Zoom-in on the tail fin of a zebra fish

September issue

This month we find out that collective motion of cells helps wound healing, reflect on the challenges faced by first-generation students, and review real-world multilayer networks.


  • Complex optics insight

    Disorder and mode interactions are often treated as sources of noise, but can shape the flow of light in interesting and useful ways. This Insight reviews the fundamental physics and broad applications of optics in disordered and multimodal media.

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    • When a system is driven across a second-order phase transition, defects can form because it cannot respond quickly enough to the new conditions. The Kibble–Zurek mechanism explains this physics, and has now been invoked for Ising-type domains.

      • István Kézsmárki
      • Andrés Cano
      News & Views
    • Local thermodynamic measurements of a twisted transition metal dichalcogenide heterostructure reveal competition between unconventional charge order and Hofstadter states. This results from the presence of both flat and dispersive electronic bands, whose energetic ordering can be experimentally tuned.

      Research Briefing
    • A trilayer copper oxide superconductor, which exhibits the highest superconducting critical temperature as a function of the number of copper–oxygen planes, is shown to have unusual doped hole distribution and interaction between the planes.

      • Atsushi Fujimori
      News & Views
    • Hubbard excitons are elusive quasiparticles that are predicted to form in strongly correlated insulators. Detecting their internal structure and dynamics clarifies the involvement of spin fluctuations in their binding and recombination processes.

      • Edoardo Baldini
      News & Views
  • Claims of a room-temperature, ambient-pressure superconductor recently kicked up a storm on social media. As the dust settles, we take stock of what this experience can teach us.

  • Originally invented to improve cornering techniques in race driving, speed traps contribute to road safety. Robert Wynands introduces us to tools of traffic metrology.

    • Robert Wynands
    Measure for Measure
  • Radionuclides have a myriad of applications, ranging from nuclear energy to environmental studies. Carine Michotte illustrates the importance of radionuclide metrology for nuclear medicine.

    • Carine Michotte
    Measure for Measure
Feynman diagrams that contribute to the production of the Higgs boson form the number ten.

The Higgs boson discovery turns ten

The discovery of the Higgs boson was announced ten years ago on the 4th of July 2012 — an event that substantially advanced our understanding of the origin of elementary particles’ masses.


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