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Electron’s cousin discovered after eighty-six-year search

20-Nov-2015

In a series of experiments at the Swiss Light Source SLS, physicists from the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI in an international collaboration with colleagues from China, from ETH Zurich and EPFL Lausanne have discovered a particle, the existence of which was predicted eighty-six years ago. It is a ...

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Using optical fiber to generate a two-micron laser

12-Oct-2015

In recent years, two-micron lasers (0.002 millimetre) have been of growing interest among researchers. In the areas of surgery and molecule detection, for example, they offer significant advantages compared to traditional, shorter-wavelength lasers. However, two-micron lasers are still in their ...

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Spintronics just got faster

24-Jul-2015

In a tremendous boost for spintronic technologies, EPFL scientists have shown that electrons can jump through spins much faster than previously thought.Electrons spin around atoms, but also spin around themselves, and can cross over from one spin state to another. A property which can be ...

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A graphene-based sensor that is tunable and highly sensitive

14-Jul-2015

Many areas of fundamental research are interested in graphene owing to its exceptional characteristics. It is made of one layer of carbon atoms, which makes it light and sturdy, and it is an excellent thermal and electrical conductor. Despite its apparently limitless potential, however, few ...

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Exploring the magnetism of a single atom

12-May-2014

Magnetic devices like hard drives, magnetic random access memories (MRAMs), molecular magnets, and quantum computers depend on the manipulation of magnetic properties. In an atom, magnetism arises from the spin and orbital momentum of its electrons. 'Magnetic anisotropy' describes how an atom's ...

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Breaking up water: Controlling molecular vibrations to produce hydrogen

05-May-2014

Natural gas (methane) can be converted into hydrogen (H2), which is used in clean energy, synthetic fertilizers, and many other chemicals. The reaction requires water and a nickel catalyst. Methane and water molecules attach on the catalyst's surface, where they dissociate into their atomic ...

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Deepwater Horizon: Identifying harmful elements of persisting oil

24-Jan-2014

On 20 April 2010, a floating oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico called Deepwater Horizon suddenly exploded, leading to the largest accidental marine oil disaster in the world. Collaborating scientists at EPFL in Switzerland and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in the United States have ...

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Extraordinary sensors pushed to their boundaries

A new step is being taken in the development of ultra-stable sensors of small forces

13-Jan-2014

Last year, Tobias Kippenberg and his team from the Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements (LPQM1) presented a new-generation sensor capable of detecting very small forces with unprecedented efficiency. These devices, developed and fabricated at the Center of MicroNanofabrication (CMi) ...

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Cost-effective catalyst for water-splitting devices

10-Jan-2014

Solar energy appears to be the only form of renewable that can be exploited at level that matches the world's growing needs. However, it is equally necessary to find efficient ways to store solar energy in order to ensure a consistent energy supply when sunlight is scarce. One of the most ...

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Solitons in a crystal

03-Jan-2014

Soliton water waves can travel several kilometers without any significant change in their shape or amplitude, as opposed to normal waves, which widen as they travel, and eventually disappear. Discovered over 150 years ago in water canals, solitons represent a surprising phenomenon of wave ...

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