Category archives: Physics

Can consciousness be explained by quantum physics? My research takes us a step closer to finding out

Can consciousness be explained by quantum physics? My research takes us a step closer to finding out

NeurosciencePhysics

By Invited Researcher

One of the most important open questions in science is how our consciousness is established. In the 1990s, long before winning the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics for his prediction of black holes, physicist Roger Penrose teamed up with anaesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff to propose an ambitious answer. They claimed that the brain’s neuronal system forms […]

Seti: how microbes could communicate with alien species

Seti: how microbes could communicate with alien species

AstronomyBiologyMicrobiologyPhysics

By Invited Researcher

Authors: Predrag Slijepcevic, Senior Lecturer in Biology, Brunel University London and Nalin Chandra Wickramasinghe, Honorary Professor, University of Buckingham Are we alone in the universe? The famous Seti (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) programme has been trying to answer this question since 1959. American astronomer Carl Sagan, and many others, believed that other human-like civilisations must […]

Evidence of brand new physics at Cern? Why we’re cautiously optimistic about our new findings

Evidence of brand new physics at Cern? Why we’re cautiously optimistic about our new findings

Particle physicsPhysics

By Invited Researcher

When Cern’s gargantuan accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), fired up ten years ago, hopes abounded that new particles would soon be discovered that could help us unravel physics’ deepest mysteries. Dark matter, microscopic black holes and hidden dimensions were just some of the possibilities. But aside from the spectacular discovery of the Higgs boson […]

HOMA: a space orbit simulator

HOMA: a space orbit simulator

MathematicsPhysics

By BCAM

Quick simulations of space orbits and trajectories are essential in different aspects of space engineering, from the optimization of trajectories and orbit transfers, to the determination of the orbits themselves, altitude control, and gravitational modelling. Although the preliminary analysis of satellite space orbits can be done without extensive simulations, to represent the dynamical states of […]

Rare events and time crystals

Rare events and time crystals

Physics

By Instituto Carlos I

The concept of crystal is very old, and it is strongly related to symmetries. Basically, a crystal is a system with a repeated pattern through space. For instance, in ice the water molecules form a hexagonal pattern, giving rise to many different macroscopic forms. But, can it happen that a system presents a pattern not […]

Desorption as a first-order phase transition

Desorption as a first-order phase transition

ChemistryCondensed matterDIPC PolymersPhysics

By DIPC

Adsorption commonly is understood as the reversible binding of molecules and atoms from the gaseous or liquid phase on surfaces, mostly of highly porous adsorbent media. In chemisorption a single layer of molecules, atoms or ions is attached to the adsorbent surface by chemical bonds; in physisorption only van der Waals forces are involved. Adsorption […]

Maxwell’s demon and the relationship between information and irreversibility

Maxwell’s demon and the relationship between information and irreversibility

Physics

By Patrice Camati

Thermodynamics is one of the oldest physical theories with its origins going back to the beginnings of the 19th century. The theory was initially developed to tackle practical problems, such as the performance of steam engines. However, within a few decades, thermodynamics was formulated on firm grounds providing one of the most fundamental laws of […]

Universal speed limits in thermodynamics away from equilibrium

Universal speed limits in thermodynamics away from equilibrium

DIPC Quantum SystemsPhysicsTheoretical physics

By DIPC

Many problems in science and engineering involve understanding how quickly a physical system transitions between distinguishable states and the energetic costs of advancing at a given speed. While theories such as thermodynamics and quantum mechanics put fundamental bounds on the dynamical evolution of physical systems, the form and function of the bounds differ. Rudolf Clausius’s […]

An additional contribution to the spin Hall effect induced by an electric current

An additional contribution to the spin Hall effect induced by an electric current

Condensed matterMaterialsPhysicsTheoretical physics

By DIPC

The interactions between moving charges and magnetic fields can be quite complicated; more if we consider the quantum effects. One example is the collection of Hall effects. Imagine that we have a conductor or a semiconductor through which a current is flowing. Then we apply a strong transverse magnetic field. As a result, we can […]