Letters to the Editor
Beer today, gone tomorrow01/08/2019 - 07:00 Particle Physics, Climate, Robotics
Rising temperatures and more frequent droughts could cut barley crop yields worldwide by the end of the century, leading to beer shortages and high prices, Jennifer Leman reported in “Add beer to the list of foods threatened by climate change” (SN: 11/10/18, p. 5).
Online reader Jean Beaulieu was hopeful that scientists will figure out an easy way to grow...
Year in Review
Here’s our short list of discoveries reported in 2018 that could shake up science, if they hold up.Not so standard
Dangling from a helium balloon high above Antarctica, the ANITA detector spied two odd signals that hint at the existence of new subatomic particles. Such extremely energetic particles, if they exist, could upend the standard model, the theory that describes the elementary...
Year in Review
Mysterious particles called neutrinos constantly barrel down on Earth from space. No one has known where, exactly, the highest-energy neutrinos come from. This year, scientists finally put a finger on one likely source: a brilliant cosmic beacon called a blazar. The discovery could kick-start a new field of astronomy that combines information gleaned from neutrinos and light.
Voyager 2 has entered interstellar space. The spacecraft slipped out of the huge bubble of particles that encircles the solar system on November 5, becoming the second ever human-made craft to cross the heliosphere, or the boundary between the sun and the stars.
Coming in second place is no mean achievement. Voyager 1 became the first spacecraft to exit the solar system in 2012. But that...
For years, some physicists have rowed against the tide, controversially claiming that they’ve found the universe’s elusive dark matter, despite mounting evidence to the contrary. A new experiment makes that upstream paddling even more of a challenge.
Observations of the cosmos indicate that an invisible, unknown type of subatomic particle must pervade the universe. The extra mass this...
News in Brief
The world’s most powerful particle accelerator has gone quiet. Particles took their last spin around the Large Hadron Collider on December 3 before scientists shut the machine down for two years of upgrades.
Located at the particle physics laboratory CERN in Geneva, the accelerator has smashed together approximately 16 million billion protons since 2015, when it reached its current...