Californian boffins say they have mastered the well-known phenomenon of freak waves - mathematically similar to the ship-swallowing monsters of the great southern ocean - occurring in supercontinuum light generators, by finding a magic optical "tickle-spot". Daniel Solli, Claus Ropers, and Bahram Jalali of UCLA believe that …
"capable of producing the optical equivalent of a seven-storey wall of water able to crumple a supertanker like a paper cup"
What *IS* the optical equivalent? Are we talking the accidental discovery of the Death Star, inadvertent vaporisation of a lab tech or just a few blips on the graph that shouldn't be there?
If I am not mistaken (and I couldn't be bothered to look it up), they induce some dynamic polarization into the medium with a pre-pulse before the short, intense pulse runs through and generates the SC. Sort of _not_at_all_ like water / bubbles or the rest of the badly chosen analogies.
Go back to your physics books at once!
(Think about electromagnetic wave propagation, induced polarization, rotating molecules, local fields, ...)
I don't know if many other readers will be making use of the Sage-Too Firefox extension for their RSS needs, but I just thought you should be aware that when it shows article headlines in a tooltip, the headline is truncated after the first 38 characters.
This created a headline that frankly gave a very misleading teaser for a comparatively dry article. Try it with your favourite string-splitting helper, I'm sure you'll see my point.
Do try to be more careful about this sort of thing, my children use this computer.
re: Good Heavens
It's O.K., your children will think you are a normal person and not some speccy-eyed white-coated geek. "Supercontinuum tickle-spot offers anal" is bog-standard tabliod stuff. Nowt disturbing in that.
...continuing the analogy with the water. You are trying to boil pure water, but its too explosive, so you add some mud...
Surely that stops it being so pure?
And I want to know what the big overload does.
Vaguely aware of the whooshing noise as it goes over my head
Sorry, don't understand a word of that article.
I'm therefore off to Wikipeadia to edit the entry about it there.
That's the way this 'stupidity of herds' thing works isn't it?
Paris because of her, er, um, supercontinuum
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