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Physics

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RAVEN RASCAL  Avian offenders like this raven caused a glitch in LIGO’s data by pecking at ice that built up on a pipe.

missile defense system

ROCKET BLOCKER  The United States’ ground-based missile defense system, shown here in a test conducted at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, aims to protect the U.S. from ballistic missiles.

Weicheng Zhong

CONSTANT QUANTIFED A team of physicists, including Weicheng Zhong of the University of California, Berkeley (pictured) has performed the most precise measurement yet of the fine-structure constant, which governs the strength of electromagnetic interactions.

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