Month: February 2020

How pest management strategies affect the bottom line

A study out of Mississippi State University evaluated the impact insect pest management strategies have on the economic return of small-scale tomato production. The results of this evaluation are published in the article “Economic Effect of Insect Pest Management Strategies on Small-scale Tomato Production in Mississippi” in the open access online journal HortTechnology.

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Innovative switching mechanism improves ultrafast control of microlasers

The all-optical switch is a kind of device that controls light with light, which is the fundamental building block of modern optical communications and information processing. Creating an efficient, ultrafast, and compact all-optical switch has been recognized as the key step for the developments of next-generation optical and quantum computing. In principle, photons don’t interact with one another directly in the low power linear regime, and a cavity is usually needed to resonantly enhance the field of control light and increase the interaction. In early work, the performance of all-optical switches has been improved rapidly by optimizing resonators such as microrings or photonic crystals. For further improvements, the research area reaches the limit—the trade-off between ultralow energy consumption and ultrashort switching time.

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Reconfigurable chiral microlaser by spontaneous symmetry breaking

Coherent light sources are one of the most crucial foundations in both scientific disciplines and advanced applications. As a prominent platform, ultrahigh-Q whispering-gallery mode (WGM) microcavities have witnessed significant developments of novel light sources. However, the intrinsic chiral symmetry of WGM microcavity geometry and the resulting equivalence between the two directions of laser propagation in a cavity severely limits further applications of microlasers.

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Physicists model the supernovae that result from pulsating supergiants like Betelgeuse

Betelgeuse has been the center of significant media attention lately. The red supergiant is nearing the end of its life, and when a star over 10 times the mass of the Sun dies, it goes out in spectacular fashion. With its brightness recently dipping to the lowest point in the last hundred years, many space enthusiasts are excited that Betelgeuse may soon go supernova, exploding in a dazzling display that could be visible even in daylight.

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Hunter-gatherer networks accelerated human evolution

Humans began developing a complex culture as early as the Stone Age. This development was brought about by social interactions between various groups of hunters and gatherers, a UZH study has now confirmed. The researchers mapped the social networks of present-day hunter-gatherers in the Philippines and simulated the discovery of a medicinal plant product.

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