Friday, October 21, 2011

OPERA Trying to send a "bit" of information faster-than-light.

About 3 weeks ago the OPERA neutrino experiment at Gran Sasso laboratory  reported FTL neutrinos. Since than, many explanations came about to explain how this surprising measurement was probably an error, discussions like (the inconsistencies) of tachyons, the problematic relation on astrophysical data, environmental explanation on experimental details, and general relativity effects.

But farther on this note, OPERA scientist thought that maybe they could send a "bit" of information to travel FTL. However, even thought FTL is still in debate OPERA assumes that the "measurement is correct and that there is no systematic shift in the measured data". They thought that based on this assumption it was possible to send a "bit" of data at FTL, with an experimental setup  and of course to see if there was any mistakes on the Lorentz symmetry or errors in the causality principle.

So far there is no errors on the Lorentz symmetry as well as the on the causality principle based on the experiment, thus, the intend to send a "bit" of information was unsuccessful meaning that it was not possible to send information at FTL.

BUT!! this argument goes far beyond.

Scientist at CERN/OPERA have considered that just because the experimental setup was particularly set on a time length of 10000ns, scientist objected that maybe, by improving the luminosity and the position of the experiment or putting the neutrino detectors much much more farther away...the sending of a signal faster than c might be indeed possible. The bad news is that this might be an extrapolation (construction of new data points) meaning that nothing will change by changing the experimental setup. This is because the Lorentz symmetry (The feature  of nature that says that experimental results are independent of the "orientation" or the boost velocity of the laboratory through space) and the causality principle (the description of cause and effect) are our basic understanding of nature.

So far CERN/OPERA scientist believe that the rejection of at least one of these "basic understandings of nature" (Lorentz symmetry or causality principle) might be because of the actual "transmission" of the "bit" of information sent at FTL and not by an extrapolation in the experimental set.

The group of scientist who wrote the paper on the experiment at CERN quoted: " Nature may be subtle, protecting these basic principles with the help of some not yet understood 'censorship' mechanism".

What sort of mechanism is this?? if such mechanism has a censorship on this principles, it is quite unusual to see neutrinos having the ability to travel Faster-Than-The-Speed-Of-Light, therefore, an error must be going on somewhere on this measurement. Why can a particle travel faster than c and a "bit" of information can't? It smells like rotten fish to me, and quite honest we will never know if this experiment was incorrectly set up until we get farther results from other institutions that have measured the neutrino speed and confirmed that, indeed, it is possible that neutrino particles travel faster than light. Until than, my best guess would be that physicist don't have a theory to explain why information goes slower than the speed of light and the apparent measurement of a neutrino particles shows the possibility to break the universal speed limit, meaning that the "basic understanding of nature" might not be "so basic" until farther results.

But I had to ask myself this, if neutrinos could travel faster than the speed of light and not be able to send a "bit" of information, what about quantum entanglement or the 'spooky action at a distance' being able to send random information to the other side of the galaxy instantaneously? Whatever it is, here I leave you with a video by Michio Kaku about Quantum Entanglement.

Source: Arxiv :1110.3642v2 [Hep-ph] 18 Oct 2011 Could The OPERA setup send a bit of information faster than light? F.Giacosa, Pkovacs, and S.Lottini  Institute for Theorical Physics, Johan Wolfgang Gothe University, Max-von-Laue-Str. 1, D-60438 Frankfurt am Main and research Institute for particle and Nuclear Physics of the Hungarian Academy of Science, H-1525 Budapest, Hungary

Saturday, October 15, 2011

FTL neutrinos might have an explanation?? (Maybe, Maybe not) + Interesting take on this by Phil Plait aka Bad Astronomer

Recently a team of scientist from the OPERA experiment measured a cloud of neutrinos going faster than the speed of light. Their measurement was very sound saying that the neutrinos were traveling about 64 nanoseconds faster than the usual speed limit (Which is not very much). However, A recent study may suggest that this whole thing might be explained with relativity.

Ronald A.J van Elburg has a different note on this (see paper). He says that just like when you have a one meter long of straw hold by your hand, an observer away from you will see this meter straw much shorter. This is because the universe makes sure everything has the same speed. In other words, If the only speed that the Universe claims to be the speed limit, no matter what. The universe will make sure to make that happened. We know this because Einstein found that the speed of light is the same for every observer, so this would mean that being away from 1 meter long straw  or close to one it will still be, however, a one meter straw for every observer , even if it looks shorter or just like one meter straw being hold by your hand.

But I must quote the Bad Astronomer on this issue about his last post (Which I agree): "As I recall from the foofooraw that unfolded after the initial announcement, the original experimenters said they accounted for all relativistic effects. The paper they published, however, didn't include the detail of how they did this, so it's not clear what they included and what they might have left out. It's possible van Elburg might be right., but I expect we haven't seen the end of this. After all, not long after the announcement, a physicist asked if they had accounted for gravitational time dilation - like relative velocity, gravity can also affect the flow of time, throwing off the measurement - and the experimenters said they had." (Badastronomer 2011/10/15)

If this discovery by van Elderburg is incorrect...This might as well be the beginning of new physics and new theories to apply to our technology. I'm very exited about this and is something that is very important to be clarified once in for all.

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