Why we may never want to use this technology

A man gets ready to teleport in the movie “The Fly” from 20th Century Fox.

The truth is that teleportation already exists. It was theorized in a 1935 paper written by Einstein and two of his colleagues, Podolsky and Rosen. It was later proven in experiments during the 1990’s. For decades we have known that it is possible, at the quantum level, to teleport particles from one location to another. There are no laws of physics which prevent human beings and objects from dematerializing in a surreal cloud of particles in one location and rematerializing somewhere very distant, somewhere like the slick moon-white ice fields of the Arctic or among the pollen-dusted flowers of the…


The mechanical batteries you didn’t know existed

The world is changing. Luminous fires consume Californian woods. Sweltering temperatures reach even the most unexpected places as preparations are made to phase out the production of new gas-powered vehicles in the next few decades. The future is magnetic and electric, no longer powered by smoldering coal or the pungent smell of petroleum. As we begin to adapt using innovative and cleaner energy, there is one technology coming back from the past — powerful, carbon-free, long-lasting. Mounting interest in this reinvented technology aims to solve one of the biggest problems facing our transition towards cleaner energy.

That problem, of course…


The tale of their journey has now transcended millennia

An artist’s depiction of the events revealed by the New Mexico footprints. Image by Karen Carr/National Park Service.

The longest collection of fossilized footprints ever found were unearthed in the ethereal, sun-flooded stretch of New Mexico land known as White Sands National Park. Stretching for about a mile, the set of prints tells a far more elaborate story than what had been the longest footprint set prior to its discovery — a track stretching just about 1/10th of a mile in Northern Tanzania. Only the footprints in New Mexico allow researchers to follow the journey of an individual across large distances, revealing a story of intrepidness through dangerous terrain. …


In the absence of fusion power, this is the next best thing

A power plant completed just last year in South Korea uses leftover hydrogen from petroleum facilities to generate electricity. Image by Hanwha Energy.

Over 90% of atoms in the universe belong to a single element. It’s the element responsible for the Solar System’s largest ocean — a vast and vaporous sea somewhere beneath Jupiter’s turbulent cloud cover. And yet this Jovian ocean is made not of water, but is instead a deep chasm of liquid metallic hydrogen. The conditions needed to create liquid metallic hydrogen are too extreme for us to simulate in our laboratories here on Earth, though we do have access to hydrogen in its less extreme gas and liquid form. …


Is one you’ve probably never heard about

A woman wipes tears from the face of the artist in “Rhythm 0”. Image by Donatelli Sbarra.

The series culminated with Rhythm 0, or what can surely be described as one of the world’s most profound and yet horrifying pieces of art. All of the performances in the Rhythm series were meant to test the limits of the human body, beginning with knife-play in the first performance and gradually mounting to the destruction and seduction of the final piece. The artist Marina Abramovic sought to give an authentic exploration of the body — consciousness and unconsciousness, its corporeal pain, its pleasure, its ability to reveal facets of humanity and womanhood.

Rhythm 10 began with 20 knives. Marina…


And could be this generation’s greatest gift to the world

Artwork of a space elevator ferrying people as it ascends through the planet’s atmosphere. Image by Glenn Clovis.

What is the single biggest obstacle facing space exploration today? What is the one thing preventing us from setting up sprawling settlements, venturing farther into the Solar System, and opening up the universe not only to the ultra-rich, but to all of us with a desire to journey deep into the cosmos? It’s not a matter of understanding physics, nor is it a matter of engineering. We already know exactly what we need to do. The biggest problem preventing us from colonizing our star system is cost.

Depending on which estimates you use, it runs about $10,000 per pound to…


Solid-state batteries are poised to emerge in the coming years

A solid-state battery cell from the company QuantumScape.

Envision this: there is a technology currently undergoing testing that, when released to the public, will become a long-awaited revolution in energy. This new technology promises to be safer and more efficient than anything we have on the market now. It will affect that which we consider mundane — power tools, toys, laptops, smartphones — and that which we consider exceptional — medical devices, spacecraft, and the innovative new vehicle designs needed to wean us off of fossil fuels. We have known about this technology for centuries, yet until now we have only been able to take small steps towards…


Life in the age of true nanotechnology

What happens when the sweeping wave of technological progress meets our understanding of atomic physics? Manipulating atoms has, up until now, allowed us to make powerful bombs, computers, power plants, and the impressive works of art we call particle accelerators. Yet these feats are small in comparison to what lies ahead. As both our technology and our understanding of the atomic realm grow, humanity will enter a new era: an industrial revolution changing everything from our space exploration to the very lifespan of a human being. No era before has been quite so fantastical — none so near the magical…


And its stunning counterparts: the nuclear submarine, train, and aircraft

The Ford Nucleon.

The body itself is a cheery candy red with a distinctive new-car gleam. Bold silver letters along the back spell the name “Nucleon”. The Ford Nucleon, to be exact. At the time of its creation it was unlike any car ever seen in the world — old-fashioned, and at the same time futuristic in the way only designs of the 50’s could be.

In this, the height of the Atomic Age, the car has been specially designed to run on none other than nuclear power. The metal circle on the rear of the car is to host the power capsule…


What the laws of nature really tell us about free will

A time-lapse shows a past, present, and future Earth.

Among the greatest mysteries of the universe — dark matter and God, singularities and the beginning of time — there is the question of free will. It is an essential aspect of the human experience, this needing to have control over one’s own destiny and this feeling that all our decisions do matter. Free will contributes to the idea that the future is as yet unwritten and there is still room to create whatever world we want for ourselves. There have been philosophical debates and there have been neurological debates over whether or not we can make conscious decisions.

Perhaps…

Ella Alderson

Astrophysics student, writer for over a decade. A passion for language and the unexplored universe. I aim to marry poetry and science. ella.aldrsn@gmail.com

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