Formula for constructing perfect sandcastles

Researchers from France, Iran, and the Netherlands have published a journal article on “How to construct the perfect sandcastle” in Nature Publishing Group’s Scientific Reports.  They present a mathematical formula for building stable sandcastles, which can be used on land or below water.

According to the authors, the study’s “results are of practical interest for civil engineering and soil mechanics… In addition, it explains the maximum height of, and provides us with a recipe to construct, the perfect sandcastle.”

In ScienceNordic, one of the authors also explains in layman’s terms how it can be applied to building sandcastles on the beach.

Image from Sandyfeet

Big money in physics?

Yuri Milner

Who knew? As a scientist in the field of physics, you have the chance to be awarded the most lucrative academic prize in the world. Nine physicists became multimillionaires after Yuri Milner, a billionaire who made his fortune investing in Internet companies like Facebook and Groupon after quitting his PhD in physics, and then established the Fundamental Physics Prize, dropped $3 million into their bank accounts. The prize is larger than the Nobel Prize, which is currently $1.2 million, split among 2 or 3 people and differs from the Nobel Prize in crucial ways. The Fundamental Physics Prize can go to younger scientists who are still in the experimental stage of their research. The nomination and voting process is also different, with anyone being able to nominate a winner online and the selection panel is public. Milner hopes that the significant size of the prize will shine a spotlight on fundamental physics and drive home the importance of the field. To read more about Yuri Milner, the Fundamental Physics Prize and its recipients, check out this article in The Guardian.

Image from The New York Times