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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.
In nonreciprocal systems, where Newton’s third law falls apart, “exceptional points” are helping researchers understand phase transitions and possibly other phenomena.
Physicists are translating commonsense principles into strict mathematical constraints on how our universe must have behaved at the beginning of time.
Over the past decade, researchers have completely rewritten the story of how gas giants such as Jupiter and Saturn form. They’re now debating whether the same process might hold for Earth.
Years of conflicting neutrino measurements have led physicists to propose a “dark sector” of invisible particles — one that could simultaneously explain dark matter, the puzzling expansion of the universe, and other mysteries.
Time was found to flow differently between the top and bottom of a single cloud of atoms. Physicists hope that such a system will one day help them combine quantum mechanics and Einstein’s theory of gravity.
After a search of neutron stars finds preliminary evidence for hypothetical dark matter particles called axions, astrophysicists are devising new ways to spot them.
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