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Editor's choice

Jan 19, 2014

A special free-to-read digital edition containing 10 of our very best feature articles on the science and applications of light

News

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The top physics stories from around the world – have your say and sign up for our newswire

Spectrometer made from quantum dots is compact and low cost

Devices could someday be used in household appliances

Bringing the human eye into focus

New imaging technique resolves the rods and cones at the back of the eye

Quantum cryptography set for lift-off

Satellite transmits qubits to the Earth's surface

Could lasers guide and control the path of lightning?

New method to steer electric discharges around an obstacle uses laser beams

Frequency combs smooth out optical-fibre signals

Research could mean higher bandwidth for optical fibres, and so more data

Thin semiconductors go through the Mott transition

Research could help build photonic devices from novel 2D transition metals

Kirigami patterns make composite materials more stretchy, while staying strong

Method could be used to make flexible electronics and optoelectronic devices

Does time dilation destroy quantum superposition?

Interplay between gravity and quantum mechanics should be observable on Earth

Graphene light bulb shines bright

Devices could be used to make transparent, flexible displays of the future

How to make a better quantum thermometer

Physicists develop theoretical framework for measuring heat in tiny objects

Ultracold ions put friction to the test

Experiment shows how "stick–slip" processes can be finely tuned

Single-molecule diode has record-breaking current

Highest rectification ratio ever measured for such a device

Lasers reveal previously unseen fossil details

New palaeontological imaging method is cheap and non-destructive

New maze-like beamsplitter is world's smallest

Device could be used for "light-speed" photonic computing

Nanomachine pumps molecules 'uphill'

New molecular machine is inspired by those found in nature