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A Massive Subterranean ‘Tree’ Is Moving Magma to Earth’s Surface
Deep in the mantle, a branching plume of intensely hot material appears to be the engine powering vast volcanic activity.
One Lab’s Quest to Build Space-Time Out of Quantum Particles
For over two decades, physicists have pondered how the fabric of space-time may emerge from some kind of quantum entanglement. In Monika Schleier-Smith’s lab at Stanford University, the thought experiment is becoming real.
The New Thermodynamic Understanding of Clocks
Investigations of the simplest possible clocks have revealed their fundamental limitations — as well as insights into the nature of time itself.
This Physicist Discovered an Escape From Hawking’s Black Hole Paradox
The five-decade-old paradox — long thought key to linking quantum theory with Einstein’s theory of gravity — is falling to a new generation of thinkers. Netta Engelhardt is leading the way.
How Big Can the Quantum World Be? Physicists Probe the Limits.
By showing that even large objects can exhibit bizarre quantum behaviors, physicists hope to illuminate the mystery of quantum collapse, identify the quantum nature of gravity, and perhaps even make Schrödinger’s cat a reality.
Physicists Create a Bizarre ‘Wigner Crystal’ Made Purely of Electrons
The unambiguous discovery of a Wigner crystal relied on a novel technique for probing the insides of complex materials.
How Steven Weinberg Transformed Physics and Physicists
When Steven Weinberg died last month, the world lost one of its most profound thinkers.
Turing Patterns Turn Up in a Tiny Crystal
The mechanism behind leopard spots and zebra stripes also appears to explain the patterned growth of a bismuth crystal, extending Alan Turing’s 1952 idea to the atomic scale.
Neither Star nor Planet: A Strange Brown Dwarf Puzzles Astronomers
Brown dwarfs such as “The Accident” are illuminating the murky borderlands that separate planets from stars.