Monday, 28 May 2012

Physics (and Maths) stuff from the week 21-27/5/12

[video] Thunderf00t - Putting Your Hand In The Large Hadron Collider
What would really happen?
Watch out for the spelling mistakes :D

Ah - metamaterials - materials deliberately engineered to have wacky properties. These have been designed to be auxetic - that means they get chunkier the more you stretch them. Sound unintuitive? Take a look

A solar-powered plane? That'll never get built!
What's that, you say? It has, and it's already flown?

[video] How big is a billion? Bigger than you think, if you speak English as a first language

A french team has demonstrated the paramagnetic properties of droplets of liquid oxygen. Paramagnetism occurs in many materials, when they respond to a magnetic field by replicating one inside themselves. This causes them to behave in a similar way to real magnets, but only while they're inside a real magnet's field. Unlike with ferromagnetic materials, their magnetic properties disappear when the other magnet does. To demonstrate their paramagnetism, they have suspended droplets above a glass surface, much like beads of oil do in a frying pan - the heat causes a thin layer of gas to separate the droplet from the hot surface, with very little friction, freeing it to race around the pan at high speed. I've seen it - it's great fun. It's the same process that causes lumps of potassium to float, as demonstrated in this vid:
Think Earth's a wet planet? It's nothing, in comparison to Europa!

[video] The Naked Scientists explain - What Is An Alloy?

Interesting formations seen in Mercury's magnetosphere. Watch the video, in the hyperlink, too - it's a really fascinating video. Meteorology FTW, LOL

8.6% efficient solar cells? That's a bit shit, isn't it? The best have already breached 15%!
Whoa - these are made of graphene - which means they could make solar cells cheap and abundant - something we desperately need in the renewables industry
Another partial solar eclipse :)

Geez - it' a wonder we're still here! But seriously - improved imaging techniques have counted twice as many dangerous asteroids as before. 4700 of them are at least 100m across, meaning they'd leave craters at least 2km across!

Llewblog - FAQ on electric cars - it's pretty concise

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