Want a 12-Month Digital Subscription to Paranormal Underground Magazine? Click here & save more than 15%!
Scientists teleport info 90 miles across islands
Quantum teleportation is reaching greater distances, and hopes are high that satellites will be able to use the technology.
by Tim Hornyak August 15, 2012 10:00 AM PDT
The European Space Agency's Optical Ground Station in the Canary Islands.(Credit: ESA)
If only we were quantum states, we'd be playing Kirk and Scotty, popping around the universe until the inevitable failure in the transporter circuits.
European and Canadian scientists are pushing the envelope on quantum teleportation after having succeeded in beaming quantum states across some 90 miles in the Canary Islands.
The laser-locked telescopes on the islands of La Palma and Tenerife served as transporter rooms, teleporting information about the state of a pair of "entangled" particles.
The entanglement links the particles such that a change in one is registered in the other despite great distances between them.
Quantum teleportation was first demonstrated in 1997, but distances are growing longer. A Chinese team of researchers also reported teleporting quantum states across a significant distance, 60 miles, in the journal Nature this month.
While quantum teleportation is subject to the cosmic speed limit, the speed of light, the technology could be harnessed to create satellite communications networks that are super-secure.
Eavesdropping on such transmissions would instantly alter them, so quantum satellites are being explored as a means to securely send military transmissions or even distribute films.
"Our work proves the feasibility of both ground-based and satellite-based free-space quantum teleportation," the European authors write. "Our experiment represents a crucial step toward future quantum networks in space, which require space to ground quantum communication."
(Via Scientific American)
Recreating a Slice of the Universe
Cambridge, MA – Scientists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) and their colleagues at the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS) have invented a new computational approach that can accurately follow the birth and evolution of thousands of galaxies over billions of years. For the first time it is now possible to build a universe from scratch that brims with galaxies like we observe around us.
"We've created the full variety of galaxies we see in the local universe," said Mark Vogelsberger (CfA).
Our cosmic neighborhood is littered with majestic spiral galaxies like Andromeda, the Pinwheel, and the Whirlpool. Spirals are common, but previous simulations had trouble creating them. Instead, they produced lots of blobby galaxies clumped into balls, without the broad disks and outstretched arms of a typical spiral.
The new software, called Arepo, solves this problem. Created by Volker Springel (HITS), Arepo generates a full-fledged simulation of the universe, taking as input only the observed afterglow of the Big Bang and evolving forward in time for 14 billion years.
"We took all the advantages of previous codes and removed the disadvantages," explained Springel.
"Our simulations improve over previous ones as much as the Giant Magellan Telescope will improve upon any telescope that exists now," said Debora Sijacki (CfA).
(When completed later this decade, the Giant Magellan Telescope's 24.5-meter aperture will make it the largest telescope in the world.)
One of Arepo's key advantages is the geometry it uses. Previous simulations divided space into a bunch of cubes of fixed size and shape. Arepo uses a grid that flexes and moves in space to match the motions of the underlying gas, stars, dark matter, and dark energy.
The simulations ran on Harvard's Odyssey high-performance supercomputer, using in total 1024 processor cores. This fast machine allowed the scientists to compress 14 billion years into only a few months – an endeavor that would have kept a desktop computer busy for hundreds of years!
The team's future goals include simulating much larger volumes of the universe at unprecedented resolution, thus creating the largest and most realistic model of the universe ever made.
The team consists of Mark Vogelsberger (CfA), Debora Sijacki (CfA), Dusan Keres (CfA/UCSD), Paul Torrey (CfA), Volker Springel (HITS), and Lars Hernquist (CfA). Their work is described in three papers accepted for publication in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Those papers can be found online at http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.1281, http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.3468, and http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.4638.
Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) is a joint collaboration between the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and the Harvard College Observatory. CfA scientists, organized into six research divisions, study the origin, evolution and ultimate fate of the universe.
See video here: http://www.engadget.com/2012/0…..imulation/
Atom Smasher Creates New Kind of Matter
By Clara Moskowitz, LiveScience Senior Writer
Collisions between particles inside the Large Hadron Collider atom smasher have created what looks like a new form of matter.
The new kind of matter is called color-glass condensate, and is a liquidlike wave of gluons, which are elementary particles related to the strong force that sticks quarks together inside protons and neutrons (hence they are like "glue").
Scientists didn't expect this kind of matter wouldresult from the typeof particle collisions going on at the Large Hadron Collider at the time. However, it may explain some odd behavior seen inside the machine, which is a giant loop where particles race around underneath Switzerland and France.
When scientists sped up protons (one of the building blocks of atoms) and lead ions (lead atoms, which contain 82 protons each, stripped of their electrons), and crashed them into each other, the resulting explosions liquefied those particles and gave rise to new particles in their wake. Most of these new particles, as expected, fly off in all directions at close to the speed of light. [Photos: The World's Largest Atom Smasher (LHC)]
But recently scientists noticed that some pairs of particles were flying off from the collision point in correlated directions.
"Somehow they fly at the same direction even though it's not clear how they can communicate their direction with one another. That has surprised many people, including us," MIT physicistGunther Roland, whose group led the analysis of the collision data along with Wei Liof Rice University, said in a statement.
A similar flight pattern is seen when two heavy particles, such as lead and lead, crash into each other. In this case, the collisions create what's called quark-gluon plasma â€” a superhot soup of particles similar tothe state of the universe just after the Big Bang. This soup can sweep particles in the same direction, explaining why their flight directions wouldbe correlated.
But quark-gluon plasma isn't possible with lead-proton collisions, like the ones in the new study. Now researchers think a different state of matter, the color-glass condensate, may act in a similar way. The color-glass condensate's dense swarm of gluons may also sweep particles off in the same direction, suggested Brookhaven National Laboratory physicistRajuVenugopalan, who first predicted the substance, which may also be seen after proton-proton collisions.
The mechanism may depend on a weird quirk of particles called quantum entanglement. Two particles can be entangled so that they retain a connection even after they are separated, and an action on one reverberates on the other.
Entangled gluons in the color-glass condensate could explain how particles flying away from the collision point might share information about their flight direction with each other, Venugopalan said.
The intriguing phenomenon was not expected to result from the LHC's run of proton-lead collisions, which was meant to serve as a reference point for comparison to other types of collisions.
"You don't expect quark-gluon plasma effects" with lead-proton collisions, Rolandsaid. "It was supposed to be sort of a reference run â€” a run in which you can study background effects and then subtract them from the effects that you see in lead-lead collisions."
The findings will be detailed in an upcoming issue of the journal Physical Review B.
Black Hole Found, 17 Billion Times as Massive as Sun
Nov 29, 2012 12:45pm
The galaxy NGC 1277 as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. NASA/ESA/Andrew C. Fabian.
You would probably not enjoy the galaxy NGC 1277. Never mind that itâ€™s far â€” 220 million light-years away in the constellation Perseus. The problem is that at its center is a giant, giant black hole, 17 billion times as massive as our sun, so big that scientists calculate it makes up 59 percent of the mass of the galaxyâ€™s disc.
Astrophysicists have long believed that thereâ€™s a black hole at the center of our Milky Way, but it probably accounts for something like 0.1 percent of the galaxyâ€™s center. The one in NGC 1277, scientists report in todayâ€™s edition of the journal Nature, is the second largest theyâ€™ve ever observed, and it upends what they thought about how galaxies form.
Black holes, as youâ€™ll recall, are objects in space so massive that their gravity consumes everything around them â€” stars, planets, matter, energy, even light. Earthly scientists can only observe their effect on the space around them, not see them directly. Be grateful weâ€™re not close to one. Theyâ€™re actually useful to astrophysicists in explaining the nice spiral shape of many galaxies â€” you need something massive in the middle for the stars to circle â€” but NGC 1277 is an extreme.
â€œThis is a really oddball galaxy,â€ said Karl Gebhardt of the University of Texas at Austin, a member of the team that made the find. â€œItâ€™s almost all black hole. This could be the first object in a new class of galaxy-black hole systems.â€ Gebhardt and colleagues at the McDonald Observatory have been calculating the mass of different black holes â€” no small task considering their powerful gravity.
The researchers put together an animation of how stars in that distant galaxy would behave, whipping around the center to avoid falling in.
What would you see if you lived on a habitable planet in that far-away galaxy and could look toward the center? Probably nothing that makes sense to human eyes. Black holes have such powerful gravity that they distort the space around them.
Hereâ€™s hoping your planet is in a nice, stable orbit around a star far from the action. If not, you might be drawn right into the black hole, destroyed so quickly that â€“
Newly discovered small asteroid just misses Earth; next up is much bigger 12/12/12 asteroid
Illustration of asteroid Toutatis nearing Earth. Toutatis is expected to pass within 4 million miles of Earth tomorrow (12/12/12). But another smaller asteroid passed much closer today. (E. De Jong and S. Suzuki, JPL, NASA) As if 12/12/12 wasnâ€™t curious enough of a date already with the whole Mayan-doomsday-but-not-really thing, thereâ€™s also the dicey issue of tomorrowâ€™s relatively close encounter with the huge (nearly three miles long) 4179 Toutatis asteroid, expected to pass within 4 million miles of Earth. As the author of this story puts it, â€œOn the scale of the cosmos, that is a very close shave.â€
But if you think thatâ€™s too close for comfort, how about an asteroid passing within just 140,000 miles (only 60% of the distance between the Earth and moon) of our planet? Guess what?… already happened earlier this morning.
Discovered only two days ago, XE54 came about as close to crashing into Earth as an asteroid can without actually doing so – close enough to be â€œeclipsed by Earthâ€™s shadow, causing its shadow to â€˜wink outâ€™ for a short time,â€ according to Universe Today.
With a diameter of just 72-160 feet, XE54 is a far cry from the over six-mile wide asteroid that wiped out dinosaurs (and about 50% of all lifeâ€™s species) 65 million years ago. But, while itâ€™s possible an asteroid of this size would produce nothing more than a brilliant fireball as it disintegrated after entering the atmosphere, a direct hit by remaining rock chunks on a populated region could be disastrous.
Believe it or not, a surprise near miss of this sort is not especially unusual. In June 2011, an steroid estimated about 30 feet in size (â€œ2011 MDâ€) passed by Earth and missed a direct hit by only 7,500 miles. An even closer encounter occurred earlier in 2011 when another small asteroid missed Earth by just 3,400 miles.
Asteroids coming this close cross through the zone of geosynchronous satellites (such as the GOES series). The chances of an asteroid-satellite collision are extremely small, though not zero.
Small asteroids such as these are difficult to discover, usually detected within a week of their closest encounter, and thatâ€™s much too little time to do anything but issue a warning about the likely locations of impact. In most, but not all cases, impacts would focus on oceans or relatively unpopulated regions.
Fortunately, asteroid strikes by ones of the size that wiped out dinosaurs are few and far between. An impact with more common intermediate-sized asteroids – dimensions larger than about 500 feet â€“ would explode with the power of a large atomic bomb. However, large and intermediate-sized asteroids can be detected and tracked years before any close encounter with Earth.
At this time, there are no sure collisions on the horizon even over the next few hundred years. That said, much of the sky, especially that viewed from the southern hemisphere, is not being monitored!
What could be done if a large- or intermediate-sized asteroid strike on Earth were deemed likely? Although no U.S. or international government agency has assumed responsibility for stopping a potential collision, there have been a number of academic and some technical studies, not to mention numerous movies, on how a devastating asteroid impact might be avoided. Among the solutions are deflecting the asteroid trajectory by nudging it with robot space vehicles, or destroying the asteroid with a nuclear-armed rocket.
One of the most intriguing ideas is to deflect an approaching asteroid with paintballs. While this sounds pretty far out there at first, the approach formulated by an MIT graduate student won the top spot of a competition sponsored by the United Nations Space Generation Advisory Council (2012 Move an Asteroid Technical Paper Competition).
Essentially, the strategy would be to blast the asteroid with paint pellets launched from a spacecraft and filled with white powder. The initial force of the pellets would deflect the asteroid, and the albedo of the white painting would reflect the sunâ€™s rays, thereby exerting a force that would deflect even more.
The caveat to this strategy, like most others, is that it requires about 20 years of advanced warning.
I always think there has to be some cosmic explanation for why these things happen. It's the only way I can wrap my head around these senseless things that happen to us. They were kids…what was the reason or logice in that? When things like this happen are the "powers that be" trying to balance something else in the universe that should not have happened? I dunno, maybe there is no reason or logic behind it—just stuff that happens randomly.
A possible spectacular comet will be coming in late 2013. The comet is called ISON. It could also be a dud if it breaks up near the sun.
"The fact that ISON can already be seen means it may be reasonably large — perhaps a couple of miles across — which suggests that when it dips to less than a million miles (1.6 million km) above the Sun’s fires next November 28, it may be robust enough to avoid the breakup that often happens to smaller comets. And if it does survive, ISON could go on to light up the night sky in the Northern Hemisphere for much of December, 2013 and on into January."
Most Users Ever Online: 151
Currently Online: MysticalKnight
Currently Browsing this Page:
Guest Posters: 3
Newest Members: luvdemks, jtr194113, purswellcaracciolo346, Johnsrudcraig@yahoo.com, Enverrera
Moderators: NoWhammies (3983), almosthunted (1138), RyanNREMTP (7427)
Administrators: admin (0), MysticalKnight (5526), sithy (1330)