03-11-2014   -   Physics

Mon 3 Nov 2014. NASA's Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL) mission has succeeded in producing a state of matter known as a Bose-Einstein condensate, a key breakthrough for the instrument leading up to its debut on the International Space Station in late 2016. A Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) is a collection of atoms in a dilute gas that have been lowered to extremely cold temperatures and all occupy the same quantum state, in which all of the atoms have the same energy levels. At a critical temperature, atoms begin to coalesce, overlap and become synchronized like dancers in a chorus line. The resulting condensate is a new state of matter that behaves like a giant -- by atomic standards -- wave. More

  13-10-2014   -   Energy

Mon 13 Oct 2014. First Water-Based Nuclear Battery to Generate Electrical Energy. The battery uses a radioactive isotope called strontium-90 that boosts electrochemcial energy in a water-based solution. A nanostructured titanium dioxide electrode (the common element found in sunscreens and UV blockers) with a platinum coating collects and effectively converts energy into electrons. Water acts as a buffer and surface plasmons created in the battery turned out to be very useful in increasing its efficiency. The ionic solution is not easily frozen at very low temperatures and could work in a wide variety of applications including car batteries and spacecraft. More

  14-09-2014   -   Physics

Sun 14 Sep 2014. First 500 GHz photon switch built as a result of four years of research. It opens a fundamentally new direction in photonics with far-reaching potential consequences for the control of photons in optical fiber channels. Specifically, the new technology could be implemented for photon sensors that operate in fields that were previously not deemed possible. An example is a receiver that could detect a handful of photons but very slowly – with the time delay between such pulses on the order of nanoseconds, not picoseconds (one nanosecond equals 1,000 picoseconds). Another example: long-scale, locally-controlled four-photon mixing may trigger a multi-frequency photon avalanche, meaning that a few-photon signal could induce massive pump photon annihilation. More

  10-09-2014   -   Nuclear

Wed 10 Sep 2014. Nuclear waste eaters - Scientists discover radioactive waste-eating bacteria. Tiny single-cell organisms discovered living underground could help with the problem of nuclear waste disposal, say researchers. Although bacteria with waste-eating properties have been discovered in relatively pristine soils before, this is the first time that microbes that can survive in the very harsh conditions expected in radioactive waste disposal sites have been found. More

  31-07-2014   -   Chemistry

Thu 31 Jul 2014. Solar energy: New Dyes help harvest broader light. A new dye-sensitized solar cell absorbs a broad range of visible and infrared wavelengths. Dye-sensitized solar cells rely on dyes that absorb light to mobilize a current of electrons and are a promising source of clean energy. Scientists have now developed zinc porphyrin dyes that harvest light in both the visible and near-infrared parts of the spectrum. More

  30-07-2014   -   Nuclear

Wed 30 Jul 2014. No increased risk of cancer for children living near Sellafield or Dounreay NPP. Children, teenagers and young adults living near two British nuclear power stations since the 1990s are not at an increased risk of developing cancer, according to a detailed analysis of decades of data by Oxford University researchers. More

  18-06-2014   -   Medicine

Wed 18 Jun 2014 A company has licensed a Sandia National Laboratories technology that offers a way to make molybdenum-99, a key radioactive isotope needed for diagnostic imaging in nuclear medicine in the United States. Known as moly 99, it is currently made in aging nuclear reactors outside the USA. More

  17-06-2014   -   Energy

Tue 17 Jun 2014 Capturing green energy from deep in the Earth will bring competitive electricity and district heating. The heat to capture is known as geothermal energy, and is derived from two sources that lie far beneath our feet. About one third of it is heat that has been stored in the Earth's molten core since our planet was formed. The other two-thirds have their origin in the decay of radioactive isotopes in the Earth's crust. This process releases heat, which means that the temperature rises, metre by metre, the further we drill into the interior of the planet. More

  26-03-2014   -   Physics

Scientists develop silicon cells capable of absorbing infrared radiation from the sun. Researchers have developed a silicon photovoltaic cell capable of turning infrared radiation into electricity. The sun is an inexhaustible source of energy which well-exploited, could solve many of the energy suply problems we have today. The photovoltaic cell, commonly known as solar cell, is a device capable of turning solar light into electricity. However, there are many obstacles that prevent a massive use, such as a relatively high cost (0.02 euros per watt generated) and the low efficiency of silicon based solar cells, around 17 per cent. More

  24-03-2014   -   Medicine

Y-90 provides new, safe treatment for metastatic breast cancer. Y-90 radioembolization can shrink liver tumors, relieve painful symptoms, boost the excellent of life and potentially extend survival. The therapy is not limited by tumor size, shape, place or quantity, and it can ease the severity of disease in patients who can not be treated effectively with other approaches. More

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