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National Synchrotron Light Source II Achieves 'First Light'

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The National Synchrotron Light Source II detects its first photons, beginning a new phase of the facility’s operations. Scientific experiments at NSLS-II are expected to begin before the end of the year.

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Exploring the Fabric of Time and Space: Upcoming Physics Webcast Tackles Quantum Mechanics and Spacetime

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On November 6, join Dr. Nima Arkani-Hamed for a journey from the infinitesimal to the infinite as he explores the links between quantum mechanics and the fabric of our universe.

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Stony Brook Scientists Disprove Theory That Reconstructed Boron Surface is Metallic

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Scientific inquiry is a hit and miss proposition, subject to constant checking and rechecking. Recently, a new class of materials was discovered called topological insulators—nonmetallic materials with a metallic surface capable of conducting electrons. The effect, based on relativity theory, exists only in special materials—those with heavy elements—and has the potential to revolutionize electronics.

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Triplet Threat from the Sun

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The most obvious effects of too much sun exposure are cosmetic, like wrinkled and rough skin. Some damage, however, goes deeper—ultraviolet light can damage DNA and cause proteins in the body to break down into smaller, sometimes harmful pieces that may also damage DNA, increasing the risk of skin cancer and cataracts. Understanding the specific pathways by which this degradation occurs is an important step in developing protective mechanisms against it.

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Exploring X-Ray Phase Tomography with Synchrotron Radiation

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X-ray phase tomography is an imaging technique that uses penetrating X-rays to create volumetric views through "slices" of soft biological tissues, and it offers strongly enhanced contrast compared to conventional CT scans, yet scientists do not know which X-ray phase tomography methods are best suited to yield optimized results for a variety of conditions. To answer this question, a large group of researchers in Europe set out to compare three different X-ray phase tomography methods.

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Backpack Physics: Smaller Hikers Carry Heavier Loads

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Hikers are generally advised that the weight of the packs they carry should correspond to their own size, with smaller individuals carrying lighter loads. Although petite backpackers might appreciate the excuse to hand off heavier gear to the larger members of the group, it turns out that they may not need the help.

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New High Speed Transatlantic Network to Benefit Science Collaborations Across the U.S.

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This joint Brookhaven Lab/Fermilab news release describes new high-speed transatlantic data-sharing links that will provide U.S. scientists with enhanced access to data at the Large Hadron Collider and other European-based experiments.

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Engineers Find a Way to Win in Laser Performance by Losing

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Engineers at Washington University in St. Louis have shown a new way to reverse or eliminate loss by, ironically, adding loss to a laser system to actually reap energy gains.

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New Light on The "Split Peak" of Alcohols

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For scientists probing the electronic structure of materials using RIXS, a persistent question has been how to account for "split peak" spectra seen in some hydrogen-bonded materials, but now researchers have performed an investigation of several types of liquid alcohols with RIXS and brought new perspective to this long-lasting debate. In Structural Dynamics, they show that the split peaks are tied to dynamic motions produced in response to the scattering X-rays themselves.

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ORNL Researchers Make First Observation of Atoms Moving Inside Bulk Material

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Researchers have obtained the first direct observations of atomic diffusion inside a bulk material.

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