From COSMOS: “Could buckyballs make any metal into a magnet?”

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Cosmos Magazine bloc

COSMOS

24 Aug 2015
Viviane Richter

A layer of carbon can bestow the powers of magnetism. Viviane Richter explains.

1A magnetic field: Magnets have become crucially important in the computer age, so researchers are seeking to learn how to magnetise metals without the help of rare Earth elements.Credit: Science Photo Library / Getty Images

In a feat of modern day alchemy, scientists have successfully turned non-magnetic metals into magnets. Oscar Cespedes at the University of Leeds and his team published their magnetic recipe in Nature in August. The key ingredient? A dusting of carbon.

“This is a new way of making magnets – it opens up a new field!” says Naresh Dalal from Florida State University, who also researches magnetic materials.

Magnets are crucial in the age of big data. We’ve generated almost as much data in the past two years as during all of human history. To generate and…

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Hurricane expert: 10 years after Katrina, North Atlantic hurricane activity well below normal

Watts Up With That?

Noted hurricane expert Dr. Philip Klotzbach of Colorado State University has had some interesting discussion and stats on his Twitter feed, for example:

10 years ago today, TD 10’s remnants brewed north of Hispaniola. 8 days later, Katrina was a Category 5 in the Gulf.

hurricane-danny-iss Hurricane Danny, the first hurricane of the 2015 Atlantic season, is seen in this picture taken by NASA astronaut Scott Kelly taken from the International Space Station Thursday.

It is worth noting that 2005 had 11 named storms, seven of which hit land and five of which caused major damage. In contrast to that era, we’ve recently seen the fourth named storm in the Atlantic, Hurricane Danny, fizzle out back to tropical storm status last Saturday, and now as a tropical depression is listed as remnant status by NHC. Given NOAA’s recent update for a below normal season, this isn’t surprising.

hurricane-danny-remnants-nhc

The remnants of…

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