Gravity Could Solve Clean Energy’s One Major Drawback

Gravity Could Solve Clean Energy’s One Major Drawback

As each block descends, the motors that lift the blocks start spinning in reverse, generating electricity that courses through the thick cables running down the side of the crane and onto the power grid.

Gravitational Waves Should Permanently Distort Spacetime

Gravitational Waves Should Permanently Distort Spacetime

“There’s an intimate connection between the memory effect and the symmetry of spacetime,” said Kip Thorne, a physicist at the California Institute of Technology whose work on gravitational waves earned him part of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics.

Jupiter's Great Red Spot Extends Deep into the Gas Giant

Jupiter's Great Red Spot Extends Deep into the Gas Giant

Taking advantage of the sensitive instruments aboard NASA’s Juno space probe, the first spacecraft to orbit Jupiter in two decades, astronomers used gravity and microwave measurements to reveal that the Great Red Spot goes down deeper and has a more complex structure than previously thought.

SpaceX's Inspiration4 Returns After 3 Days in Orbit

SpaceX's Inspiration4 Returns After 3 Days in Orbit

After spending three days about 360 miles above the ground, the all-civilian crew of SpaceX’s Inspiration4 have returned to Earth.The crew kept busy while orbiting the Earth 15 times a day: Isaacman kept track of the spacecraft’s systems and kept in touch with mission control.

Quantum Mischief Rewrites the Laws of Cause and Effect

Quantum Mischief Rewrites the Laws of Cause and Effect

That’s changing as physicists contemplate the new quantum switch experiments, as well as related thought experiments in which Alice and Bob face causal indefiniteness created by the quantum nature of gravity.Lucien Hardy originated the study of indefinite causality as a route to understanding the quantum nature of gravity.

Don’t Tell Einstein, but Black Holes Might Have ‘Hair’

Don’t Tell Einstein, but Black Holes Might Have ‘Hair’

“We would expect that the gravitational signal we would see would be quite different from ordinary black holes that are not extremal,” said Khanna.

The Secret Ingredient That Powers Supernovas

The Secret Ingredient That Powers Supernovas

Whenever theorists tried to model these intricate particle motions and interactions in computer simulations, the supernova’s shock wave would stall and fall back on itself.Only in the last few years, with the growth of supercomputers, have theorists had enough computing power to model massive stars with the complexity needed to achieve explosions.

The Black Hole Information Paradox Comes to an End

The Black Hole Information Paradox Comes to an End

Hawking and others sought to describe matter in and around black holes using quantum theory, but they continued to describe gravity using Einstein’s classical theory—a hybrid approach that physicists call “semiclassical.” Although the approach predicted new effects at the perimeter of the hole, the interior remained strictly sealed off.

Mathematicians May Have Figured Out How ‘Stone Forests’ Form

Mathematicians May Have Figured Out How ‘Stone Forests’ Form

These pointed rock formations, like the famed Stone Forest in China's Yunnan Province, are the result of solids dissolving into liquids in the presence of gravity, which produces natural convective flows, according to the NYU team.

Looking for Gravitons? Check for the ‘Buzz’

Looking for Gravitons? Check for the ‘Buzz’

Dyson’s 2013 calculation convinced many people that gravitational wave detectors were, at best, impractical probes for learning about quantum gravity.“There’s a kind of default consensus that it’s a waste of time to think about quantum effects and gravitational radiation,” said Frank Wilczek, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist at MIT who was a coauthor with Parikh on the new paper.

Black Hole Paradoxes Reveal a Link Between Energy and Entropy

Black Hole Paradoxes Reveal a Link Between Energy and Entropy

Thus, generations of physicists have looked to black holes for clues about the true, quantum origin of gravity, which must fully reveal itself in their hearts and match Einstein’s approximate picture everywhere else.

How the Extreme Art of Dropping Stuff Could Upend Physics

How the Extreme Art of Dropping Stuff Could Upend Physics

“Once you go to space, you can throw your object, and it will be in free fall for a long time,” says physicist Aurélien Hees of the Paris Observatory, a member of the team.

So You Think You Know Gravity? Let Us Drop Some Knowledge

So You Think You Know Gravity? Let Us Drop Some Knowledge

But maybe a better way to approach gravity is to think not about being stuck on Earth but about being weightless.“What you’re really doing when you’re experiencing gravity isn’t being heavy in your chair, it’s falling weightlessly in the gravitational field,” says astrophysicist Janna Levin.

Scientists Take Baby Steps Toward Extraterrestrial Babies

Scientists Take Baby Steps Toward Extraterrestrial Babies

The study was limited—the sperm was in microgravity for less than 9 seconds, for example—but it suggested that reduced gravity has negligible effects on the health of frozen sperm.“We are at the frontier of knowledge about human reproduction in space,” says Antoni Perez-Poch, an engineer at Polytechnic University of Catalonia and a coauthor on the paper.

Tips for Puking in Microgravity and Staying Healthy in Space

Tips for Puking in Microgravity and Staying Healthy in Space

Just ask Mike Massimino , a former NASA astronaut who has flown to space twice for extended stays .Getting medical treatment on the International Space Station is complicated, so NASA does its best to ensure astronauts are in peak physical condition before they leave for the final frontier.

Are We All Wrong About Black Holes?

Are We All Wrong About Black Holes?

In the early 1970s, people studying general relativity, our modern theory of gravity , noticed rough similarities between the properties of black holes and the laws of thermodynamics.

Great Stunt, Spider-Man! Now Let's Fine-Tune the Physics

Great Stunt, Spider-Man! Now Let's Fine-Tune the Physics

Now, if we put this vertical acceleration together with the fixed horizontal velocity , we get something special, called projectile motion. On the next jump, I get a vertical acceleration of –6.074, which is closer, but you can see that the fit is pretty janky.

As Social VR Grows, Users Are the Ones Building Its Worlds

As Social VR Grows, Users Are the Ones Building Its Worlds

When Rec Room launched in the summer of 2016, it didn't feel like a platform for social virtual reality as much as it did a collection of mini-games.

SpaceX Is Launching 'Organs on a Chip' to the ISS

SpaceX Is Launching 'Organs on a Chip' to the ISS

The following year, the NIH granted a total of $6 million to five research projects that would study how microgravity affects the human body by sending organ and tissue chips to the ISS.

Two Unusual Galaxies Shake Up the Dark Matter Debate, Again

Two Unusual Galaxies Shake Up the Dark Matter Debate, Again

In March, a team of astronomers led by Yale professor Pieter van Dokkum and his graduate student Shany Danieli published two papers, one confirming the existence of a galaxy that appears to have almost no dark matter and the other announcing the discovery of a second galaxy of this type.

Space and Time Could Be a Quantum Error-Correcting Code

Space and Time Could Be a Quantum Error-Correcting Code

Ahmed Almheiri , Xi Dong and Daniel Harlow did calculations suggesting that this holographic “emergence” of space-time works just like a quantum error-correcting code.

How Does a 'Martian'-Style Gravity Assist Actually Work?

How Does a 'Martian'-Style Gravity Assist Actually Work?

The first question is easy—a gravity assist (also called a gravity slingshot) is a space maneuver in which a spacecraft gets a speed boost by moving past a planet.

The Expanse Gets Artificial Gravity Right in This Neat Trick

The Expanse Gets Artificial Gravity Right in This Neat Trick

With no thrust, Jim and Naomi lose their artificial gravity and start floating off the gangway. When the artificial gravity ended, they were still pushing for a short time and this increased their momentum upward.Once they are moving away from the gangway, Jim does something rude.

Astronomers Creep Up to the Edge of the Milky Way’s Black Hole

Astronomers Creep Up to the Edge of the Milky Way’s Black Hole

The idea, first proposed in 2005 by Avery Broderick, now at the Perimeter Institute of Theoretical Physics and the University of Waterloo in Canada, and Avi Loeb of Harvard University, would explain why the black hole appears to flare.“It seems like they’ve got something really exciting here,” added astronomer Andrea Ghez, a longtime competitor to the European team at the University of California, Los Angeles.If these rotating flares are due to hot spots in the way that Broderick and Loeb imagined, additional flares will help reveal the black hole’s “spin,” a measure of its rotation.