Science & Engineering

Fifteen Eighty Four


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  • 22 Aug 2023
    Kostya Trachenko

    Theory of liquids, the hard problem

    I had a memorable library day trying to find an answer to a question that is simple to formulate: what is a theoretical value of energy and heat capacity of a classical liquid? I looked through all textbooks dedicated to liquids as well as statistical physics and condensed matter textbooks in the Rayleigh Library at […]

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  • 18 Aug 2023
  • 11 Apr 2023
    Emanuel Kulczycki

    Publication metrics don’t have to drive academia

    Rudolf Weigl, a Polish biologist who invented the first effective vaccine against typhus, called a practice of publishing many papers a ‘duck shit’: just as ducks leave a lot of traces while walking about in the yard, scientists hastily publish articles with partial results that are the product of undeveloped thought. This is one of the unfortunate outcomes of the evaluation game in today’s science, where researchers attempt to follow various evaluation rules and meet metrics-based expectations.

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  • 24 Jan 2023
    Yong Du, Rainer Schmid-Fetzer

    Computational Design of Engineering Materials

    A revolution has been underway for several decades, transforming materials engineering from costly and time-consuming process of trial-and-error experimental “materials by discovery” to “intelligent materials design” enabled by computational tools, CALPHAD (Calculation of phase diagrams)-type scientific databases (also named as Materials Genome database), and calculation-guided experiments.

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  • 18 Jan 2023
    Mathias Risse

    Brave New World: Political Philosophy and AI

    “I know a person when I talk to it.” With these words Google engineer Blake Lemoine made headlines in June 2022, thinking that a Google chatbot had become sentient. Google did not appreciate these headlines, and Lemoine was fired. But what is remarkable about this incident is that, as of 2022, someone in the industry […]

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  • 6 Jan 2023
    Andrew King

    Black Holes and Galaxies

    More than a century after Einstein formulated General Relativity (GR), black holes are firmly established as one of its most striking and inescapable consequences.

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  • 2 Nov 2022
    Greg Tallents

    Relativity applications in radiation and plasma physics

    Albert Einstein developed the theory of relativity using ``thought experiments’’ to illustrate the consequences of a constant speed of light. Many measurements have validated Einstein’s work, but some thought experiments and applications of relativity have only become possible in reality with advances in technology.

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  • 4 Jul 2022
    Akaki Rusetsky, Ulf-G Meißner

    What are Effective Field Theories?

    The quantum world is governed by a large number of different energy or length scales, as clearly seen in the hydrogen atom, where an essentially point like electron is bound to a proton.

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