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Nature Physics offers a unique mix of news and reviews alongside top-quality research papers. Published monthly, in print and online, the journal reflects the entire spectrum of physics, pure and applied.
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One-dimensional Kronig–Penney superlattices at the LaAlO<sub>3</sub>/SrTiO<sub>3</sub> interface

Thu, 15/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 15 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01217-z

The two-dimensional electron gas at an oxide interface is patterned to form a channel with a periodic potential imposed on top. This replicates the textbook Kronig–Penney model and leads to fractionalization of electron bands in the channel.

Two-fold symmetric superconductivity in few-layer NbSe<sub>2</sub>

Thu, 15/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 15 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01219-x

A two-fold rotational symmetry is observed in the superconducting state of NbSe2. This is strikingly different from the three-fold symmetry of the lattice, and suggests that a mixed conventional and unconventional order parameter exists in this material.

Embryonic tissues as active foams

Mon, 12/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 12 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01215-1

A computational framework draws analogy with foams to offer a comprehensive picture of how cell behaviours influence fluidization in embryonic tissues, highlighting the role of tension fluctuations in regulating tissue rigidity.

Unusual high-field metal in a Kondo insulator

Mon, 12/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 12 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01216-0

Transport and thermodynamic measurements on strongly correlated Kondo metal YbB12 reveal the coexistence of charged and charge-neutral fermions in the material and the crucial role played by the latter in the quantum oscillations of resistivity.

Measurement of the proton spin structure at long distances

Mon, 12/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 12 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01198-z

Measurements of the proton’s spin structure in experiments scattering a polarized electron beam off polarized protons in regions of low momentum transfer squared test predictions from chiral effective field theory of the strong interaction.

A signal from the ice

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01227-x

A signal from the ice

Nerve rays on the brain

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01228-w

Nerve rays on the brain

Selective prosecution of scientists must stop

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01231-1

The US Department of Justice’s ‘China Initiative’ is unfairly targeting Chinese American academics for their alleged ties with the Chinese government. A more proportionate approach is urgently needed.

One outstanding path from A to B

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01222-2

What does it mean for an individual to be ‘important’ or for a connection to be ‘outstanding’? The answer depends on context, as Sarah Shugars and Samuel V. Scarpino explain.

When the dust settles

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01223-1

When the dust settles

Instruments of change for academic tool development

Fri, 09/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 09 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01221-3

Scientific progress has always been driven by the ability to build an instrument to answer a specific question. But spreading the news of how to replicate that tool is an evolving art, ripe for an open-source revolution.

Life on the osmotic slopes

Mon, 05/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 05 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01218-y

Gradients in the concentration of a solute can drive particle transport by inducing interfacial flows via imbalances in the osmotic pressure near surfaces. Now it seems that this mechanism is directing traffic on the cell membrane.

Mirror symmetry breaking in a model insulating cuprate

Mon, 05/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 05 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01210-6

Several cuprate superconductors were recently shown to have chiral phonons. Here second harmonic generation measurements show that antiferromagnetism breaks all mirror symmetries in a related compound, consistent with a chiral state.

A diffusiophoretic mechanism for ATP-driven transport without motor proteins

Mon, 05/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 05 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01213-3

Protein oscillations linked to cell division in Escherichia coli are shown to localize unrelated molecules on the cell membrane via a diffusiophoretic mechanism, in which an effective friction fosters cargo transport along the fluxes set up by the proteins.

Knock-out interpretability

Fri, 02/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 02 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01224-0

A detailed analysis of a nucleon-knockout experiment has put forward a methodological roadmap for overcoming ambiguities in the interpretation of the data — promising access to the nuclear wave functions in unstable nuclei.

Unreal art and hidden physics

Thu, 01/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 01 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01220-4

Unreal art and hidden physics

Duality and domain wall dynamics in a twisted Kitaev chain

Thu, 01/04/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 01 April 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01208-0

A terahertz spectroscopic study of the quasi-one-dimensional ferromagnet CoNb2O6 reveals bond-dependent interactions in this material that are similar to those of a one-dimensional version of the honeycomb Kitaev spin liquid.

Unperturbed inverse kinematics nucleon knockout measurements with a carbon beam

Mon, 29/03/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 29 March 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01193-4

Initial- and final-state interactions distort the kinematics in particle knockout scattering experiments, complicating their interpretation. These effects are suppressed by detecting 11B nuclei in quasi-free scattering of 12C ions from hydrogen.

Endless forms fabricated

Mon, 22/03/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 22 March 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01214-2

The patterning dynamics of confined immiscible fluids has inspired an elegant and versatile approach to building periodic three-dimensional multi-material architectures. The technique extends to triphasic composites, three-dimensional droplet networks and even biological tissues.

Solar flare effects in the Earth’s magnetosphere

Mon, 22/03/2021 - 00:00

Nature Physics, Published online: 22 March 2021; doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01203-5

The solar wind affects the magnetosphere, but whether this holds true for solar flares was unclear. By combining geospace modelling with observations, solar flares are shown to influence the dynamics of the magnetosphere and its ionosphere coupling.

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