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  • News

    Naked singularity might evade cosmic censor

    Certain stealthy spacetime curiosities might be less hidden than thought, potentially exposing themselves to observers in some curved universes.

    These oddities, known as singularities, are points in space where the standard laws of physics break down. Found at the centers of black holes, singularities are generally expected to be hidden from view, shielding the universe from their...

    05/15/2017 - 09:00 Physics
  • News

    Gravitational waves unmask universe just after Big Bang

    Editor's note: The findings reported in this story were later found to be caused by galactic dust. Read the full story here.

    Astronomers have detected the earliest echoes of the Big Bang, confirming a decades-old hypothesis that describes the universe’s ultrafast expansion during its first moments. The findings provide researchers with the first direct measurement of conditions at nearly...

    03/17/2014 - 18:23 Cosmology, Astronomy
  • People

    Exploring NASA’s quirky places

    View zoomable JPL mapOne building houses what has been deemed the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s “best bathroom.” Another, an atomic clock. And naturally the scientists and engineers at the Pasadena, Calif., lab that built the Curiosity rover have a Mars Yard that simulates the surface of the Red Planet, complete with rocks and sand.

    Luke Johnson (right), a graphic designer,...

    02/21/2013 - 08:44 Humans & Society
  • Feature

    Last Words

    The most powerful atom smasher in the United States will soon smash no more.

    Known as the Tevatron, this 6.3-kilometer subterranean ring was once the biggest, baddest physics machine in the world. For 26 years it has been slamming together bits of matter and antimatter moving at nearly the speed of light. These violent collisions spit out new particles never before...

    09/09/2011 - 09:05 Physics, Particle Physics
  • News

    2010 ties record for warmest year yet

    2010 has tied with 2005 as the hottest year on record, according to two new studies.

    On January 12 NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released their independent analyses of global surface temperature data for last year. Both found that 2010 was ever-so-slightly warmer than 2005. But the difference was not statistically large enough to declare 2010 the...

    01/13/2011 - 14:23 Earth & Environment, Climate
  • Feature

    Everyday Entanglement

    If the Manning brothers were quantum physicists as well as NFL quarterbacks, one of them could win his game’s opening coin toss every time. The night before they played, the brothers would take two coins from a special quantum box to use the next day. If Peyton’s game came first, after learning the outcome of his coin toss, he would know without a doubt how his brother’s coin would land. Say...

    11/05/2010 - 17:01 Quantum Physics
  • Feature

    Beyond Galileo’s universe

    Four hundred years ago, astronomy embraced all that was visible. For Galileo, looking through his primitive telescope, the vistas included jewel-like stars, mountains on the moon, moons orbiting Jupiter and the glow of comet tails. Today astronomy is often about what cannot be seen. Astronomers have known for decades that stars and galaxies are mere baubles floating on a vast sea of dark...

    05/08/2009 - 14:10 Astronomy, Atom & Cosmos
  • Feature

    Gadgets from the Quantum Spookhouse

    Computers exploiting the oddities of quantum mechanics may eventually put conventional computers to shame. Theoretically, full-fledged versions of those quantum machines will someday master in an eye blink mathematical puzzles and secret codes that current supercomputers wouldn't crack with a billion years of number crunching.

    The exotic innards of such quantum computers...

    12/04/2001 - 13:41 Technology
  • Feature

    Viking: Polar Dunes and Captured Moons

    10/30/1976 - 00:00