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Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!

 
Trippstick
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09/23/2011 10:20 AM
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Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
[link to www.bbc.co.uk]


By Jason Palmer
Science and technology reporter, BBC News

The neutrinos are fired deep under the Italian Apennines at Gran Sasso
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Puzzling results from Cern, home of the Large Hadron Collider, have confounded physicists because subatomic particles seem to have beaten the speed of light.

Neutrinos sent through the ground from Cern toward the Gran Sasso laboratory 732km away in Italy seemed to show up a tiny fraction of a second early.

The results - which threatens to upend a century of physics - were put online for scrutiny by other scientists.

In the meantime, the group says it is being very cautious about its claims.

They will be discussing the result in detail in a conference at Cern on Friday afternoon, which can be viewed online.

"We tried to find all possible explanations for this," said report author Antonio Ereditato of the Opera collaboration.

"We wanted to find a mistake - trivial mistakes, more complicated mistakes, or nasty effects - and we didn't," he told BBC News.

"When you don't find anything, then you say 'Well, now I'm forced to go out and ask the community to scrutinise this.'"

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We want to be helped by the community in understanding our crazy result - because it is crazy”

Antonio Ereditato
Opera collaboration
Light speed: Flying into fantasy
The speed of light is the Universe's ultimate speed limit, and much of modern physics - as laid out in part by Albert Einstein in his theory of special relativity - depends on the idea that nothing can exceed it.

Thousands of experiments have been undertaken to measure it ever more precisely, and no result has ever spotted a particle breaking the limit.

But Dr Ereditato and his colleagues have been carrying out an experiment for the last three years that seems to suggest neutrinos have done just that.

Neutrinos come in a number of types, and have recently been seen to switch spontaneously from one type to another.

The team prepares a beam of just one type, muon neutrinos, sending them from Cern to an underground laboratory at Gran Sasso in Italy to see how many show up as a different type, tau neutrinos.

In the course of doing the experiments, the researchers noticed that the particles showed up 60 billionths of a second sooner than light would over the same distance.

This is a tiny fractional change, but one that occurs consistently.


The team measured the travel times of neutrino bunches some 15,000 times, and have reached a level of statistical significance that in scientific circles would count as a formal discovery.

But the group understands that what are known as "systematic errors" could easily make an erroneous result look like a breaking of the ultimate speed limit, and that has motivated them to publish their measurements.

"My dream would be that another, independent experiment finds the same thing - then I would be relieved," Dr Ereditato said.

But for now, he explained, "we are not claiming things, we want just to be helped by the community in understanding our crazy result - because it is crazy".

"And of course the consequences can be very serious."
NTimes

User ID: 1539400
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09/23/2011 10:36 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
"And of course the consequences can be very serious."

What does he mean by this?
That the laws of physics no longer apply?
Seems a bit excessive.
Trippstick (OP)

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09/23/2011 10:39 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
"And of course the consequences can be very serious."

What does he mean by this?
That the laws of physics no longer apply?
Seems a bit excessive.
 Quoting: NTimes


Not that they don't apply but a lot of the boundaries we have used in many of our equations for physics may have to be reworked if our laws of relativity become suspect as this research will do if proven as fact.
Anonymous Coward
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09/23/2011 10:40 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
"And of course the consequences can be very serious."

What does he mean by this?
That the laws of physics no longer apply?
Seems a bit excessive.
 Quoting: NTimes


Yep, it means they have to change how they think.
damned
Trippstick (OP)

User ID: 1446631
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09/23/2011 10:40 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
"And of course the consequences can be very serious."

What does he mean by this?
That the laws of physics no longer apply?
Seems a bit excessive.
 Quoting: NTimes


Yep, it means they have to change how they think.
damned
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1546287


Exactly.
NTimes

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09/23/2011 10:58 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
Yeah - i get it.
I guess I always just assumed that the formulas were going to need to be reworked at some point - as there is so much in this universe we can't yet explain. I am surprised that the scientist is so shaken by the "discovery".
Trippstick (OP)

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09/23/2011 11:01 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
Yeah - i get it.
I guess I always just assumed that the formulas were going to need to be reworked at some point - as there is so much in this universe we can't yet explain. I am surprised that the scientist is so shaken by the "discovery".
 Quoting: NTimes


Well relativity has been a basic foundation for physicists for a while now. Even going into quantum mechanics we use relativity. It's basically like being told the period table of elements is just 1% of what actually exists. It's opening a whole new world.
Anonymous Coward
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09/23/2011 11:39 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
Well, they thought it would not happen in nature. And if it happens the thing that travels would go back in time.
So maybe they just invented a time machine.
Trippstick (OP)

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09/23/2011 11:40 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
Well, they thought it would not happen in nature. And if it happens the thing that travels would go back in time.
So maybe they just invented a time machine.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1068718


That theory is very old and doesn't have much merit anymore. Evidence is pointing to the idea that Particle State is more what determines your relativity than just your velocity.
Anonymous Coward
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09/23/2011 11:42 AM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
Well, they thought it would not happen in nature. And if it happens the thing that travels would go back in time.
So maybe they just invented a time machine.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1068718


Or, it was just proven that you can go faster than light. Doesn't mean you'll go back in time, means you'll simply advance to where you want to go in what seems like faster time to everyone else. This is, assuming you can actually ACCELERATE to that speed, which is what Einstein was saying....
Anonymous Coward
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09/23/2011 01:04 PM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
meh, most likely they fucked up their research & published this BS.
Trippstick (OP)

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09/27/2011 03:04 PM
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Re: Particles that travel faster than the SPEED OF LIGHT!!!
bump

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