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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Great Example of Computational Thinking/Modeling for an Everyday Physics Problem

Check out how mathematical modeling is applied to solving the motion of a rotating fan blade slowing down. It outlines the thought process and methods used to solve this commonly observed event.  Check it out! 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Femto-Photography is Here - 1 Trillion frames per second!

Modern technology has revolutionized many facets of life, but as much as any area, photography has gone bananas with high-speed photos and films.  As long ago as the 1960s, scientists and engineers figured out how to take pictures at one million frames per second.  Now, fifty years later, there is a camera that is one million times faster than that!   Yes, one trillion frames per second.  Check out this TED talk to see what it can do, where is actually follows a pulse of light can see a light pulse move.  I find this unbelievable, and truly fascinating.  Our ability to view Nature at this level has opened our eyes to details of all sorts of phenomena we could not dream of just a few years ago.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Big Day in Particle Physics - The HIGGS!!

The Higgs is here! After decades of looking for the bugger, confirming experimental results from Fermilab and CERN show that the Higgs boson is a real particle, which satisfies the prediction from the Standard Model.  It is also cool to see comments from two old friends from my Fermilab days, Rob Roser and Tom LeCompte, in this article.  Here is another article, and also an interview on CNBC below.  There are also a couple former students from Chem-Phys out at CERN (shout-out to Edmund and Dan!), who have helped keep me in the loop the past couple years.  Congrats to everyone involved!!