The use of methods from the physical sciences to aid in the study of biological systems. Note that biophysics questions are only allowed if they are mainly about physics.

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Why is the efficiency of human cells less than the efficiency of an Otto engine?

I always used to think (I don’t know why!) that the efficiency of human (and animal and plant) cells should be equal to or near the efficiency of a Carnot engine or at least should be the highest ...
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1answer
25 views

How can I get the sensitivity of some eye cone at a specific wavelength?

The following graph shows the sensitivity for eye cones and rods, but I want to know e.g. what is the red cone sensitivity for a wavelength of 500 nm? How can I find an answer for questions like this?...
0
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2answers
31 views

Work and energy example [duplicate]

The normal definition of Work, as far as I have read, is: Energy is transferred through work. But I just heard an educationist state this example, where there is a weightlifter who keeps up a huge ...
2
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1answer
52 views

Generallized Canonical Ensemble - Isobaric Ensemble

I am trying to understand the way generalized canonical ensembles like the pressure ensemble are derived from the standard canonical ensemble. In the derivation for the standard form, one defines a ...
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1answer
76 views

Are all radioisotopes equally dangerous? [closed]

I'm currently writing an issues investigation on the radioisotope plutonium-239. It's difficult to talk about the dangers of the radioisotope itself, since information on the internet is mixed. ...
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2answers
54 views

A dead body floats with its head immersing in water . Why?

I found this question in my practice book . I want to know about it .
2
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1answer
41 views

Why does our eyes see red when exposed to too much light? [closed]

When I looked into my projector when it was on the blue screen it left a red spot in my vision. I should not have tried it but all the colors left a red spot. Why not a blue or yellow spot was left?
0
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2answers
224 views

Can we write the wave function of the living things? If yes then how? [closed]

In quantum mechanics we studied that everything has a wave function associated with it.My question is can we write down the wave functions of things. Then how we can write down the wave functions of ...
5
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2answers
111 views

How does electrical energy develop by concentrating ions on one side of a biomembrane?

In biology there is a topic called oxidative phosphorylation. In the first step of this process substrates such as isocitrate is oxidised and the electrons are transferred to coenzymes NAD+ or FAD ...
0
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1answer
66 views

What are the problems in the idea that a person would freeze to death in outer space?

It is said that the body would freeze to death, if left in outer space, which is true, since the temperature is around $3$K. But what are the flaws in this theory, in terms of thermodynamics (if we ...
3
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1answer
458 views

Can we use radiation pressure to push/levitate a human?

I want to know, at least in theory, are there any safe em wavelength that could affect human body as net force and do no harm? To put it bluntly I want to know is it possible for levitate a human on ...
3
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2answers
37 views

Is a folded protein's conformation subject to thermal fluctuations?

In biology class we learn that proteins are folded, and that the shape the protein takes affects its bioactivity. Typically we don't go much further into protein shape from that, at least not at the ...
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2answers
48 views

What causes anything to smell?

We all know that we can see anything because of Light Absorption and all. We can hear things because of caused vibrations. But what makes an object smell? I read somewhere about the presence of ...
2
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1answer
339 views

Singing: Resonance body open-closed or closed-closed?

Googling yields contradictory results, so here my question: When I sing, my vocal chords vibrate, but my whole body is the resonance body, right? So I would say that when I think about standing waves ...
7
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1answer
5k views

Adverse Health Effects of Strong Radio Waves

A while ago, I was hiking near the Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles. When I got to the sign, I found out it was fenced off; with several signs and a security camera promising prompt enforcement. As I was ...
0
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1answer
30 views

Why is resting membrane potential or a membrane depolarisation localised to the membrane?

Why would a membrane depolarisation be localised to one part of the membrane? If adjacent areas have a more negative potential shouldn't the difference in potential cause charge to flow into the ...
10
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3answers
909 views

Do human bodies give off a consistent but unique radiation/electromagnetic/energy signature?

Is there any facet of the energy emitted by a human body that is consistent and unique - like a fingerprint, but a signal that could be detected by a remote device?
2
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1answer
218 views

How much energy (eV) is in a mosquito's wing beat?

We're all familiar with the annoying sound of a mosquito near our ear. I estimate the wing beat frequency to be in the 400 to 800Hz range (to accomodate the Bruce Willis and Danny de Vito of mosquitos ...
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1answer
188 views

Why it's more difficult to walk in an inclined plane than in a causal road [closed]

my question is about something very casual , but when i tried to solve that , it was not easy at all . My question is : "Why when we walk in an inclined plane we get tired more than when we walk in ...
6
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1answer
60 views

What happens at the point of welding iron?

What is the physics behind welding iron? It is obviously the electricity that causes the two metal parts to fuse but what is the role of the welding rod and why is it said to damage your eyes when you ...
0
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1answer
57 views

Why is standing still easier than walking? [closed]

Both the works basically push force into the ground.So why does walking require more work?
5
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4answers
798 views

Why does the human body feel loud music?

I was sitting close to a speaker and I could feel the sound coming from it all over my body, especially in my heart, and it pounded with the loud beats of the music. Was my heart pounding because of ...
0
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1answer
107 views

Why does holding an object cost energy while no work is being done? [duplicate]

I was reading the discussion here: Why does holding something up cost energy while no work is being done? I feel as though the question is being avoided. Suppose instead of holding an object by hand ...
1
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1answer
69 views

Could I pick up a human with a strong enough magnet? [duplicate]

Could I pick up a human with a strong enough magnet? Humans contain magnetic materials, such as iron.
3
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1answer
2k views

How much magnetic field will be required to levitate a human? [duplicate]

According to this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqKeiiezqzc it should be possible to levitate humans because the water in our bodies is diamagnetic - but it is stated (at 1:14) "although ...
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3answers
82 views

How do Calories (kcal) relate to watts?

In thinking about exercise and "burning calories" it occurred to me that there should be some fairly intuitive correlation between the biological energy conversion going on in a person's body with the ...
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0answers
31 views

How do inverse of Kirchoff matrix of a polymer possess the information for its mobility?

In Normal Mode Analysis of polymers like proteins, I have seen that mobility (measures like root mean squared fluctuations) can be found from the eigen values and eigen vectors of inverse of Kirchoff ...
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1answer
55 views

Humans Voice Frequency? [closed]

Do all human beings have a different voice frequency like they have different finger prints? as all of us are unique so probably our vocal folds make different vibrations while saying a same word that ...
3
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2answers
82 views

Why do some people support more electricity than others?

There is a game where people hold by their hands and two of them touch the electrodes of a shock box, then an electric current flows through them. I understand that since they are all making a single ...
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1answer
26 views

Decompression sickness

In decompression sickness why does nitrogen gas come out as bubbles? Is it because under high pressure the nitrogen gas was converted into liquid nitrogen and during the process of coming to the ...
2
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1answer
78 views

Confusion over plant's “magnetic field” being used to reduce wastage of pesticide

As far as I am aware, a plant does not have a magnetic field of any significant magnitude. What I wonder is, is there any electromagnetic related basis for the crop spraying technique outlined in ...
1
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1answer
46 views

Is it possible to fight tree height limit with centrifugal force?

I heard tree has some height limit because water cannot be pumped over some height (130m if I remember it right) which cap the limit of tallest tree possible on earth But there are centrifugal force ...
13
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4answers
6k views

Why does adding red light with blue light give purple light?

Our eyes contain 3 photoreceptor cells (cones) to perceive three wavelength ranges of light. Here is a visual representation of the wavelengths by these receptors (S, M and L). So if we have light ...
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1answer
54 views

How to shield myself from the LTE radiation coming from my phone while working on my Laptop? [closed]

I am connecting to the internet with the tethering option on my phone. I wonder if there is a way to shield myself from the LTE radiation (Long-Term Evolution, commonly marketed as 4G) as I am exposed ...
3
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1answer
59 views

Physiological Significance of Superposition

To what extent is the concept of superposition appropriate to physiology? In other words, can organisms "actually" exist in a state of superposition?
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Does the human body have a resonant frequency? If so, how strong is it?

Inspired by this question on Music beta SE, I'm wondering if the human body has a strong resonant frequency. I guess the fact that it's largely a bag of jelly would add a lot of damping to the system, ...
0
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0answers
21 views

Can we define a whole body thermodynamic model for human?

we can consider human body as a thermodynamic system and an energy exchange system, so we can investigate efficiency, entropy, exergy, is there any thermodynamic model for whole body?
3
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1answer
43 views

How much ionizing (carcinogenic) radiation is one exposed to on a commercial flight, what are the sources, and how could exposure be minimized? [closed]

I don't know if this is the best place to ask this question, but I figure a physics-based answer would be the most satisfying. I'd be happy to be convinced I'm being paranoid about protecting an ...
0
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0answers
42 views

Why does the lack of pressure in outer space affect what's inside our bodies?

I have read multiple similar questions on this site, but none answer specifically the thing I am having trouble understanding. I have read repeatedly that a lack of pressure will cause the fluids ...
0
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1answer
37 views

Voltage homogeneity across cell membrane

During respiration, individual cells produce a relatively large potential difference ($\sim 100$ mV) between the inside and outside, using energy to pump $H^+$ out of the cell to the liquid ...
4
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2answers
79 views

Why is it harder to situp on solid floor?

When I situp on solid floor it is harder for me to lift my body upwards versus on a soft/foamy floor which I can do a lot.
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1answer
71 views

If a being was able to swallow itself, where would it go physically? [closed]

if a being was made from a special type of material that allowed it to stretch and was very flexible, if it were to swallow itself, where wold it go. I mean the physical aspects of it since it wont be ...
4
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2answers
182 views

Fired a bullet upwards, can it fall down and kill me?

I know that if something is thrown up with a velocity v, it comes down with the same velocity as long as its motion faces no resistance. So is it possible for me to fire a bullet and be killed if it ...
0
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3answers
93 views

Lifting and putting down a weight

A man in a gym lifts a weight and then puts it down where it was before. 1) What can be say about the work done by the man to the weight? 2) Can it be equal in absolute value to the work made by ...
1
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1answer
21 views

how does voltage sensitive dye determine the membrane potential?

There are so many papers about VSDs and how to use them, but i can not find anything about what exactly is happening in the cell membrane that leads to the change in VSD's light intensity as a sign of ...
0
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1answer
194 views

The difference in how temperature feels inside in the summer vs. in the winter?

72 degrees feels cooler when it's hotter outside, say 90 F but warmer if it's really cold outside, say 32F However it also feels different if it's 90 vs say 70F outside. Why is that?
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0answers
17 views

Bimolecular and Isomerization reactions

Is it possible to describe a reaction of the $$ A+B \rightleftharpoons AB $$ exactly using the solution of an isomerization reaction? $$A \rightleftharpoons B$$ I just can not figure it out the ...
0
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3answers
57 views

According to the second law of thermodynamics, would life be possible on an Earth always facing the sun?

Suppose the Earth was making one complete rotation around its polar axis every year. Will life develop, or will there be a constant flow of energy from the Sun through and around the Earth? Will a ...
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2answers
99 views

Do animals defy gravity? [closed]

I am a beginner and trying to understand the concept of gravity Do animals defy gravity? If yes, which animal defies and in what way it does? Sorry had I asked something wrong
2
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2answers
75 views

Why was it difficult to walk in the same direction the train's acceleration, and easier the other way around?

The other day while I was walking in the same direction that the train was accelerating. Then I came across this question. Please if would answer it, I am very curious to know. But when I walked the ...