‘Explore The Secrets Of The Atom’ - The Gilbert U-238 Atomic Energy Lab - a toy lab set produced by Alfred Carlton Gilbert, inventor of the well-known Erector Set. Released by the A.C. Gilbert Company in 1950 it was designed to allow children to create and watch chemical reactions using radioactive material. The U-238 Energy Lab never gained popularity and the toy was taken off
shelves only a year later, selling only from 1950 and 1951.
After this, you may never look at a humidifier the same way again. Ultrasonic humidifiers generate tiny droplets using piezoelectric transducers. When the humidifier is on, the ultrasonic vibrations of the piezoelectric transducer create a pressure wave that forces the water above into a hill with a string of liquid droplets extending upward. For a sense of the scale, the gray bars shown in each image above represent 1mm. The super-fine droplets the humidifier produces come from cavitation of these larger drops, as shown in image c). Image d) shows snapshots of the formation of the droplet string over a matter of milliseconds. (Image credit: S. J. Kim et al., original poster)
For the first time, researchers have managed to capture images of individual potassium atoms distributed on an optical lattice, providing them with a unique opportunity to see how they interact with one another.
While capturing these images is a feat in itself, the technique could help researchers to better understand the conditions needed for individual atoms to come together and form exotic states of matter like superfluids and superconductors.
“Learning from this atomic model, we can understand what’s really going on in these superconductors, and what one should do to make higher-temperature superconductors, approaching hopefully room temperature,” team member Martin Zwierlein from MIT said in a statement.
To capture the images, the team took potassium gas, and cooled it only a few nanokelvins - just above absolute zero. To put that into perspective, 1 nanokelvin is -273 degrees Celsius (-460 degrees Fahrenheit).
At this extremely cold temperature, the potassium atoms slow to a crawl, which allowed the team to trap some of them inside a two-dimensional optical lattice - a complex series of overlapping lasers that can trap individual atoms inside different intensity waves.