Colossal spiral-shaped flows of super-hot plasma have been discovered on the sun, completing a nearly 50-year quest to confirm their existence, scientists say.
These giant solar plasma spirals — each of which is at least 60,000 miles (100,000 kilometers) wide — could help spark the formation of strongly magnetic regions on the sun that have been linked with solar flares and other sun eruptions, researchers added.
Built from single atoms, the first-of-their-kind switches could one day be networked via fiber-optic cables to form the backbone of a "quantum Internet" that allows for perfectly secure communications, said Professor of Physics Mikhail Lukin, who, together with Professor Vladan Vuletic of MIT, led a team consisting of graduate students Jeff Thompson and Lee Liu and postdoctoral fellows Tobias Tiecke and Nathalie de Leon to construct the new system. Their research is detailed in a recently published paper in the journal Nature.
If this works it will change the world, its the SABRE engine in development by Reaction Engines Ltd. It will use oxygen from the atmosphere as the oxidizer and then switch to on board liquid oxygen reserves to make the final push to space. This right here is the next stepping stone to bringing down the cost of getting people and materials into space.