One of the coldest places in the Universe is aboard the ISS
Did you know that on the International space station (ISS) is a Laboratory cold atom (LHA) is one of the coldest places in the known Universe? LHA began its work in June 2018 and is the first installation in orbit, producing the whole cloud «ultracold» atoms, the temperature of which can reach fractions of a degree above absolute zero, -273.15 ºC — the minimum temperature limit, which can have a physical body in the Universe. All this space mess scientists started, of course, for the sake of quantum physics. So, after two years of continuous work they managed to create a strange quantum matter, whose existence was predicted more than a century ago.
For 25 years, physicists have used the exotic state of matter consisting of ultracold atoms to explore quantum behavior on a macroscopic scale. But this was only on Board the ISS. Almost two years of work of LHA, physicists at NASA have created a fifth state of matter — condensate Bose-Einstein, whose existence was predicted by albert Einstein and Indian mathematician Satyendra NAT Bosa almost a hundred years ago.
In simple words, cold as a decent number of atoms is in the lowest possible quantum States – that's why quantum effects begin to manifest at a macroscopic level. Authors of research believe that the condensate Bose-Einstein allow them to explore the microworld are very little studied. The results, published in the journal show that microgravity (weightlessness constant) of LHA allows scientists to create phenomena, which on Earth is impossible.
Writes Nature in the condensate probably hid the answers to the most mysterious energy in the Universe is dark energy, which is responsible for its accelerating expansion. Read more about the search for dark energy .
The coolest Universe lab set to open the quantum world
Agree, creating a fifth state of matter in space — an important event for the world science. But as scientists have succeeded? To obtain the condensate, the researchers used atoms of rubidium-87, lasers and high vacuum, which has existed longer than a second at 200 trillionth fractions of a degree above absolute zero, along with some of the most successful experiments on Earth. In future experiments, the team plans to drop to a record 20 trillion of a degree and create a condensate that can exist up to 5 seconds.
The Creation of a condensate of Bose-Einstein of rubidium (soft metal resembling potassium) became possible only in microgravity. the First to atoms of rubidium-87 scientists were able in 1995 using invented 1980s, the technique of laser cooling and magnetic evaporative cooling.
So is the cold atom Lab on the ISS in June 2018.
It Should be noted that the condensate – not the first created in microgravity. A series of previous experiments showed how this phase of matter behaves during a stay in weightlessness. But LHA – the first laboratory existing in this environment constantly. Its success was not expected, given that the lab is the size of an average dishwasher.
Moreover, the scope of the received condensate Bose-Einstein and his explanation varies depending on the search for dark energy, gravitational waves and tests of General relativity etc. However, the importance of this discovery is difficult to overestimate.
Actually in space spend a huge amount of scientific experiments, each of which is unique and allows you to better know the Universe and ourselves. So, one of the main directions of space research today is growing to the ISS a large variety of plants. During the operation of the station, the astronauts grew barley, peas, radish, wheat, lettuce plants, etc are Also constantly researching cancer and Parkinson's disease.
In addition, the project cultivates Mayo Clinic stem cells – this will allow scientists to understand why some cancers are resistant to chemotherapy. to improve our understanding of cancer resistance to chemotherapy. About six of the most interesting scientific experiments aboard the International space station read .
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