THIS summer, physicists celebrated a triumph that many consider fundamental to our understanding of the physical world: the discovery, after a multibillion-dollar effort, of the Higgs boson.
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Moons, rather than planets, could star in the first images of habitable worlds outside our solar system. Once taken, such images would offer unprecedented clues to the moons' ability to support life by providing the chemical signatures carried in their light.
When quantum theory was born, practical applications such as quantum computers and super-accurate atomic clocks would have seemed virtually impossible. This year's Nobel prize in physics, announced this morning, rewards two pioneers who made today's quantum technology possible.
This year's Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine has been awarded to John Gurdon at the University of Cambridge and Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University in Japan. They rewrote biology textbooks by showing that mature cells could be reprogrammed into embryonic cells that could then turn into all other tissues of the body.
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