skip to context

All Research News

  • The importance of the 1949 Florence conference “StatPhys I” to physics

    New York | Heidelberg, 11 July 2024
    The first international conference devoted to statistical mechanics was also of great importance to scientific reconstruction in post-war Italy.

  • Assessing the place of citizen science in modern research

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2024
    New analysis presents recommendations for EU-funded research projects on how citizen science can be deployed to ensure the best possible outcomes for both research and public engagement.

  • Tuning the movement of a self-propelled robot to the physics of living matter

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2024
    The two-wheeled robot employs a range of complex active dynamics that can be implemented with precise control.

  • Determining Refractive Index at Relativistic Speeds

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2024
    Ideas first posed by seventeenth-century physicists have been extended in determining the mechanical refractive index of particles travelling at speeds close to that of light.

  • Electron-impact ionization calculations match with experiments

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2024
    Through a new calculation approach, researchers have made far more accurate predictions of how atoms are ionized when impacted by high-energy electrons.

  • Observing Flows at a Liquid-Liquid-Solid Intersection

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 June 2024
    Experiments reveal how a liquid-liquid interface interacts with a moving contact line.

  • Investigating collective motions in schools of zebrafish

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 May 2024
    Observations reveal new insights into the evolution of collective motions within schools of zebrafish, and how their complexity and structure vary with density.

  • Modelling vibration patterns in granular materials

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 May 2024
    The ‘Laguerre ensemble’ statistical model can better describe the vibrational patterns of granular materials at a critical point of transition in their behaviour.

  • Tracing the history of perturbative expansion in quantum field theory

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 May 2024
    Contrary to long-standing assumptions, simplified descriptions of quantum systems have played a central role in shaping the foundations of quantum field theory.

  • A new simple scheme for atom interferometry

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 May 2024
    New scheme proposes a simpler method for investigating matter waves with an ease of use that could make it ideal for commercial applications

  • A Mathematical Understanding of Project Schedules

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 May 2024
    Complex projects are made up of many activities, the duration of which vary according to a power law; this model can be used to predict overall project duration and delay.

  • Probing neptunium’s atomic structure with laser spectroscopy

    New York | Heidelberg, 8 May 2024
    A new technique developed by researchers in Germany can measure ionisation states of this element more precisely than before, with implications for its detection and remediation in radioactive waste.

  • Quantum Gravity, Effective Field Theory, and Strings

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 May 2024
    A historical overview of different approaches to the quantum theory of gravitation from the early twentieth century shows how they have been combined to set our modern view of a unified ‘theory of everything’.

  • A guide for early-career researchers in computational science

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 May 2024
    New analysis shows how key properties of biological tissues can be accurately described in the mathematical language of Onsager’s variational principle, widely used to describe continually changing systems in thermodynamics.

  • Describing growing tissues in the language of thermodynamics

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 April 2024
    New analysis shows how key properties of biological tissues can be accurately described in the mathematical language of Onsager’s variational principle, widely used to describe continually changing systems in thermodynamics.

  • Coalescence-fragmentation cycles based on Human conflict

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 April 2024
    Inspired by insurgency warfare dynamics, a model predicts patterns of how groups gel and shatter.

  • Estimating uncertainty in atomic spectroscopy

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 April 2024
    A numerical toolbox offers a robust way to evaluate uncertainty in atomic wavelength measurements.

  • CompactLight: Designing a Cost-Effective XFEL Facility

    New York | Heidelberg, 10 April 2024
    An international group of experts has produced a design for a free electron X-ray laser facility that is significantly smaller and cheaper than those that are currently in use.

  • Exploring exotic behaviours in population-imbalanced fermionic systems

    New York | Heidelberg, 11 March 2024
    New studies show that oscillations in the quantum states of composite particles in trapped systems can be adjusted using an external magnetic field.

  • Harvesting vibrational energy from coloured noise

    New York | Heidelberg, 5 March 2024
    Two engineers from Beijing Institute of Technology in China have shown how to optimise the output of a device that can convert ambient vibrational energy into useful electric power.

  • Beam balance designs could elucidate the origins of dark energy

    New York | Heidelberg, 5 March 2024
    With some improvements, the instrument could help physicists to identify the mysterious origins of dark energy.

  • Access to burgeoning quantum technology field could be widened by open master educational model

    New York | Heidelberg, 4 March 2024
    Quantum technology offers major societal benefits, but its growth depends on the supply of a qualified workforce.

  • Breaking an electrolyte’s charge neutrality

    New York | Heidelberg, 4 March 2024
    Excess charge builds up in salt solutions due to interactions between electrostatic forces and a channel’s varying cross section

  • Unlocking the full potential of Auger electron spectroscopy

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 February 2024
    A new computational approach makes more realistic assumptions about the redistribution of energy during the Auger process, improving the accuracy of Auger electron spectroscopy.

  • Investigating the role of random walks in particle diffusion

    New York | Heidelberg, 18 January 2024
    Theoretical analysis reveals new insights into unusual patterns displayed by diffusing particles in recent experiments.

  • Celebrating 50 years of QCD with a comprehensive review

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 December 2023
    A series of key experiments performed about 50 years ago revealed the eminent role of gauge theories. Two theories were formulated: the electroweak theory and the strong interaction theory QCD. An extensive worldwide research programme has since been set up and has step by step corroborated their predictions, while alternative theoretical attempts have been ruled out. Today these theories are well established and represent the cornerstones of the Standard Model.

  • An exciting era for ultrafast science in France

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 December 2023
    Progress across five scientific topics currently being investigated by the French scientific network on ultrafast phenomena highlight both a rapid pace of discovery and emerging new directions of research.

  • Better calculations for the magnetic properties of neodymium compounds

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 December 2023
    Valuable magnetic properties of neodymium compounds have so far remained difficult to probe using high-energy neutron spectroscopy. A new correction to the technique could make these measurements far more feasible.

  • The Quark Model: A Personal Perspective

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 November 2023
    The properties of hadrons - both protons and neutrons, and heavier short-lived particles - are explained by the quark model. This was introduced by André Petermann (whose 1963 paper, in French, went unnoticed for 50 years); Murray Gell-Mann (whose insistence that they are purely mathematical entities discouraged take-up of the idea); and George Zweig.

  • Magnetic Shielding for Particle Detectors

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 November 2023
    Carefully positioned wire coils can improve photodetector efficiency by counteracting Earth’s magnetic field.

  • Acquitting a Physicist Accused of “Obscurantism”

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 November 2023
    A reanalysis of letters and publications show that David Bohm’s contemptuous contemporaries were misinformed and politically driven.

  • Would Matrix Mechanics Win Recognition Today?

    New York | Heidelberg, 31 October 2023
    A re-evaluation of contributions to the development of quantum mechanics suggests that a belated Nobel Prize was a product of its times.

  • Beyond the Periodic Table: Superheavy Elements and Ultradense Asteroids

    New York | Heidelberg, 9 October 2023
    Predictions of the behaviour of super-heavy elements that have not yet been observed on Earth may help explain the properties of dense asteroids further motivating potential asteroid miners.

  • Creating optical logic gates from graphene nanoribbons

    New York | Heidelberg, 9 October 2023
    A new graphene-based optical logic gate uses collective oscillations of electrons to process light waves in a far smaller space than existing designs. The device also benefits from low information loss and high stability.

  • Toward a Fast-Switching Liquid Crystal

    New York | Heidelberg, 9 October 2023
    Combining a bulky chain with a stable polymer can enhance liquid crystal performance

  • Introducing the European strategy for accelerator-based photon science (ESAPS 2022)

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 September 2023
    Through new plans detailed in ESAPS 2022, the LEAPS consortium aims to strengthen Europe as a global leader in accelerator-based photon science.

  • An overview of the management structure of the AGATA collaboration

    New York | Heidelberg, 25 September 2023
    The AGATA project could eventually lead to a deeper understanding of the strong nuclear force. This paper details the project’s highly sophisticated management structure, which will be essential to achieving this goal.

  • Testing particle scattering and reflection in graphene

    New York | Heidelberg, 25 September 2023
    Testing the quantum effects of Andreev reflection in the wonder material could have positive implications for quantum technology

  • How hydrophobicity shapes protein assemblies

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 September 2023
    Using an electrical analogy, researchers show how a distribution of hydrophobic charges draws proteins into parallel alignment in a macromolecule assembly

  • Machine learning hunts for the right mix of hydrogen isotopes for future nuclear fusion power plants

    New York | Heidelberg, 31 August 2023
    New research is an initial step in the use of deep learning to help determine the right mix of hydrogen isotopes to use in fusion power plants of the future

  • Capturing the evolution of complex quantum systems

    New York | Heidelberg, 30 August 2023
    Through a new survey, researchers show how mathematical representations named ‘tensor trains’ can help to capture and simulate the dynamics of evolving quantum systems across a range of different scenarios.

  • How a transparent conductor responds to strain

    New York | Heidelberg, 2 August 2023
    First-principles calculations show how to manipulate some transition metal oxides’ optical and electronic properties for use in thin-film devices.

  • Many-body interactions feel the heat: Introducing thermal field theory

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 August 2023
    Thermal field theory seeks to explain many-body dynamics at non-zero temperatures not considered in conventional quantum field theory.

  • Investigating the Ising model with magnetisation

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 July 2023
    Researchers have explored the evolution of systems of interacting spins, as they transition from random to orderly alignments. Through new simulations, they show that this evolution can be investigated by measuring the changing strength of the system’s magnetism.

  • Looking deeper into graphene using rainbow scattering

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 July 2023
    New research uses protons to shine a light on the structure and imperfections of this two-dimensional wonder material

  • How a molecular motor moves in a network

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 July 2023
    A new study determines the efficiency of a single-molecule heat engine by considering a series of ratchets that transfer energy along a network.

  • Exploring the elasticity of colloidal suspensions

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 July 2023
    Experiments reveal that under the right conditions, the elasticity of colloidal suspensions will peak at a certain value, which depends both on the deformation applied to the material and the strength of attraction between its solid particles.

  • Calculating thermal properties from phonon behaviours

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 July 2023
    A new study determines the thermal properties of advanced solid materials, based on first-principles calculations of quantum vibrations.

  • Looking deeper into violent neutron star collisions to find the origins of heavy elements

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 July 2023
    The gold that makes up your most precious jewellery may have been forged in a violent cosmic collision millions or billions of light years away between two neutron stars. New research seeks to better understand this process.

  • Measuring nanocomposite structures with neutron and x-ray scattering

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 July 2023
    Experiments with state-of-the-art scattering instruments reveal an absence of specific patterns in the x-rays scattered by nanocomposite materials. With the help of advanced simulation techniques, a new study suggests that attractive interactions between nanoparticles with diverse shapes and sizes are most likely responsible for this behaviour.

  • Testing a perfect absorber metamaterial

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 July 2023
    The proposed metamaterial could have a wide range of applications, from sensing to stealth technology

  • A broader approach to quantum walks

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 July 2023
    Quantum walks have been widely studied for their ability to simulate real physical phenomena. Physicists previously studied two distinct types of quantum walk, but so far, they haven’t widely considered how their mathematical descriptions could be linked. Through new research published in EPJ D, a pair of physicists in France: Nicolas Jolly at ENS de Lyon, and Giuseppe Di Molfetta at Aix-Marseille University, show how ‘discrete-‘ and ‘continuous-time’ quantum walks can be described using more general mathematical language. Their results could allow researchers to simulate an even broader range of phenomena using quantum walks.

  • Investigating the use of noise to solve inverse physical problems

    New York | Heidelberg, 19 June 2023
    New research looks at the problem of solving a physics problem starting with observational data and working backwards.

  • Uncovering spin ladders in real compounds

    New York | Heidelberg, 19 June 2023
    Low-dimensional quantum systems named ‘spin ladders’ are strongly linked to superconductivity. A new theoretical approach has accurately predicted the nature of the spin ladder which appears in real chemical compound – possibly paving the way for new discoveries of advanced superconductors.

  • Active Brownian particles have four distinct states of motion

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 Mai 2023
    Depending on the friction and external bias forces they experience, self-propelled Brownian particles will take on one of four possible states of motion. The discovery could help researchers to draw deeper insights into the behaviours of these unique systems in nature and technology.

  • Investigating gender equality in urban cycling

    New York | Heidelberg, 8 May 2023
    New research looks at why cycling has a low uptake among women in urban areas

  • Improving fluid simulations with embedded neural networks

    New York | Heidelberg, 8 Mai 2023
    While neural networks can help to improve the accuracy of fluid flow simulations, new research shows how their accuracy is limited unless the right approach is taken. By embedding fluid properties into neural networks, simulation accuracy can improve by orders of magnitude.

  • Better understanding the bonds between carbon group elements

    New York | Heidelberg, 4 May 2023
    Heating clusters of these elements reveals key differences

  • Predicting the composition of a steel alloy

    New York | Heidelberg, 4 May 2023
    Austenitic steel is a potential material for nuclear fusion reactors

  • Training models with a structured data curriculum

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 April 2023
    By carefully structuring the data used to train models of complex systems by leveraging physics and information theory, researchers can significantly improve the quality of their predictions, without relying on additional principles from machine learning in situations where less information about the system is available.

  • Statistical physics reveals how languages evolve

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 April 2023
    Models based on the principles of statistical physics can provide useful insights into how languages change through contact between speakers of different languages. In particular, the analysis reveals how unusual linguistic forms are more likely to be replaced by more regular ones over time.

  • 2023 Julius Springer Prize

    New York | Heidelberg, 9 March 2023
    Applied Physics A and Applied Physics B congratulate the winner of the 2023 Julius Springer Prize!

  • Better simulations of neutron scattering

    New York | Heidelberg, 7 March 2023
    A new simulation approach named eTLE aims to improve the precision of a primary tool for estimating neutron behaviours in 3D space. This study examines the approach in detail – validating its reliability in predicting the scattering of neutrons in crystalline media.

  • Tracking how magnetism affects animal behaviour

    New York | Heidelberg, 23 February 2023
    We still know little about how animal behaviour changes in response to magnetic fields. A new review provides a tutorial introduction to the study of this fascinating and potentially useful phenomenon.

  • 2D Janus materials could harvest abundant hydrogen fuel

    New York | Heidelberg, 23 February 2023
    A new group of asymmetric 2D materials can readily catalyse the splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen – providing a reliable source of hydrogen fuel.

  • Examining heat transfer in granular materials

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 February 2023
    Heat transfer through granular materials in a humid atmosphere occurs mainly through the air in the case of larger particles, and via water capillary bridges for smaller particles.

  • Building a computer with a single atom

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 February 2023
    New research opens the horizons regarding what a “computer” can be and how small a computational unit can get

  • Shear ultrasound shaking lowers friction between solids

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 February 2023
    A simple new experiment shows how tiny ultrasound shaking at the interfaces between two objects will lower the friction between them – and in some cases, can induce sudden, large jerky motions

  • Quarks and gluons: The JADE experiment at DESY

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 February 2023
    A new paper in EPJ H describes the JADE experiment at DESY in Hamburg, in which high-energy electron-positron collisions led to the discovery of the particle that holds quarks together to form protons and neutrons: the gluon.

  • Mid-twentieth-century physics in the home of Galileo

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 February 2023
    Breakthroughs made at the Institute of Physics near Florence before 1950 include Fermi statistics and the first electronic coincidence circuits

  • Atoms slow down more within colder blackbody radiation

    New York | Heidelberg, 10 February 2023
    New analysis shows that atoms will encounter high frictional forces in the presence of blackbody radiation at lower temperatures. Accounting for this effect could help researchers to improve the accuracy of high-precision experiments.

  • Finely-tuned quantum dots enhance nonlinear optics

    New York | Heidelberg, 10 February 2023
    Quantum dots with finely-tuned spherical defects could display advanced ‘nonlinear’ optical properties, new calculations have suggested. Adjusting the sizes of these defects could enable researchers to tightly control the brightness and frequency of the light they produce when illuminated.

  • Machine learning could help kites and gliders to harvest wind energy

    New York | Heidelberg, 2 February 2023
    Using trial-and-error, machine learning algorithms could enable flying wind harvesters to dynamically adjust their orientations, allowing them to account for unpredictable turbulence and improve their performances.

  • Alain Aspect: The physicist who made entanglement an experimental reality

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 January 2023
    For Einstein and other physicists of his generation, the strongly counter-intuitive features of quantum mechanics were very hard to accept, given that our intuition is based on the classical world around us. This EPJ D Topical Issue examines the discoveries, motivations, and continuing legacy of Alain Aspect: the physicist whose experiments, along with those of John Clauser and Anton Zeilinger, have made that quantum entanglement, an essentially non-classical feature, is now also an experimental reality, exploited in science and technology.

  • Higher physical activity levels associated with reduced respiratory infection susceptibility in children

    Higher levels of daily physical activity are associated with reduced susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infections such as the common cold, suggests a study of 104 Polish children published in Pediatric Research.

  • Citizen Science: From the cosmos to the classroom

    New York | Heidelberg, 18 January 2023
    An extensive network of cosmic ray detectors allows high school students in Italy to contribute to cutting-edge particle physics research

  • Modelling the collective movement of bacteria

    New York | Heidelberg, 23 December 2022
    Research into the movement of packages of bacteria could help better understand the formation of troublesome biofilms.

  • The universal sound of swearing across languages

    Swear words across different languages may tend to lack certain sounds such as lr, and w, suggests research published in Psychonomic Bulletin & Review. This common pattern in profanity indicates that these sounds, called approximants, may appear less offensive to listeners.

  • Women footballers not on level playing field for sports technology

    London, 16th November 2022

    Women football players require specifically tailored products such as kit, boots, and balls in order to optimise their performance and safety on the pitch, according to a paper published in Sports Engineering.

  • Legacy of a molecular dynamics trailblazer

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 November 2022
    Computer simulations meet biochemistry

  • Exploring the duality of gravity and gauge theory

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 November 2022
    This EPJ C Topical Collection presents a series of reviews showcasing the latest developments and applications of gauge/gravity duality, and aims at dissemination to a wider physics community in a way that enables building upon these concepts.

  • Piggy in the middle: Pig aggression reduced when a bystander pig steps in

    London, 8th November 2022

    A small study suggests that when two pigs are fighting, a bystander pig can intervene to either reduce the number of attacks by the aggressor or to help reduce the anxiety of the victim. The study of 104 domestic pigs, published in the journal Animal Cognition, reveals the complex social groups that pigs form and how they may resolve conflict.

  • Cat got your tongue: Cats distinguish between speech directed at them and humans

    London, 25th October 2022

    A small study has found that cats may change their behaviour when they hear their owner’s voice talking in a tone directed to them, the cats, but not when hearing the voice of a stranger or their owner’s voice directed at another person. The study of 16 cats is published in the journal Animal Cognition and adds to evidence that cats may form strong bonds with their owner.

  • Assessing the environmental impact of future ‘Higgs factories’

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 October 2022
    New research looks at planned particle accelerators that will follow the retirement of the Large Hadron Collider— the world’s most powerful particle accelerator

  • How advanced optical tweezers revolutionized cell manipulation

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 October 2022
    A new review looks at devices called optical tweezers and how they are used to better uncover the natural secrets of human life at the single-cell level.

  • Elastic nozzles could create more stable liquid jets

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 September 2022
    New experiments show that nozzles which deform as liquid flows through them could help to improve the stability of liquid jets in many different scenarios.

  • Modelling the use of Beta Radiation in cancer treatment

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 September 2022
    New research pits the simulation of beta radiation doses in tumour treatment against an analytical method.

  • Tiny animal hairs could act as sensitive compass needles

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 September 2022
    Statistical mechanics shows that some animals may be able to perceive Earth’s magnetic field with bundles of microscopic hairs in their inner ears.

  • Fermi’s ground-breaking figure

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 September 2022
    How the radial wave function transformed physics

  • Considering how friction is maximised when liquids flow on nanoscales

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 August 2022
    By simulating a liquid confined by a nanoscale structure, researchers discovered the role molecular clogging plays in friction.

  • Assessing the effect of hydraulic fracturing on microearthquakes

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 August 2022
    New research examines mining sites with hydraulic fracturing comparing it to those without to determine the practice’s effect on seismic hazards.

  • A step towards quantum gravity

    New York | Heidelberg, 11 August 2022
    Resolving the problem of time

  • Bringing consistency to methods of 2D material analysis

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2022
    New research introduces a more cohesive approach to the functional renormalization group — a key tool in the analysis of 2D materials

  • Chaotic circuit exhibits unprecedented equilibrium properties

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2022
    Mathematical derivations have unveiled a chaotic, memristor-based circuit in which different oscillating phases can co-exist along 6 possible lines.

  • QEMMS: Improving measurements of the kilogram

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2022
    Currently in development by NIST, QEMMS will allow researchers to measure macroscopic masses, based on quantum principles. New analysis shows how an optimised design of this device could significantly reduce the errors associated with current approaches to mass measurement.

  • Quantum control for advanced technology: Past and present

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2022
    Quantum devices are a promising technological advance for the future, but this will hinge on the application of quantum optimal control top real-world devices. A new review looks at the status of the field as it stands.

  • 2022 Julius Springer Prize

    New York | Heidelberg, 19 July 2022
    Applied Physics A and Applied Physics B congratulate the winner of the 2022 Julius Springer Prize!

  • The fascinating ways animals navigate

    New York | Heidelberg, 30 June 2022
    Many animals – from birds to whales to zebras – find their way across great distances using a variety of environmental factors.

  • Investigating the temperature of large biomolecules in ion-storage rings with jellyfish protein

    New York | Heidelberg, 27 June 2022
    New research introduces a simple way to determine the temperature of a stored biomolecule and assess how it changes over time.

  • Investigating positron scattering from giant molecular targets

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2022
    New research looks at positron scattering from rare gas atoms encapsulated in carbon 60 to investigate quantum properties that can’t be tested with electrons.

  • Exotic carbon microcrystals in meteorite dust

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 June 2022
    Unusually shaped microcrystals formed of pure, graphite-like carbon were discovered in the dust of the 21st-century’s largest meteorite. They are likely to have grown in layers from complex carbon nuclei such as fullerene.

  • Probing high-energy neutrinos with an IceCube

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 June 2022
    Studying a high-energy neutrino that was observed by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole and that is believed to be intergalactic in origin has yielded some intriguing ‘new physics’ beyond the Standard Model.

  • How can x-ray diffraction be used for a reliable study of nanostructured materials?

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 June 2022
    A new overview shows how x-ray diffraction can effectively measure lattice defects responsible for the unique properties of nanostructured materials – but special care is required for the application.

  • Energy harvesting to power the Internet of Things

    New York | Heidelberg, 13 June 2022
    A new paper in EPJ Special Topics shows how energy can be harvested from vibrating micromagnets to power the now ubiquitous wireless sensors in the most efficient way.

  • Higher fish consumption may be associated with increased melanoma risk

    London, 9th June 2022

    Eating higher levels of fish, including tuna and non-fried fish, appears to be associated with a greater risk of malignant melanoma, suggests a large study of US adults published in Cancer Causes & Control.

  • Modelling the behaviour and dynamics of microswimmers

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 May 2022
    The understanding of the clustering and movement of microswimmers has a range of applications from human health to tackling ecological problems.

  • Revisiting the history of CPT theorem

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 May 2022
    A new review looks at an important and often overlooked aspect of physics that suggested symmetry in the particle zoo and how it could be broken.

  • Assessing the impact of loss mechanisms in solar cell candidate

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 May 2022
    The superconductor antimony sulfide selenide is a potential candidate for solar materials, but this depends on understanding how to boost its efficiency.

  • Studying the pseudogap in superconducting cuprate materials

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 May 2022
    Despite being vital to the study of superconductivity in cuprate materials the physical origins of the pseudogap remain a mystery.

  • Characterising limestone rocks with Raman spectroscopy

    New York | Heidelberg, 20 April 2022
    Research published in EPJ Plus shows that it is possible to classify rocks according to the size of the particles they contain during quarrying, using a portable Raman spectrometer.

  • Thin quantum wires work better with less insulating coatings

    New York | Heidelberg, 19 April 2022
    New theoretical analysis considers cases where the electrons are allowed to exist beyond the boundaries of semiconducting quantum wires – with important implications for their performance.

  • Searching for dark matter with a haloscope

    New York | Heidelberg, 14 April 2022
    A new paper in EPJ Plus introduces a novel method of searching for a type of dark matter known as axions; a modified version of this technique may have useful ‘real life’ applications.

  • Using AI to expand the quality and fairness of urban data

    New York | Heidelberg, 14 April 2022
    The sparse and inconsistent availability of urban data is currently hampering efforts to manage our cities fairly and effectively – but this could be solved by exploiting the latest advances in artificial intelligence.

  • Optimizing silicon structure to reduce reflection

    New York | Heidelberg, 14 April 2022
    New research connects the porous structure of silicon and its ability to “trap” incident light.

  • Ranking nanodevice functionality methods

    New York | Heidelberg, 14 April 2022
    Examining the charge transfer influence of three charge control methods and producing a hierarchy promises important practical applications in nanodevices.

  • A novel computing approach to recognising chaos

    New York | Heidelberg, 14 April 2022
    Chaos isn’t always harmful to technology, in fact, it can have several useful applications if it can be detected and identified.

  • The relationship between active areas and boundaries with energy input in snapping shells

    New York | Heidelberg, 5 April 2022
    New research looks at how the geometry of shells relates to the energy input required to actuate snap-through instability.

  • Investigating newly synthesised thallium compounds for optoelectronic devices

    New York | Heidelberg, 5 April 2022
    The burgeoning field of optoelectronic devices is driving the development of new alkali metal-based chalcogenides with qualities that have to be robustly investigated.

  • Astrophysical plasma study benefits from new soft X-ray transition energies benchmark

    New York | Heidelberg, 5 April 2022
    The new benchmark for X-ray transition energies set for neon, carbon dioxide, and sulfur hexafluoride paves a pathway to high accuracy analysis of astrophysical plasmas.

  • Tackling large data sets and many parameter problems in particle physics

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 March 2022
    A new tool to break down and segment large data set problems and problems with many parameters in particle physics could have a wide range of applications.

  • Acknowledging Fermi’s contributions to early quantum statistics

    New York | Heidelberg, 18 March 2022
    Enrico Fermi’s ideas played a key role in the origins of quantum statistics, but so far, they have been largely overlooked in historical analysis

  • Documenting the first attempt at a gravitational-wave observatory in Europe

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 March 2022
    EUROGRAV was set to be a network of gravitational wave antennas in Europe. A new paper looks at the reasons it never happened.

  • A cautionary tale of machine learning uncertainty

    New York | Heidelberg, 7 March 2022
    By decorrelating the performance of machine learning algorithms with imperfections in the simulations used to train them, researchers could be estimating uncertainties that are lower than their true values.

  • Tyrannosaurus remains hint at two possible species distinct from T. rex

    London, 1st March 2022

    A new analysis of Tyrannosaurus skeletal remains reveals physical differences in the femur, other bones and dental structures across specimens that could suggest Tyrannosaurus rex specimens need to be re-categorised into three distinct groups or species, reports a study published in Evolutionary Biology.

  • An overview of neutrinos and their interactions

    New York | Heidelberg, 18 February 2022
    A new summary of the study of neutrinos, and the ways in which they interact with regular matter, could inspire both new and senior neutrino researchers to open up new areas of investigation within the field.

  • A new era of research into laser-matter interactions

    New York | Heidelberg, 8 February 2022
    Studies of laser-matter interactions are an important and rapidly growing area of physics. This special issue of EPJ ST, edited by Sivarama Krishnan at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras and Marcel Mudrich at Aarhus University, Denmark, contains a set of 21 articles in this field, encompassing a broad range of experimental and theoretical approaches. The collection provides researchers with useful insights into this burgeoning area of science, and the exciting applications it may soon lead to.

  • A shifting approach to modelling phase transitions

    New York | Heidelberg, 2 February 2022
    Between the years 1937 and 1970, physicists went from taking a ‘naturalistic’ approach to modelling phase transitions, to a ‘caricature’ approach – which incorporated far less realistic models. New analysis of this period provides new insights into this profound shift in thinking.

  • Reassessing radon as a reliable groundwater tracer

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 February 2022
    A widely used technique for tracing natural radioactive atoms within flowing groundwater may not be as accurate as previously thought.

  • Assessing and optimising the quality of sensor networks

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 February 2022
    A new method for optimising the arrangements of complex sensor networks could lead to improvements in a variety of cutting-edge experiments: including the ongoing search for Dark Matter

  • Understanding changes in a non-equilibrium economy

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 February 2022
    A novel theory can link abrupt, non-equilibrium changes to the state of the economy to a central principle of dynamics and thermodynamics

  • Small study found no evidence of transmitting virus through breastfeeding

    London, 19th January 2022

    There is no evidence of recently infected mothers transmitting infectious SARS-CoV-2 through breastmilk to their baby, reports a study published in the journal Pediatric Research.

  • Examining recent developments in Quantum Chromodynamics

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 December 2021
    The strong nuclear force is responsible for binding together quarks, the basic building blocks of protons and neutrons, that comprise almost all of the visible matter. A new collection looks at recent development in the field of Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) from a range of perspectives.

  • An exploration of tipping in complex systems

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 November 2021
    This special issue examines the extensive landscape of research into tipping within complex systems, and provides guidance as to where the field will likely be headed in the future.

  • Examining the dynamics of complex networks

    New York | Heidelberg, 22 November 2021
    A new collection of papers focuses on the theories and methodology of dynamical networks with a focus on neuroscience and Earth sciences, and climate systems.

  • Celebrating the impacts of Jacques Raynal’s work in the development of nuclear reaction formalism, codes and analysis

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 November 2021
    This topical article edition of EPJ A is dedicated to the memory of French nuclear physicist Jacques Raynal, who passed away on April 10th, 2020.

  • Hubble tension: Showing the cracks in Gaussian Processes

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 November 2021
    Today, Gaussian Processes data reconstruction is viewed as a vital tool in cosmology. Yet through new analysis of tensions in the value of Hubble’s constant, two researchers suggest that the approach may not be as valid as currently thought.

  • The first black hole image: A gravitomagnetic monopole as an alternative explanation

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 November 2021
    The Event Horizon Telescope made science history when it captured the first image of the supermassive black hole in the galaxy M87. New research suggests alternative explanations for the massive compact object at the centre of this galaxy questioning if this could contain gravitomagnetic monopole.

  • Black hole thermodynamics: a history from Penrose to Hawking

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 October 2021
    New research explores the historical context of Penrose’s theory of black hole energy extraction, and how it inspired collaborations across political boundaries: ultimately leading to Stephen Hawking’s celebrated theory of black hole radiation.

  • Examining the accelerating Universe

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 October 2021
    A new collection of papers focuses on the paradigm of the accelerating expansion of the Universe in turn unpacking some of cosmology’s most pressing questions.

  • Quantum battles in attoscience: Following three debates

    New York | Heidelberg, 21 October 2021
    Discussions among an extensive panel of attoscience researchers have clarified points of tension within the field, and offer new suggestions of how research should move forward in the face of these divisions.

  • African grey parrots may have better self-control than macaws

    African grey parrots may be better able than macaws to delay gratification – rejecting an immediate reward in favour of a better one in the future – according to a study published in the journal Animal Cognition.

  • Mixing mineral and chemical sunscreens may limit protection against UVA

    Combining chemical sunscreen mixtures, which are safe on their own, with zinc oxide, which is commonly used in hybrid sunscreens, may result in decreased UVA protection, according to a study published in Photochemical & Photobiological Sciences. Sunscreen mixed with zinc oxide was also found to cause toxic effects when tested in zebra fish embryos reports the study.

  • Uncovering fragmentation differences in chiral biomolecules

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2021
    By combining mass spectroscopy with further analytical and simulation techniques, researchers have revealed key differences in the fragmentation of dipeptide biomolecules with different chiral structures

  • Understanding the ionisation of proton-impacted helium

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2021
    Advanced mathematical analysis of the ionisation of a helium atom by an impacting proton has revealed where discrepancies arise between experiments and existing theoretical calculations of the process

  • Beer mats make bad frisbees and why it matters

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2021
    Whilst modelling the forces acting upon a thrown beer mat, physicists discover why flat discs have such poor flight potential.

  • Revisiting Clebsch’s early papers

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2021
    New analysis of two recently translated papers, first published in the 1850s, assesses the early methods used by Alfred Clebsch to describe the flow of incompressible fluids, and explores their impact on active areas of cutting-edge research

  • Using particle accelerators to investigate the quark-gluon plasma of the infant Universe

    New York | Heidelberg, 8 August 2021
    In the early stages of the Universe, quarks and gluons were quickly confined to protons and neutrons which went on to form atoms. With particle accelerators reaching increasingly higher energy levels the opportunity to study this fleeting primordial state of matter has finally arrived.

  • Gaining insight into the Universe’s most powerful objects and events

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2021
    A timely new collection reminds us that even in times of great hardship, our understanding of the Universe’s most explosive, spectacular and mysterious events and objects continues to grow

  • Celebrating the life and work of Mahir Hussein through cutting-edge research

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 July 2021
    A new collection of papers focusing on the dynamics of nuclei pays fitting tribute to Iraqi/Brazilian physicist Mahir Saleh Hussein.

  • Exposure to second-hand marijuana smoke associated with more frequent respiratory infections in children

    Children whose parents regularly smoke or vape marijuana may experience viral respiratory infections, such as the common cold, more frequently than those whose parents do not smoke, according to a study published in the journal Pediatric Research.

  • Simulating microswimmers in nematic fluids

    New York | Heidelberg, 12 July 2021
    A combination of two simulation techniques has allowed researchers to investigate how swimming microparticles propel themselves through ‘nematic liquid crystals’ – revealing some unusual behaviours

  • Hunting Dark Energy with Gravity Resonance Spectroscopy

    New York | Heidelberg, 29 June 2021
    A highly sophisticated technique enables researchers to search for minuscule anomalies in the quantum state transitions of neutrons, which could offer key clues about the elusive nature of Dark Energy

  • Studying wombat burrows with WomBot, a remote-controlled robot

    A new robot – named WomBot – that can be used to explore and study wombat burrows is presented in a study published in the journal SN Applied Sciences.

  • THOR: Driving collaboration in heavy-ion collision research

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 June 2021
    As an expansive platform for collaboration between different research groups, the THOR COST Action has enabled hundreds of physicists studying the aftermath of high-energy collisions between heavy ions to improve their predictions

  • Understanding the mechanism that gives light a ‘little extra push’

    New York | Heidelberg, 7 May 2021
    The use of light to move matter has a wide range of technological applications and could one day even power spaceflight. New research suggests a method to better understand this subtle phenomenon.

  • A deeper understanding of how cells move and stick together

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 May 2021
    The way cells adhere to surfaces is an important element in allowing them to form cohesive tissues. A new study looks at how cells stick to a surface and spread across it.

  • Obesity may be a more significant risk factor for death from COVID-19 for men than women

    Obesity may be a stronger risk factor for death, severe pneumonia and the need for intubation in men than in women with COVID-19, according to a study published in the European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases.

  • Investigating heavy quark physics with the LHCb experiment

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 April 2021
    In ten years of operation the LHCb experiment has probed the nature of physics attempting to answer some of the Universe’s most fundamental questions. A new review examines its past achievements and future potential.

  • Investigating heavy quark physics with the LHCb experiment

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 April 2021
    In ten years of operation the LHCb experiment has probed the nature of physics attempting to answer some of the Universe’s most fundamental questions. A new review examines its past achievements and future potential.

  • Tracking the progress of fusion power through 60 years of neutral particle analysis

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 April 2021
    Harnessing the fusion power of the stars requires the control of plasma and a powerful diagnostic tool to analyse it

  • Micro-environmental influences on artificial micromotors

    New York | Heidelberg, 31 March 2021
    New experiments reveal the characteristic ways in which self-propelled ‘Janus particles’ with charged coatings will slide across or move away from charged boundaries in their surrounding environments.

  • Effective Field Theories and the Nature of the Universe

    New York | Heidelberg, 23 March 2021
    Effective Field Theories were introduced to simplify the mathematics involved in unifying interactions into the Standard Model of particle physics. An article in EPJ H presents Nobel Laureate Steven Weinberg’s recent lecture on the development of these theories.

  • Modelling speed-ups in nutrient-seeking bacteria

    New York | Heidelberg, 17 March 2021
    By considering how some bacteria will swim faster within higher nutrient concentrations, researchers have created a more accurate model of how these microbes search for nutrients

  • Factoring in gravitomagnetism could do away with dark matter

    New York | Heidelberg, 4 March 2021
    Models of galactic rotation curves built of a general relativistic framework could use gravitomagnetism to explain the effects of dark matter.

  • Investigating dense plasmas with positron waves

    New York | Heidelberg, 26 February 2021
    Astrophysical and lab-created plasmas under the influence of magnetic fields are the source of intense study. New research seeks to understand the dynamics of position waves travelling through these clouds of highly ionised gas.

  • Using neutron scattering to better understand milk composition

    New York | Heidelberg, 26 February 2021
    By using a more complex model for neutron scattering data, researchers can better understand the composition of materials such as milk.

  • Considering disorder and cooperative effects in photon escape rates from atomic gases

    New York | Heidelberg, 26 February 2021
    Investigating more complex models of photon escape rates from cold atomic gases could help researchers learn more about light-matter interactions

  • Slutpage visits may be common among US college students

    Visits to digital groups, websites or email lists that share nude or semi-nude photos of women without their consent, known as slutpages, may be common among US college students, according to a survey conducted at a large university in the USA. The findings, published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior, could help inform sexual violence prevention education offered by universities, according to the authors.

  • New data on COVID-19 patients with diabetes show that one in five die within 28 days of hospital admission

    Updated results from the CORONADO study, analysing the outcomes of patients with diabetes admitted to hospital with COVID-19, shows that one in five patients die within 28 days while around half are discharged. The study is published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes [EASD]), and is by Professor Bertrand Cariou and Professor Samy Hadjadj, diabetologists at l’institut du thorax, University Hospital Nantes, INSERM, CNRS, and University of Nantes, France, and colleagues.

  • Placing cosmological constraints on quantum gravity phenomenology

    New York | Heidelberg, 9 February 2021
    Researchers have used cosmological data to place stringent new limits on a model which emerges in attempts to reconcile gravity with the principles of quantum mechanics.

  • Modelling the brain during pain processing

    New York | Heidelberg, 2 February 2021
    Novel approaches in graph theory have enabled researchers to reveal the characteristic configurations of neurons which arise as our brains process pain

  • A full-scale prototype for muon tomography

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 February 2021
    Building on previous studies of muon tomography techniques, this topical issue demonstrates a full-scale prototype for the technology, capable of determining the position of a small lead block within a large sensing area

  • Paving the way for effective field theories

    New York | Heidelberg, 1 February 2021
    A detailed analysis of theories which approximate the underlying properties of physical systems could lead to new advances in studies of low-energy nuclear processes

  • Absence of supporters during football matches associated with fewer altercations on pitch

    Players, staff and officials engaged in shorter and less extensive emotional behaviour and interactions, such as arguments and discussions in games played during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic, when supporters were absent. The findings are presented in a case study of 20 FC Redbull Salzburg championship group games published in Humanities and Social Sciences Communications.

  • GEFS: Searching beyond seismology for earthquake precursors

    New York | Heidelberg, 25 January 2021
    A proposed collaborative initiative involving researchers in a wide range of fields could lead to better predictions of large-scale seismic events.

  • Tracking the evolution Maxwell knots

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 January 2021
    New research investigates the properties of particular solutions of Maxwell equations, tracking their evolution over time and determining a route to combine them with other systems.

  • Drinking water in several Chinese cities contains high levels of persistent chemicals

    Drinking water in several cities and regions in China contains high levels of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), according to a study published in Environmental Sciences Europe

  • Characterising cold fusion in 2D models

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 December 2020
    A new 2D modelling approach has been used to directly calculate how hydrogen nuclei fuse into helium after capturing muons

  • Trapping nanoparticles with optical tweezers

    New York | Heidelberg, 10 December 2020
    By exploiting a particular property of light diffraction at the interface between a glass and a liquid, researchers have demonstrated the first optical tweezers capable of trapping nanoscale particles.

  • Predicting epilepsy from neural network models

    New York | Heidelberg, 7 December 2020
    Improved modelling techniques have enabled a group of researchers to better predict how damaging conditions in the brain can be triggered by complex dynamics in branching networks of neurons.

  • Optimising laser-driven electron acceleration

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 December 2020
    A new paper examines how tuning aspects of a powerful laser beam can affect the acceleration of electrons, attempting to find the recipe for maximum net energy gain.

  • Characterising complex flows in 2D bubble swarms

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 December 2020
    In 2D simulations, the flows surrounding rising swarms of bubbles display characteristically different behaviours to those observed in 3D models

  • Detecting solar neutrinos with the Borexino experiment

    New York | Heidelberg, 3 December 2020
    Neutrinos produced by the CNO cycle within the core of the Sun are being hunted by the Borexino experiment so that we may learn more about this important nuclear process.

  • Building better diffusion models for active systems

    New York | Heidelberg, 19 November 2020
    Modifications to existing theories have enabled researchers to better understand and model the dynamics of systems which don’t obey conventional laws of diffusion.

  • Surgical face masks may impair facial identification

    People may not be able to correctly verify the identity of individuals in photos if they are wearing surgical face masks, according to a study published in the open access journal Cognitive Research: Principles and Implications.

  • Modelling microswimmers for drug delivery

    New York | Heidelberg, 11 November 2020
    Mathematical models of the motion of cells in viscous liquids that show how this motion is affected by the presence of a surfactant coating have applications in the design of artificial microswimmers for targeted drug delivery, micro-surgery and other applications.

  • Investigating optical activity under an external magnetic field

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 November 2020
    New research reveals that applying a magnetic field to a chiral metamaterial can change the way it polarises light.

  • Outcome of 2016 US election associated with poorer mental health in Clinton voters

    There were 54.6 million more days of poor mental health among adults in states that voted for Hillary Clinton in December 2016, compared to October 2016, according to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

  • Identifying biomolecule fragments in ionising radiation

    New York | Heidelberg, 28 October 2020
    Research published in EPJ D has revealed how the nature of biomolecule fragmentation varies with the energies of electrons produced when living cells are irradiated with heavy ions.

  • Weak equivalence principle violated in gravitational waves

    New York | Heidelberg, 28 October 2020
    Calculations reveal that a key principle of classical physics is broken by quantum particles as they pass through ripples in spacetime.

  • Slowing light in an optical cavity with mechanical resonators and mirrors

    New York | Heidelberg, 15 October 2020
    Theoretical physicists Kamran Ullah and Hameed Ullah have shown how a position-dependent mass optomechanical system involving a cavity between two mirrors, one attached to a resonator, can enhance induced transparency and reduce the speed of light.

  • Avoiding environmental losses in quantum information systems

    New York | Heidelberg, 28 September 2020
    Through new techniques for generating ‘exceptional points’ in quantum information systems, researchers have minimised the transitions through which they lose information to their surrounding environments.

  • Antiferromagnet lattice arrangements influence phase transitions

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 September 2020
    Calculations involving ‘imaginary’ magnetic fields show how the transitioning behaviours of antiferromagnets are subtly shaped by their lattice arrangements.

  • Impurities enhance polymer LED efficiencies

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 September 2020
    Molecular dynamics simulations have shown that the mysteriously high efficiency of polymer LEDs arises from interactions between triplet excitons in their polymer chains, and unpaired electrons in their molecular impurities.

  • A question of reality

    New York | Heidelberg, 24 September 2020
    John Stewart Bell’s eponymous theorem and inequalities set out, mathematically, the contrast between quantum mechanical theories and local realism. They are used in quantum information, which has evolving applications in security, cryptography and quantum computing.

  • Climate change may harm flight of Monarch butterflies

    Projected increases in global temperature may reduce the flight performance and alter the wing shape of North America’s Monarch butterflies in a way that may impede their ability to migrate, according to an experimental study published in the Journal of Insect Conservation.

  • Understanding electron transport in graphene nanoribbons

    New York | Heidelberg, 10 September 2020
    New understanding of the electrical properties of graphene nanoribbons (GRBs), when bounded with aromatic molecules, could have significant benefits in the development of chemosensors and personalised medicine.

  • Measuring electron emission from irradiated biomolecules

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2020
    OrigiA new experiment has characterised the properties of the electrons emitted when a key constituent of DNA is bombarded with high-velocity ions.

  • Updating Turing’s model of pattern formation

    New York | Heidelberg, 6 August 2020
    Through fresh analysis of a method first proposed by Alan Turing to explain the diversity of natural patterns, a team of researchers offer new explanations of how living systems can order themselves on large scales.

  • People with right-wing authoritarian attitudes less likely to alter existing beliefs

    People with strong right-wing authoritarian attitudes, which are characterised by a desire for order, structure, and preservation of social norms, are less likely to alter their beliefs in response to new information, according to a study published in the journal Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.