NBSP Industry Update
Oct. 1, 2011

Physicists discover 'magnetotoroidic effect'
For many years, scientists have known about the magnetoelectric effect, in which an electric field can induce and control a magnetic field, and vice versa. In this effect, the electric field has always been homogeneous. Now, scientists have found that a curled electric field can also be used to control magnetic fields, constituting a novel phenomenon that they call the "magnetotoroidic effect." More

Cloaking magnetic fields — the first anti-magnet
Institute of Physics
Spanish researchers have designed what they believe to be a new type of magnetic cloak, an anti-magnet, which shields objects from external magnetic fields, while at the same time preventing any magnetic internal fields from leaking outside, making the cloak undetectable. The development of such a device could offer many beneficial applications, such as protecting a ship's hull from mines designed to detonate when a magnetic field is detected, or allowing patients with pacemakers or cochlear implants to use medical equipment. More

Is nuclear energy still a viable option for the developing world?
Nuclear energy is seen as one way to respond to climate change, creating a dilemma for developing countries searching for relatively cheap sources of energy. Some have already invested in nuclear power. South Africa operates two nuclear reactors. Nigeria has announced that it plans to build a nuclear power plant, and Ghana is moving forward with its plan. But after the incident in Japan, the world is taking a second look at nuclear power, asking whether it is the best, long-term option. Senegal has shelved its nuclear power plant plans, and even Germany has foresworn nuclear power.More

Physicists speak out on neutrino result
Scientific American
Scientific American asked a number of physicists for their reaction to the announcement of neutrinos breaking the cosmic speed limit.More

No cause to dispute Einstein
Huffington Post
The result recently announced from CERN does not actually contradict Einstein's theory of relativity. Einstein's equations fully allow for particles to travel faster than light — provided they never travel slower. But if the result holds up it will overthrow the distinction between cause and effect. More

Texas update: State holds firm to closing physics departments
Inside Higher Ed
Almost half of undergraduate physics programs at public colleges and universities in Texas are in danger of being eliminated because they do not meet a new state requirement of graduating at least 25 students every five years. The national average for bachelor degree production is seven, and if the Texas criterion was applied nationally, 70 percent of all departments would be shuttered. A delegation of Texas physicists met with the Texas higher education commissioner the week of Sept. 19 and he was clear; the departments slated for closure likely cannot be saved. Attention should be turned to increasing enrollments at the remaining departments.More

Bubbles of hydrogen and oxygen burn spontaneously if they are small enough
American Physical Society
In an article in Physical Review E, Vitaly Svetovoy of the University of Twente in the Netherlands and colleagues show evidence for spontaneous combustion in bubbles smaller than 200 nanometers in diameter. To generate hydrogen or oxygen gas from water, the researchers apply brief negative or positive voltage pulses to a submerged metal electrode. Nanobubbles of either gas alone persist and aggregate into larger bubbles. In contrast, rapidly alternating the voltage polarity creates mixed bubbles that disappear as the gases react. More

US-Islamic states science link-up to be launched
University World News
A ground-breaking initiative to foster higher education and scientific cooperation among Islamic countries, and between them and the United States, will be launched at the USA-Muslim World Science and Technology Convergence Summit in Marrakesh, Morocco, May 23-27. A statement on the summit's website says, "Although it is a U.S.-Muslim World initiative, the summit is open to all nations from all over the world. It is intended to be the starting point for a global platform of open innovation." More

Hints of universal behavior seen in exotic 3-atom states
Science Daily News
A novel type of interparticle binding predicted in 1970 and observed for the first time in 2006, is forming the basis for an intriguing kind of ultracold quantum chemistry. Chilled to nano-kelvin temperatures, cesium atoms — three at a time — come together to form a bound state orders of magnitude larger than individual atoms. Unlike the case of ordinary atoms, wherein electrons are bound to a nucleus by energy on the order of an electron volt, the cesium triplets feature energy levels that are measured in trillionths of an electron volt (peV). More

Laser pulses can reveal quantum features of large objects
Science Daily News
Just as a camera flash illuminates unseen objects hidden in darkness, a sequence of laser pulses can be used to study the elusive quantum behavior of a large "macroscopic" object. The main idea is based on the fact that quantum objects, in contrast to classical objects, behave differently when they are being watched. "In current approaches, objects are constantly monitored and the possible quantum features are being washed out.More

Cold atoms reveal their crystalline nature
American Physical Society
Cold atoms in an optical trap can behave like the electrons in a solid crystal. The traps, which are easily manipulated, provide researchers with a test bed for understanding real crystals. Now a team reports in Physical Review Letters that they have extracted from this kind of simulated crystal an essential property — the band structure — that in real crystals characterizes the conductivity and related parameters. More

National Society of Black Physicists jobs board postings
Postdoctoral Research Positions, LIGO Laboratory
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Assistant Professor of Physics
Assistant Professor, Physics Department at MIT
Neukom Fellow
Assistant Professor of Physics & Astronomy
Tenure Track Assistant Professor of Experimental Physics
Tenure Track Assistant Professor, Physics
Auburn University Facutly Position in Expermental Laboratory Plasma Physics
Alonzo W. Ashley Internship Program - LCLS Area Physicist Assistant Intern
Alonzo W. Ashley Internship Program - Operations Engineering Intern
Assistant Professor in Astrophysics, posting #814540
Faculty Position in Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences at the University of Michigan
Assistant Professor, Astrophysics
High Voltage Development Engineer II
Assistant Professor
Assistant Professor (Experimental Biophysics)
Assistant Professor, Experimental Ultrafast/High Field AMOP Physics
AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowships
Faculty Position in Experimental Condensed Matter Physics

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. MoreMore

Latest research from Europhysics Letters
IOP Journal

Substrate rigidity deforms and polarizes active gels

Temperature dependence of the diffusive thermopower in the 2-dimensional interacting electron gas

Spin-orbital physics for p orbitals in alkali RO2 hyperoxides — Generalization of the Goodenough-Kanamori rules

Ion pump activity generates fluctuating electrostatic forces in biomembranes

Surface plasma rogue wavesMore

Latest research from Optics Letters
Optics Letters
Broadband supercontinuum generation in air using tightly focused femtosecond laser pulses

Intrachannel nonlinearity enhancement in polarization multiplexed phase modulated systems with differential detection

Generation of spirally polarized propagation-invariant beam using fiber microaxicon

Generation of 520 mW pulsed blue light by frequency doubling of an all-fiberized 978 nm Yb-doped fiber laser source

Diode-pumped femtosecond Yb:CaNb2O6 laserMore