Readers ask about positronium, wild bees and extra

Dance of the doomed particles

Scientists are puzzled by an unexpectedly giant hole within the power ranges of an unique “atom” referred to as positronium, which consists of an electron and a positron, Emily Conover reported in “Positronium outcome baffles physicists” (SN: 9/12/20, p. 14).

Reader Lee Skinner requested why the electron and its antimatter counterpart, the positron, don’t simply annihilate one another once they collide.

Ultimately, the electron and positron do annihilate each other, Conover says. Consequently, positronium doesn’t stick round perpetually. “The 2 particles perform a little orbital dance with one another for a time period earlier than they meet up and annihilate,” she says. “That’s truly a part of how the researchers made the measurement, although I didn’t have the house to incorporate these particulars within the story.” The crew measured how lengthy it took electrons and positrons to annihilate, which depends upon the atoms’ power degree. “Timing that annihilation revealed whether or not the positronium atoms had jumped to a brand new power degree or not,” Conover says.

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What’s the thrill?

Pollination by wild bees accounts for about $1.5 billion value of yields for six U.S. crops, Susan Milius reported in “Wild bees are moneymakers for some U.S. farms” (SN: 9/12/20, p. 5).

Reader Steve Robinson puzzled what species of untamed bees the researchers noticed.

Milius is glad that readers acknowledge there are various sorts of untamed bees. “Frequent teams noticed within the survey included bumblebees, carpenter bees, Andrena mining bees and squash bees — named for a few of their favourite flowers,” she says.

Cold and warm

A research of glass beads hints at how sizzling water can freeze quicker than chilly water, Emily Conover reported in “Sizzling beads chilled quicker than cool ones” (SN: 9/12/20, p. 16).

“Makes you marvel about warming. Has anyone performed the other experiment?” reader Robert Chester requested.

Conover hasn’t seen experimental proof for chilly water warming quicker than sizzling water, however she says there’s a theoretical research that implies the impact is feasible. For sure idealized supplies, scientists have proven mathematically that atoms might warmth up quicker after a precooling part. Scientists finally might search for the impact in actual supplies reminiscent of magnetic alloys (SN On-line: 2/13/20).

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