James Riordon is a freelance science writer who covers physics, math and astronomy, and coauthor of the book Ghost Particle – In Search of the Elusive and Mysterious Neutrino.

All Stories by James R. Riordon

  1. Physics

    Physicists explain how to execute a nearly splashless dive

    A pocket of air lets elite divers pull off the rip entry, breaking through the water without sending it flying.

  2. Physics

    How physics can improve the urinal

    Urinals built with curves like those in nautilus shells eliminate the splash-back common with conventional commodes.

  3. Plants

    Why dandelion seeds are so good at spreading widely

    Individual seeds on a dandelion flower are programmed to let go for a specific wind direction, allowing them to spread widely as the wind shifts.

  4. Physics

    Zapping tiny metal drops with sound creates wires for soft electronics

    Wearable medical devices and stretchable displays could benefit from a way to use high-frequency sound to create liquid metal wires.

  5. Physics

    Crowdsourced cell phone data could keep bridges safe and strong

    Accelerometers and GPS sensors in smartphones could provide frequent, real-time data on bridge vibrations, and alert engineers to changes in integrity

  6. Climate

    Wind turbines could help capture carbon dioxide while providing power

    Turbulent wakes from wind turbines can concentrate CO2 from cities and factories, making it easier to remove the greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.

  7. Earth

    Particles from space provide a new look inside cyclones

    Cosmic rays that smash into the atmosphere make muons that are sensitive to changing air pressure inside storms.

  8. Physics

    Protons may be stretchier than physics predicts

    Studying how quarks inside protons move in response to electric fields shows that protons seem to stretch more than theory says they should.

  9. Astronomy

    For the first time, astronomers saw dust in space being pushed by starlight

    Images collected over 16 years reveal that dust expelled from a well-known binary star system is hurried on its way by light from those stars.

  10. Health & Medicine

    Cooperative sperm outrun loners in the mating race

    Sperm that swim in clusters travel more directly toward the uterus, while overcoming fluid currents in the reproductive tract.

  11. Physics

    Quantum experiments with entangled photons win the 2022 Nobel Prize in physics

    Three pioneers in quantum information science share this year’s Nobel Prize in physics.

  12. Physics

    Despite a retraction, a room-temperature superconductor claim isn’t dead yet

    A high-profile retraction called a superconductivity result into question. But a new experiment appears to support it.