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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Physical Sciences

A long-awaited understanding of the Casimir torque

The Casimir force has been well researched by physicists for decades, but only recently has one particularly intriguing aspect of this effect been recreated in the lab. Through his research, Dr Wijnand Broer at the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences has built upon these recent breakthroughs to explore the processes which cause the surfaces of some specialised materials to […]

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Physical Sciences

Searching for axions: Revealing the dark matter particle

Dark matter is one of the central mysteries of modern cosmology. Even after many years of investigation into the true nature of this enigmatic component of our Universe, every search for its cause has so far come up short. Dr David J. E. Marsh at the University of Göttingen believes that the solution lies with a fundamental particle which was […]

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Physical Sciences

Building waveguides for everyday photonic circuits

From mobile phones to computers, the devices we use every day are almost universal in their use of electricity for transmitting information through their circuits. However, Dr Richard Hildner at the University of Groningen believes that the capabilities of many modern technologies could improve if they were combined with circuits which operate using light. His team’s work has now brought […]

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Physical Sciences

Sustainable construction for a circular economy

Prof Dr-Ing Danièle Waldmann and Dr Gelen Gael Chewe Ngapeya from the Institute of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Luxembourg are developing sustainable solutions for the construction industry in the form of modular building components that can be reused, reconditioned and recycled. Rather than standardising buildings, the research team have developed standardised building components including new masonry […]

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Physical Sciences

Hydrogen? Just add water and sunlight

Hydrogen has been sold to the public as having the potential to be the ultra-clean fuel for the future’s economy. What’s less likely to be mentioned is that 96% of hydrogen is produced from natural gas, coal or other fossil fuels – producing it using renewable electricity is simply too expensive. To realise hydrogen’s full potential, the world needs better […]

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