Tagged: Science Alert(AU) Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • richardmitnick 10:04 am on March 5, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "For The First Time Organic Matter Crucial For Life Has Been Found on an Asteroid's Surface", , , , , , , Most of Earth's meteorites come from S-type asteroids like Itokawa., , Science Alert(AU), The asteroid Itokawa   

    From Science Alert(AU): “For The First Time Organic Matter Crucial For Life Has Been Found on an Asteroid’s Surface” 


    From Science Alert(AU)

    5 MARCH 2021

    A grain of dust (circled) from Itokawa (ISAS-Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) (国立研究開発法人宇宙航空研究開発機構; Kokuritsu-kenkyū-kaihatsu-hōjin Uchū Kōkū Kenkyū Kaihatsu Kikō](JP)

    Follow the twisted limbs of your family tree all the way back to its primordial origins billions of years in the past and you’ll find that we all originated from dust rich in organic chemistry.

    Just where this organic dust came from has been a topic of debate for more than half a century. Now, researchers have found the first evidence of organic materials essential to life on Earth on the surface of an S-type asteroid.

    An international team of researchers recently conducted an in-depth analysis on one of the particles brought back from the asteroid Itokawa by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) (国立研究開発法人宇宙航空研究開発機構; Kokuritsu-kenkyū-kaihatsu-hōjin Uchū Kōkū Kenkyū Kaihatsu Kikō](JP) original Hayabusa mission back in 2010.

    JAXA Hayabusa2

    Most of Earth’s meteorites come from S-type asteroids like Itokawa, so knowing that it could have contained essential ingredients for life on our planet is a significant step forward in our understanding of how life-forming conditions could arise. Up until now, most research on organic material has focussed on carbon-rich (c-class) asteroids.

    Looking into the sample, the team found that organic material that came from the asteroid itself has evolved over time through extreme conditions – incorporating water and organic matter from other sources.

    This is similar to the process that happened on Earth, and helps us better understand how the earliest forms of terrestrial biochemistry might simply be an extension of the chemistry taking place inside many asteroids.

    “These findings are really exciting as they reveal complex details of an asteroid’s history and how its evolution pathway is so similar to that of the prebiotic Earth,” says earth scientist Queenie Chan from the Royal Holloway University(UK).

    Evolutionary models can take us back some 3.5 billion years to a time when life was little more than competing sequences of nucleic acid.

    Step back any further and we’re forced to consider how elements like hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon might join to form amazingly complex molecules capable of self-arranging into stuff that behaves like RNA, proteins, and fatty acids.

    In the 1950s, as researchers were first considering the prickly question of how simpler ingredients might spontaneously cook up an organic soup, experiments showed conditions on Earth’s surface might do a sufficient job.

    Nearly seven decades later, our focus has turned to the slow and steady chemical processes inside the very rocks that aggregated into worlds like ours.

    Evidence isn’t hard to come by. It’s now clear a steady rain of rock and ice billions of years ago could have delivered molecules of cyanide, the sugar ribose, and even amino acids – along with a generous donation of water – onto Earth’s surface.

    But the degree to which the chemistry of meteorites could have been contaminated by things on Earth leaves some room for doubt.

    Since Hayabusa’s return a decade ago, more than 900 particles of pristine asteroid dirt taken from its payload have been separated and stored in a JAXA clean room.

    Fewer than 10 have been studied for signs of organic chemistry, but all of them were found to contain molecules predominantly made up of carbon.

    Itokawa is what’s referred to as a stony (or siliceous) class of asteroid, or s-class. Following early studies on its material, it’s also believed to be an ordinary chondrite – a relatively unmodified type of space rock representing a more primitive state of the inner Solar System.

    Given these types of asteroids make up a good chunk of the minerals smashing into our planet, and aren’t generally thought to contain much in the way of organic chemistry, those early findings were intriguing, to say the least.

    Chan and her colleagues took just one of these grains of dust, a 30 micrometre wide particle shaped a little like the continent of South America, and conducted a detailed analysis of its make-up, including a study of its water contents.

    They found a rich variety of carbonaceous compounds, including signs of disordered polyaromatic molecules of a clearly extraterrestrial origin, and structures of graphite.

    “After being studied in great detail by an international team of researchers, our analysis of a single grain, nicknamed ‘Amazon’, has preserved both primitive (unheated) and processed (heated) organic matter within ten microns (a thousandth of a centimetre) of distance,” says Chan.

    “The organic matter that has been heated indicates that the asteroid had been heated to over 600°C in the past. The presence of unheated organic matter very close to it, means that the in-fall of primitive organics arrived on the surface of Itokawa after the asteroid had cooled down.”

    Itokawa has had an exciting history for a rock that has nothing better to do than float idly around the Sun for a few billion years, having been modified with a good baking, dehydrated, then rehydrated with a new coating of fresh material.

    While its story isn’t quite as exciting as our own planet’s history, the asteroid’s activity does describe the cooking of organic material in space as a complex process, and isn’t limited to carbon-rich asteroids.

    Late last year, Hayabusa2 returned with a sample of a c-class, near-Earth asteroid named Ryugu. Comparing the contents of its payload with those of its predecessor will no doubt contribute even more knowledge of how organic chemistry evolves in space.

    The question of life’s origins and its seeming uniqueness on Earth is one that we’ll be seeking answers to for a long time to come. But every new discovery is pointing to a story that stretches far beyond the safe, warm puddles our newborn planet.

    This research was published in Scientific Reports.

    See the full article here .


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

  • richardmitnick 9:51 am on February 23, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Really Small Black Holes Could Be Out There Devouring Neutron Stars From Within", , , , , , , Endoparasitic black hole, , Science Alert(AU), Tiny all-but-undetectable primordial black holes could be one of the mysterious sources of mass that contributes to Dark Matter.,   

    From University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign via Science Alert(AU): “Really Small Black Holes Could Be Out There Devouring Neutron Stars From Within” 

    From University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign



    Science Alert(AU)

    23 FEBRUARY 2021

    Credit: Victor de Schwanberg/Science Photo Library/Getty Images.

    Tiny, all-but-undetectable primordial black holes could be one of the mysterious sources of mass that contributes to Dark Matter. There are significant limits to their lifespan in open space, but in recent years, astrophysicists have asked: what if these black holes are in the core of neutron stars?

    Gradually, such black holes would accrete the neutron star, devouring it from within. These hypothetical systems are yet to be verified, but a new paper [Accretion onto a small black hole at the center of a neutron star], yet to be peer-reviewed, has calculated how long this devouring would take.

    This, in turn, could be used to analyse the current neutron star population to constrain the nature of the black holes considered as a dark matter candidate – whether they are primordial, dating back to the Big Bang, or black holes that formed inside neutron stars.

    Although we don’t know what dark matter is, it’s pretty fundamental to our understanding of the Universe: there simply isn’t enough matter we can directly detect – normal matter – to account for all the gravity. In fact, there’s so much gravity that scientists have calculated roughly 75 to 80 percent of all matter is dark.

    There are a number of candidate particles that could be dark matter. Primordial black holes that formed just after the Big Bang are not one of the leading candidates, because if they were above a certain mass we would have noticed them by now; but, below that mass, they would have evaporated via the emission of Hawking Radiation long before now.

    Black holes, however, are an attractive candidate for dark matter: they, too, are extremely difficult to detect if they’re just hanging out in space just doing nothing. So astronomers continue to look for them.

    One idea that has been explored recently is the endoparasitic black hole. There are two scenarios for this. One is that primordial black holes were captured by neutron stars, and sink down to the core. The other is that dark matter particles are captured inside a neutron star; if the conditions are favourable, these could then come together and collapse down into a black hole.

    These black holes are small, but they wouldn’t remain so. From their position, ensconced inside the neutron star, these little black holes would then parasitise their host.

    The team of physicists from Bowdoin College and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign calculated the accretion rate – that is, the rate at which the black hole would devour the neutron star – for a range of black hole mass ratios, from three to nine orders of magnitude less massive than the neutron star host.

    Neutron stars have a theoretical upper mass limit of 2.3 times the mass of the Sun, so the black hole masses would extend down into the range of dwarf planets.

    For a non-rotating neutron star hosting a non-spinning black hole, the accretion would be spherical. At the team’s calculated accretion rates, black holes as small as 10-21 times the mass of the Sun would completely accrete a neutron star well within the lifetime of the Universe.

    This suggests that primordial black holes, from the beginning of the Universe, would have completely accreted their host neutron stars before now. These timescales are in direct conflict with the ages of old neutron star populations, the researchers said.

    “As an important application, our results corroborate arguments that use the current existence of neutron star populations to constrain either the contribution of primordial black holes to the dark matter content of the Universe, or that of dark matter particles that may form black holes at the center of neutron stars after they have been captured,” they wrote in their paper.

    So the result is another blow for primordial black holes; but it doesn’t rule endoparasitic black holes out entirely. If there are globs of dark matter particles out there floating through space and being slurped into neutron stars, they could be collapsing into black holes and converting neutron stars into black hole stuff even as you read this sentence.

    And that is freaking awesome.

    Dark Matter Background
    Fritz Zwicky discovered Dark Matter in the 1930s when observing the movement of the Coma Cluster., Vera Rubin a Woman in STEM denied the Nobel, some 30 years later, did most of the work on Dark Matter.

    Fritz Zwicky from http:// palomarskies.blogspot.com.

    Coma cluster via NASA/ESA Hubble.

    In modern times, it was astronomer Fritz Zwicky, in the 1930s, who made the first observations of what we now call dark matter. His 1933 observations of the Coma Cluster of galaxies seemed to indicated it has a mass 500 times more than that previously calculated by Edwin Hubble. Furthermore, this extra mass seemed to be completely invisible. Although Zwicky’s observations were initially met with much skepticism, they were later confirmed by other groups of astronomers.
    Thirty years later, astronomer Vera Rubin provided a huge piece of evidence for the existence of dark matter. She discovered that the centers of galaxies rotate at the same speed as their extremities, whereas, of course, they should rotate faster. Think of a vinyl LP on a record deck: its center rotates faster than its edge. That’s what logic dictates we should see in galaxies too. But we do not. The only way to explain this is if the whole galaxy is only the center of some much larger structure, as if it is only the label on the LP so to speak, causing the galaxy to have a consistent rotation speed from center to edge.
    Vera Rubin, following Zwicky, postulated that the missing structure in galaxies is dark matter. Her ideas were met with much resistance from the astronomical community, but her observations have been confirmed and are seen today as pivotal proof of the existence of dark matter.

    Astronomer Vera Rubin at the Lowell Observatory in 1965, worked on Dark Matter (The Carnegie Institution for Science).

    Vera Rubin measuring spectra, worked on Dark Matter (Emilio Segre Visual Archives AIP SPL).

    Vera Rubin, with Department of Terrestrial Magnetism (DTM) image tube spectrograph attached to the Kitt Peak 84-inch telescope, 1970. https://home.dtm.ciw.edu.

    See the full article here .


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign community of students, scholars, and alumni is changing the world.

    The University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (U of I, Illinois, or colloquially the University of Illinois or UIUC) is a public land-grant research university in Illinois in the twin cities of Champaign and Urbana. It is the flagship institution of the University of Illinois system and was founded in 1867.

    The University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is a member of the Association of American Universities and is classified among “R1: Doctoral Universities – Very high research activity”, and has been listed as a “Public Ivy” in The Public Ivies: America’s Flagship Public Universities (2001) by Howard and Matthew Greene. In fiscal year 2019, research expenditures at Illinois totaled $652 million. The campus library system possesses the second-largest university library in the United States by holdings after Harvard University. The university also hosts the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) and is home to the fastest supercomputer on a university campus.

    The university contains 16 schools and colleges and offers more than 150 undergraduate and over 100 graduate programs of study. The university holds 651 buildings on 6,370 acres (2,578 ha). The University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign also operates a Research Park home to innovation centers for over 90 start-up companies and multinational corporations, including Abbott, AbbVie, Caterpillar, Capital One, Dow, State Farm, and Yahoo, among others.

    As of August 2020, the alumni, faculty members, or researchers of the university include 30 Nobel laureates, 27 Pulitzer Prize winners, 2 Turing Award winners and 1 Fields medalist. Illinois athletic teams compete in Division I of the NCAA and are collectively known as the Fighting Illini. They are members of the Big Ten Conference and have won the second-most conference titles. Illinois Fighting Illini football won the Rose Bowl Game in 1947, 1952, 1964 and a total of five national championships. Illinois athletes have won 29 medals in Olympic events, ranking it among the top 40 American universities with Olympic medals.

    Illinois Industrial University

    The original University Hall, which stood until 1938, when it was replaced by Gregory Hall and the Illini Union. Pieces were used in the erection of Hallene Gateway dedicated in 1998.

    The University of Illinois, originally named “Illinois Industrial University”, was one of the 37 universities created under the first Morrill Land-Grant Act, which provided public land for the creation of agricultural and industrial colleges and universities across the United States. Among several cities, Urbana was selected in 1867 as the site for the new school.[19][20] From the beginning, President John Milton Gregory’s desire to establish an institution firmly grounded in the liberal arts tradition was at odds with many state residents and lawmakers who wanted the university to offer classes based solely around “industrial education”.[21] The university opened for classes on March 2, 1868, and had two faculty members and 77 students.

    The Library, which opened with the school in 1868, started with 1,039 volumes. Subsequently, President Edmund J. James, in a speech to the board of trustees in 1912, proposed to create a research library. It is now one of the world’s largest public academic collections. In 1870, the Mumford House was constructed as a model farmhouse for the school’s experimental farm. The Mumford House remains the oldest structure on campus. The original University Hall (1871) was the fourth building built; it stood where the Illini Union stands today.

    University of Illinois

    In 1885, the Illinois Industrial University officially changed its name to the “University of Illinois”, reflecting its agricultural, mechanical, and liberal arts curriculum.

    During his presidency, Edmund J. James (1904–1920) is credited for building the foundation for the large Chinese international student population on campus. James established ties with China through the Chinese Minister to the United States Wu Ting-Fang. In addition, during James’s presidency, class rivalries and Bob Zuppke’s winning football teams contributed to campus morale.

    Like many universities, the economic depression slowed construction and expansion on the campus. The university replaced the original university hall with Gregory Hall and the Illini Union. After World War II, the university experienced rapid growth. The enrollment doubled and the academic standing improved. This period was also marked by large growth in the Graduate College and increased federal support of scientific and technological research. During the 1950s and 1960s the university experienced the turmoil common on many American campuses. Among these were the water fights of the fifties and sixties.

    University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

    By 1967 the University of Illinois system consisted of a main campus in Champaign-Urbana and two Chicago campuses, Chicago Circle (UICC) and Medical Center (UIMC), and people began using “Urbana–Champaign” or the reverse to refer to the main campus specifically. The university name officially changed to the “University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign” around 1982. While this was a reversal of the commonly used designation for the metropolitan area, “Champaign-Urbana,” most of the campus is located in Urbana. The name change established a separate identity for the main campus within the University of Illinois system, which today includes campuses in Springfield (UIS) and Chicago (UIC) (formed by the merger of UICC and UIMC).

    In 1998, the Hallene Gateway Plaza was dedicated. The Plaza features the original sandstone portal of University Hall, which was originally the fourth building on campus. In recent years, state support has declined from 4.5% of the state’s tax appropriations in 1980 to 2.28% in 2011, a nearly 50% decline. As a result, the university’s budget has shifted away from relying on state support with nearly 84% of the budget now coming from other sources.

    On March 12, 2015, the Board of Trustees approved the creation of a medical school, the first college created at Urbana–Champaign in 60 years. The Carle-Illinois College of Medicine began classes in 2018.

    See the full article here .


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    U Illinois campus

    The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign community of students, scholars, and alumni is changing the world.

    With our land-grant heritage as a foundation, we pioneer innovative research that tackles global problems and expands the human experience. Our transformative learning experiences, in and out of the classroom, are designed to produce alumni who desire to make a significant, societal impact.

    The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) is a public research university in Chicago, Illinois. Its campus is in the Near West Side community area, adjacent to the Chicago Loop. The second campus established under the University of Illinois system, UIC is also the largest university in the Chicago area, having approximately 30,000 students enrolled in 15 colleges.

    UIC operates the largest medical school in the United States with research expenditures exceeding $412 million and consistently ranks in the top 50 U.S. institutions for research expenditures. In the 2019 U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of colleges and universities, UIC ranked as the 129th best in the “national universities” category. The 2015 Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked UIC as the 18th best in the world among universities less than 50 years old.

    UIC competes in NCAA Division I Horizon League as the UIC Flames in sports. The Credit Union 1 Arena (formerly UIC Pavilion) is the Flames’ venue for home games.

  • richardmitnick 10:46 am on February 20, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Physicists Propose a 'Force Field' to Protect Sensitive Quantum Computers From Noise", "Synthetic magnetic field", A promising method for ensuring a qubit stays fuzzy long enough to be useful is to entangle it with other qubits located elsewhere., , Back in 2001 a trio of researchers - Daniel Gottesman; Alexeir Kitaev; and John Preskill - formulated a way to encode this kind of protection into a space as an intrinsic feature of the circuitry., , One way to reduce the risk of “noise” is to build in checks and balances that help to shield the blurred state of reality at the core of quantum computers., , , RWTH Aachen University [ Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aache](DE), Science Alert(AU), The basis for the design is a concept that's nearly 20 years old., This "noise" only gets worse as we grow devices to include more qubits., Too much 'noise' and the delicate state of the system collapses leaving you with a very expensive paperweight.   

    From RWTH Aachen University [ Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aache](DE) via Science Alert(AU): “Physicists Propose a ‘Force Field’ to Protect Sensitive Quantum Computers From Noise” 

    From RWTH Aachen University [ Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aache](DE)



    Science Alert(AU)

    19 FEBRUARY 2021

    Credit: oxygen/Moment/Getty Images.

    Creating a quantum computer requires an ability to stroke the edges of reality with the quietest of touches. Too much ‘noise’ and the delicate state of the system collapses, leaving you with a very expensive paperweight.

    One way to reduce the risk of this occurring is to build in checks and balances that help to shield the blurred state of reality at the core of quantum computers – and now scientists have proposed a new way to do just that.

    Theoretical physicists from RWTH Aachen University [ Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aache](DE) have proposed what’s known as a “synthetic magnetic field”, which they think could help protect the fragile qubits needed in a quantum computer.

    “We have designed a circuit composed of state-of-the-art superconducting circuit elements and a nonreciprocal device, that can be used to passively implement the GKP quantum error-correcting code,” the team writes in Physical Review X.

    The basis for the design is a concept that’s nearly 20 years old (we’ll get to that in a moment), one that simply isn’t feasible based on its requirement of impossibly strong magnetic fields. The new approach attempts to get around this issue.

    Instead of the solid, bit-based language of 1s and 0s that informs the operations of your smartphone or desktop, quantum computing relies on a less binary, and far less definitive approach to crunching numbers.

    Quantum bits, or qubits, are individual units of its language based on the probability of quantum mechanics. String enough together and their seemingly random tumbling sets the foundations for a different unique approach to problem solving.

    A qubit is an odd creature though, something that has no real equivalent in our day-to-day experience. Unobserved, it could be simultaneously in the position of 1, 0, or both. But as soon as you look at it, the qubit settles into a single, more mundane state.

    In physics, this act of looking doesn’t even need to be an intentional stare. The buzz of electromagnetic radiation, a stray bump of a neighbouring particle… and that qubit can quickly find itself part of the scenery, losing its essential powers of probability.

    This ‘noise’ only gets worse as we grow devices to include more qubits, something that is necessary to make quantum computers powerful enough to be capable of the high-level processing we expect of them.

    A promising method for ensuring a qubit stays fuzzy long enough to be useful is to entangle it with other qubits located elsewhere, meaning its probabilities are now dependent on other, equally fuzzy particles sitting in zones unlikely to be slammed by the same noise.

    If that’s done right, engineers can ensure a level of quantum error correction – an insurance scheme that allows the qubit to cope with the occasional shake, rattle, and roll of surrounding noise.

    And this is where we return to the new paper. Back in 2001, a trio of researchers – Daniel Gottesman, Alexeir Kitaev, and John Preskill – formulated a way to encode this kind of protection into a space as an intrinsic feature of the circuitry holding the qubits, potentially allowing for slimmer hardware.

    It became known as the Gottesman-Kitaev-Preskill (GKP) code. There was just one problem – the GKP code relied on confining an electron to just two dimensions using intense, large magnetic fields in a way that just isn’t practical. What’s more, processes for detecting and recovering from errors are also fairly complicated, demanding even more chunks of hardware.

    To really get the most out of the GKP code’s benefits, quantum engineers would need a more passive, hands-off approach for shielding and recovering a qubit’s information from noise.

    So in this innovative new proposal, physicists suggest replacing the impossibly large magnetic field with a superconducting circuit comprising of components that serve much the same purpose, ironing out the noise.

    The technicalities of the setup aren’t for general reading, but Anja Metelmann at APS Physics does a top job of going through them step-by-step for those eager for details.

    For it to work, there would need to be a way for photons – effectively ripples in the electromagnetic field that carry the electron’s forces – to be manipulated by that very field. Given the photon’s neutrality, this just isn’t a possibility.

    There is a workaround, though. In recent years physicists have found a way to control photons so they can be channelled like electrons, by manipulating the optics of a space so it takes on certain magnetic-like characteristics.

    So-called synthetic magnetic fields permit photons to be directed, giving engineers a way to craft devices in which light waves can be forced to behave more like a current.

    The new paper lays out a way to use this synthetic magnetic field to protect a theoretical single electron in a crystal, confined to a 2D plane. When they ran calculations to see how it would react when subjected to a strong, real magnetic field, which usually would interfere with the system, they showed that their new set-up could protect it.

    “We find that the circuit is naturally protected against the common noise channels in superconducting circuits, such as charge and flux noise, implying that it can be used for passive quantum error correction,” the team explains in their paper.

    Before we get a working prototype of this quantum error-correcting machinery, there are plenty of kinks to work out experimentally. It’s all good on paper, but left to be seen if the technology does cooperate as expected.

    In time, we might have a relatively simple device that turns an impractical – but otherwise efficient – concept for scaling up quantum computers into a real possibility, opening the way for error tolerant technology that has until now been mostly theoretical.

    See the full article here.


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    RWTH Aachen University [ Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aache](DE) is a public research university located in Aachen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. With more than 45,000 students enrolled in 144 study programs, it is the largest technical university in Germany.

    In 2007, RWTH Aachen was chosen by the DFG as one of nine German Universities of Excellence for its future concept RWTH 2020: Meeting Global Challenges and additionally won funding for one graduate school and three clusters of excellence.

    RWTH Aachen is a founding member of IDEA League, a strategic alliance of five leading universities of technology in Europe. The university is also a member of TU9, DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) and the Top Industrial Managers for Europe network.

    On 25 January 1858, prince Frederick William of Prussia (later German emperor), was given a donation of 5,000 talers from the Aachener und Münchener Feuer-Versicherungs-Gesellschaft, the precursor of the AachenMünchener insurance company, for charity. In March, the prince chose to use the donation to found the first Prussian institute of technology somewhere in the Rhine province. The seat of the institution remained undecided over years; while the prince initially favored Koblenz, the cities of Aachen, Bonn, Cologne and Düsseldorf also applied, with Aachen and Cologne being the main competitors. Aachen finally won with a financing concept backed by the insurance company and by local banks.

    Groundbreaking for the new Polytechnikum took place on 15 May 1865 and lectures started during the Franco-Prussian War on 10 October 1870 with 223 students and 32 teachers. The new institution had as its primary purpose the education of engineers, especially for the mining industry in the Ruhr area; there were schools of chemistry, electrical and mechanical engineering as well as an introductory general school that taught mathematics and natural sciences and some social sciences.
    Main Building of the RWTH Aachen. It was built in 1870.

    The unclear position of the new Prussian polytechnika (which officially were not universities) affected the first years. Polytechnics lacked prestige in society and the number of students decreased. This began to change in 1880 when the early RWTH, amongst others, was reorganized as a Royal Technical University, gained a seat in the Prussian House of Lords and finally won the right to bestow Dr. (1899) degrees and Diplomat titles (introduced in 1902). In the same year, over 800 male students enrolled. In 1909 the first women were admitted and the artist August von Brandis succeeded Alexander Frenz at the Faculty of Architecture as a “professor of figure and landscape painting”, Brandis became dean in 1929.

    World War I, however, proved a serious setback for the university. Many students voluntarily joined up and died in the war, and parts of the university were shortly occupied or confiscated.

    While the (then no more royal) TH Aachen (Technische Hochschule Aachen) flourished in the 1920s with the introduction of more independent faculties, of several new institutes and of the general students’ committee, the first signs of nationalist radicalization also became visible within the university. The Third Reich’s Gleichschaltung of the TH in 1933 met with relatively low resistance from both students and faculty. Beginning in September 1933, Jewish and (alleged) Communist professors (and from 1937 on also students) were systematically persecuted and excluded from the university. Vacant Chairs were increasingly given to NSDAP party-members or sympathizers. The freedom of research and teaching became severely limited, and institutes important for the regime’s plans were systematically established, and existing chairs promoted. Briefly closed in 1939, the TH continued courses in 1940, although with a low number of students. On 21 October 1944, when Aachen capitulated, more than 70% of all buildings of the university were destroyed or heavily damaged.

    After World War II ended in 1945 the university recovered and expanded quickly. In the 1950s, many professors who had been removed because of their alleged affiliation with the Nazi party were allowed to return and a multitude of new institutes were founded. By the late 1960s, the TH had 10,000 students, making it the foremost of all German technical universities. With the foundation of philosophical and medical faculties in 1965 and 1966, respectively, the university became more “universal”. The newly founded faculties in particular began attracting new students, and the number of students almost doubled twice from 1970 (10,000) to 1980 (more than 25,000) and from 1980 to 1990 (more than 37,000). Now, the average number of students is around 42,000, with about one third of all students being women. By relative terms, the most popular study-programs are engineering (57%), natural science (23%), economics and humanities (13%) and medicine (7%).

    Recent developments

    “Red lecture hall” at the central campus

    In December 2006, RWTH Aachen and the Sultanate of Oman signed an agreement to establish a private German University of Technology in Muscat. Professors from Aachen aided in developing the curricula for the currently five study-programs and scientific staff took over some of the first courses.

    In 2007, RWTH Aachen was chosen as one of nine German Universities of Excellence for its future concept RWTH 2020: Meeting Global Challenges, earning it the connotation of being a “University of Excellence”. However, although the list of universities honored for their future concepts mostly consists of large and already respected institutions, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research claimed that the initiative aimed at promoting universities with a dedicated future concept so they could continue researching on an international level. Having won funds in all three lines of funding, the process brought RWTH Aachen University an additional total funding of € 180 million from 2007–2011. The other two lines of funding were graduate schools, where the Aachen Institute for Advanced Study in Computational Engineering Science received funding and so-called “clusters of excellence”, where RWTH Aachen managed to win funding for the three clusters: Ultra High-Speed Mobile Information and Communication (UMIC), Integrative Production Technology for High-wage Countries and Tailor-Made Fuels from Biomass (TMFB).

    RWTH was selected to receive funding from the German federal and state governments for the third Universities of Excellence funding line starting 2019. RWTH’s proposal was called “The Integrated Interdisciplinary University of Science and Technology – Knowledge. Impact. Networks.” and has secured funding for a seven-year period.

    2019 Clusters of Excellence

    The Fuel Science Center (FSC) Adaptive Conversion Systems for Renewable Energy and Carbon Sources
    Internet of Production
    ML4Q – Matter and Light for Quantum Computing

    RWTH was already awarded funding in the first and second Universities of Excellence funding lines, in 2007 and 2012 respectively.

  • richardmitnick 3:38 pm on February 19, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Astronomers Mapped The Spectacular Accelerating Outflows of a Stellar Explosion", , , , Based on the Orion outflows; the G5.89 outflows; the marginal detection similar outflows in a star-forming region known as DR-21 the team estimates that these events occur every 130 years or so., , , G5.89−0.39 also known as W28 A2 is around 9752 light-years away., In the 1980s astronomers discovered something peculiar in the star-forming Orion nebula., It's only the second time molecular outflows of this kind have ever been clearly seen., National Autonomous University of Mexico [Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México](MX), , Science Alert(AU), Since then molecular outflows have been discovered in many star-forming regions., Streamers of dense molecular gas travelling at speed through space: when these streamers were mapped they seemed to originate from a single point., The astronomers were able to identify 34 molecular streamers zooming radially away from the heart of the cloud accelerating outwards., The Orion outflow was one of a kind., They are not as powerful as the outflows you'd expect from a supernova explosion which occurs when a massive star dies., We don't know as much about the formation of massive stars as we do about the smaller ones.   

    From National Autonomous University of Mexico [Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México](MX) via Science Alert(AU): “Astronomers Mapped The Spectacular Accelerating Outflows of a Stellar Explosion” 

    From National Autonomous University of Mexico [Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México](MX)



    Science Alert(AU)

    19 FEBRUARY 2021

    ALMA’s map of the Orion streamers. (ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), J. Bally/H. Drass et al.)

    Material accelerating away from the site of a stellar explosion has been discovered in a star-forming cloud.

    It’s only the second time molecular outflows of this kind have ever been clearly seen, but it could help astronomers understand how the most massive stars get their start in life.

    In the 1980s, astronomers discovered something peculiar in the star-forming Orion nebula: streamers of dense molecular gas, travelling at speed through space. When these streamers were mapped, they seemed to originate from a single point.

    Orion Nebula ESO/VLT

    Since then, molecular outflows have been discovered in many star-forming regions. They are thought to play an important role in the formation of low-mass stars, transporting away the excess angular momentum that would otherwise cause baby stars to spin themselves into oblivion.

    The Orion outflow, however, was one of a kind. Molecular outflows in low-mass stars are bipolar; that is, there are only two of them, shooting out in opposite directions. The outflows in Orion were much more numerous… and they were also found in a region where much more massive stars – over 10 times the mass of the Sun – are forming.

    Combined X-ray, radio and optical image of W28, the region’s parent complex. (NASA/ROSAT; NOIRLab NOAO/CTIO/P.F. Winkler et al; NSF/NRAO/VLA/G. Dubner et al.)

    ROSAT X-ray satellite built by DLR (DE) , with instruments built by West Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States.

    NOIRLab CTIO Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory,approximately 80 km to the East of La Serena, Chile, at an altitude of 2200 meters.

    NRAO Karl G Jansky Very Large Array, located in central New Mexico on the Plains of San Agustin, between the towns of Magdalena and Datil, ~50 miles (80 km) west of Socorro. The VLA comprises twenty-eight 25-meter radio telescopes.

    Now, we don’t know as much about the formation of massive stars as we do about the smaller ones. Massive stellar nurseries are rarer and tend to be more distant, making them harder to see. So astronomers thought that maybe the Orion outflows could yield some clues.

    Yet there was nothing at the source of the outflows – no baby massive star. This could imply several explosive scenarios, such as a merger between two massive baby stars, or gravitational energy liberated by the formation of a nearby massive binary. But with only one observation of its kind, it’s difficult to make a firm ruling.

    To try and learn more about this phenomenon, a team of astronomers led by Luis Zapata of the National Autonomous University of Mexico [Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México](MX) decided to turn one of our most powerful radio telescopes, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), at a known massive stellar nursery.

    ESO/NRAO/NAOJ ALMA Array in Chile in the Atacama at Chajnantor plateau, at 5,000 metres.

    False-colour image of W28. Credit:NRAO/AUI/NSF and Brogan et al.

    G5.89−0.39 [JHEA], also known as W28 A2, is around 9,752 light-years away. It contains a bright, expanding shell-like ultra-compact hydrogen cloud and powerful molecular outflows. Zapata and his team had previously noted that six of these filaments seemed to point directly at the centre of the hydrogen cloud, but their results were inconclusive.

    ALMA cleared that ambiguity right up. It detected dense streamers based on the millimetre-wavelength emission from carbon dioxide and silicon monoxide.

    Credit:The Astrophysical Journal

    The astronomers were able to identify 34 molecular streamers zooming radially away from the heart of the cloud, accelerating outwards. Based on their velocities of up to 130 kilometres (80 miles) per second, the outflows are about 1,000 years old; whatever explosion produced them occurred about a millennium ago.

    They are not as powerful as the outflows you’d expect from a supernova explosion, which occurs when a massive star dies. In addition, as was also seen in the case of Orion, there was no star in the centre – just a region of ionised gas, possibly the result of heating during an explosive event.

    If there was a star (or multiple stars) associated with the event that produced the outflows, it could have been ejected from the region.

    Because massive stars always form in clusters, such interactions are possibly quite common, which in turn could shed some light on massive star formation. If two protostars merged, they would likely have ended up as one much larger star.

    Based on the Orion outflows, the G5.89 outflows, and the marginal detection of what could be similar outflows in a star-forming region known as DR-21, the team estimates that these events occur every 130 years or so. That’s very close to an estimated rate of supernova explosions.

    The unpredictability of these events, and the short duration of the outflow phase, may make them pretty hard to find; but, now that we know what to look for and how, astronomers may be able to build a catalogue of these kinds of events. In turn, that will help us understand why they occur.

    “If enough of these outflows can be detected in the future, the merging of clusters of stars may be an important formation mechanism of massive stars,” Zapata said.

    The research has been published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

    See the full article here.


    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The National Autonomous University of Mexico [Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México](MX) is a public research university in Mexico. It ranks highly in world rankings based on the university’s extensive research and innovation. It is the largest university in Latin America and has one of the biggest campuses in the world. UNAM’s main campus in Mexico City, known as Ciudad Universitaria (University City), is a UNESCO World Heritage site that was designed by some of Mexico’s best-known architects of the 20th century. Murals in the main campus were painted by some of the most recognized artists in Mexican history, such as Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros. In 2016, it had an acceptance rate of only 8%. UNAM generates a number of strong research publications and patents in diverse areas, such as robotics, computer science, mathematics, physics, human-computer interaction, history, philosophy, among others. All Mexican Nobel laureates are either alumni or faculty of UNAM.

    UNAM was founded, in its modern form, on 22 September 1910 by Justo Sierra as a liberal alternative to its predecessor, the Royal and Pontifical University of Mexico, the first to be founded in North America. UNAM obtained its autonomy from the government in 1929. This has given the university the freedom to define its own curriculum and manage its own budget without government interference. This has had a profound effect on academic life at the university, which some claim boosts academic freedom and independence.

    UNAM was the birthplace of the student movement of 1968, which turned into a nationwide rebellion against autocratic rule and began Mexico’s three-decade journey toward democracy.

Compose new post
Next post/Next comment
Previous post/Previous comment
Show/Hide comments
Go to top
Go to login
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
%d bloggers like this: