12/1/2005:

Intermediate Word:  numismatics (a) formal logic  (b) number theory  (c) the science of polling  (d) coin collecting
Difficult Word: - hael -
(a) chant of praise  (b) slot in keel for ship's rib  (c) sack attached to one's back  (d) tie point to lock ship's keel or tiller

Was Einstein'S "Biggest Blunder" A Stellar Success? - SpaceDaily  The genius of Albert Einstein, who added a "cosmological constant" to his equation for the expansion of the universe but later retracted it, may be vindicated by new research. The enigmatic dark energy that drives the accelerating expansion of the universe behaves just like Einstein's famed cosmological constant, according to the Supernova Legacy Survey (SNLS), an international team of researchers in France and Canada that collaborated with large telescope observers at Oxford, Caltech and Berkeley. Their observations reveal that the dark energy behaves like Einstein's cosmological constant to a precision of 10 per cent.     
Researchers Approach Quantum Limit In Third-Order Nonlinear Light-Light Interaction - SpaceDaily  Researchers from Lehigh University and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH) have reported unprecedented nonlinear optical efficiency in some small organic molecules that makes the molecules potentially useful for optical computing, optical data processing, and optical telecommunication. In an article to be published in the journal Optics Letters, the researchers say that the optical nonlinearities of the molecules are "extraordinarily large relative to the small molecular mass of the molecules and are within a factor of 50 from the fundamental quantum limit."     

The Impossible Is Possible: Laser Light From Silicon - SpaceDaily  Since the creation of the first working laser a ruby model made in 1960 scientists have fashioned these light sources from substances ranging from neon to sapphire. Silicon, however, was not considered a candidate. Now a trio of Brown University researchers, led by engineering and physics professor Jimmy Xu, has made the impossible possible. Its structure would not allow for the proper line-up of electrons needed to get this semiconductor to emit light. The team has created the first directly pumped silicon laser. They did it by changing the atomic structure of silicon itself. This was accomplished by drilling billions of holes in a small bit of silicon using a nanoscale template. The result: weak but true laser light.     




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