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…

Separate advancements have both revealed promising leaps forward for fusion energy

This high temperature superconducting magnet was designed by Commonwealth Fusion Systems and MIT. It is the most powerful fusion magnet in the world. Image by Gretchen Ertl, CFS/MIT-PSFC.

In the future — when the twinkling electrical cities of the world are powered in large part by fusion energy — we will ask ourselves at which moment we first thought fusion could become a reality. We have dreamt of it, toiled with it, argued about whether or not it is just another pipe dream taking up our valuable time. And yet two significant breakthroughs emerging in just the past few weeks may represent to us that critical moment in fusion energy’s history: the first advancements that made us believe it could really, truly change the world.

The first breakthrough

Accelerate to near the speed of light, no propellant required

In the deep space adventure world of Star Trek, high-tech ships are propelled forward with incredible efficiency by utilizing something known as an “impulse drive”. This drive allows them to travel at speeds approaching — but never quite reaching — the speed of light. Intrepid crew members travel between planets in minutes. Sometimes they even go back and forth between different worlds in the span of a single day.

This is unimaginable for us. Getting to our neighboring world of Mars will take at least 7 months with our best technology. A mission to the red planet and back would…

My experience with the Mexican drug cartel

In Mexico there is a saying: “If a scorpion stings a person and that person dies, they were good of heart. But if it’s the scorpion that dies, then the person was more wicked and venomous at heart than the scorpion could ever be.”

When my aunt first told me this I thought it was a clever but ultimately silly expression. I was never the kind to believe in superstitions, myths, or religious teachings. In my mind everything boiled down to science. Surviving a scorpion sting, therefor, wasn’t due to anything other than a healthy body and good medical care…

Iron air batteries are now outperforming lithium-ion, bringing them closer to commercialization

The breakthrough was a quiet affair, escaping the light of many major media outlets. Up until this year any research behind this technology was highly secretive; details were ushered out of the public eye and bound behind closed doors. It was only a few weeks ago that we became aware of the brilliant strides one company had made. Their announcement to the world may have been subtle and unassuming, yet the impact this technology will have is tremendous, affecting the course of humanity and the future of our society as a whole. Though the company behind this innovation isn’t well…

Thanks to this booming trend in biotechnology

The thread-like growth of mycelium.

One of the greatest lies ever sold to humanity is the recyclability of plastics. The three green arrows placed on packaging were supposed to be a symbol of progress — a symbol that we would take better care to reuse materials and lessen the strain on our planet. Instead, the recycling icon became the opposite. It was used to shift attention away from the production of new plastics and onto the consumer, pressuring them to do a better job with proper disposal while companies continued to flood the world with more and more waste. In the decades after recycling became…

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…

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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