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An Injection of Chaos Solves Decades-Old Fluid Mystery
In the 1960s, drillers noticed that certain fluids would firm up if they flowed too fast. Researchers have finally explained why.
Detailed Footage Finally Reveals What Triggers Lightning
Scientists have never been able to adequately explain where lightning comes from. Now the first detailed observations of its emergence inside a cloud have exposed how electric fields grow strong enough to let bolts fly.
Gravitational Waves Should Permanently Distort Space-Time
The “gravitational memory effect” predicts that a passing gravitational wave should forever alter the structure of space-time. Physicists have linked the phenomenon to fundamental cosmic symmetries and a potential solution to the black hole information paradox.
Quantum Simulators Create a Totally New Phase of Matter
One of the first goals of quantum computing has been to recreate bizarre quantum systems that can’t be studied in an ordinary computer. A dark-horse quantum simulator has now done just that.
At the Dawn of Life, Heat May Have Driven Cell Division
A mathematical model shows how a thermodynamic mechanism could have made protocells split in two.
The Algorithm That Lets Particle Physicists Count Higher Than Two
Through his encyclopedic study of the electron, an obscure figure named Stefano Laporta found a handle on the subatomic world’s fearsome complexity. His algorithm has swept the field.