New Phase Of Matter Discovered: Time Crystals
Start writing a post

Nowadays it seems like there isn't too much that's new anymore. All the good ideas have been used in some form or another, and some discovery you stumbled upon turns out to be one someone else already found fifty years ago. But fear not, comrades, for now we truly have something new. Something once deemed impossible.

Recently, two teams of scientists from the University of Maryland and Harvard University respectively have discovered a new form of matter called "time crystals." This may sound like something out of a science fiction novel, but allow me to explain.

Time crystals are a new discovery which has been found to have a repeating lattice structure, similar to solid crystals. But instead of repeating as a solid, they repeat in time. If you were to look at a time crystal for one moment, look away, then look back again, it will have changed its fundamental shape. It will come back to the shape that you first observed it in after a certain amount of time, depending on its variables, and operates in a constant cycle.

Normally, things that are in constant motion need outside energy to stay in motion (as explained in Newton's 2nd Law of Thermodynamics). But with time crystals, such is not entirely the case. The way that it works is that time crystals are in a state of perpetual motion due to a fracture in the symmetry of time, which allows for continuous motion.This also means that it is the only state of matter currently known that is not intrinsically in equilibrium.

According to Norman Yao, the lead researcher of both teams of scientists and co-author on both papers (which are still undergoing peer review), time crystals repeat in time because they are periodically "kicked", like poking Jell-O repeatedly to make it move. But instead of someone constantly keeping up the motion, the Jell-O settles into a stable pattern and continues to move on its own through vibrating in time, the fourth dimension, instead of just our standard three dimensions. Such is the essence of time crystals.

Though it was deemed impossible by physicists, time crystals were first predicted by the late Nobel prize laureate Frank Wilczek back in 2012. And now, a little after four years later, we may be on the breach of one of the most important scientific discoveries not only of our decade, but possibly of our generation.

"This is a new phase of matter, period," said Yao, "but it is also really cool because it is one of the first examples of non-equilibrium matter. For the last half-century, we have been exploring equilibrium matter, like metals and insulators. We are just now starting to explore a whole new landscape of non-equilibrium matter."

Isn't science an amazing thing?


-Links For Further Reading-

Time Crystals Are Now A Thing

Scientists Unveil New Form Of Matter: Time Crystals

Physicists Actually Create "Impossible" Time Crystals

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers

1229468

Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

771744
Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series

771431
Netflix

Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

498222
Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

309238
Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?

445915

Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

14 Last Minute Valentine's Day Gifts Your S.O. Will Love

If they love you, they're not going to care if you didn't get them some expensive diamond necklace or Rolex watch; they just want you.

301070

Let me preface this by saying I am not a bad girlfriend.

I am simply a forgetful one.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

10 Helpful Tips For College Students Taking Online Courses This Semester

Here are several ways to easily pass an online course.

202758
Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels

With spring semester starting, many college students are looking to take courses for the semester. With the pandemic still ongoing, many students are likely looking for the option to take online courses.

Online courses at one time may have seemed like a last minute option for many students, but with the pandemic, they have become more necessary. Online courses can be very different from taking an on-campus course. You may be wondering what the best way to successfully complete an online course is. So, here are 10 helpful tips for any student who is planning on taking online courses this semester!

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments