A look at the top stories in physics this past year according to Physics News in 1989 reveals one conspicuous absence - cold fusion. Why was one of science's most fiercely debated issues of the year not included? Phillip Schewe, editor of the American Institute of Physics' annual review, says there simply was not enough confirming evidence. Last spring, when the cold fusion issue was contested by physicists attending the American Physical Society meeting in Baltimore, there was a pervasive feeling from APS members that "those guys in Utah didn't know what they were doing," says Schewe, referring to claims made by the University of Utah's B. Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann. "I would have to support them [APS members] in their view."

The stories included in Physics News in 1989, this year published as a separate booklet, were chosen by scientists from AIP's 10 member societies. Other topics in...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?