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Author Topic:   Einstein is rolling over in His Grave, or Cern makes a big mistake
cavediver
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Posts: 4129
From: UK
Joined: 06-16-2005


(1)
Message 61 of 74 (641575)
11-20-2011 11:28 AM
Reply to: Message 59 by Wollysaurus
11-20-2011 12:43 AM


Re: Follow-on experiment confirms original result
but could you put in layman's terms what a zero mass particle that exists in velocities exceeding c would mean...?

First off, tachyons are not massless. Something that is massless travels at c. Tachyons have mass, but just to cause greater confusion, that mass is imaginary, i.e. the squared mass is negative.

What would the confirmation of the existance of such a particle mean in practical terms, for us social "science" types who don't have the background in mathematics or the phycial sciences to appreciate such concepts on paper? If any?

Not much. We know that GPS works, that particle accelerators work, etc, so SR and GR are good approximations of reality. But to those of us in fundemental phsyics, if it is not a mistake, and if it is not a "cheat" (some higher-dimensional physics leaking into the experiemnt) then it is not far from discovering that 2+2=5. Everyone is asking what are the ramifications of this result if true, and we're floundering around trying to work out what the result actually means! At this stage we have no idea.

Edited by cavediver, : No reason given.


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GDR
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From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
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Message 62 of 74 (641629)
11-20-2011 8:19 PM


A related article on tachyons.

Can We Travel Backwards in Time


    
ramoss
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Message 63 of 74 (653584)
02-22-2012 8:16 PM


And, not surprising,

Flaw is discovered in the experiment

Darn, it would have been so fun to blow people's mind.


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Tangle
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Joined: 10-07-2011
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Message 64 of 74 (653606)
02-23-2012 3:44 AM
Reply to: Message 61 by cavediver
11-20-2011 11:28 AM


Re: Follow-on experiment confirms original result
cavediver writes:

First off, tachyons are not massless. Something that is massless travels at c. Tachyons have mass, but just to cause greater confusion, that mass is imaginary, i.e. the squared mass is negative.

sheesh.....that was the layman's explanation? I'm going fishing.......


Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

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Wounded King
Member (Idle past 2259 days)
Posts: 4149
From: Edinburgh, Scotland
Joined: 04-09-2003


Message 65 of 74 (653617)
02-23-2012 5:23 AM
Reply to: Message 63 by ramoss
02-22-2012 8:16 PM


The article you link to seems to have gone through the usual science press mangle.

A slightly fuller account on ZDnet goes into a bit more detail on the nature of the technical problems. It also passes on a statement from CERN's spokesman that even if these problems are verified it doesn't necessarily mean that they were extant at the time of the previous experiments.

So a definitive answer will need the problems to be eliminated and the experiment performed again. It does seem quite likely that the result is going to be that the fault giving an overestimate was the cause of the previous results, just on the grounds of it being a more reasonable explanation than a huge tranche of our current understanding of physics being radically wrong.

TTFN,

WK


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Percy
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Joined: 12-23-2000
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Message 66 of 74 (653640)
02-23-2012 10:48 AM
Reply to: Message 63 by ramoss
02-22-2012 8:16 PM


ramoss writes:

Darn, it would have been so fun to blow people's mind.

If the supraluminal transmission results prove out it will be absolutely mind-blowing to science and probably initiate a period of both new theory and new discovery. I personally don't believe they'll prove out, but if they did, wow!

This love of new discovery is what creationists think is absent in science. They see science as paranoidly defending the status quo when all we're really doing is following the evidence trail. We would love it if actual scientific evidence were uncovered of a young earth or a designer. It isn't these ideas in themselves that we decry but the lack of evidence.

--Percy


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kbertsche
Member (Idle past 296 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 67 of 74 (653642)
02-23-2012 11:00 AM
Reply to: Message 65 by Wounded King
02-23-2012 5:23 AM


CERN Press Release
CERN Press release, Feb 23, 2012:
The OPERA collaboration has informed its funding agencies and host laboratories that it has identified two possible effects that could have an influence on its neutrino timing measurement. These both require further tests with a short pulsed beam. If confirmed, one would increase the size of the measured effect, the other would diminish it. The first possible effect concerns an oscillator used to provide the time stamps for GPS synchronizations. It could have led to an overestimate of the neutrino's time of flight. The second concerns the optical fibre connector that brings the external GPS signal to the OPERA master clock, which may not have been functioning correctly when the measurements were taken. If this is the case, it could have led to an underestimate of the time of flight of the neutrinos. The potential extent of these two effects is being studied by the OPERA collaboration. New measurements with short pulsed beams are scheduled for May.

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Percy
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From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
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Message 68 of 74 (656101)
03-16-2012 2:33 PM


Not so fast: Second experiment refutes faster-than-light particles:

Anyone who bet against Einstein better get out their wallet...

--Percy


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1.61803
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Message 69 of 74 (656579)
03-20-2012 10:07 AM
Reply to: Message 68 by Percy
03-16-2012 2:33 PM


much ado about neutrinos....
From the Article: "The new results pile on to revelations last month that a loose cable may have compromised the original experiment, called OPERA."
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Percy
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Posts: 18482
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 70 of 74 (657773)
03-30-2012 12:55 PM


"Speed of light" experiment professor resigns
From http://www.reuters.com/...ce-neutrinos-idUSBRE82T0IP20120330:

(Reuters) - The Italian professor who led an experiment which initially appeared to challenge one of the fundaments of modern physics by showing particles moving faster than the speed of light, has resigned after the finding was overturned earlier this month.

Seems a bit of an overreaction. Mistakes are part of science.

--Percy


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Perdition
Member (Idle past 1402 days)
Posts: 1593
From: Wisconsin
Joined: 05-15-2003


Message 71 of 74 (657781)
03-30-2012 1:09 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by Percy
03-30-2012 12:55 PM


Re: "Speed of light" experiment professor resigns
Seems a bit of an overreaction. Mistakes are part of science.

I agree, it seems like a bit of an overreaction, but he may be resigning, not for being wrong, but for shooting the unverified results into the media.

Still, it got people really interested in science for a bit, so I don't see that any harm was done. It showed how science works best.


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Taq
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Message 72 of 74 (657784)
03-30-2012 1:14 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by Percy
03-30-2012 12:55 PM


Re: "Speed of light" experiment professor resigns
Seems a bit of an overreaction. Mistakes are part of science.

I agree. They even stated that they probably had made a mistake, and were asking the scientific community to find it for them after they had spent 3 months trying to do that very thing.

If the rumor is true that the faulty measurements may have been caused by a loose wire I can understand the embarrassment. I remember spending 3 weeks trying to get a specific expression clone to work only to find that I had left out a single base in one of my primers. It was an extremely simple and embarrassing mistake and I was sure that my bosses were going to rip me a new one. They didn't, and I learned an invaluable lesson. I would hope that a colleague would have tried to talk him out of resigning. Eating humble pie sucks, but it does make you a better scientist.


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jar
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Posts: 30981
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.8


Message 73 of 74 (657790)
03-30-2012 1:31 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by Percy
03-30-2012 12:55 PM


Re: "Speed of light" experiment professor resigns
He's Italian.

I think it was a mistake to resign if the reason was this experiment since that is a great example of how science works.

But he's Italian.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

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Tangle
Member
Posts: 6878
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.1


(1)
Message 74 of 74 (657792)
03-30-2012 2:11 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by Percy
03-30-2012 12:55 PM


Re: "Speed of light" experiment professor resigns
That's a damn shame if true. I thought it was a great piece of scientific honesty declaring a result that they couldn't themselves believe to be true and ask for help and confirmation.

I really dislike the idea that you have to resign for making that kind of mistake - it's not what science stands for.


Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

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