Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Wavelength


Spatial resolution, spectral contrast and occlusion are three major bottlenecks for non-invasive inspection of complex samples with current imaging technologies. We exploit the sub-picosecond time resolution along with spectral resolution provided by terahertz time-domain spectroscopy to computationally extract occluding content from layers whose thicknesses are wavelength comparable. The method uses the statistics of the reflected terahertz electric field at subwavelength gaps to lock into each layer position and then uses a time-gated spectral kurtosis to tune to highest spectral contrast of the content on that specific layer. To demonstrate, occluding textual content was successfully extracted from a packed stack of paper pages down to nine pages without human supervision. The method provides over an order of magnitude enhancement in the signal contrast and can impact inspection of structural defects in wooden objects, plastic components, composites, drugs and especially cultural artefacts with subwavelength or wavelength comparable layers.

Concepts: Diffraction, Optics, Fundamental physics concepts, Light, Layer, Wavelength, Telescope, OSI model


We investigated the frequency and clinical significance of diagonal earlobe crease (DELC) in cognitively impaired patients using imaging biomarkers, such as white matter hyperintensities (WMH) on MRI and amyloid-β (Aβ) PET. A total of 471 cognitively impaired patients and 243 cognitively normal (CN) individuals were included in this study. Compared with CN individuals, cognitively impaired patients had a greater frequency of DELC (OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.1-2.2, P = 0.007). This relationship was more prominent in patients with dementia (OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.2-2.7, P = 0.002) and subcortical vascular cognitive impairment (OR 2.4, 95% CI 1.6-3.6, P < 0.001). Compared with Aβ-negative cognitively impaired patients with minimal WMH, Aβ-positive patients with moderate to severe WMH were significantly more likely to exhibit DELC (OR 7.3, 95% CI 3.4-16.0, P < 0.001). We suggest that DELC can serve as a useful supportive sign, not only for the presence of cognitive impairment, but also for cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD) and Aβ-positivity. The relationship between DELC and Aβ-positivity might be explained by the causative role of CSVD in Aβ accumulation.

Concepts: Cognitive psychology, Cognition, Cerebral cortex, Wavelength, Earlobe


We utilized an in vitro adult mouse extensor digitorum longus (EDL) nerve-attached preparation to characterize the responses of muscle spindle afferents to ramp-and-hold stretch and sinusoidal vibratory stimuli. Responses were measured at both room (24°C) and muscle body temperature (34°C). Muscle spindle afferent static firing frequencies increased linearly in response to increasing stretch lengths to accurately encode the magnitude of muscle stretch (tested at 2.5%, 5% and 7.5% of resting length [Lo]). Peak firing frequency increased with ramp speeds (20% Lo/sec, 40% Lo/sec, and 60% Lo/sec). As a population, muscle spindle afferents could entrain 1:1 to sinusoidal vibrations throughout the frequency (10-100 Hz) and amplitude ranges tested (5-100 µm). Most units preferentially entrained to vibration frequencies close to their baseline steady-state firing frequencies. Cooling the muscle to 24°C decreased baseline firing frequency and units correspondingly entrained to slower frequency vibrations. The ramp component of stretch generated dynamic firing responses. These responses and related measures of dynamic sensitivity were not able to categorize units as primary (group Ia) or secondary (group II) even when tested with more extreme length changes (10% Lo). We conclude that the population of spindle afferents combines to encode stretch in a smoothly graded manner over the physiological range of lengths and speeds tested. Overall, spindle afferent response properties were comparable to those seen in other species, supporting subsequent use of the mouse genetic model system for studies on spindle function and dysfunction in an isolated muscle-nerve preparation.

Concepts: Wave, Phase, Frequency, Hertz, Wavelength, Extensor digitorum muscle, Muscle spindle, Vibration


Our aim was to determine the association between melanopsin gene polymorphism and pupillary light reflex under diverse photic conditions, including different intensities andwavelengths.

Concepts: Light, The Association, Wavelength, Pupillary light reflex, Pupillary reflex


This paper is a theoretical analysis of mirror tilt in a Michelson interferometer and its effect on the radiant flux over the active area of a rectangular photodetector or image sensor pixel. It is relevant to sensor applications using homodyne interferometry where these opto-electronic devices are employed for partial fringe counting. Formulas are derived for radiant flux across the detector for variable location within the fringe pattern and with varying wave front angle. The results indicate that the flux is a damped sine function of the wave front angle, with a decay constant of the ratio of wavelength to detector width. The modulation amplitude of the dynamic fringe pattern reduces to zero at wave front angles that are an integer multiple of this ratio and the results show that the polarity of the radiant flux changes exclusively at these multiples. Varying tilt angle causes radiant flux oscillations under an envelope curve, the frequency of which is dependent on the location of the detector with the fringe pattern. It is also shown that a fringe count of zero can be obtained for specific photodetector locations and wave front angles where the combined effect of fringe contraction and fringe tilt can have equal and opposite effects. Fringe tilt as a result of a wave front angle of 0.05° can introduce a phase measurement difference of 16° between a photodetector/pixel located 20 mm and one located 100 mm from the optical origin.

Concepts: Optics, Ratio, Wave, Phase, Wavelength, Periodic function, Michelson interferometer, Active pixel sensor


We propose a new approach to control the amplitude and phase distributions of electromagnetic fields over the aperture of a horn antenna. By loading a metamaterial lens inside the horn antenna, a tapered amplitude distribution of the aperture field is achieved, which can suppress the side-lobe radiations of the antenna. The metamaterial is further manipulated to achieve a flat phase distribution on the horn aperture to avoid the gain reduction that usually suffers in the conventional low-sidelobe antenna designs. A prototype of the metamaterial-loaded horn antenna is designed and fabricated. Both numerical simulations and measured results demonstrate the tapered aperture-field distribution and significant reduction of side-lobe and back-lobe radiations in the operating frequency band.

Concepts: Electromagnetism, Quantum mechanics, Optics, Fundamental physics concepts, Superlens, Frequency, Wavelength, Radio


Suffering from giant size of objective lenses and infeasible manipulations of distant targets, telescopes could not seek helps from present super-resolution imaging, such as scanning near-field optical microscopy, perfect lens and stimulated emission depletion microscopy. In this paper, local light diffraction shrinkage associated with optical super-oscillatory phenomenon is proposed for real-time and optically restoring super-resolution imaging information in a telescope system. It is found that fine target features concealed in diffraction-limited optical images of a telescope could be observed in a small local field of view, benefiting from a relayed metasurface-based super-oscillatory imaging optics in which some local Fourier components beyond the cut-off frequency of telescope could be restored. As experimental examples, a minimal resolution to 0.55 of Rayleigh criterion is obtained, and imaging complex targets and large targets by superimposing multiple local fields of views are demonstrated as well. This investigation provides an access for real-time, incoherent and super-resolution telescopes without the manipulation of distant targets. More importantly, it gives counterintuitive evidence to the common knowledge that relayed optics could not deliver more imaging details than objective systems.

Concepts: Diffraction, Optics, Microscope, Wavelength, Lens, Telescope, F-number, Angular resolution


Electrogastrography (EGG) is a non-invasive method for the assessment of gastric myoelectrical activity. Porcine EGG is comparable with human one. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of atropine and neostigmine on the EGG in experimental pigs. Adult female pigs were administrated atropine (1.5 mg i.m., n=6) and neostigmine (0.5 mg i.m., n=6) after the baseline EGG, followed by a 90-minute trial recording (MMS, Enschede, the Netherlands). Running spectral analysis was used for the evaluation. The results were expressed as dominant frequency of slow waves and EGG power (areas of amplitudes). Neostigmine increased continuously the dominant frequency and decreased significantly the EGG power. Atropine did not change the dominant frequency significantly. However, atropine increased significantly the EGG power (areas of amplitudes) from basal values to the maximum at the 10 - 20-minute interval. After that period, the areas of amplitudes decreased significantly to the lowest values at the 60 - 90-minute interval. In conclusion, cholinergic and anticholinergic agents affect differently EGG in experimental pigs. This paper is scheduled for Physiological Research, Vol. 64, Supplement 5 (2015).

Concepts: Wave, Acetylcholine, Wavelength, Netherlands, Pig, Mydriasis, Physostigmine, Atropa belladonna


Insects are continually exposed to Radio-Frequency (RF) electromagnetic fields at different frequencies. The range of frequencies used for wireless telecommunication systems will increase in the near future from below 6 GHz (2 G, 3 G, 4 G, and WiFi) to frequencies up to 120 GHz (5 G). This paper is the first to report the absorbed RF electromagnetic power in four different types of insects as a function of frequency from 2 GHz to 120 GHz. A set of insect models was obtained using novel Micro-CT (computer tomography) imaging. These models were used for the first time in finite-difference time-domain electromagnetic simulations. All insects showed a dependence of the absorbed power on the frequency. All insects showed a general increase in absorbed RF power at and above 6 GHz, in comparison to the absorbed RF power below 6 GHz. Our simulations showed that a shift of 10% of the incident power density to frequencies above 6 GHz would lead to an increase in absorbed power between 3-370%.

Concepts: Fundamental physics concepts, Electromagnetic radiation, Frequency, Hertz, Wavelength, Sound, Radio, Heinrich Hertz


Metasurfaces impart phase discontinuities on impinging electromagnetic waves that are typically limited to 0-2π. Here, we demonstrate that multiresonant metasurfaces can break free from this limitation and supply arbitrarily large, tunable time delays over ultrawide bandwidths. As such, ultrathin metasurfaces can act as the equivalent of thick bulk structures by emulating the multiple geometric resonances of three-dimensional systems that originate from phase accumulation with effective material resonances implemented on the surface itself via suitable subwavelength meta-atoms. We describe a constructive procedure for defining the required sheet admittivities of such metasurfaces. Importantly, the proposed approach provides an exactly linear phase response so that broadband pulses can experience the desired group delay without any distortion of the pulse shape. We focus on operation in reflection by exploiting an antimatching condition, satisfied by interleaved electric and magnetic Lorentzian resonances in the surface admittivities, which completely zeroes out transmission through the metasurface. As a result, the proposed metasurfaces can perfectly reflect a broadband pulse imparting a prescribed group delay. The group delay can be tuned by modifying the implemented resonances, thus opening up diverse possibilities in the temporal applications of metasurfaces.

Concepts: Electromagnetism, Fundamental physics concepts, Light, Wave, Frequency, Wavelength, Group delay and phase delay, Waves