Monthly Archives: March 2015

UW scientists build a nanolaser using a single atomic sheet

University of Washington scientists have built a new nanometer-sized laser — using the thinnest semiconductor available today — that is energy efficient, easy to build and compatible with existing electronics. Lasers play essential roles in countless technologies, from medical therapies to metal cutters to electronic gadgets. But to meet modern needs in computation, communications, imaging and sensing, scientists are striving to create ever-smaller laser systems that also consume less energy.2015032410749070

The UW nanolaser, developed in collaboration with Stanford University, uses a tungsten-based semiconductor only three atoms thick as the “gain material” that emits light. The technology is described in a paper published in the March 16 online edition of Nature.

Quantum experiment verifies Einstein’s ‘spooky action at a distance’

An experiment devised in Griffith University’s Centre for Quantum Dynamics has for the first time demonstrated Albert Einstein’s original conception of “spooky action at a distance” using a single particle. In a paper published in the journal Nature Communications, CQD Director Professor Howard Wiseman and his experimental collaborators at the University of Tokyo report their use of homodyne measurements to show what Einstein did not believe to be real, namely the non-local collapse of a particle’s wave function.2015032410747880

According to quantum mechanics, a single particle can be described by a wave function that spreads over arbitrarily large distances, but is never detected in two or more places.

Ebola whole virus vaccine shown effective, safe in primates

An Ebola whole virus vaccine, constructed using a novel experimental platform, has been shown to effectively protect monkeys exposed to the often fatal virus. The vaccine, described today (March 26, 2015) in the journal Science, was developed by a group led by Yoshihiro Kawaoka, a University of Wisconsin-Madison expert on avian influenza, Ebola and other viruses of medical importance. It differs from other Ebola vaccines because as an inactivated whole virus vaccine, it primes the host immune system with the full complement of Ebola viral proteins and genes, potentially conferring greater protection.

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“In terms of efficacy, this affords excellent protection,” explains Kawaoka, a professor of pathobiological sciences in the UW-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine and who also holds a faculty appointment at the University of Tokyo. “It is also a very safe vaccine.”