Thought for the month

“A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man’s brow.” Ovid, Roman Poet (43 BC – 17 AD).

Monday, 15 July 2019

BandiT setting tips

Settings Tips for your kSA BandiT System for easier thin-film temperature monitoring.

Friday, 12 July 2019

Top auction sales

Last month saw a 1859 first edition of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection auctioned for $500,075. Elsewhere, for a mere $2.3 million one could have procured a, somewhat larger, 150 million year old allosaurus skeleton

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Top unis

MIT, Stanford and Harvard top the QS World University Rankings 2020.

Monday, 8 July 2019

Become an astronaut

NASA has announced that it is opening up the international space station for private astronaut missions. Terms and conditions apply. Not cheap.

Friday, 5 July 2019

Wrist action

I don’t recall that Navier, Stokes, Bernoulli or Reynolds ever wrote a recipe book or opened a creperie, but fluid dynamics has hit the kitchen. The surface kinematics of producing the perfect pancake has been examined using Monte Carlo methods and partial differential equations. Apparently success is associated with rotating and decreasing the pan’s angle of inclination whilst adding the batter. Mine still stick to the pan.

Thursday, 4 July 2019

Help find ET

Are we alone? After 3 years of searching the Breakthrough Listen project notes that “We found no evidence of artificial signals from beyond Earth, but this doesn't mean there isn't intelligent life out there: we may just not have looked in the right place yet, or peered deep enough to detect faint signals”. In sharing its two recent papers and 1 PB of raw observational data the team is encouraging the astronomical community to look afresh with different tools and perspectives. Did they miss something?

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Help #TeachTheReach

Over 500 people are injured every year in car-dooring collisions, and it can even be fatal. Yet 35% of drivers admit to not looking for cyclists before getting out of their car - which probably includes some of your friends and family. You can change that.

Friday, 29 March 2019

Cool LEDs

Running an LED in reverse could cool future computers.

Thursday, 28 March 2019

Disruptiveness index

Small research teams ‘disrupt’ science more radically than large ones.

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Monday, 25 March 2019

Thursday, 21 March 2019

Fast food

Almost nothing is new, in fact.

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

PVD Products, Inc. partnership with Northwestern University

Through extensive communication, PVD and Northwestern University have developed a custom system that allowed them to expand and improve their deposition applications. 

Monday, 18 March 2019

k-Space Associates, Inc. narrows BandiT spectrum

The kSA BandiT is now available in a UV/VIS model! - contact us for more details.

Friday, 15 March 2019

Thermo Scientific correlates XPS and Raman

Correlative chemical & structural analysis of 2D materials is easy with the right tool like the Thermo Scientific™ Nexsa™ XPS System. Watch the webinar, it’s around 10 minutes, so perfect for a coffee break!

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

LIGO to double

A  $35M upgrade to the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory will see a doubling of its sensitivity to gravitational waves. 

Monday, 11 March 2019

Taiwan (21.8%) and S. Korea (21.3%) head the global IC wafer capacity in 2018 according to the Global Wafer Capacity 2019-2023 report.

Friday, 8 March 2019

Oppy dies on Mars

Rover over, One dead?
Last month NASA declared that after nearly 15 years of successfully trundling around Mars the exploration rover nicknamed "Oppy" had ceased to function. A far less auspicious Martian enterprise may also have come to an end with Mars One Ventures AG entering administration. The proposed reality TV funded project to send people to Mars may sadly linger on through a new investor.

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Dangerous tools?
A paper at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting has questioned whether we are producing erroneous science by the use of machine learning algorithms. The concern being that these tools have been developed specifically to find interesting things in datasets and so when they search through huge amounts of data they will inevitably find a pattern. A lack of reproducibility in science may also be a result. Others suggest that it is not the tools but how they are used that produces problems.

Friday, 15 February 2019

Some people believe that the earth is flat, others that the Apollo moon landings were faked. The Flat Earth International Conference is being held in November. Two days with an exhibition! The conference website promotes a Flat Earth cruise in 2020, clearly unconcerned that for many years marine navigation has relied upon a more spherical model of the earth. Can we dismiss these people and ideas as irrelevant or are there wider lessons to be learnt that impact more serious issues? Bernstein's concept of an idiot culture maybe a bit harsh but too often scientific rationale is lost, and sometimes poorly communicated, in a plethora of opinions. Being right is not the same as being effective.

Wednesday, 13 February 2019

One ring to rule them all?
CERN has published, in four volumes, its ideas for a £20bn successor to the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), given the working name of Future Circular Collider. The circular tunnel would have a circumference of about 100 kilometres (62 miles), almost four times longer than the current LHC. Undoubtedly it would be a tool for progressing particle physics and our knowledge of matter and dark matter. However will politicians and those in other scientific areas think it precious?

Monday, 11 February 2019

PVD Products, Inc.
Customer Application Spotlight: Driving adoption of unique MAPLE deposition techniques at Duke University.