Wednesday, June 08, 2005
- This is just awful. [Note: safe for work, not safe in terms of the mental image you'll have after reading this news story]
- Must be something in the water: federal officials close down an alleged heroin trafficking ring at Chicago's city water department [CBS2 Chicago]; Chicagoist has a skeptic's take on the story
- Amazing images: what you're looking at here is a pulse of light, slowed down a thousandfold, traveling through a specially prepared piece of semiconductor material.
Scientists have been able to capture and slow light for several years. Slow light, once better understood, could be used to improve devices like sensors and optical communications equipment. Researchers from the University of Twente in the Netherlands, the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, Ghent University in Belgium, and the FOM-Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics in the Netherlands have moved the field forward with a way to directly observe the phenomenon.However, no need to break out into that Madonna song just yet.
The researchers used a photonic crystal waveguide to slow light by several orders of magnitude. The waveguide is constructed of semiconductor material punched with a pattern of holes. The pattern causes lightwaves to interfere with each other enough to slow the pulse to just under one micron per three trillionths of a second, or picoseconds. The pulse traveled about one thousand times slower than the speed of light in a vacuum, which is 299,792,458 meters per second. [read full article at Technology Research News]
- Cold and allergy medications that contain pseudoephedrine may soon be leaving drugstore shelves for a spot behind the pharmacist's counter:
[CNN] The Senate Bill is modeled on an Oklahoma law that took effect in April. The proposal would require the sale of medicines with pseudoephedrine only by a pharmacist or pharmacy personnel. Customers would have to show a photo ID, sign a log and be limited to 9 grams (or about 300 30-milligram pills) in a 30-day period. The government can make exceptions in areas where pharmacies are not easily accessible.[via Brutal Women]
- "Vienna [Beef] slips its wieners into Target" [Chicagoist's words, not mine]