3 Questions: Faster than light?

Sep 26, 2011 by David L. Chandler
View of the OPERA detector (on the CNGS facility) with its two identical Super Modules, each one containing one target section and one spectrometer. Image: CERN

The news media were abuzz this week with reports of experiments conducted at the Gran Sasso particle detector complex in Italy, apparently showing subatomic particles called neutrinos had traveled from the giant particle accelerator at CERN, outside Geneva, to the Italian detector at a speed just slightly faster than the speed of light -- a result that, if correct, would overturn more than a century of accepted physics theory. Professor of Physics Peter Fisher, head of MIT's Particle and Nuclear Experimental Physics division, answered some questions about these new findings.

Q. If this result is confirmed, does it really undermine Einstein’s theory of relativity, as some news reports claim? And if so, is there a theory that’s been proposed that might account for it?

A. Einstein’s theory rests on two postulates, one of which is that electromagnetic radiation travels at the same speed (the speed of light, 300,000 kilometers per second) no matter how the observer moves. Light particles — photons — have no mass, so a consequence is that no particle with mass can move at a velocity greater than light. These neutrinos have a tiny, but non-zero, mass and hence should not be able to travel faster than the speed of light.

There are theories that predict particles moving faster than the , but, to my knowledge, none of them account for all the other phenomena we have measured experimentally since the time of Einstein.

Q. What kind of other tests or independent experiments would it take to confirm this result so that it would be widely accepted?

A. There are two other experiments that shoot neutrinos over long distances that may have something to say about this result. One experiment is in the U.S., and the beam goes from Fermilab, near Chicago, to a detector called MINOS in northern Minnesota. The other shoots a neutrino beam across Japan to an experiment in a mine called Super-Kamiokande. The energies of the neutrinos in these experiments are much lower than the beam, but they may have something to say very soon.

Q. If this turns out to be some kind of unrecognized systematic error in the measurements, would that reflect badly on the scientists who reported it, or would it just be a reflection of science working as it’s supposed to?

A. I would say more the latter. I know a number of the people on the OPERA experiment [at Gran Sasso] and they are very thoughtful, careful people who would never publish a result like this unless they were certain there was no better explanation. I would bet that whatever the explanation is, it will be very interesting.

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rawa1
1.8 / 5 (12) Sep 26, 2011
IMO the neutrinos don't undermine the relativity at all. The irony of this interpretation is, the neutrinos are accused of violation of special relativity - although just these tiny fu*ers are fulfilling special relativity more faithfully, than the photons ever did. But the truth is, the neutrinos don't bother with large or small gravitational lens or space-curvatures - they even tend to ignore the tiny gravitational lensing around massive particles, so they're passing through visible matter freely.

This is exactly, what the Lorentz invariance really means in its very consequences: the completely flat and transparent Universe. Because the truly constant speed of light in vacuum admits no lensing, diffraction and dispersive phenomena in vacuum. If we want to find a real tachyons, we should focus to gravitational waves and/or long wavelength photons.

Indeed, this interpretation still doesn't explain, why neutrinos are ignoring CMBR background, while the other particles do.
rawa1
1.5 / 5 (8) Sep 26, 2011
IMO much more interesting question would be, whether the neutrinos are able to move with variable speed at all - and if yes, if all these speeds fall into superluminal sector. Such neutrinos would play a role of supersymmetric counterpart of photons (a lightweight SUSY photinos), which are always moving with slightly subluminal speed. We can observe both examples of such solitons at the phase interface of supercritical fluids.

As an aether proponent, I'd like to have the later option confirmed, but it violates another theories of mine, especially the slow neutrino origin of warm dark matter. This model is quite predicative, but it requires, the neutrinos could move in arbitrary subluminal speeds, too. One solution of this paradox could be, the superluminal neutrinos moving along zig-zag paths due their interactions with CMBR photons at low energy sector, so that their global speed still remains subluminal at the case of primordial neutrinos.
rawa1
1.4 / 5 (9) Sep 26, 2011
The superluminal neutrinos would have many observational consequences. They fit the neutrino models of dark matter - you can imagine, they're advancing the subluminal particles during omnidirectional expansion of space-time, so that they form a dark matter coats around observable objects.

The superluminal neutrinos could explain, why many black holes are intensive sources of neutrinos - they're simply emanate them through their even horizon. It allows the black hole to radiate their matter a much faster, than the classical Hawking mechanism would allow.

Bursts of energetic neutrinos would explain the X-ray flares emitted the Milky Way core in accordance to LaViolette theory, which I believe are responsible for some global warming and geovolcanic effects across solar system.
http://www.techno...v/25780/
I'm sure, you could extrapolate many other testable consequences of this finding. It's entertaining conceptual physics, violating many established paradigms.
jamesrm
2.3 / 5 (3) Sep 26, 2011
But the truth is, the neutrinos don't bother with large or small gravitational lens or space-curvatures - they even tend to ignore the tiny gravitational lensing around massive particles, so they're passing through visible matter freely.

Are you saying, that when space is curved their remains an uncurved component that the Neutrinos use? or are you saying that either photon or neutrinos are moving through the Aether and the other is not?

"Because the truly constant speed of light in vacuum admits no lensing" can you try to explain please or I might have to ask omataranter?
remember the curvature is proposed to increase the amount of space the photon has to traverse at c
p100rabh
4.6 / 5 (14) Sep 26, 2011
If this result is confirmed, does it really undermine Einsteins theory of relativity, as some news reports claim?
what a stupid question what matters is knowing facts of universe not whether Einstein is right or wrong. Stick to physic not people
Jayded
2.3 / 5 (7) Sep 26, 2011
Im still lost on the basics of why a particle can have no mass, how can something without mass exist?
rawa1
1.5 / 5 (8) Sep 26, 2011
Are you saying, that when space is curved their remains an uncurved component that the Neutrinos use?
It looks so. There is only minute difference between speed of normal photons and neutrinos. If the neutrinos would be real tachyons, they could move in arbitrary speed, accordingly to their energy. But (nearly) no energy dependence of neutrino speed has been found at OPERA experiment. Apparently the neutrinos are using only the tiny window, caused with subtle curvature caused with CMBR background field. They're still remain attached to our space-time brane, so to say.

IMO this result supports the idea of double time arrow, as proposed with some theorists. Our Universe consist of pair dual time arrows, which differ only infinitesimally each other for lightest particles.

http://www.physor...776.html

In aether theory the space-time is composed of membranes of foam bubble with pair of surface gradients, which implies the double time arrow too.
rawa1
1.4 / 5 (9) Sep 26, 2011
In some speculations the neutrinos could pass through worm holes freely.

http://twitter.co...87526400

IMO the worm holes are rather exotic stuff (..we actually don't know any..) - but the penetration of neutrinos through event horizon of "normal" black hole is the way, in which the superluminal speed of neutrinos could be independently tested a way easier. The energetic neutrinos could interact with interstellar dust at close neighbourhood of black hole in rather specific way under formation of X-ray or even ultraviolet radiation.
rawa1
1.4 / 5 (9) Sep 26, 2011
Because the truly constant speed of light in vacuum admits no lensing
IMO it's quite easy to understand - or not? In classical physics all dispersion, lensing or refractive phenomena are connected with variable speed of light in different materials. If the light would move in REALLY invariant speed through vacuum (as the special relativity considers), we should never observe any gravitational lensing or dispersion of light in vacuum.

General relativity evades this restriction with assumption of space-time curvature, which works only from intrinsic perspective of gravitational lens. Outside of such lens is no gravity field and space-time is flat - so that the general relativity cannot be applied anyway there. Nevertheless the path of light still appears curved there - which means, the general relativity is violated outside of gravity lens.

I know, it sounds strange, but it's quite consequential thinking - the gravitational lensing is actually quantum mechanics phenomena.
rawa1
1.4 / 5 (9) Sep 26, 2011
For example, the objects observed through gravity lens appear distorted or we can occasionally observe odd number of images instead of single object. It's the quantum uncertainty, which takes its place here.

And vice-verse: inside of gravitational lens (when the space-time is really curved and time is dilated in accordance to special relativity) we wouldn't experience no relativist aberration at all. Such lensing can be observed only when we are residing OUTSIDE of gravity lens and its curvature of space-time.

I know quite well, only the GR enables to predict exact value of this lensing - but it cannot explain it logically and phenomenologically this effect doesn't belong into relativistic phenomena at all. In aether theory it's quite common, the theorems of one theory are used as a postulates of another theory and vice-versa. The logical predictions of one model differs from formal predictions of this model, because nonformal logic is in duality with formal applications of it.
lunarian
2 / 5 (3) Sep 26, 2011
Is it possible that the accepted value for the vacuum speed of light is the source of the current puzzle? In all measurements of light speed, there would some material along the light path, even if very slight, and this could mean that the neutrinos are still moving slower than c (but faster than previously measured photons). Explanation?
Callippo
1 / 5 (5) Sep 26, 2011
It seems, the light speed is undergoing changes, maybe it could participate on phenomena observed with neutrinos. But IMO the difference in the speed is too large (60 nsec/2.5 msec interval, i.e. 0.24 promile i.e. 7,2 km/sec). We should notify such difference already in independent observations.

http://www.newsci...tly.html

BTW the 7 km/sec difference in neutrino speed is in range with Doppler anisotropy shift of CMBR (627 km/s toward Virgo cluster) - we should check its directional dependence too.
Gustav
1 / 5 (1) Sep 26, 2011
More likely than not, the measured result is in error, and I would bet on incorrect measurement of the distance between the source and the detector. I just don't believe you can measure such a large distance, on Earth, with sufficient accuracy. Now, assuming that the result is correct, special relativity would be just fine, if further measurements detected that neutrinos could never move with speed less than the speed of light. It would then classify them as tachyons. There would be a problem there with neutrino spin though, because, according to how we think about elementary particles today, tachyons cannot have spin (this has to do with there not being any finite dimensional Lorentz representations for particles with imaginary mass). But there could be some dynamic explanation to it, perhaps, similar to symmetry breaking. Only if it was shown (experimentally) that neutrinos can travel with less and more than the speed of light would relativity be in trouble.
Callippo
1.8 / 5 (5) Sep 26, 2011
tachyons cannot have spin
Real tachyons not, but the speed of neutrinos differs only slightly from the speed of light. The neutrinos are behaving rather like Goldstone bosons of weak and reversible particle/antiparticle nature (neutral Majorana particles appearing at the ends of 1D spinless string.).
jsberry
4 / 5 (3) Sep 26, 2011
Has anyone taken into account time dilation as the particles travel through the Earth? If a particle gets closer to the center of the Earth, the effective gravitational field strength is decreased. Clocks at the surface would be slower than the particle's clock by a small amount. This effect would be most noticeable for particles traveling through the exact center of the Earth since the effective field strength (this is assuming that the Earth is fairly close to a spherical mass distribution) is exactly zero there. I don't know if this could account for the entire effect observed but it might be part of it.
Temple
4.4 / 5 (5) Sep 26, 2011
Is it possible that the accepted value for the vacuum speed of light is the source of the current puzzle? In all measurements of light speed, there would some material along the light path, even if very slight, and this could mean that the neutrinos are still moving slower than c (but faster than previously measured photons).


They're not comparing the speed of these neutrinos to 'the speed of light' as measured. Instead they're comparing the speed of these neutrinos to "c", which is often confused with 'the speed that light travels'. The constant c is calculated out of some fairly fundamental electromagnetic equations (Maxwell's equations), and it can be thought of as "the speed of light in a vacuum". Light is very often slowed from c, and sometimes things travel faster than that slowed light, but we've yet to confirm anything traveling faster than c.

I wrote more about that here:

Point Five Past Lightspeed:
http://www.isthis...htspeed/
Vendicar_Decarian
1.7 / 5 (6) Sep 26, 2011
Neutron Neutron repulsion? No No. I meant to say Neutrino, Neutrino Repulsion.

My bad. - OmaTard
Temple
3 / 5 (2) Sep 26, 2011
Vendicar_Decarian:
Neutron Neutron repulsion? No No. I meant to say Neutrino, Neutrino Repulsion.

My bad. - OmaTard


Oops, you dropped your facade there.
vacuum-mechanics
2 / 5 (4) Sep 26, 2011
Im still lost on the basics of why a particle can have no mass, how can something without mass exist?

This is one crucial weak point of modern physics. The problem is because photon was not accepted as the vibration of some physical thing, instead it was thought as a magical thing!
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Sep 26, 2011
Could it be? Per http://www.scienc...ty-82950
...Neutrinos CAN Go Faster Than Light Without Violating Relativity
jonnyboy
1 / 5 (4) Sep 26, 2011
Neutron Neutron repulsion? No No. I meant to say Neutrino, Neutrino Repulsion.

My bad. - OmaTard


stop molesting your little boys and leave science to the rest of us.
bgwest
1 / 5 (1) Sep 26, 2011
I've looked for this elsewhere, and found nothing.

A simple calculation: the index of refraction of air is about 1.0003, so photons are slowed by .03% traveling through air. 450 miles is about 2.38 million feet, which is about 2.38 million ns at the speed of light in vacuum. Photons would normally take .0003x2.38 million ns (about 713 ns) more to travel 450 miles than they would in free space, so the relative index of refraction of neutrinos compared to photons in air would only have to be about 8% less than that of photons in order to account for 60 ns. I'm pretty sure nobody has yet measured the index of refraction for neutrinos in air, for whatever that is worth. The theory of relativity says that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light in free space, and as of right now it appears to me the CERN people have not exceeded THAT limit yet.

But maybe I did the math wrong?
Deesky
5 / 5 (2) Sep 26, 2011
Could it be? Per http://www.scienc...ty-82950
...Neutrinos CAN Go Faster Than Light Without Violating Relativity

The author starts by belittling proponents of currently known physics because they pooh-pooh the results for violating relativity and because we're now in the 21 century, apparently.

He then proceeds to forward an idea based on string/brane theory and unseen dimensions to 'prove' that relativity isn't violated?

Well, excuse me for being doubly skeptical. He's asking us to both accept an extraordinary and (yet) unverified result and to plug that into a theory that so far has produced no predictions or means of falsifiability.

Could it be? Sure, why not? But any wild guess is as good as any other at this stage.
Daleg
3 / 5 (2) Sep 27, 2011
It seems that if these Nuetrinos actually covered the distance in less time, that possibly we have a confirnmtion of the extra dimensions proposed by string theory. I wonder has anyone postulated the idea that instead of traveling faster than the speed of light, these nuetrinos took a short cut through one of these extra dimensions? This would mean they did not exceed the speed of light, simply that they traveled less distance to reach the target. Could or would this rsult be a confirmation "?" of strings and extra dimensions"?".
Daleg
not rated yet Sep 27, 2011
It seems that if these Nuetrinos actually covered the distance in less time, that possibly we have a confirmation of the extra dimensions proposed by string theory. I wonder if the physicists have postulated the idea that instead of traveling faster than the speed of light, these nuetrinos took a short cut through one of these extra dimensions? This would mean they did not exceed the speed of light, simply that they traveled less distance to reach the target. Could or would this rsult be a confirmation "?" of strings and extra dimensions"?".
marraco
1 / 5 (2) Sep 27, 2011
First error: Is not true that neutrinos have tiny mass

Fact: Nobody ever measured the mass of a neutrino.

You can find on physics books the mass of electrons, protons, muon, and a lot of particles. Not a single book says what mass have any of neutrino types/flavors.

The mass of neutrino is just a theory. In fact experiments trying to measure neutrino mass can only conclude that his mass squared is negative, so their mass should be imaginary, and that is exactly what relativity predicts for faster than light particles:

http://arxiv.org/.../0012060
http://arxiv.org/.../0009291

So, if experiments show that neutrinos are faster than light, and have imaginary mass, then they confirm again Relativity.
All the babble about this experiment being anything against relativity is garbage. Pseudo science.
Deesky
5 / 5 (1) Sep 27, 2011
The mass of neutrino is just a theory. In fact experiments trying to measure neutrino mass can only conclude that his mass squared is negative

I'd like to see a recent reference from a peer-reviewed journal for that assertion, not a arxiv reference from 2000.

The (small) masses are predicted from theory on neutrino oscillation and from BB cosmology.

Also in July 2010 the 3D MegaZ experiment reported a measurement for the upper limit of the combined mass of all three neutrino varieties to be less than 0.28 eV.
http://prl.aps.or.../e031301
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Sep 27, 2011
... plug that into a theory that so far has produced no predictions or means of falsifiability.

He does suggest a good test:

...building an OPERA detector not at 730 km distance but say only 200 km or say as far as 2000 km away

Then he makes some prediction but honestly I don't understand how he interprets the possible results.
marraco
1 / 5 (1) Sep 27, 2011
The mass of neutrino is just a theory. In fact experiments trying to measure neutrino mass can only conclude that his mass squared is negative

I'd like to see a recent reference from a peer-reviewed journal for that assertion, not a arxiv reference from 2000.


Just search low energy beta decay of tritium
http://pdg.lbl.go...s802.pdf
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Sep 27, 2011
lol
I am all for the new speed of night - ([n]eutrino l[ight])
Already mentioned before : this speed is easier to remember.
300,006 km/s

Next please.
Imaginary mass? Check.
Negative mass? Check.
Constant. No? Check.
Never let go of your old love until you and your new love are locked in embrace. Monkeys do this to swing from one branch to the other.
KBK
1 / 5 (2) Sep 28, 2011
"(the speed of light, 300,000 kilometers per second) no matter how the observer moves."

If we take this statement at face value, it is entirely indicative of a supra-light speed frameworks or integrational condition ---of some sort.
Gezza
5 / 5 (1) Sep 29, 2011
Could the movement of the earth through space account for the 60ns difference? Rotation of earth, solar system, galaxy and possibly the universe. This was a one way measurement of speed. As far as I'm aware, light is measured in as two way. Bounced of a mirror back toward the source where it is measured. Giving an average of the two directions. Earth is moving pretty fast through the cosmos. If the finish line is moving toward the start line then this could account for the 60ns.

Just an idea. Or..

Neutrino Reduction

Neutrinos reduce time and space....

http://WWW.blahblahblah.com

now where has that little boy gone?

Oliver

Former NASAcist
Mick K_
not rated yet Sep 29, 2011
Adding to another comment above, maybe neutrinos are moving at the TRUE speed of light in a vacuum, that is a vacuum without virtual particles & gravity waves & so on. Neutrinos would not be affected by these phenomena, so a classical vacuum has a refractive index.
CHollman82
1 / 5 (1) Sep 29, 2011
Im still lost on the basics of why a particle can have no mass, how can something without mass exist?


Mass-energy equivalency as per e=mc^2
Callippo
1 / 5 (1) Sep 30, 2011
Whereas I'm the supporter of superluminal neutrino model, it's true, these experiments are based on dozens of corrections, many of them are much larger, than the difference observed.

http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.6562

http://arxiv.org/...9.6160v1

We shouldn't forget, to impeach these experiments is much easier, than to replicate them.
GreyLensman
not rated yet Oct 01, 2011
Adding to another comment above, maybe neutrinos are moving at the TRUE speed of light in a vacuum, that is a vacuum without virtual particles & gravity waves & so on. Neutrinos would not be affected by these phenomena, so a classical vacuum has a refractive index.

Was thinking along those lines myself. Perhaps we should drop the term "speed of light" and replace with "fundamental speed limit". Meaning that, for example, the "c" in E=mc^2 and 1/(1-v^2/c^2) may have a very slightly higher value than the measured speed of light in a vacuum.
Callippo
1 / 5 (1) Oct 01, 2011
It's basically the idea of the first comment in this thread. IMO the chargeless neutrinos are violating special relativity in the opposite way, like the charged particles. For example, I presume, at the speeds close to speed of light the electrons would exhibit a significant drag of vacuum, which could explain the "antigravity beams" of Podkletnov. The electrons within superconductors are moving with high speed in chaotic way, so that the superconductor could exhibit a significant "aether drag" during it's acceleration (compare the things like the EMdrive, Heim's drive and Tajmar's experiments). IMO there is still lotta interesting physics to reveal and physicists should focus their attention to this sector of physics.
GreyLensman
not rated yet Oct 01, 2011
Has anyone taken into account time dilation as the particles travel through the Earth? If a particle gets closer to the center of the Earth, the effective gravitational field strength is decreased. Clocks at the surface would be slower than the particle's clock by a small amount. This effect would be most noticeable for particles traveling through the exact center of the Earth since the effective field strength (this is assuming that the Earth is fairly close to a spherical mass distribution) is exactly zero there. I don't know if this could account for the entire effect observed but it might be part of it.

Good question - yes they did compensate for this effect.
GreyLensman
not rated yet Oct 01, 2011
Im still lost on the basics of why a particle can have no mass, how can something without mass exist?


Better to talk of mass/energy than mass. Their equivalence is the most famous equation in physics history.
Callippo
1 / 5 (1) Oct 01, 2011
why a particle can have no mass, how can something without mass exist
The photons have mass, they just don't have the rest mass - which makes no problem, because the rest mass is only extrapolated quantity for them (as photons never stay at rest). If photons would have no mass, they wouldn't be affected with gravity field, they couldn't interact mutually, annihilate the less. It's understandable easily, because the particles of matter are essentially composed of space-time curvatures in similar way, like the photons. The photons are really pieces of matter.

When massive body radiates the energy in photons, it's actually losing mass, not just some "momentum" or "energy". If it absorbs a photon, it really gains a mass. For example the atom nuclei excited with X-rays are heavier in atom mass spectrometer in measurable way.
Burnerjack
4 / 5 (1) Oct 01, 2011
Being uneducated on these things, I've got to ask a couple of questions and I apologize in advance for generating the "eye rolling response".
1) Why is the speed of light in a vacuum the speed that it is?
2) I've always thought that at the speed of light, time slows to a stop,
in relative terms. Is this correct?
3) If the electrowave and the magnetic wave cause self propagation even
when the source no longer exists, is this not a form of perpetual
energy?
4) If gravity causes a distortion of Spacetime, doesn't that mean that
very "shape of the universe is distorted meaning all things must
follow this shape to following a "straight line" as in adhering to
the shape of real space?
Burnerjack
not rated yet Oct 01, 2011
One last question: if the universe and ererything in it was at a dead stop, what would the speed of light be then?
Ober
5 / 5 (1) Oct 01, 2011
I've wondered about point 2 Burnerjack too.
Since velocity = distance /time (in it's basic form), then anything travelling at "light speed" stands still in time, therefore giving an infinite/undefind velocity as we are dividing by zero!!!
Also the interpretation of relativity 4D spacetime, is that the maximum velocity through the SUM OF ALL 4 Dimensions cannot excede C. So if you're travelling at velocity C in space, then you must be at rest in TIME!!! If it's at rest in time, how does the feedback propagation take effect for the electric and magnetic fields which light is supposedly comprised of???

How does something "move" when time stops???? Seems like light is frozen, and everything else in the universe whips past at light speed. But this is a circular argument!!!

I don't think we know enough about light yet. Still one of the most mysterious entities around!!!!!!!

My head hurts!!!!! Maybe a super luminal Neutrino collided with a Neuron!!!!
rsklyar
1 / 5 (2) Oct 02, 2011
Plagiarism in a "family" style
How young ambitious capos and soldiers from Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) under supervision of a decrepit american don-godfather from Northwestern University are successfully completed their sequential plagiaristic enterprise: http://issuu.com/...saivaldi
douglas2
not rated yet Oct 02, 2011
Has anyone taken into account time dilation as the particles travel through the Earth? If a particle gets closer to the center of the Earth, the effective gravitational field strength is decreased. Clocks at the surface would be slower than the particle's clock by a small amount. This effect would be most noticeable for particles traveling through the exact center of the Earth since the effective field strength (this is assuming that the Earth is fairly close to a spherical mass distribution) is exactly zero there. I don't know if this could account for the entire effect observed but it might be part of it.


jsberry Has anyone taken into account time dilation as the particles travel through the Earth? If a particle gets closer to the center of the Earth, the effective gravitational field strength is decreased. Clocks at the surface would be slower than the particle's clock by a small amount.

Time dilation depends on gravitational potential, not field strength.
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 02, 2011
@Burner's #3...an attempted solution:
If energy is conserved, never being created nor destroyed, then the conservation of energy is continuously perpetual.

Apologetics for curiosity doesn't exist. An assumption that is as close to human nature as imagination allows.
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 03, 2011
So energy is not perpetual. CoE(Conservation of Energy) is perpetual.
Equivalent wording is:
What is the (physical) nature of symmetry, besides it's mathematical nature.
What physics underlie symmetry and/or asymmetry?
When is any state no longer transitional?
CHollman82
1 / 5 (2) Oct 03, 2011
I've wondered about point 2 Burnerjack too.
Since velocity = distance /time (in it's basic form), then anything travelling at "light speed" stands still in time, therefore giving an infinite/undefind velocity as we are dividing by zero!!!


What?

c = 299792458 m/s
v = distance (m) / time (s)

You're not dividing by zero, you're dividing by 1 second to get ~300 million meters of distance... that is the speed of light in terms of distance/time, in terms of velocity.

You're confusing the principles of special relativity here...
CHollman82
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 03, 2011
Someone else will have to explain why it is thought that time "stops" from the "point of view" of a photon... though I suspect it is an interpretation of an asymptotic mathematical relationship coupled with the flawed assumption that mathematics dictate reality.

Mathematics may be used to model reality, they do not dictate reality. An asymptote on a graph of related rates does not mean one rate goes to infinity IN REALITY... it means the mathematical model breaks down at that point and is inaccurate.
vacuum-mechanics
1 / 5 (2) Oct 03, 2011
The photons have mass, they just don't have the rest mass - which makes no problem, because the rest mass is only extrapolated quantity for them (as photons never stay at rest).

Why photon never stay at rest?
nsgaga
not rated yet Oct 03, 2011
Why photon never stay at rest?

why light never stays at rest :) - the same reason
omniaxis
5 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2011
Maybe the simplest explanation is that they simply quantum tunneled while in transit to arrive at their destination just a bit sooner than they were excepted. Being quantum objects, especially nearly massless objects, this wouldn't be such a far reach.
vacuum-mechanics
1 / 5 (2) Oct 05, 2011
Why photon never stay at rest?

why light never stays at rest :) - the same reason

What the reason?
rawa1
1 / 5 (2) Oct 05, 2011
why it is thought that time "stops" from the "point of view" of a photon
Try to imagine, you're fishing on the boat and you're deriving the speed of time from period of float swinging. When the boat will get into motion, the frequency of swinging would go down and when the boat will reach the speed of surface ripples, it will cease completely.

Before some time I made an illustrative HTML applet (it runs in MSIE browser only, though), which represents an array of clocks, which are using surface ripples for their pace in similar way, like the laser clock resonators. The faster these "clocks" will move, the slower time they will measure.

http://www.aether...wins.htm
rawa1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 05, 2011
Why photon never stay at rest?
IMO from the same reason, like the surface ripples never stay at rest on the surface of water. The heavier particles can never stay at rest too - their motion is just limited to small distances like the Brownian motion of pollen grains at the surface of water. Panta Rhei - our Universe is in eternal microscopic motion and we are floating in it.

http://en.wikiped...nta_rhei
Luis_Mochan
not rated yet Oct 05, 2011
I wonder, when calibrating the clocks at the two ends of the experiment, was the index of refraction of air (n > 1) taken into account?
Luis_Mochan
not rated yet Oct 05, 2011

jsberry Has anyone taken into account time dilation as the particles travel through the Earth?


They would travel at about h=10km below the surface, so the effect would be of order gh/c^2, i.e., one part in 10^12 instead of a few parts per 10^5, and in the opposite direction.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
rawa1:
...Panta Rhei - our Universe is in eternal microscopic motion and we are floating in it.

Worth repeating. Macroscopic motion? Relative to what? Acceleration? We don't think so, else it would not be isotropic and homogeneous.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
vacuum-mechanics:
...Why photon never stay at rest?

Maybe you could have a standing wave?
Seeker2
3 / 5 (2) Oct 25, 2011
CHollman82:
...Mathematics may be used to model reality, they do not dictate reality

Yes but note mathematics may dictate unreality.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
hush1:
...Apologetics for curiosity doesn't exist.

Pardon?
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
CHollman82:
... why it is thought that time "stops" from the "point of view" of a photon

The fields don't move relative to an observer moving with the light wave, so there is no propagation relative to this observer.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
Ober:
... if you're travelling at velocity C in space, then you must be at rest in TIME!!! If it's at rest in time, how does the feedback propagation take effect for the electric and magnetic fields which light is supposedly comprised of???

Same answer as above.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
Burnerjack:
...If gravity causes a distortion of Spacetime, doesn't that mean that
very "shape of the universe is distorted meaning all things must
follow this shape to following a "straight line" as in adhering to the shape of real space?

IMO gravity is distortion of spacetime so yes all things follow this shape like it was a straight line.

I also think matter and anti-matter are distortions in spacetime, matter being a compressed form of spacetime and anti-matter an expanded form. As a result spacetime around matter is stretched inwards (gravity) and around anti-matter stretched outwards (anti-gravity). So objects follow these shapes as they travel through spacetime.

...if the universe and ererything in it was at a dead stop, what would the speed of light be then?

Assuming light is a thing then it would also be at a dead stop.
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
If you draw on a piece of paper that expanses at the speed of light, what do your drawings look like? At what speed do you draw to even make a mark on your graph if the graph on which you draw expands at light speed?
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
What if you have a tool called points and the number of points makes no difference to you? Does the cardinality of the line you draw matter? After all, you arbitrarily bounded your line. Who cares how many points your line contains? What if you call one of your points 'instantaneous duration'? And to your horror behind the point your labeled 'instantaneous duration' are more points?
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
You are left undaunted by your horror and renamed all your points 'durationaless'. And proclaim to the world 'entanglement' makes perfect sense.
hush1
1 / 5 (1) Oct 25, 2011
Dice? What dice?

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