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Before yesterdayNew Scientist - Physics

Mysterious origin of Earth's water may be explained by solar wind

29 November 2021 at 08:22
Evidence from asteroids shows that charged particles from the sun can turn dust grains into water – a process that could be useful for space exploration too

Soft yet strong gel keeps its shape after being run over by a car

25 November 2021 at 08:00
A gel with similar properties to shatterproof glass could have applications in soft robots and prosthetics

The Leidenfrost effect: Levitating droplets bounce off each other

25 November 2021 at 02:06
Known as the triple Leidenfrost effect, when two different liquids are placed on a hot enough surface, they will levitate and bounce off one another.

Physicists have created a new type of diamond by crushing buckyballs

24 November 2021 at 08:00
A new form of diamond created in the lab is as strong as natural diamond and better able to withstand heat

Lab-made diamond's unique structure allows it to tolerate extreme heat

24 November 2021 at 08:00
A new form of diamond created by crushing buckyballs is as strong as natural diamond and better able to withstand heat

Watch droplets bounce off each other as they levitate on a hot plate

24 November 2021 at 02:54
A twist on the classic Leidenfrost effect sees orbs of different liquids repel each other as they float on a hot plate

Why is the universe intelligible? Things aren’t as clear as we think

17 November 2021 at 10:00
We have made huge progress in understanding some bits of the cosmos, but we’ve hit a brick wall with things like quantum theory and our own minds. Is there a way round?

Why is there a cosmic speed limit? It could even be why we're here

17 November 2021 at 10:00
Nothing in the cosmos can travel faster than light speed. By distinguishing cause and effect and stopping everything happening in a jumbled mess, our existence depends on it

Why is quantum theory so strange? The weirdness could be in our heads

17 November 2021 at 10:00
Quantum theory is peerless at explaining reality, but assaults our intuitions of how reality should be. It seems likely the fault lies with our intuitions

Why is the universe just right for life? Blame the multiverse

17 November 2021 at 10:00
Physicists have long speculated why our universe seems β€œjust right” for life. The most complex answer might be the simplest – that every other universe also exists

Strange quantum effect predicted 30 years ago has now been observed

18 November 2021 at 11:00
Pauli blocking, a quantum phenomenon that makes a dense quantum gas suddenly turn transparent, has now been observed in three independent experiments

13 of the most profound questions about the cosmos and ourselves

18 November 2021 at 02:45
Questions that are just as enigmatic now as when we first asked them

Why does time only move forwards? Possibly just because we’re ignorant

17 November 2021 at 10:00
The one-way flow of time is one of the great mysteries of physics. It might be that we see causes and effects just because our information about reality is incomplete

Why is there something not nothing? The big bang isn’t the only answer

17 November 2021 at 10:00
The idea that the universe started in the big bang revolutionised 20th-century cosmology. But it seems increasingly unlikely it was a case of something from nothing

The quantum experiment that could prove reality doesn't exist

3 November 2021 at 05:00
We like to think that things are there even when we aren't looking at them. But that belief might soon be overturned thanks to a new test designed to tell us if quantum weirdness persists in macroscopic objects

Physicists fail to find mysterious 'sterile neutrino' particles

27 October 2021 at 09:00
After decades of looking, physicists are no closer to discovering theorised particles that could help solve ongoing problems in physics

Can Einstein’s forgotten theory of space solve the cosmology crisis?

13 October 2021 at 11:00
Decades ago, Einstein concocted a theory in which space doesn't just curve, but swirls like a cyclone. Now it is making a comeback because it could fix several of the biggest problems in cosmology

Chemistry Nobel awarded for technique to produce mirror molecules

6 October 2021 at 05:10
The 2021 Nobel prize for chemistry has been awarded to Benjamin List and David MacMillan for developing catalysts that produce molecules of a desired left or right "handedness"

Chameleon diamonds change colour when chilled in liquid nitrogen

5 October 2021 at 09:23
Diamonds that change colour when heated or kept in the dark have been known since 1866, but now there is a third kind

Physics Nobel awarded for work on chaotic systems such as the climate

5 October 2021 at 05:09
This year's winners of the Nobel prize for physics are Syukuro Manabe, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi

Lunar craters could reveal past collisions with ancient black holes

29 September 2021 at 11:00
Black holes born in the big bang could be the dark matter physicists have sought for decades – if they exist. Now there's an audacious plan to find the scars they would have left as they punched through the moon

Ada Twist, Scientist review: Brilliant children's TV for the curious

24 September 2021 at 23:00
Netflix's adaptation of the bestselling picture book series Ada Twist, Scientist will be loved by children and provoke a smile from even the most jaded parents

The black hole paradox that thwarts our understanding of reality

22 September 2021 at 06:35
Black holes devour stuff and then shrivel away over billions of years. Explaining what happens to anything that falls in explodes our current theories of physics, says cosmologist Paul Davies

Stephon Alexander interview: Is the universe a self-learning AI?

8 September 2021 at 11:00
To solve the big mysteries in physics, we need to embrace fresh perspectives, says cosmologist Stephon Alexander. Here he explains why intuition is so important – and outlines one of his own wild ideas

Stingrays’ bulging eyes and mouths make them much faster swimmers

2 September 2021 at 09:33
Stingrays have protruding eyes and mouths, which seem like they would make swimming less efficient, but they actually create vortices that let the rays swim faster

Large Hadron Collider sticks with reels of tape for vast storage needs

2 September 2021 at 03:00
The physicists at CERN still rely on tape for the long-term storage of data from the LHC, because it is more reliable and cheaper than hard discs or flash storage

Quantum nature of gravity may be detectable with gravitational waves

30 August 2021 at 08:00
Perhaps the most important problem in physics is how gravity and quantum mechanics fit together, and strange fluctuations in gravitational waves could help us figure it out

Why is it so difficult to find a viable quantum theory of gravity?

25 August 2021 at 11:00
The way we calculate the properties of subatomic particles with quantum theory goes haywire when it comes to hypothetical particles of gravity, but there may be a clever workaround

Beyond quantum physics: The search for a more fundamental theory

25 August 2021 at 11:00
Quantum theory can’t be the final answer and some theorists are exploring new ways to formulate physical laws – and yet there is no guarantee that any theory can completely describe the universe