The Geometric Phase
A circuit tracing a closed curve in an abstract space can explain both a curious shift in the wave function of a particle and an apparent rotation of a pendulum's plane of oscillation
A quarter of a century after the appearance of the optical laser, experimental X-ray lasers have begun to produce beams with wavelengths 100 times shorter than those of visible light
Snakes, Blood Circulation and Gravity
When a snake climbs or rears up, its cardiovascular system must resist strong pressure gradients. These effects of gravity explain why the circulatory system of a tree snake differs from that of a sea snake
Science in Pictures: Patterned Ground
A common physical phenomenon shapes these uncommon manifestations of natural geometry
Plasticity in Brain Development
The final wiring of the brain occurs after birth and is governed by early experience. A protein called MAP2 seems to take part in the molecular events that underlie the brain's ability to change
Managing Solid Waste
Poor disposal practices have taxed the U.S. economy and environment.
Municipalities should construct better incinerators and landfills and support active resource-conservation and recycling programs
Fertilization in Mammals
The events that immediately precede and follow the fusion of sperm and egg must occur in a precise sequence. Surprisingly, a single molecule seems to have a crucial role at many points along the way
Canal Builders of Pre-Inca Peru
The engineers of Chimor built canals to carry water from rivers to fields as much as 70 kilometers away.
In the end they were defeated by relentless geologie forces
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