Physical Sciences

‘Mosquito method’ avoids crossed wires in optical circuitry

Electric circuitry – energy-wasting and prone to interference – is overdue an overhaul. In several industries optical fibres allow faster data transfers, and ‘fibre’ is becoming synonymous with ‘faster internet’. As technologies like cloud storage drive a desire for ever-increasing data transfer speeds, optical fibres are expected to make their way inside computers. This requires a new set of manufacturing […]

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Physical Sciences

Consciousness and Quantum Mechanics wherein Planck’s constant becomes a variable

In his new book Generalized Lagrangian Approach and Behavior of Living Systems Professor Uziel Sandler, from the Jerusalem College of Technology, takes the reader on a journey from the conception of Quantum Mechanics through the development and application of a new extended Quantum Mechanics. An unexpected finding led him to a natural extension of the Hamiltonian Action and makes describing […]

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Physical Sciences

Controlling hydrate crystallisation for block-free pipes

Hydrate formation is a major problem in the oil & gas industry, leading to blocked pipes and increased costs. Hydrates are crystals formed by ‘trapped’ gas in water, under specific temperature and pressure conditions. Using surfactants can inhibit and control hydrate formation, but this research area is still young. Professor Liat Rosenfeld from San José State University sheds light on […]

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Physical Sciences

Multi-fidelity shape optimisation of suspension bridge decks

Over the last century, technological advances have resulted in increased length of the main span of long-span suspension bridges, making them even more vulnerable to structural vibrations caused by environmental factors, particularly wind. Dr Ibuki Kusano from the University of Stavanger, Norway, and her collaborators are investigating the structural response of suspension bridges under wind loads. The research team has […]

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Physical Sciences

Careful catalysis converts CO2 emissions into useful chemicals

‘Reduce carbon dioxide emissions by reducing carbon dioxide’: at first glance, this doesn’t seem particularly insightful, but it’s the basis of research recently produced by Samuel Perry at the University of Southampton. Using the carbon dioxide reduction reaction, an electrochemical process with multiple possible products, Perry and his collaborators are working towards an electrode design that can selectively convert CO2 […]

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Physical Sciences

New pipelining method for heavy oil: Stabilising the flow of high viscosity fluids during transportation

Professor Ian Frigaard and Dr Parisa Sarmadi from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of British Columbia specialise in industrial applications of non-Newtonian Fluid Mechanics and mathematical modelling of Complex Fluids. They developed a method to overcome interfacial instabilities of lubricated pipeline flow during the transportation of higher viscosity fluids, such as heavy oil, coatings, and cements. They […]

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Physical Sciences

Stress, our hated guard: Or how theoretical physics could explain the phenomenon of life

In his new book – Generalized Lagrangian Approach and Behavior of Living Systems – Professor Uziel Sandler, from the Lev Academic Centre (JCT), explains how a specific generalisation of a Lagrangian function can help theoretical physics to describe the phenomenon of life. He demonstrates how the generalised Lagrangians allow Lagrangian dynamics to be used to describe the behaviour of living […]

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Physical Sciences

New insights into the strong interaction with strange exotic atoms

The strong interaction plays a fundamental role in our universe. The difficulty of performing precision measurements has limited our understanding of this interaction. Dr Catalina Curceanu at the National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) in Frascati-Rome is leading ambitious new efforts to study and measure the strong interaction in her lab. Her team’s work is centred around an intriguing form […]

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Physical Sciences

Producing the first functioning synthetic DNA using click chemistry

Click chemistry revolutionised our ability to create custom proteins, so could it do the same for DNA? Professor Tom Brown at the University of Oxford and Professor Afaf El-Sagheer at the University of Oxford and Suez University are performing truly groundbreaking research into the application of ‘click chemistry’ bioconjugation techniques to DNA. Their technique allows the creation of DNA and […]

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Physical Sciences

Classic biomolecules continue to surprise with unexpected reactivity

Biological hydrides like NADH and folates were identified by early biochemists for their importance in fermentation and hydrogen transfer and are today some of the most thoroughly studied biomolecules. Dr Michael Denk, Professor of Chemistry at the University of Guelph, PhD candidate Nicholas Milutinovic and PhD candidate Katherine Marczenko have been performing research which has shown that these old biomolecules […]

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