Monday, July 24, 2017

Science for Your Stories!

I'm always on the lookout to find scientific discoveries (or dreams) to include in my stories. The manuscript I'm querying features quantum mechanics, and the one I'm editing has elements of nuclear fusion. I'm still a few months away from starting a new first draft, but I couldn't help but look up a few new-ish discoveries. If you're a science nerd like me, maybe you can use some of these in your writing!

Pull water out of thin air
Your desert city doesn't have to live without water–now you can simply pull it out of the air. A porous, metal-organic layer captures water from the air, the water is heated and released via fancy solar elements, and then a condenser turns the vapor into liquid water.

Microchipped employees
Why carry around a key fob or your credit card when you can just get a microchip injected into your hand? Some people believe that these implants will soon replace passports, passcards, and most forms of payment. At least it'll be harder to lose your wallet?

Replace steel with graphene
Instead of using the same ol' metals for your world, why not fuse some lightweight layers of graphene? Graphene is essentially a latticework of carbon atoms, and as such is incredibly strong, but scientists so far have had a hard time translating that 2D strength to a 3D world. MIT has started fusing graphene flakes and reports that the resulting pieces have 5% of steel's density but are ten times as strong.

Time crystals are the new matter
Oh, yes, you read that right. Scientists have created a new phase of matter–a "time" crystal whose 3D atomic patterns repeat not in space, but in time. They hope this discovery can be used in quantum computers.

Michelle geeks out about science on a daily basis. Especially quantum mechanics.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the heads up on time crystals; it certainly conjures up some interesting ideas. Topological physics does offer a fair amount of interesting story fodder.

    I have always been a science enthusiast, but lacked the discipline to be an actual scientist. My parents said, when the doctor slapped me after I was born I said “Why?” instead of “Whah!” In my childhood basement lab, I did many experiments. Most of them ended up bursting into flames, and/or producing foul odors.

    I have a few science podcast I enjoy “Big Picture Science”, “Science Talk”, “The Naked Scientist” and “Quirks and Quarks” These give a good variety of science news in a relatable format.