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Physicists created a "mysterious waveform" to study gravitational waves








  Physicists created a

Composition: NASA and Pixabay

There was a time when physics experiments could be performed with two weighted balls and a tower in Pisa (though Galileo is famous) experiment is most likely apocryphal). Today scientists need a rocket, a special rubidium isotope, some lasers, and a few minutes of free fall to do their experiments. At least you need a Bose-Einstein condensate in space.

The Bose-Einstein condensate is probably the most exotic matter state that scientists have discovered so far, and it is very difficult to produce very . At its core, a BEC is a cluster of atoms whose temperature has dropped to near absolute zero. From there, the atoms begin to condense into a unitary structure that behaves like a single atom. One of the possible applications for BECs is to create a sensor that can absorb gravitational waves, but scientists still need to experiment to fully understand what BECs can do.

The only problem is that Bose-Einstein condensates do not do this like gravity.

Under normal conditions, a BEC can only be effectively studied when it is in free fall from a tower, but that gives scientists a window that only takes fractions of a second. This prompted scientists to create a BEC while it was out of space in freefall, which would allow them to do much more research in one fell swoop. According to Phys.org:

"The device consisted of a capsule with a chip containing a group of rubidium-87 atoms, electronics, some lasers and a power source, which was activated as soon as the rocket reached a height of 243 km In just six and a half seconds, a BEC was generated, and after the BEC was produced, 110 preprogrammed experiments were performed in the six minutes in which the rocket fell back to Earth. "

Just to put it bluntly, a Bose Einstein condensate is very is different from a Higgs boson particle (the strange small particle that the Large Hadron Collider tries to study). The main difference is that experiments for a BEC do not run the risk of turning the Earth into a hyper-density sphere the size of a football field.


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