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Aug. 24, 2011
Volume: II
Number: 33
National Society of Black Physicists    African Physical Society    South African Institute of Physics   African Astronomical Society   
Higgs boson signals fade at Large Hadron Collider
The Guardian    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Researchers at the Large Hadron Collider noticed intriguing signals in their data in July that they thought might be caused by the elusive sub-atomic particle. But the latest analyses, based on nearly twice as much data, saw those signals weaken considerably. The news was broken at the Lepton-Photon conference in Mumbai. "We see no striking evidence of anything that could resemble a discovery," says Guido Tonelli, spokesman for the Compact Muon Solenoid detector group at CERN. More

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Geophysics and the Virginia earthquake
IO9    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Virginia and the eastern side of the North American continent are in the middle of the North American tectonic plate, one of the 15 or so major "chunks" of crust that float on top of the Earth's hot mantle. In contrast, the West Coast of the U.S. is on the western edge of the North American Plate and rubs against the eastern edge of the Pacific Plate. That boundary is marked by the San Andreas Fault and many other named/unnamed faults. The Central Virginia Seismic Zone is laced with known, but often poorly located, faults. Numerous smaller or deeply buried faults remain undetected. Locating these faults are amongst the grand challenges in seismology. More

Scientists crack the physics of coffee rings
NPR    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Two papers, one in Nature, the other in Physical Review Letters, provide a topic of conversation during coffee breaks, namely the coffee ring effect. Spill a drop of coffee on a substrate and after the stain dries you will see that the outer edge of the stain is darker than the rest of the stain. The question is, "Why does all the material suspended in a drop of coffee end up at the edge when the drop evaporates, considering that it started out dispersed across the whole drop?" The answer lies in the colloidal nature of the fluid and capillary fluid dynamics. More

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Physicist uncovers new data on adenine, a crucial building block of life
R&D Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Early Earth's atmosphere provided little shielding for ultraviolet light from space, so many prebiotic molecules, bombarded by it and light of other wavelengths, had a hard time surviving at all. But some molecules became photostable — able to withstand the assault and thrive as building blocks of life. Using ultrafast time-resolved photoionization spectroscopy physicists have been able to discern the reaction pathway where adenine converts UV energy to heat from the path that leads to the molecules destruction. More

Regular lattice structure leads to more efficient lithium batteries
American Physical Society    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The lithium ion batteries found in many portable electronics are starting to be made with lithium iron phosphate, which is safer and cheaper than alternative compounds. Researchers at Vanderbilt University and Oak Ridge National Laboratory have recently reported in Physical Review Letters that when the material is carefully made, the iron-based defects in the LFP lattice, which retard the mobility of lithium ions, occur in 1-D channels, leaving other channels open to the mobile ions. More

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Astronomers detect presence of fullerene molecules in space
AZoNano    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
An astronomy team at the National Optical Astronomy Observatory has detected the presence of the C60 and C70 fullerene molecules in space utilizing the Spitzer Space Telescope. The team is also working on the first extragalactic detection of graphene or planar C24. More

Nigeria launches 2 satellites into orbit
IT News Africa    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In a move aimed at ensuring proper disaster monitoring and security of the West African nation, Nigeria recently launched NigeriaSat-2 and NigeriaSat-X. In a statement, the government said the two satellites would be used for forestry mapping, disaster monitoring, military applications and security, among other applications. More

Masters of the Universe:
National Society of Black Physicists

Comet expected to be visible from Earth in early 2013
Astronomy Now Online    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Astronomers at the University of Hawaii at Manoa say they expect a recently discovered comet to be visible to the naked eye in early 2013. Originally found by the Pan-STARRS 1 telescope in Hawaii on Haleakala, Maui, on June 5-6, it was confirmed to be a comet by UH astronomer Richard Wainscoat and graduate student Marco Micheli the following night using the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Mauna Kea. More

Global tsunami monitoring could follow from discovery in ionosphere
Science and Development Network    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Researchers from Brazil, France and the United States, using a highly sensitive, wide-angle camera at the top of Haleakala volcano in Hawaii, detected the "airglow" signature in the atmosphere of the March 11 tsunami that devastated Japan, demonstrating that the genesis of a tsunami leaves a fingerprint in the ionosphere — an ionized zone of the atmosphere more than 80 kilometers up. More

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Great Britain sees surge in students taking up physics
IOP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
For the fifth consecutive year, Great Britain has seen an increase in the number of students sitting for the physics A-level exam, a key end-of-high school national exam. Also for the first time since 2002, physics is back in the top 10 most popular subjects. Professor Sir Peter Knight, incoming-president of the Institute of Physics, said, "Year on year we are seeing increases in the number of students choosing to sit physics A-level. As physics has enjoyed popular rejuvenation — thanks, in no small part, to the 'Brian Cox effect' and the excitement surrounding the Large Hadron Collider — we're sure that many students are also responding to calls from university leaders, businesses and the government for students to choose subjects, which will provide the skills our country needs. More

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The number of US citizens among physics Ph.D recipients is on the rise
American Institute of Physics    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Although the number of physics Ph.Ds conferred by American universities on both U.S. and non-U.S. citizens has been climbing in recent years, the number going to U.S. citizens has been increasing at a greater rate. As a result, U.S. citizens made up 47 percent of the Ph.D class of 2007–2008, up from an all-time low of 40 percent in 2004. Also in years 2007 and 2008, the two-year average of the number of physics Ph.D. degrees awarded to African-Americans was 15, and 25 at the exiting master's level. More

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NIH study reveals black scientists are systematically underfunded
NPR    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A detailed analysis of National Institutes of Health grant data reveals that a black research scientist is 10 percent less likely to receive research funding than a white scientist from a similar institution and with the same research credentials, a similar finding of the 2006 study with respect to women physicists and the Department of Energy. The NIH study was commissioned by the agency itself, and published in Science. Science Live will hold an online chat the week of Aug. 29 to discuss the study and challenges that minority and women researchers face. More

National Society of Black Physicists jobs board postings
NSBP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Junior Faculty Search in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
NASSP Honors and Masters Programs (Closing date: Sept. 30)
Tenure-Track Assistant Professor
Auburn University Tenure-Track Faculty Position in Theoretical Space Physics
Assoc. SRF Group Leader (Sr. Research Assoc)
Assistant Professor — Nanoscience Biophysics — UPenn
4 Tenure-Track Faculty Positions in Experimental and Computational Condensed Matter Physics
Program Manager Antartic Research Logistics Integration
Faculty Position in Experimental Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
KICP Postdoctoral Research Fellow
South African Research Chairs
Project Officer: IAU Global Office of Astronomy for Development (3 Year Contract)
Faculty Position in Theoretical Solid State Physics
APS Scholarship Program for Minority Undergraduate Physics Majors
HBCU STEM Fellowship Program
National Astrophysics and Space Science Program
Visiting Professor
Postdoctoral Research Associate Positions

Advice for graduate students
Inside Higher Education
Steven Stearns offers some insight and advice for graduate students. Know thyself and know thy advisor. More

More advice for graduate students
Inside Higher Education
So much comes down to good writing skills. Steven Stearns offers some tips on how to write well and write strategically. More

Overcoming the imposter syndrome
At one time or another nearly every graduate student and new faculty member wonders about his or her competence. This is a common fear often referred to as the impostor syndrome. The impostor syndrome runs rampant in academia — and women are especially prone to it. How do you get over the impostor syndrome? Easier said than done. More

Ready. Set. Go. Transitioning from college to graduate school
Compared to your undergraduate education, graduate school is faster paced. Professors expect a lot of work to be done, and there's a lot less hand-holding. More

Latest research from Fluid Dynamics Research
IOP Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail

Stability analysis of a boundary layer over a hump using parabolized stability equations

A fluid film sprayed on a 3-D stretching/shrinking sheet

Local instability of a rotating flow driven by precession of arbitrary frequency

Coherent structure statistics in the wake of a sharp-edged bluff body placed vertically in a shallow channel

Extraction of design rules from multiobjective design exploration using rough set theory

Latest research from the Journal of Photonics for Energy
Journal of Photonics for Energy    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Publisher's note: Special section on organic photovoltaics

Mixed solvents for reproducible photovoltaic bulk heterojunctions

Optimization of the efficacy and angle dependence of emission of top-emissive organic light-emitting diodes on metal foils

Transparent oxide/metal/oxide trilayer electrode for use in top-emitting organic light-emitting diodes

1-axis tracking holographic planar concentrator systems

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