A New Form Of Matter

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Mr. Anderson, Jan 29, 2004.

  1. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #1
  2. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

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    pretty amazing stuff... i'm surprised the magnetic fields and lasers used to manipulate the atoms didn't push the heat way above <1 kelvin. makes me wonder how many other forms of matter we'll discover, and what interesting sort of properties might be discovered...

    paul
     
  3. jayscheuerle macrumors 68020

    jayscheuerle

    #3
    Yes, this new form of matter is called Itdoesnt Matter, as it will most likely just end up a scientific curiosity (like element #152 or whatever).

    Are these my tax dollars at work?
     
  4. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

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    "If you had a superconductor you could transmit electricity with no losses," Jin said. "Right now something like 10 percent of all electricity we produce in the United States is lost. It heats up wires. It doesn't do anybody any good."

    This will definitely be a vast improvemnwt in our electricity transmission. Last suumers blackout shows that we need an upgrade. I hope that this can be brought to real world use soon.
     
  5. Mr. Anderson thread starter Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #5
    Its more than just that 10% - if you could get super conductors in solar panels you up the efficiency by a huge amount that would effectively change the way we generate energy. Solar panels are at 10-20% efficiency, if you could get 50% or higher the possibilities would be endless...:D

    D
     
  6. jayscheuerle macrumors 68020

    jayscheuerle

    #6
    With the amount of cooling that this matter needs in order to exist, don't count on it before we're all driving around in maglev Volkswagons. Seriously, outside of the scientific community, this is non-news. Give it a couple of decades and see where it leads... if anywhere.
     
  7. Dros macrumors 6502

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    I think everyone involved agrees that the method to obtain this form of matter doesn't have practical applications. However, the key here is that they can study how atoms pair up, the poorly understood way superconductors superconduct. They suggest that the insights from studying this will allow higher temperature superconductors to be more rationally designed.

    So sure, maybe a few decades will be needed. Maybe not. Maybe it will be great and earth-shattering, maybe a flop. That is the nature of basic research. If it was a sure fire given that this would create room temperature superconductors, companies would be all over it. But for now, I'm happy the government is supportive of making these kinds of bets. Some will pay off far beyond what the total cost is to you (at least that is what I believe). If there is one area that I think government taxes and spending are defensible, it is supporting basic scientific research. And even if you don't think so, the researcher was supported as well by two private foundations that didn't cost you a penny.
     
  8. jayscheuerle macrumors 68020

    jayscheuerle

    #8
    Actually, I just didn't recheck my facts. :D
     
  9. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

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    Much like fusion, which is not theoretical but needs 2 billion dollars, hundreds of people, and a million megawatts to produce enough power to light the inside of a breadbox, this new matter needs such a large amount of energy to produce it, it will certainly be centuries before any practical application is developed. Of course the accumulation of data, and its branches into other disciplines, is what's really exciting. For now it belongs on the pages of Discover Magazine and nowhere else.
     
  10. Dale Sorel macrumors 6502a

    Dale Sorel

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    #10
    Yea, like relativity :rolleyes:

    Yep :rolleyes:
     
  11. Frohickey macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    Just make sure you don't stick your wet tongue to it. :p
     
  12. MrMacMan macrumors 604

    MrMacMan

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    Just tell me when the interstellar space ship gets up to 200% efficiency ok?

    10 MrMacMan points if you get the show right... :D


    Superconducters... 0% loss is impossible.

    Theoretically is not even possible.

    Where there is an energy exchange there is a loss of some (although minute) amount of energy.

    --MrMacMan
     
  13. themadchemist macrumors 68030

    themadchemist

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    ah, such skeptics! such disdain for pure science. such short-sight for the power of knowledge.

    Anyway, there's a probably a reason I'm not as interested in physics as I am in biochemistry and neurobiology. The organic world, specifically the living world, seems a more fun (and perhaps more productive) place to spend our time doing research.

    But this actually sounds great...Extremely fascinating...But the naysayers will continue to say nay.

    Without the NSF and YOUR tax dollars, we wouldn't be nearly where we are in the sciences...And not EVERYTHING important requires a practical application right now. Sit back and enjoy the pure beauty of it all.
     
  14. Rend It macrumors 6502

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    Perhaps, but 0.00000001% loss is much better than 10%.

    As a grad student in physics at CU-Boulder (not in Jin's group), I had to comment on how important this result really is for physics and for our department in particular. If you read the news report from CU's website (below), you'll notice that the phenomenon was predicted to occur the way Jin's group observed it by Dr. Holland's (JILA theoretical physicist) group in 2001. There is nothing more elegant than a beautiful theory being validated by experiment. Jin's result is the first to provide an experimental demonstration of the crossover region between the BCS theory of superconductivity (developed in the late 50's) and the BEC/superfluid behavior observed by Jin's group last year. Even Nobel laureate Eric Cornell admitted that this work was much more difficult than the Bose-Einstein work for which he was awarded the prize.

    A glance at physics history shows that great things happen about every 100 years or so. From Newton to Lagrange to the development of relativity and quantum mechanics in the early part of the 20th century. We are due for something profound in the next 15-20 years.

    -Jason

    http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2004/21.html
     
  15. Mr. Anderson thread starter Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #15
    Ha! So any predictions? Fusion, room temp superconductor, anti grav?

    I do have a question, though - they get this new form of matter assembled at really low temeratures - what happens when they warm it up?

    D
     
  16. jayscheuerle macrumors 68020

    jayscheuerle

    #16
    World peace? :)
     
  17. Mr. Anderson thread starter Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #17
    ha, with technology?

    Not unless its mind control :p

    D
     
  18. cosmo macrumors newbie

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    Grad Student here too

    and this is a really important result...

    I'm a physics graduate student working in astrophysics, and this is even a big deal to me...

    it's ironic that someone sitting at their machine, probably drooling over the technology of a G5 criticizes basic research like this...

    and fyi the materials are basically cooled by the doppler effect using finely tuned lasers...
     
  19. ThomasJefferson macrumors 6502

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    #19
    And to think that this was just a -small piece- of Steve's Reality Distortion Field.
     
  20. Rend It macrumors 6502

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    When I made the comment about the next 15-20 years, I was implying something much more fundamental and far-reaching. Just as quantum physics has brought us lasers, solid-state electronics, etc., which are now an integral part of our normal lives, it should be something that will revolutionize our understanding of nature. It may come out of string theory, or biophysics, or perhaps nanotechnology, but after it's understood, we will look back and think, "How could we have been so stupid?"

    An interesting aside is that a great deal of unsolved problems have to do with how things (e.g., atoms, electrons, biological molecules) interact with one another, especially when there are a lot of them (so-called many body problem). In most cases, physicists make assumptions which neglect these interactions, like in the ideal gas law. The Jin experiment was profound in this sense because it uses a magnetic field to precisely control interactions, and the observed behavior as a function of interaction strength is the amazing result.

    Nature, especially its biological side, is rife with examples of the important role that interactions play. Almost all of the advances ahead are dependent on our understanding of "interactions": the highly nonlinear effects in plasmas (fusion), the interplay between lattice vibrations and electrons (superconductivity), and the response of cancerous cells to drugs (disease).

    -Jason
     
  21. cosmo macrumors newbie

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    #21
    My guess

    I too am anticipating something like this as a physics student.

    But i think the big revolution will be in physics education, specifically how newtonian dynamics is taught...

    revolution in this will make physics easier to understand for most students, making physics more popular as a whole...


    but just my opinion
     
  22. Durandal7 macrumors 68040

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    #22
    Indeed, the only thing that sets man apart from the animals is his mind therefore to choose not to use the mind is to choose to cease being human.

    I daresay if everything had to have a practical application then we would probably still think that the Sun orbited the Earth and that the planet was made 6000 years ago.

    I don't mind short-sightedness but I do get bothered when they try to inflict their short-sightedness on the rest of the world.
     

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