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Researchers pioneer use of capsules to save materials, streamline chemical reactions

14-Aug-2015

Chemists working in a variety of industries and fields typically go through a laborious process to measure and mix reagents for each reaction they perform. And many of the common reagents they use sit for months or years on shelves in laboratories, where they can react with oxygen and water in ...

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A small, modular, efficient fusion plant

New design could finally help to bring the long-sought power source closer to reality

13-Aug-2015

It's an old joke that many fusion scientists have grown tired of hearing: Practical nuclear fusion power plants are just 30 years away - and always will be. But now, finally, the joke may no longer be true: Advances in magnet technology have enabled researchers at MIT to propose a new design for ...

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How to look for a few good catalysts

04-Aug-2015

Two key physical phenomena take place at the surfaces of materials: catalysis and wetting. A catalyst enhances the rate of chemical reactions; wetting refers to how liquids spread across a surface. Now researchers at MIT and other institutions have found that these two processes, which had been ...

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Weyl points: Wanted for 86 years

21-Jul-2015

Weyl points, the 3D analogues of the structures that make graphene exceptional, were theoretically predicted in 1929. Today, an international team of Physicists from MIT and Zhejiang University, found them in photonic crystals, opening a new dimension in photonics.In 1928 the English physicist ...

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Surfaces get smooth or bumpy on demand

MIT research produces soft material with controllable surface textures that can be varied by squeezing

15-Jun-2015

An MIT team has developed a way of making soft materials, using a 3-D printer, with surface textures that can then be modified at will to be perfectly smooth, or ridged or bumpy, or even to have complex patterns that could be used to guide fluids.The process, developed using detailed computer ...

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MIT team creates ultracold molecules

At near absolute zero, molecules may start to exhibit exotic states of matter

15-Jun-2015

The air around us is a chaotic superhighway of molecules whizzing through space and constantly colliding with each other at speeds of hundreds of miles per hour. Such erratic molecular behavior is normal at ambient temperatures.But scientists have long suspected that if temperatures were to ...

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Researchers build new fermion microscope

Instrument freezes and images 1,000 individual fermionic atoms at once

19-May-2015

Fermions are the building blocks of matter, interacting in a multitude of permutations to give rise to the elements of the periodic table. Without fermions, the physical world would not exist.Examples of fermions are electrons, protons, neutrons, quarks, and atoms consisting of an odd number of ...

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New tabletop detector 'sees' single electrons

Magnet-based setup may help detect the elusive mass of neutrinos

23-Apr-2015

MIT physicists have developed a new tabletop particle detector that is able to identify single electrons in a radioactive gas.As the gas decays and gives off electrons, the detector uses a magnet to trap them in a magnetic bottle. A radio antenna then picks up very weak signals emitted by the ...

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Thousands of atoms entangled with a single photon

Result could make atomic clocks more accurate

27-Mar-2015

Physicists from MIT and the University of Belgrade have developed a new technique that can successfully entangle 3,000 atoms using only a single photon. The results, published in the journal Nature, represent the largest number of particles that have ever been mutually entangled experimentally. ...

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New detector sniffs out origins of methane

Instrument identifies methane's origins in mines, deep-sea vents, and cows

09-Mar-2015

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, second only to carbon dioxide in its capacity to trap heat in Earth's atmosphere for a long time. The gas can originate from lakes and swamps, natural-gas pipelines, deep-sea vents, and livestock. Understanding the sources of methane, and how the gas is formed, ...

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