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Matter & Energy

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chemicals within a primordial soup

DROPS DIVIDE  Droplets of chemicals (green) within a primordial soup (blue) can elongate, split and replicate (top row, left to right), new simulations indicate. That process repeats (bottom row) to create new generations of droplets, in a process that mimics reproduction and could reveal the origins of life.

holmium atoms

ATOMIC BIT  Scientists stored data using individual atoms of holmium (shown above). Each 0 or 1 is encoded using the orientation of the atom’s magnetic field.

River in Egypt

WINDING WATERWAYS  Aerial views of watersheds like this one in Egypt can take on fractal-like appearances, with large rivers branching into ever-smaller streams.

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