Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 2007-04-03 07:00
Physicists seeking to tame plasma have figured out yet another of its wily ways. Knowing how plasma escapes the grip of magnetic fields may help researchers design better magnetic bottles to contain it. Magnetic confinement could be a crucial technology for electric power plants that harness nuclear fusion, the powerful process fueling the sun.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 2007-03-29 07:00
Typical universities have mechanical engineering faculty who teach and conduct occasional consulting projects on the side, but the California Institute of Technology is not like most universities and its ME department is anything but typical.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 2007-03-22 07:00
For the first time, physicists have devised a way to make visible light travel in the opposite direction that it normally bends when passing from one material to another, like from air through water or glass. The phenomenon is known as negative refraction and could in principle be used to construct optical microscopes for imaging things as small as molecules, and even to create cloaking devices for rendering objects invisible.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 2006-12-07 08:00
Computers and liquids are not very compatible, as many a careless coffee-drinking laptop owner has discovered. But a new breakthrough by researchers at the California Institute of Technology could result in future logic circuits that literally work in a test tube—or even in the human body.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 2006-11-30 08:00
When it comes to digestive ability, termites have few rivals due to the gut activities that allow them to literally digest a two-by-four. But they do not digest wood by themselves—they are dependent on the 200 or so diverse microbial species that call termite guts home and are found nowhere else in nature.
There is more to bubbles than just froth. The same phenomenon that puts foam in your latte can also reduce kidney stones or chew holes in propellers. Understanding how bubbles form and collapse has led to a variety of applications, from faster torpedoes to cleaner teeth.
In the 1950s, a revolution began when glass and metal vacuum tubes were replaced with tiny and cheap transistors. Today, for the cost of a single vacuum tube, you can buy a computer chip with literally millions of transistors.
A new study by researchers at the California Institute of Technology has revealed important findings about the nature of ruptures and sliding behavior, which could impact how we respond to earthquakes and other disasters.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 2006-09-05 07:00
The old optical microscopes that everyone used in high-school biology class may be a step closer to the glass heap. Researchers at the California Institute of Technology have announced their invention of an optofluidic microscope that uses no lens elements and could revolutionize the diagnosis of certain diseases such as malaria.