The matter that apparently doesn’t matter

Artist's impression of the expected dark matter distribution around the Milky Way

We interact with ordinary matter all the time. It is the bed in which you wake up in the morning and the food that you eat for breakfast. It is the people we love and the pets we often love even more. It is us. Being fairly prominent stuff, ordinary matter is often referred to as ‘the matter that matters’ and without doubt deserves our attention. But we should not forget that it only makes up 5% of our Universe, the remainder of which is dark matter. Indeed, dark matter crosses paths with all of us but unless you’re a physicist it is unlikely to have crossed your mind.  Read more

There was nothing sane about Chernobyl

Liquidators (biorobots) clear radioactive debris off the roof of the reactor, throwing it on the ground where it will later be covered by the sarcophagus.

The new British-American miniseries ‘Chernobyl’, aired on HBO and Sky in May and June 2019, takes you on a dark ride through the insanity that accompanied the nuclear disaster of Chernobyl. Five haunting episodes depict the night and aftermath of the explosion of reactor 4, using the style of disaster films to vividly show how the combination of bad nuclear reactor design, irresponsible scientists, a totalitarian system and human error led to one of the biggest nuclear disasters, with devastating consequences within and outside the Iron Curtain.    … Read more

Interactions: Luke Fleet

Interactions: Luke Fleet

Luke Fleet is a Senior Editor & Team Leader at Nature. He joined Nature Research in 2013 as an editor at Nature Communications, before moving to Nature Physics in 2014, and then to Nature in 2017. He’s responsible for selecting the research papers that are published across a range of fields, including applied physics and electronics, and also assists in devising and delivering the goals for the physics team.  Read more

Behind the paper: Serendipitous encounters

Behind the paper: Serendipitous encounters

If you meet an editor of the Nature journals they will likely assure you that to get published you just need good science. But, the truth is there is some luck involved too – especially for interdisciplinary work. Sometimes the editors accidentally come across gems of papers. Bart Verberck and Liesbeth Venema tell two such stories.  Read more

More or more diverse?

The amount of scientific literature is growing at a staggering rate. In physics alone, more than 19,000 articles were published in 2016 and this is only what is indexed by Web of Science, excluding unpublished arXiv preprints, some conference papers, technical reports and PhD theses. There is little hope that anyone can keep up with what is going on outside their area of expertise and even that is a challenge. Review articles come in handy, but even reading just the physics review articles published in 2016 is hard — there’s more than 860 of them!  Read more