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An ice-cube away from…brrrrrrr…the coldest temperatures

February9

coldest_tempsOur daughter found herself trapped in a large freezer once. Fortunately, her cell phone saved her from a slow, agonizing death! Actually, she was doing a promotion at a trade show and the freezer was supposed to have a safety mechanism to prevent the door locking. Just the thought of this incident makes H3 shiver!

Anyway, Measurement is a really popular topic studied in many High School Mathematics classes. Recently, “physicists from Australia and the United Kingdom have created a new way of measuring matter — and as a result they now can study the coldest objects in the universe.

Raise the temperature just an ice cube above absolute zero — that’s -273.15 Celsius or -459.67 Fahrenheit, the temperature believed to be the lowest possible — and ordinary science gets weird. Stuff acts strange, different laws of physics take over and a dilute gas forms into what’s called a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC), a cold atomic substance. A fraction of the stuff has been created in physics labs since the mid-1990s, an achievement that earned a Nobel Prize in 2001. But it’s difficult even to photograph this strange material without eradicating it, because if it absorbs even the tiniest piece of light — a photon — it can be destroyed.

That’s like trying to see if your fridge is cold without opening the door and turning on the light, explained Michael Hush, a research fellow with the University of Nottingham in the U.K.

“We have a way to fix this problem,” Hush said.” How did they do it? Read more here.

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NCEA Level 2 Algebra Problem. Using the information given, the shaded area = 9, that is:
y(y-8) = 9 –> y.y – 8y – 9 =0
–> (y-9)(y+1) = 0, therefore y = 9 (can’t have a distance of – 1 for the other solution for y)
Using the top and bottom of the rectangle,
x = (y-8)(y+2) = (9-8)(9+2) = 11
but, the left side = (x-4) = 11-4 = 7, but rhs = y+? = 9+?, which is greater than the value of the opp. side??
[I think that the left had side was a mistake and should have read (x+4)?]

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