Month: November 2006

Dark Energy from the Universe’s Bright Past

Dark energy, the unidentified force that’s pushing the universe to expand at ever faster rates, was already at work as early as nine billion years ago, scientists reported last week. New Hubble Space Telescope sightings of distant supernova explosions support the explanation of dark energy as energy of the vacuum whose density has stayed constant throughout the universe’s history, the scientists said.

Read more of my Nov. 22 article from Physics News Update

Totally Unwired

Soljacic and colleaguesMIT

A team of MIT physicists has come up with an idea that could make it possible to recharge your laptop and cell phone without plugging them in. At the AIP Industrial Physics Forum here in San Francisco today, Marin Soljačić explained the physics of wireless energy transfer and how it could be a realistic means of keeping gadgets from ever running out of juice. He said one day even electric cars could recharge their batteries wirelessly while driving on specially-equipped highways — thereby removing the short-range limitations that are the most serious impediment to making all-electric vehicles a reality.

This story was the subject of one of my press releases from the meeting. MIT liked the press release and (after some editing) decided to publish it in their campus newspaper: see Wireless Energy Could Power Consumer, Industrial Electronics.

Update, Jan. 31 2007: My shortened Physics News Update write-up of this story was also translated into Japanese by Parity magazine.