The research team led by Prof. Nanfang Yu, along with collaborators from Univ. of Zürich, Univ. of Washington and BNL, have reported new discoveries on how Saharan silver ants (Cataglyphis bombycina) stay cool in one of the hottest places on earth. The report listed two distinctive yet connected traits that allow these ants to not only efficiently reflect incoming solar radiation, but also to emit thermal radiation efficiently in the mid-infrared, which allows the ant keeping its body temperature cool. Their report was published online in Science magazine on June 18th.
Kyle Mandli, assistant professor of applied mathematics, is working to develop better mathematical representations and computer models of tsunamis and storm surge in order to predict their potential impact, help emergency managers make critical evacuation decisions, and evaluate the effectiveness of protection measures, such as levees. He examines the physics behind why these phenomena intensify in shallow water and applies advanced algorithms to quickly and accurately predict these events.
Researchers have developed new ways in which light can move around and even through a physical object, making it invisible to parts of the electromagnetic spectrum and undetectable by sensors. Mathematicians, theoretical physicists and engineers are exploring how and whether it's feasible to cloak against other waves besides light waves. "Cloaking is about detection and rendering something - and the cloak itself - not detectable or seen," said Michael Weinstein. "An object is seen when waves are bounced off it and observed by a detector."
Under the direction of Latha Venkataraman, associate professor of applied physics at Columbia Engineering, researchers have designed a new technique to create a single-molecule diode, and, in doing so, they have developed molecular diodes that perform 50 times better than all prior designs. Venkataraman’s group is the first to develop a single-molecule diode that may have real-world technological applications for nanoscale devices. Their paper, “Single-Molecule Diodes with High On-Off Ratios through Environmental Control,” was published May 25 in Nature Nanotechnology.
Prof. Chis Wiggins has received an NOA Grant for the Center for Topology of Cancer Evolution and Heterogeneity. The Center - a member of the National Cancer Institute's Physical Sciences in Oncology Network - is a multidisciplinary, multi-institutional research center that supports research combining mathematical and experimental techniques for the study of cancer. Their team includes experts in cancer genomics, the genetics of brain tumors, developmental biology, single-cell genomics, machine learning, and topological data analysis.