APS March: The curious case of Jan Hendik Schön

APS March: The curious case of Jan Hendik Schön

This afternoon I sat in on a well-attended session about the greatest fraud in physics history by investigative journalist Eugenie Reich. Reich has literally written the book on Jan Hendrik Schön, a Bell Labs physicist who is believed to have fabricated data in dozens of research papers in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Her message in a sentence? “Don’t hate da playa, hate da game.”

APS March: Has graphene passed its peak?

APS March: Has graphene passed its peak?

Over on his personal blog, Nature Physics editor Ed Gerstner has a very nice blog post on graphene at the March meeting. Graphene, you may remember, are atomically thin sheets of carbon that display all sorts of cool properties. At last year’s meeting Graphene took the headlines: There was lots of talk about using sheets for displays and ribbons of the stuff for transistors.

APS March: Welcome to Portland!

Good morning and welcome to the American Physical Society’s March 2010 meeting in beautiful Portland, OR. I walked into the convention centre this morning and was astonished to see a huge Foucault pendulum in the foyer. I wonder if they set it up all for us…  … Read more

IAEA: License to ill(icitly traffic nuclear material)

Yesterday the press got a briefing from the the team running the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Illicit Trafficking Database. The database was officially established in 1995 and is one of the few publicly available sources of information on nuclear smuggling. 108 countries voluntarily deposit information about lost, missing or stolen radiological material in the database. They do so on condition of anonymity, so the IAEA won’t say too much about where any given incidents occur. However, they do give aggrigate numbers which are in and of themselves reasonably interesting.