- Published on 25 February 2011
Tiny polymer droplets that crystallize on a surface are a shrewd expedient to study the birth of a polymer crystal by the elusive homogeneous nucleation mechanism. In most cases, take for example the dust particle in a snowflake, nucleation starts from a heterogenous defect. Homogenous nucleation is difficult to study because of the prevalence of defects in any bulk sample. Crystallization in small droplets alleviates this difficulty in a manner that is conceptually simple: subdivide the system into more domains than the number of defects. If the domains greatly outnumber the defects then only the homogenous mechanism can induce nucleation in a defect free compartment.
- Published on 17 February 2011
The need to store, distribute and analyze the 15 million gigabytes of data annually generated by the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN has led to a revolutionary development of innovative software tools. Under CERN coordination, leading IT teams have tested and validated cutting-edge software technologies aimed to operate distributed computing and data storage infrastructures based on a worldwide network of hundreds of computing centers on an unprecedented scale.
- Published on 07 February 2011
Individual success in competitive endeavors, such as sports or academia, is the result of many factors, some of which are time-dependent. In order to compare human achievements from different time periods, we need to normalize success metrics so as to avoid a time-dependent bias in the comparison of the statistical measures. A novel 'detrending' approach presented in EPJ B removes precisely this bias and allows for an objective comparison across time.
- Published on 02 February 2011
A key to our understanding of Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) in the strong regime is our ability to reproduce the hadronic excitation spectrum. Up to now, and due to their limited predictive power, quark models forecast of this spectrum at high excitation energies is unsatisfactory and is dubbed ``the missing resonances problem”. To explore the high excitation energies in the hadron spectrum production or scattering of heavier mesons from a nucleon target is essential.
- Published on 10 January 2011
We are very pleased to announce that Jean-Marc Di Meglio, Physics Professor at the University Paris Diderot, has been appointed Editor in Chief of EPJ E, with the special title of Commissioning Editor in Chief. From 1981 to 1994 he worked in the laboratory of Pierre-Gilles de Gennes at College de France, and was Professor at the University of Strasbourg from 1994 to 2002 The European Physical Journal E has benefitted from his editorial talent and vast expertise since 2007, when he joined the Editorial Board of the journal. Professor Di Meglio's work ranges from soap films to bubbles, polymers, colloids and vesicles. His latest interest is in biomechanics. Professor Di Meglio will work alongside Editors in Chief Daan Frenkel and Frank Julicher. We wish him a great experience in his new role.
- Published on 03 January 2011
A photon is not a point: its wavepacket stretches out in space. In the classical limit, this spatial profile is governed by Maxwell's equations, and reshaping it has been a goal in optics since Galileo's invention of the telescope. In this paper, Morizur and his colleagues describe a new Unitary Programmable Mode Converter, a device capable of changing the spatial shape of quantum light at will without introducing loss in the beam.
- Published on 22 December 2010
Gold and copper atoms adsorbed on a NaCl surface behave as isolated atoms and complex electronic interactions with the surface are negligible. A study by a group of Brazilian researchers uses first-principles simulations to measure the electronic and magnetic properties of gold and copper atoms adsorbed on NaCl(001) surfaces, as well as the modifications in these properties upon charge injection.
- Published on 15 December 2010
The eye of the Drosophila (fruit fly) is characterized by a neat hexagonal patterns, a fascinating system to study pattern formation in biology. A recent paper published in EPJ E proposes a new mechanism to explain the emergence of this pattern.
- Published on 06 December 2010
In order to foster and accelerate the development of full Open Access publishing in the physical sciences, as well as to coordinate better with the successful existing hybrid physics journals portfolio, Springer's STM division and BioMed Central have agreed to transfer and integrate PhysMath Central into a new initiative of the European Physical Journal (EPJ), EPJ.Open. EPJ.Open is a series of new, fully Open Access Physics journals to complement the existing portfolio of EPJ titles.
EPJ, a collection of well known physics journals jointly published by Springer, EDP Sciences and the Italian Physical Society (SIF) will announce its plans for full open access publishing in the course of 2011.
This development will benefit the Physics community due to the combined strength of Springer Science - with its strong global presence and long history of physics publishing - and BioMed Central - who operate a portfolio of over 200 open access journals and have demonstrated the ability to develop and sustain large scale Open Access operations.