new approach to initial design proposals. Known as the Collaborative Modeling for Parametric Assessment of Space Systems (COMPASS) Lab, scientists and engineers at NASA’s Glenn Research Center work together over a few short weeks to complete the initial designs of the next generation of craft that will explore our solar system.

redOrbit visited the Cleveland, Ohio, facility to see first hand how these talented teams work together to complete these advanced projects in such a short period of time.

Credit: redOrbit
 

Sharks Sense Prey In Surprising Ways

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:35:05 PMGo to full article
0 A team of scientists have unmasked the intricacies of how sharks hunt prey — from the first whiff to the final chomp —in a new study about shark senses that was supported by the National Science Foundation and published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE.

Credit: University of South Florida / Mote Marine Laboratory

[ Read the Article: A Collage Of Senses Help Sharks Hunt For Food: Study ]
 

Can Babies Really Learn To Read?

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:43 AMGo to full article
0 A collaboration of researchers from different universities in Canada and The States put teach-baby-to-read products to the test. They exposed a group of infants between the ages of 9 months to 18 months to the products which included DVDs, flash cards, and other media. Another control group received none of this training. Follow up visits and lab tests to assess reading skills revealed no noticeable difference between the experimental group and the control group.

[ Read the Article: New Study Confirms Instructional Media Can’t Teach Babies To Read ]
 

Vegetarian Diet Lowers Blood Pressure

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:00 AMGo to full article
0 A vegetarian diet can help lower your blood pressure. Japanese and American researchers sifted through data dating back to 1900 all the way up to 2013. Observational studies revealed that vegetarians have lower average systolic and diastolic blood pressure compared to carnivores. Researchers say switching to a veggie diet is more cost-efficient than buying drugs to treat the same problem. And the side-effects of a vegetarian diet, unlike meds, are all good: weight loss, lower cholesterol, and better blood sugar control.

[ Read the Article: A Vegetarian Diet Can Help Lower Blood Pressure: Review ]
 

Space To Ground - April 4, 2014

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:52 AMGo to full article
0 NASA's Space to Ground is your weekly update on what's happening aboard the International Space Station.

Credit: NASA
 

NIST-F2 Atomic Clock Sets The Time Standard

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:27 AMGo to full article
0 A new atomic clock based on a "fountain" of cesium atoms, to serve as the next U.S. civilian time standard. NIST-F2 would neither gain nor lose one second in 300 million years, making it more than twice as accurate as its predecessor, NIST-F1, the U.S. civilian time and frequency standard since 1999.

Credit: National Institute of Standards and Technology

[ Read the Article: NIST Launches A New NIST-F2 Atomic Clock ]
 

Nanocone Surface, Coated With Gold, Repels Water Droplets

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:06:11 PMGo to full article
0 Demonstration of the super-hydrophobicity of nanocone array surfaces and their ability to repel water droplets in a manner similar to lotus leaves.

Credit: University of California, Irvine

[ Read the Article: Chemists Develop Gold Coating That Dims Glare ]
 

Stick-On Electronic Patches For Health Monitoring

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:01:21 PMGo to full article
0 John A. Rogers, a University of Illinois professor, and Yonggang Huang, a Northwestern University professor, have created thin, soft stick-on patches that stretch and move with the skin and incorporate commercial, off-the-shelf chip-based electronics for sophisticated wireless health monitoring.

Credit: University of Illinois

[ Read the Article: Stick-on Electronic Patches For Health Monitoring ]
 

Stick-On Electronic Patches For Health Monitoring

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:01:21 PMGo to full article
0 John A. Rogers, a University of Illinois professor, and Yonggang Huang, a Northwestern University professor, have created thin, soft stick-on patches that stretch and move with the skin and incorporate commercial, off-the-shelf chip-based electronics for sophisticated wireless health monitoring.

Credit: University of Illinois
 

NASA Animation Shows ISS's Cyclops Satellite Deployer

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:55:21 PMGo to full article
0 This animation shows how the Cyclops Deployment System launches satellites in the 50 to 100 kg class from the International Space Station. Cyclops is set to launch in mid to late 2014 on a SpaceX-4 resupply mission.

Credit: NASA

[ Read the Article: Meet Space Station’s Satellite Launcher Suite ‘Cyclops’ ]
 

Sentinel-1 Unfolds In New ESA Animation

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:51:49 PMGo to full article
0 Sentinel-1 is the first in a family of satellites built specifically to provide a stream of timely data for Europe’s ambitious Copernicus environmental monitoring program. It carries an advanced radar instrument to image Earth’s surface through cloud and rain and regardless of whether it is day or night. During launch, this 12 m-long radar and the solar wings are folded, but once the satellite is released into orbit they deploy in a specific sequence.

Delivering vital information for numerous operational services, from monitoring ice in the polar oceans to tracking land subsidence, Sentinel-1 is set to play a key role in the largest civil Earth-observation program ever conceived.

Credit: ESA

[ Read the Article: ESA Sentinel-1A Satellite Performs Critical Dance Routine After Launch ]
 

Fermi Data Hints At New Dark Matter Clues

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:12 AMGo to full article
0 This animation zooms into an image of the Milky Way, shown in visible light, and superimposes a gamma-ray map of the galactic center from NASA's Fermi. Raw data transitions to a view with all known sources removed, revealing a gamma-ray excess hinting at the presence of dark matter.

Credit: NASA Goddard / A. Mellinger (Central Michigan Univ.) and T. Linden (Univ. of Chicago)

[ Read the Article: Tantalizing New Dark Matter Clues ]

 

 
 

RedOrbit Videos Science

 

Earth From Space: Rocks And Salt

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:46:25 AMGo to full article
0 Earth from Space is presented by Kelsea Brennan-Wessels from the ESA Web-TV virtual studios. A dried-up salt marsh near the northeast Caspian Sea in Kazakhstan is pictured in the one-hundred-first edition. Credit: ESA
 

Research Shows Climate Change Drove Evolution Of Ice Age Predators

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎09:22:24 AMGo to full article
0 Concerns about climate change and its impact on the world around us are growing daily. New scientific studies at the La Brea Tar Pits are probing the link between climate warming and the evolution of Ice Age predators, attempting to predict how animals will respond to climate change today.
 

Can A Pet Make You More Sociable?

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:23 AMGo to full article
0 A new study from Tufts University found that young adults who take care of a pet have stronger social relationships and bonds to their communities. In a survey of 500 volunteers between 18 and 26, those who looked after animals reported participating in more “contribution” activities like volunteering in their community or helping friends and family. There was a direct correlation between pets and contribution—the more they looked after a pet, the higher the contribution score. Also, those with a pet connection exhibited more empathy, self-assurance and feeling in touch with other people. [ Read the Article: Taking Care of Pets Boosts Mental Health And Social Relationships ]
 

IceBridge: Video Postcard From Greenland

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:38 AMGo to full article
0 NASA researchers are spending March through May 2014 in -- and above -- Greenland, studying the ice from the air. This "video postcard" shows some in-flight vignettes from early April. IceBridge, a six-year NASA mission, is the largest airborne survey of Earth's polar ice ever flown. It will yield an unprecedented three-dimensional view of Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, ice shelves and sea ice. These flights will provide a yearly, multi-instrument look at the behavior of the rapidly changing features of the Greenland and Antarctic ice. Data collected during IceBridge will help scientists bridge the gap in polar observations between NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) -- in orbit since 2003 -- and ICESat-2, planned for early 2016. ICESat stopped collecting science data in 2009, making IceBridge critical for ensuring a continuous series of observations. Credit: NASA
 

Ozone-Rich Air Descends From On High

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:47 AMGo to full article
0 Ozone in the stratosphere usually stays up there and protects us from UV rays but sometimes the gas enters the lower part of Earth's atmosphere, affecting ground-level ozone and human health. Credit: NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center
 

Escape Maneuver Of A Flying Fly

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:02:37 PMGo to full article
0 When startled by predators, tiny fruit flies respond like fighter jets -- employing screaming-fast banked turns to evade attacks, according to new findings led by University of Washington researchers. Watch the fly's body roll as it executes a banked turn after seeing a looming shadow (off camera). The video has been slowed down 300 times. The maneuver is also depicted in two animated sequences, the final segment can be viewed in 3-D with red/cyan glasses. Credit: F. Muijres / University of Washington
 

Ancient Harvestman Arachnid Images Reveal Secrets

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:40:54 PMGo to full article
0 This is a video showing a 305-million-year-old harvestman fossil. Credit: Paris NHM / Russell Garwood [ Read the Article: Scientists Find Four Eyes In 305M-Year-Old Daddy Longlegs Fossil ]
 

The $5 Chemistry Set

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:13 AMGo to full article
0 Manu Prakash won The Science Play and Research Kit Competition (SPARK) to develop the 21st century chemistry set. His version, based on a toy music box, is small, robust, programmable and costs $5. It can inspire young scientists and also address developing world problems like water quality and health. Credit: Stanford University [ Read the Article: Stanford Scientist Creates $5 Chemistry Set Inspired By Music Box ]
 

Brain Edits Past Memories

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:51 AMGo to full article
0 Researchers at Northwestern University say that our brains act like an editing suite, cutting and splicing past events based on present circumstances. Researchers studied subjects via MRI as they were administered memory tests that simulated the creation of past and present memories and their interaction. They found that the editing happens in the hippocampus and that participants often edited their original memories based on new circumstances, keeping their memory up-to-date. Researchers said this makes the idea of a “perfect memory” nothing more than a myth. [ Read the Article: Brain Edits, Splices Past Memories With Current Events ]
 

Height Is Definitely A Factor In Romance

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:09 AMGo to full article
0 A new study from Rice University and the University of North Texas looked at how “height” factors into mate preference. Taking data from Yahoo! personal dating advertisements, they found that nearly half of women tended to care about a man’s height, whereas for men it wasn’t nearly as important at 13.5%. Further study of university students confirmed that finding with 55% of women wanting a taller man and 37% of men wanting a shorter woman. Come on guys, us tall girls need love too! One female participant said “as a girl, I like to feel delicate and secure all the time. There’s something to be said about wearing high heels and still being shorter.” [ Read the Article: Study Shows That Height Matters For A Woman ]
 

Arid Areas Absorb Unexpectedly Large Amounts Of Carbon

 
‎08 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:37 AMGo to full article
0 Researchers led by a Washington State University biologist have found that arid areas, among the biggest ecosystems on the planet, take up an unexpectedly large amount of carbon as levels of carbon dioxide increase in the atmosphere. The findings give scientists a better handle on the earth's carbon budget - how much carbon remains in the atmosphere as CO2, contributing to global warming, and how much gets stored in the land or ocean in other carbon-containing forms. Credit: Washington State University / Lynn Fenstermaker, Desert Research Institute [ Read the Article: Arid Regions Absorb Unexpectedly Large Amounts Of Atmospheric CO2 ]
 

Sharks Sense Prey In Surprising Ways

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:35:05 PMGo to full article
0 A team of scientists have unmasked the intricacies of how sharks hunt prey — from the first whiff to the final chomp —in a new study about shark senses that was supported by the National Science Foundation and published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE. Credit: University of South Florida / Mote Marine Laboratory [ Read the Article: A Collage Of Senses Help Sharks Hunt For Food: Study ]
 

Can Babies Really Learn To Read?

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:00:43 AMGo to full article
0 A collaboration of researchers from different universities in Canada and The States put teach-baby-to-read products to the test. They exposed a group of infants between the ages of 9 months to 18 months to the products which included DVDs, flash cards, and other media. Another control group received none of this training. Follow up visits and lab tests to assess reading skills revealed no noticeable difference between the experimental group and the control group. [ Read the Article: New Study Confirms Instructional Media Can’t Teach Babies To Read ]
 

NIST-F2 Atomic Clock Sets The Time Standard

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:27 AMGo to full article
0 A new atomic clock based on a "fountain" of cesium atoms, to serve as the next U.S. civilian time standard. NIST-F2 would neither gain nor lose one second in 300 million years, making it more than twice as accurate as its predecessor, NIST-F1, the U.S. civilian time and frequency standard since 1999. Credit: National Institute of Standards and Technology [ Read the Article: NIST Launches A New NIST-F2 Atomic Clock ]
 

Nanocone Surface, Coated With Gold, Repels Water Droplets

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:06:11 PMGo to full article
0 Demonstration of the super-hydrophobicity of nanocone array surfaces and their ability to repel water droplets in a manner similar to lotus leaves. Credit: University of California, Irvine [ Read the Article: Chemists Develop Gold Coating That Dims Glare ]
 

Researchers Test Drones To Monitor Antarctic Ice

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:30:18 AMGo to full article
0 NSF-funded KU researchers successfully test an unmanned aircraft system to measure and eventually predict exactly what's going on underneath Antarctic Ice Sheets. Credit: NSF / University of Kansas [ Read the Article: Measuring Changes In Polar Ice Sheets Using Unmanned Aircraft ]
 

Photos, Maps Of Footprints Used To Digitally Reconstruct Dinosaur Chase

 
‎03 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:35:15 AMGo to full article
0 Scientists digitally reconstructed a model of a dinosaur chase using photos of theropod and sauropod footprints excavated 70 years ago. Credit: Falkingham PL, Bates KT, Farlow JO (2014) Historical Photogrammetry: Bird's Paluxy River Dinosaur Chase Sequence Digitally Reconstructed as It Was prior to Excavation 70 Years Ago. PLoS ONE 9(4): e93247. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0093247 [ Read the Article: Researchers Create 3D Model Of Paluxy River Dinosaur Chase ]
 

Arctic Melt Season Lengthening, Ocean Rapidly Warming

 
‎02 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:45:38 AMGo to full article
0 The length of the melt season for Arctic sea ice is growing by several days each decade, and an earlier start to the melt season is allowing the Arctic Ocean to absorb enough additional solar radiation in some places to melt as much as four feet of the Arctic ice cap's thickness, according to a new study by National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) and NASA researchers. Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center [ Read the Article: Seasonal Arctic Summer Ice Extent Still Hard To Forecast ]
 

Self-Healing Muscle Engineered And Grown In Lab

 
‎01 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:22:44 AMGo to full article
0 Biomedical engineers have grown living skeletal muscle that looks a lot like the real thing. It contracts powerfully and rapidly, integrates into mice quickly, and for the first time, demonstrates the ability to heal itself both inside the laboratory and inside an animal. Here, cells travel through veins that have grown into laboratory-made muscle fibers after implantation into the back of a mouse. Credit: Duke Pratt School of Engineering [ Read the Article: Scientists Grow Self-healing Engineered Muscle In The Laboratory ]
 

Researchers Develop New Model Of Earth's Dynamic Interior

 
‎31 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎11:32:34 AMGo to full article
0 This video shows a numerical simulation of Earth's deep mantle. The top panel is temperature and the bottom panel is composition which includes three components: the more-primitive reservoir at the lowermost mantle (cyan), the subducted oceanic crust (yellow) and the depleted background mantle (black). Notice that as the oceanic crust is subducted to the lowermost mantle, some part of it is directly carried up to the surface by plumes which a large fraction of it episodically enters the more-primitive reservoir. As a result, plumes forming on top of the more-primitive reservoir could simultaneously entrain a combination of compositional components to the surface, including (a) relatively young oceanic crust, (b) ancient more-primitive material stirred with older oceanic crust, and (c) background, depleted mantle. Credit: Mingming Li / Allen McNamara / Arizona State University [ Read the Article: New Model Of Earth’s Dynamic Interior Developed ]
 

Scientists Synthesize First Functional 'Designer' Chromosome in Yeast

 
‎31 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:49 AMGo to full article
0 An international team of scientists led by Jef Boeke, PhD, director of NYU Langone Medical Center's Institute for Systems Genetics, has synthesized the first functional chromosome in yeast, an important step in the emerging field of synthetic biology, designing microorganisms to produce novel medicines, raw materials for food, and biofuels. Over the last five years, scientists have built bacterial chromosomes and viral DNA, but this is the first report of an entire eukaryotic chromosome, the threadlike structure that carries genes in the nucleus of all plant and animal cells, built from scratch. Researchers say their team's global effort also marks one of the most significant advances in yeast genetics since 1996, when scientists initially mapped out yeast's entire DNA code, or genetic blueprint. "This work represents the biggest step yet in an international effort to construct the full genome of synthetic yeast," says Dr. Boeke. "It is the most extensively altered chromosome ever built. But the milestone that really counts is integrating it into a living yeast cell. We have shown that yeast cells carrying this synthetic chromosome are remarkably normal. They behave almost identically to wild yeast cells, only they now possess new capabilities and can do things that wild yeast cannot." Credit: NYU Langone Medical Center [ Read the Article: Scientists Insert Man-Made Chromosome Into Yeast ]
 

USGS Scientists On Landslide Hazards

 
‎28 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:29 AMGo to full article
0 Landslides occur in all 50 states and U.S. territories, and cause $1-2 billion in damages and more than 25 fatalities on average each year. USGS scientists aim to improve our understanding of landslide hazards to help protect communities and reduce associated losses. Credit: Don Becker, U.S. Geological Survey [ Read the Article: Deadly Washington Landslide Was Not Caused By An Earthquake: USGS ]
 

New Caledonian Crows Understand Reward

 
‎28 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:32 AMGo to full article
0 This video shows example trials for each of the six experiments that shows how New Caledonian crows may understand how to displace water to receive a reward. Credit: Sarah Jelbert, University of Auckland [ Read the Article: Crows Understand Water Displacement Proving Aesop’s Fable ]
 

GOES Satellite Movie of 2014 Winter Storms

 
‎27 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎01:43:43 PMGo to full article
0 This new animation of NOAA's GOES-East satellite imagery shows the movement of winter storms from January 1 to March 24 making for a snowier-than-normal winter along the U.S. East coast and Midwest. Credit: NASA/NOAA GOES Project
 

Three-Dimensional Visualization of the Insect Thorax

 
‎27 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎11:34:38 AMGo to full article
0 This video shows the insect thorax reconstructed from tomograms and highlights the external movements of the thorax and the location of the indirect power and steering muscles. Credit: 2014 Walker et al
 

Salamanders Shrinking Due to Climate Change

 
‎27 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎06:15:48 AMGo to full article
0 Wild salamanders living in some of North America's best salamander habitat are getting smaller as their surroundings get warmer and drier, forcing them to burn more energy in a changing climate. That's the key finding of a new study published March 25, 2014 in the journal Global Change Biology that examined museum specimens caught in the Appalachian Mountains from 1957 to 2007 and wild salamanders measured at the same sites in 2011-2012. Credit: Brian M. Mullen, Research Minute producer, Clemson News Now [ Read the Article: Appalachian Salamanders Appear To Be Shrinking Due To Climate Change ]
 

Keeping Secrets in a World of Spies and Mistrust

 
‎27 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:27 AMGo to full article
0 This is an interview with Professor Artur Ekert, co-inventor of quantum cryptography, about what it takes to keep secrets secret. Credit: Karol Jalochowski, Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore
 

Keeping Secrets in a World of Spies and Mistrust

 
‎26 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎04:01:27 PMGo to full article
0 This is an interview with Professor Artur Ekert, co-inventor of quantum cryptography, about what it takes to keep secrets secret. Credit: Karol Jalochowski, Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore
 

The Dynamics of Continental Accretion

 
‎26 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎11:55:37 AMGo to full article
0 USC scientist Meghan Miller is among an international team of researchers who used computer modeling to reveal, for the first time, how giant swirls form during the collision of tectonic plates, with subduction zones stuttering and recovering after continental fragments slam into them. The team’s 3-D models suggested a likely answer to a question that has long plagued geologists: Why do long, curving mountain chains form where two tectonic plates collide, pushing one down into the mantle? Credit: University of Southern California [ Read the Article: 3D Computer Models Used To Solve Age-old Geologic Riddle ]
 

3-D Mass Spectrometry

 
‎26 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎11:35:41 AMGo to full article
0 In early tests, the research team used a Kuka KR5 sixx R650 robot, seen in action here. Credit: Facundo Fernandez
 
 

 

 

Beyond Perception - DVD

by Chuck Missler  

 

 

DVD

PRICE R 159.00

 

Media Type: DVD
Published 20-Sep-2010
Published by Koinonia House
KHID#: DVD84
Why do scientists now believe we live in a 10-dimensional universe?

Has physics finally reached the very boundaries of reality?

There seems to be evidence to suggest that our world and everything in it are only ghostly images; projections from a level of reality so beyond our own that the real reality is literally beyond both space and time. The main architect of this astonishing idea is one of the world's most eminent thinkers- physicist David Bohm, a protege of Einstein's. Earlier, he noticed that, in plasmas, particles stopped behaving like individuals and started behaving as if they were part of a larger and inter connected whole. He continued his work in the behavior of oceans of these particles, noting their behaving as if they know what each on the untold trillions of individual particles were doing.

This briefing pack DVD comes with:
-two mp3 audio files
-one notes file in pdf format

This DVD includes notes in PDF format and MP3 files.

Encoding: This DVD will be viewable in other countries WITH the proper DVD player and television set.
Format: Color, Fullscreen
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Audio Encoding: Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo
Run Time: 2 hour(s)
Number of discs: 1


 
The Beyond Collection 

 

 

      

 

 

 

Price R399.00

 The Collection Includes the 4 DVD'S below

 

 

 

DVD - R159.00

 

 

DVD - R159.00

 

 

DVD - R159.00

 

 

DVD - R159.00

 

If you purchase the 4 discs individually the price will be R636.00

 

 YOU SAVE R 237.00!

Genetics Research Confirms Biblical Timeline

Exciting research from the summer of 2012 described DNA variation in the protein coding regions of the human genome linked to population growth. One of the investigation's conclusions was that the human genome began to rapidly diversify not more than 5,000 years ago.1,2 This observation closely agrees with a biblical timeline of post-flood human diversification. Yet another study, this one published in the journal Nature, accessed even more extensive data and unintentionally confirmed the recent human history described in Genesis.3

Differences in human DNA can be characterized across populations and ethnic groups using a variety of techniques. One of the most informative genetic technologies in this regard is the analysis of rare DNA variation in the protein coding regions of the genome. Variability in these regions is less frequent than the more numerous genetic differences that occur in the non-coding regulatory regions. Researchers can statistically combine this information with demographic data derived from population growth across the world to generate time scales related to human genetic diversification.4

What makes this type of research unique is that evolutionary scientists typically incorporate hypothetical deep time scales taken from the authority of paleontologists or other similar deep-time scenarios to calibrate models of genetic change over time. Demographics-based studies using observed world population dynamics do not rely on this bias and are therefore more accurate and realistic.

In a 2012 Science report, geneticists analyzed DNA sequences of 15,585 protein-coding gene regions in the human genome for 1,351 European Americans and 1,088 African Americans for rare DNA variation.1,2 This new study accessed rare coding variation in 15,336 genes from over 6,500 humans—almost three times the amount of data compared to the first study.3 A separate group of researchers performed the new study.

The Nature results convey a second spectacular confirmation of the amazingly biblical conclusions from the first study. These scientists confirmed that the human genome began to rapidly diversify not more than 5,000 years ago. In addition, they found significant levels of  variation to be associated with degradation of the human genome, not forward evolutionary progress. This fits closely with research performed by Cornell University geneticist John Sanford who demonstrated through biologically realistic population genetic modeling that genomes actually devolve over time in a process called genetic entropy.5

According to the Bible, the pre-flood world population was reduced to Noah's three sons and their wives, creating a genetic bottleneck from which all humans descended. Immediately following the global flood event, we would expect to see a rapid diversification continuing up to the present. According to Scripture, this began not more than 5,000 years ago. We would also expect the human genome to devolve or degrade as it accumulates irreversible genetic errors over time. Now, two secular research papers confirm these biblical predictions.

References

  1. Tomkins, J. 2012. Human DNA Variation Linked to Biblical Event Timeline. Creation Science Update. Posted on icr.org July 23, 2012, accessed December 31, 2012.
  2. Tennessen, J. et al. 2012. Evolution and Functional Impact of Rare Coding Variation from Deep Sequencing of Human Exomes. Science. 337 (6090): 64-69.
  3. Fu, W, et al. Analysis of 6,515 exomes reveals the recent origin of most human protein-coding variants. Nature. Published online before print, July 13, 2012.
  4. Keinan, A and A. Clark. 2012. Recent Explosive Human Population Growth Has Resulted in an Excess of Rare Genetic Variants. Science. 336 (6082): 740-743.
  5. Sanford, J. C. 2008. Genetic Entropy and the Mystery of the Genome, 3rd ed. Waterloo, NY: FMS Publications.

* Dr. Tomkins is a Research Associate and received his Ph.D. in Genetics from Clemson University.

 

Students Surprised to Find Noah's Ark Feasible

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Advanced physics students at Leicester University were tasked with determining if the Biblical dimensions of Noah's ark could have supported the weight of 70,000 animals. What did they find?

 More...

 

Dual-Gene Code Discovery Highlights Designed Biocomplexity

 
‎09 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Recent evidence of dual codes in the protein-coding sections of genes raised the bar on our understanding of genome complexity, and now a new study is showing that the control regions of genes contain dual codes as well.

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Cells' Molecular Motor Diversity Confounds Evolution

 
‎07 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Scientists believe that the study of genes that encode the proteins for molecular motors will help solve the mysteries of evolution. However, the result of a recent study has only served to support the predictions of special creation.

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Water Deep in Earth's Mantle

 
‎04 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

An international science team recently found a unique Brazilian diamond inclusion that indicates an abundance of water located as deep as Earth's mantle. Could this find relate to the Bible's description of the early Earth?

 More...

 

Shale Oil Boom Begs Explanation

 
‎02 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

The U.S. is having an oil boom—made possible by cutting-edge techniques that extract voluminous amounts of petroleum from shale rocks. Where did all this shale oil come from?

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Zircon: Earth's Oldest Crystal?

 
‎28 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Researchers recently published an article in Nature Geoscience highlighting findings from their analysis of a detrital zircon from Australia. BBC News has cited this mineral as the "oldest scrap of Earth crust"—is this conclusion accurate?

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Mind-Boggling Complexity in the Fruit Fly Transcriptome

 
‎26 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Using new technology, researchers recently evaluated the diversity of gene expression across the fruit fly genome and discovered incredible complexity and design.

 More...

 

'Smoking Gun' Evidence of Inflation?

 
‎21 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

On March 17, a team of radio astronomers announced they discovered purportedly direct evidence for cosmic inflation—a critical component of the modern Big Bang model. How solid are the new data and what does the evidence really show?

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IBM's Watson: Designed to Learn Like a Human

 
‎19 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

What would it take to reverse engineer the human brain? The debut of an innovative supercomputer provides a clue to answering that question as well as to the ultimate cause of self-adjusting systems.

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Ancient Lake Bed Merges with Biblical Clues

 
‎17 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

New discoveries in northwestern India indicate lake Kotla Dahar retained more water in the past. When and how did the climate change? Does the history recorded in Genesis provide a useful context?

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Reverse Engineering Reveals Ideal Propulsion Design

 
‎14 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

In a recent analysis of how dozens of species propel their bodies through air and water, a collaborative team found not only ideal design but also common design.

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Black Rocks Red-Flag Uniformitarian Flaws

 
‎12 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

A surprising rock discovery in West Virginia has red-flagged the uniformitarian analysis of sediment deposits previously thought to be non-marine in origin.

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Asteroid Medley Challenges Naturalistic Origins

 
‎10 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Data from recent spacecraft flybys challenge the prevailing naturalistic perspective on asteroid origins. Secular astronomers assume that natural processes, rather than miracles, created the sun, Earth, planets, and asteroids from ancient, swirling masses of gases, but this new evidence points to something different.

 More...

 

Europe’s Oldest Human Footprints—Dated in Error?

 
‎07 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

News headlines worldwide recently reported Europe's oldest human footprint discovery. How old are the tracks? It appears the media and researchers answer this question by following the same misleading trends.

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Live Birth Fossil Exposes Evolutionary Enigma

 
‎05 ‎March ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

One of the latest ephemeral fossils comes from China—a baby ichthyosaur halfway in and halfway out of its mother's body. Though fossilization tragically ended the baby's transition from the womb, could this specimen support the story that a land reptile evolved into the first ichthyosaur?

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Wooly Mammoth Mystery Finally Solved?

 
‎28 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Researchers claim to potentially have solved the mystery of the wooly mammoth’s mass extinction—the creatures went extinct when grasses began “crowding out” other edible plants these massive animals needed to subsist.

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Human lincRNA Genes Contradict Evolution

 
‎26 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

A research team recently characterized a group of genes in humans and other mammals that not only defies evolutionary models but vindicates the Bible’s prediction of the uniqueness of created kinds with distinct genetic features.

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Genesis Camels: Biblical Error?

 
‎24 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Tel Aviv University archaeologists recently radiocarbon-dated camel bones from the Aravah Valley and concluded that the first “significant” appearance of domesticated camels in Israel occurred around 900 B.C.—much later than the biblical record. Did they catch the Bible in an error?

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DNA Proof That Neandertals Are Just Humans

 
‎21 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

The study of ancient DNA is currently all the rage in the field of genomics. Despite the fact that many problems still plague the field, several new research papers are claiming that scientists can now detect and study Neandertal genome sequence in modern human DNA databases using only electronic tools.

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Speedy Glaciers Trample Multiple Ice-Age Theories

 
‎19 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Greenland’s Jakobshavn Isbræ glacier set a new speed record for glacial flow. The ice stream’s calculated average speed for summer 2012 was 46 meters per day—more than 6 feet per hour—the fastest recorded speed for any Antarctica or Greenland ice stream.

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Could Space Dust Help Spark Life?

 
‎17 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Physicists in California and Hawaiʻi found evidence that solar wind performs curious chemistry on space dust, and they suggested that this will help support a naturalistic origin of life on Earth. But how much help will it really bring?

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Evolutionary Dogma, Not Science, Kicks Out Adam

 
‎14 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Secular geneticists continue to claim that humans did not come from a literal Adam and Eve. But if clues in the human genome do not reject Adam from our ancestry, then why would scientists insist that he was not real?

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Evidence of Eternity in Our Hearts?

 
‎12 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

We widely believe that some core in each person will somehow live forever, but where does this idea come from? A new research tactic reveals that belief in eternal life is hardwired into each of us, inadvertently confirming the Bible’s message.

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Cuneiform Reed-Ark Story Doesn't Float

 
‎10 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

A cuneiform tablet at the British Museum describes Noah’s Ark as round and built of reeds, but an older tablet supports the Bible’s description. Babylonian or biblical, round or rectangular—which Ark story stays afloat?

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Nye vs. Ham Debate: No True Scotsman

 
‎07 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Some three million people watched live online February 4 as debaters discussed the topic “Is creation a viable model of origins in today’s modern scientific era?” “Science Guy” Bill Nye kept using the “no true Scotsman” fallacy. Viewers should beware of this debate tactic’s sometimes subtle effects.

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Fossil Skin Pigment Evolved Three Times?

 
‎05 ‎February ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Paleontologists recently presented their analysis of original skin leftovers from three marine reptile fossils and inadvertently revealed three clues that darken their evolutionary explanations.

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Most of Venus' History Is Missing?

 
‎31 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Venus’ tortured surface begs for explanation, but scientists have a trying time reconstructing the planet’s past based on its mysterious features. Secular geologists anticipate that additional measurements may help resolve the vexing Venusian riddles, but satisfactory answers may never come without something more substantial than just new data.

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Spider Webs Attract Scientists' Attention

 
‎29 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

No, it’s not science fiction—it’s real. Spider webs use electricity to snare prey, and researchers recently discovered an added environmental benefit from these arachnids’ masterful constructions.

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Interest in Origins Stays Strong

 
‎27 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Do Americans really care about where they came from? The results of two recent polls and a surge in interest in an upcoming creation vs. evolution debate suggest they do. This origins conversation has reverberated for generations, and the current controversy is no different.

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Do Foxes Have Magnetic Senses?

 
‎24 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

During winter, red foxes hunt snow-covered mice without even seeing their prey—but how? Foxes may see more than what visible light reveals.

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Elephant Shark Research Team Misses Creation Clues

 
‎22 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Scientists recently studied the genome of a “living fossil” called the elephant shark. Their report refers to “unique insights” into evolution, but the facts actually reveal something else—clues to creation these researchers overlooked.

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Gecko-Footed Robot Fit for Outer Space

 
‎20 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Abigaille the robot can climb up smooth walls, but she leaves behind no residue as her feet mimic gecko traction and locomotion. How close did the engineers come to matching the precision capabilities of real gecko feet?

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Amber Flowers Challenge Dinosaur Depictions

 
‎17 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

Dinosaur dioramas don’t display flowers and grasses—supposedly because they had not yet evolved. But amazing amber fossils refute that idea by showing the abrupt appearance of fully-formed flowers.

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Mouse Study Shows 'Junk DNA' Is Actually Required

 
‎15 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

It was once believed that the regions in between the protein-coding genes of the genome were wastelands of alleged nonfunctional “junk DNA.” However, we now know that these previously misunderstood regions are teeming with functional activity—and a new study shows they are actually required for life.

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One-Hour Oil Production?

 
‎13 ‎January ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:00 AMGo to full article

A new technology produces diesel fuel from algae in mere minutes using heat and pressure, thus calling into question the secular claim that fossil fuels have developed over millions of years.

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Scientific American Content: Global

 

 

Are Human Pheromones Real?

 
‎01 ‎May ‎2014, ‏‎04:00:00 PMGo to full article
Scientists are still unraveling nature’s secret olfactory signals

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

5 Tips for Faster Mental Division (Part 2)

 
‎13 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:00:00 PMGo to full article
The Math Dude: Quick & Dirty Tips to Make Math Simpler

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Barbie Exposure May Limit Girls' Career Imagination

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:45:00 PMGo to full article
Girls who played with dolls were then asked about future careers. Those who played with Barbie more likely to envision traditional pink-collar jobs than were girls who played with Mrs. Potato Head....

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

5 Tips for Faster Mental Division (Part 1)

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:00:00 PMGo to full article
The Math Dude: Quick & Dirty Tips to Make Math Simpler

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

April 2014 Book Reviews Roundup

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:00:00 PMGo to full article
Books and recommendations from Scientific American

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Flu Drug Stockpiling Reported to Be a Waste of Money

 
‎12 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:00:00 PMGo to full article
A medical panel now suggests that bulk purchasing of the influenza drug Tamiflu, on which the U.S. has spent $1.5B, was a waste of money

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Heartbleed Bug: Information, Advice and Resources

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:40:00 PMGo to full article
The Heartbleed Internet security flaw has made a mess that might not be cleaned up for a while

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Ohio Links Fracking to Earthquakes, Announces Tougher Rules

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:02:37 PMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Catch a Total Lunar Eclipse Sidling Up to Mars—and Send Us Your Photos

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:50:00 PMGo to full article
A total lunar eclipse will coincide with Mars's closest approach to Earth, offering stargazers an unusual show

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Lab-Grown Vaginas Implanted Successfully in 4 Teenagers

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:50:00 PMGo to full article
The organs, grown from the patients' own cells, are showing normal functions for the four young women

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Google Doodle Honors Chemist Dr. Percy Julian

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎07:18:52 PMGo to full article
April 11, 2014 would have been Dr. Julian Percy’s 115th Birthday and it was a beautiful site to behold – seeing today’s Google Doodle honoring the man and his science.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

How to Build an Earth-Size Telescope

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎06:00:23 PMGo to full article
Looking into the galactic center is hard. So much dust and gas lies between us and the center of the Milky Way that very little of the visible light emitted there makes it to us.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

How to Battle Climate Change and Poverty Together

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎05:30:00 PMGo to full article
World Bank President Jim Kim yesterday put climate change at the center of the fight against extreme poverty

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

AWOL Microbes May Explain Our Modern Plagues [Excerpt]

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎04:00:00 PMGo to full article
Antibiotics have endangered our native microbiomes and left us increasingly vulnerable to modern diseases like obesity, diabetes, asthma and autism

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Does Growing Time Lag for Nobels Portend End of Fundamental Discoveries in Physics?

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:49:44 PMGo to full article
Some idiot over at National Geographic just wrote a column titled “Science Is Running Out of Things to Discover,” and the commenters are hammering him.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Measure Yourself by the Standard of the Capybara

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:30:46 PMGo to full article
We all know a lot of measurements about ourselves. You are some number of feet or meters tall. You weigh some number of pounds, kilograms, or stone.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Book Review: <em>You Are Here</em>

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:00:00 PMGo to full article
Books and recommendations from Scientific American

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Chinese City Clears Shelves of Water in Chemical Scare

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎01:32:02 PMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Rains Saturate Parts of Australia as Cyclone Nears

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:54:00 AMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Turtles that eat bone, rocks and soil, and turtles that mine

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:03:34 AMGo to full article
I have had extensive turtle guilt of late - that is, there just haven't been enough turtles on Tet Zoo for a while… by which I mean, there haven't been any.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

China Begins Soil Pollution Clean-up amid Doubt over Funding

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:00:59 AMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Being Bad at Video Games Ups Aggression

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:45:00 AMGo to full article
A custom-designed video game that frustrated players left them at least as aggressive after playing as did other games famous for their violence. Larry Greenemeier reports.  

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Strong 6.1 Quake Shakes Nicaragua, No Major Damage

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:30:43 AMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Forest Elephants Get a Fair Hearing

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎02:09:00 AMGo to full article
The Elephant Listening Project, associated with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, is recording thousands of hours of forest elephant vocalizations. Steve Mirsky reports  

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Deadly Bat Disease Found in Wisconsin, Michigan

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:40:49 AMGo to full article


-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Stag Parties: Awareness and Elegant Solutions

 
‎11 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎12:24:34 AMGo to full article
Kiddo spills her milk. We lock eyes, and she dissolves in a puddle of sadness, crying about how it's all her fault and she feels SO BAD. "Kiddo, honey, it's really okay.

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Beat Jet Lag With This Scientist-Developed App

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎11:34:02 PMGo to full article
Fed up with jet lag when you fly long distances? University of Michigan mathematicians have your back. They've developed a free app, available today, based on mathematical models that can tell you...

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Fighter Jet Moves Help Flies Evade Predators

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:29:00 PMGo to full article
High-speed video reveals why flies are so hard to swat

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
 

Four-Eyed 'Daddy Longlegs' Fossil Discovered

 
‎10 ‎April ‎2014, ‏‎10:24:00 PMGo to full article
A spider-like arachnid fossil helps explain the evolutionary path of modern harvestmen, often called 'daddy longlegs'

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

 

 

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Transhumanism is an international intellectual and cultural movement supporting the use of science and technology to improve human mental and physical characteristics and capacities.

by Dr. Martin Erdmann


The human species can, if it wishes, transcend itself. We need a name for this new belief. Perhaps transhumanism will serve: man remaining man, but transcending himself, by realizing new possibilities of and for his human nature.
Julian Huxley
1st director of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (wrote nearly fifty years ago)
Transhumanism is a word that is beginning to bubble to the top of our prophetic studies and horizon. Simply described, transhumanism is an international intellectual and cultural movement supporting the use of science and technology to improve human mental and physical characteristics and capacities - in essence, to create a "posthuman" society.
This is not a passing fad. Transhumanist programs are sponsored in institutions such as Oxford, Standford, and Caltech. Sponsorships come from organizations such as Ford, Apple, Intel, Xerox, Sun Microsystems, and others. DARPA, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, a technical department within the U.S. Department of Defense is also involved in transhumanist projects.
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The Origins of Information: Exploring and Explaining Biological Information


 

In the 21st century, the information age has finally come to biology. We now know that biology at its root is comprised of information rich systems, such as the complex digital code encoded in DNA. Groundbreaking discoveries of the past decade are revealing the information bearing properties of biological systems.

Dr. Stephen C. Meyer, a Cambridge trained philosopher of science is examining and explaining the amazing depth of digital technology found in each and every living cell such as nested coding, digital processing, distributive retrieval and storage systems, and genomic operating systems.

Meyer is developing a more fundamental argument for intelligent design that is based not on a single feature like the bacterial flagellum, but rather on a pervasive feature of all living systems. Alongside matter and energy, Dr. Meyer shows that there is a third fundamental entity in the universe needed for life: information.

 

http://www.stephencmeyer.org/

Got Science? Genesis 1 and Evidence

 

 

 
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Many scientists say complex life just randomly happened.
Primordial soup + lightning strike = Bingo! Is there any shred of scientific evidence that life was CREATED as Genesis 1 claims? Dr. Stephen Meyer, author of SIGNATURE IN THE CELL, says not a shred. Rather, a ton. Learn good reasoning techniques here.
 
08 June 2012, 08:09:11 PM
 

Intelligent Design is not Creationism

 
08 June 2012, 08:09:11 PM | Robert CrowtherGo to full article

This article was originally published in the Daily Telegraph (UK) on January 29. Original Article In 2004, the distinguished philosopher Antony Flew of the University of Reading made worldwide news when he repudiated a lifelong commitment to atheism and affirmed the reality of some kind of a creator. Flew cited evidence of intelligent design in DNA and the arguments of "American [intelligent] design theorists" as important reasons for this shift. Since then, British readers have learnt about the theory of intelligent design (ID) mainly from media reports about United States court battles over the legality of teaching students about it. According to most reports, ID is a "faith-based" alternative to evolution based solely on religion. But is this accurate? As one of the architects of the theory, I know it isn't. Contrary to media reports, ID is not a religious-based idea, but an evidence-based scientific theory about life's origins. According to Darwinian biologists such as Oxford University's Richard Dawkins, living systems "give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose". But, for modern Darwinists, that appearance of design is illusory, because the purely undirected process of natural selection acting on random mutations is entirely sufficient to produce the intricate designed-like structures found in living organisms. By contrast, ID holds that there are tell-tale features of living systems and the universe that are best explained by a designing intelligence. The theory does not challenge the idea of evolution defined as change over time, or even common ancestry, but it disputes Darwin's idea that the cause of biological change is wholly blind and undirected. What signs of intelligence do design advocates see? In recent years, biologists have discovered an exquisite world of nanotechnology within living cells - complex circuits, sliding clamps, energy-generating turbines and miniature machines. For example, bacterial cells are propelled by rotary engines called flagellar motors that rotate at 100,000rpm. These engines look like they were designed by engineers, with many distinct mechanical parts (made of proteins), including rotors, stators, O-rings, bushings, U-joints and drive shafts. The biochemist Michael Behe points out that the flagellar motor depends on the co-ordinated function of 30 protein parts. Remove one of these proteins and the rotary motor doesn't work. The motor is, in Behe's words, "irreducibly complex". This creates a problem for the Darwinian mechanism. Natural selection preserves or "selects" functional advantages as they arise by random mutation. Yet the flagellar motor does not function unless all its 30 parts are present. Thus, natural selection can "select" the motor once it has arisen as a functioning whole, but it cannot produce the motor in a step-by-step Darwinian fashion. Natural selection purportedly builds complex systems from simpler structures by preserving a series of intermediates, each of which must perform some function. With the flagellar motor, most of the critical intermediate structures perform no function for selection to preserve. This leaves the origin of the flagellar motor unexplained by the mechanism - natural selection - that Darwin specifically proposed to replace the design hypothesis. Is there a better explanation? Based on our uniform experience, we know of only one type of cause that produces irreducibly complex systems: intelligence. Whenever we encounter complex systems - whether integrated circuits or internal combustion engines - and we know how they arose, invariably a designing intelligence played a role. Consider an even more fundamental argument for design. In 1953, when Watson and Crick elucidated the structure of the DNA molecule, they made a startling discovery. Strings of precisely sequenced chemicals called nucleotides in DNA store and transmit the assembly instructions - the information - in a four-character digital code for building the protein molecules the cell needs to survive. Crick then developed his "sequence hypothesis", in which the chemical bases in DNA function like letters in a written language or symbols in a computer code. As Dawkins has noted, "the machine code of the genes is uncannily computer-like". The informational features of the cell at least appear designed. Yet, to date, no theory of undirected chemical evolution has explained the origin of the digital information needed to build the first living cell. Why? There is simply too much information in the cell to be explained by chance alone. The information in DNA (and RNA) has also been shown to defy explanation by forces of chemical necessity. Saying otherwise would be like saying a headline arose as the result of chemical attraction between ink and paper. Clearly, something else is at work. DNA functions like a software program. We know from experience that software comes from programmers. We know that information - whether, say, in hieroglyphics or radio signals - always arises from an intelligent source. As the pioneering information theorist Henry Quastler observed: "Information habitually arises from conscious activity." So the discovery of digital information in DNA provides strong grounds for inferring that intelligence played a causal role in its origin. Thus, ID is not based on religion, but on scientific discoveries and our experience of cause and effect, the basis of all scientific reasoning about the past. Unlike creationism, ID is an inference from biological data. Even so, ID may provide support for theistic belief. But that is not grounds for dismissing it. Those who do confuse the evidence for the theory with its possible implications. Many astrophysicists initially rejected the Big Bang theory because it seemed to point to the need for a transcendent cause of matter, space and time. But science eventually accepted it because the evidence strongly supported it. Today, a similar prejudice confronts ID. Nevertheless, this new theory must also be evaluated on the basis of the evidence, not philosophical preferences. As Professor Flew advises: "We must follow the evidence, wherever it leads." Stephen C Meyer edited 'Darwinism, Design and Public Education' (Michigan State University Press). He has a PhD in philosophy of science from Cambridge University and is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute in Seattle.

 

09 December 2011, 11:13:24 PM

New Research Supports Meyer's Discussion of Pre-Biotic Chemistry in Signature in the Cell

 
09 December 2011, 11:13:24 PM | Andrew McDiarmidGo to full article
A recent Nature publication reports a new technique for measuring the oxygen levels in Earth's atmosphere some 4.4 billion years ago. The authors found that by studying cerium oxidation states in zircon, a compound formed from volcanic magma, they could ascertain the oxidation levels in the early earth. Their findings suggest that the early Earth's oxygen levels were very close to current levels. This research supports Dr. Meyer's discussion in Signature in the Cell. On pgs. 224-226 of Ch. 10: Beyond the Reach of Chance, Meyer states that when Stanley Miller conducted his famous 1953 experiment simulating early Earth's atmosphere, he "assumed that the earth's atmosphere contained virtually no free oxygen." Meyer reveals that new geochemical evidence showed that the assumptions Miller had made about the early atmosphere were incorrect. This new research is additional confirmation that oxygen was present in significant quantities. Because oxygen quenches organic reactions necessary to produce essential building blocks of life, the ability of inorganic materials to produce organic life, as chemical evolutionary theory assumes, is not possible. Read the complete article at ENV.

 

Dr. Meyer Debates Signature in the Cell Arguments with Keith Fox on Premier Radio UK

24 November 2011, 12:37:19 AM | Andrew McDiarmidGo to full article
During a recent visit to London, Dr. Stephen Meyer debated Keith Fox on Premier Radio UK's "Unbelievable" program. Fox is a professor of biochemistry at Southampton University and Chair of the UK's Christians in Science network. Two years after its publication, Meyer's Signature in the Cell continues to make an impact with its powerful argument for design in DNA. In this lively conversation, Meyer and Fox discuss origins of life and the design inference in science.

 

« Overflowtoday.com asks Stephen Meyer if he's got science | Main

Dr. Meyer Debates Signature in the Cell Arguments with Keith Fox on Premier Radio UK


During a recent visit to London, Dr. Stephen Meyer debated Keith Fox on Premier Radio UK's "Unbelievable" program. Fox is a professor of biochemistry at Southampton University and Chair of the UK's Christians in Science network. Two years after its publication, Meyer's Signature in the Cell continues to make an impact with its powerful argument for design in DNA. In this lively conversation, Meyer and Fox discuss origins of life and the design inference in science.


 

 

July 14, 2010

What is the key thing that needs to be explained in origin of life research?

Dr. Stephen Meyer explains the importance of biological information in origin of life research, as discussed in his groundbreaking intelligent design book Signature in the Cell.

 

 

Watch here in high resolution.