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    RESEARCHERS USE SEMICONDUCTORS TO SET SPEED LIMIT ON LIGHT
    Posted on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 @ 13:54:53 MST by vlad

    Science RESEARCHERS USE SEMICONDUCTORS TO SET SPEED LIMIT ON LIGHT, September 28
    In a nod to scientific paradox, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have slowed light down in an effort to speed up network communication.

    They have shown for the first time that the group velocity of light - the speed at which a laser pulse travels along a light wave - can be slowed to about 6 miles per second in semiconductors. While that speed is not exactly the pace of a turtle, it is 31,000 times slower than the 186,000 miles (or 300 million meters) per second that light normally clocks while traveling through a vacuum.


    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1363.html

    Other news that could be of interst to our readers from PhysOrg.com:

    FIRST BATTERY BASED ON 'NANOGRASS', September 28
    mPhase Technologies and Lucent Technologies today announced a major milestone for future commercialization of a nanotechnology-based battery. Lab tests, which have been replicated, proves it is possible to fabricate nanotech-based batteries, which can store and generate electric current. The project is based on a joint program with Bell Labs, the R&D arm of Lucent Technologies.
    The prototype battery is based on a Bell Labs discovery that liquid droplets of electrolyte will stay in a dormant state atop microscopic structures called "nanograss" until stimulated to flow, thereby triggering a reaction producing electricity.
    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1361.html

    FIVE-KILOWATT FUEL CELL CELEBRATES ONE YEAR, September 28
    The University of Alaska Fairbanks and Fuel Cell Technologies of Kingston, Ontario, have announced that the five-kilowatt solid oxide fuel cell installed in Fairbanks has successfully passed the one-year field operational mark.

    UAF has been testing fuel cell systems, which convert natural gas to grid-compatible AC electricity, for more than six years. Fuel cells promise highly reliable and efficient small-scale systems for remote power applications that may mean a significant reduction in both fuel consumption and CO2 production. Since system lifetime and reliability are major issues preventing deployment of these systems in remote areas, the one-year mark represents a significant milestone for solid oxide fuel cell systems toward proving that the technology is coming of age.
    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1366.html

    GROUND-BREAKING ARCTIC EXPEDITION, September 28
    A scientific party including four University of Rhode Island oceanographers and a science teacher from Narragansett Pier Middle School has just returned from the Arctic Ocean on a landmark expedition to recover seafloor sediments to reconstruct the geologic history of the Arctic. The nineteen scientists on the expedition, hailing from eight nations, collected a total of 339 meters of sediment, the oldest of which is 80 million years.
    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1364.html

    GLOBAL EARTH OBSERVATION MOVES AHEAD, September 28
    The intergovernmental Group on Earth Observations (GEO) met this week to agree important elements of a groundbreaking 10-year Plan that will pave the way toward building a global Earth Observation System. Over the next decade, this system will revolutionize our understanding of the Earth and how it works. With benefits as broad as the planet itself, this initiative promises to make peoples and economies around the globe healthier, safer and better equipped to manage basic daily needs. The aim is to create an observing system as interrelated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects providing the science on which sound policy and decision-making can be built. The 10-Year Plan is set to be adopted at the 3rd Earth Observation Summit in Brussels next February - the highlight in a nine-day public "Earth & Space Week" devoted to raising awareness of the important role that Earth observation & space play in our society.
    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1352.html

    SEARCHING THE SOURCES OF MYSTERIOUS PARTICLES FROM THE UNIVERSE, September 28
    The H.E.S.S. Telescope system, a new scout to the high-energy universe, will be opened on September 28, 2004 in the vicinity of the Gamsberg/Namibia

    A new system of large telescopes, dedicated to the search of the sources of high energetic particles with energies of more than 100 GeV, like supernova remnants and other exotic objects, will be opened on September 28, 2004 by the prime minister of the Republic of Namibia, Dr. Theo-Ben Gurirab. Numerous high-ranking guests from Namibia, South Africa, France and Germany will attend the ceremony on the Farm Goellschau in Namibia. The international project, which is coordinated by the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, is based on technologies from particle physics. It provides a powerful instrument for the young research field of TeV-astronomy, and may for the first time allow the detection of "dark matter" in the universe. The inauguration of the four telescopes marks the completion of the installation of the first phase of H.E.S.S. The telescope system can start its work for the benefit of the worldwide astronomical community.
    Full story at http://www.physorg.com/news1348.html


     
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