“Flying Pigs Now Ice-Skate in Hell,” says Physicist.

by wjw on September 22, 2011

A fundamental pillar of physics – that nothing can go faster than the speed of light – appears to be smashed by an oddball subatomic particle that has apparently made a giant end run around Albert Einstein’s theories.

Scientists at the world’s largest physics lab said Thursday they have clocked neutrinos travelling faster than light. That’s something that according to Einstein’s 1905 special theory of relativity – the famous E (equals) mc2 equation – just doesn’t happen . . .

CERN now reports that they’ve clocked neutrinos exceeding the speed of light.

Mr. Gillies told The Associated Press that the readings have so astounded researchers that they are asking others to independently verify the measurements before claiming an actual discovery.

“They are inviting the broader physics community to look at what they’ve done and really scrutinize it in great detail, and ideally for someone elsewhere in the world to repeat the measurements,” he said Thursday . . .

CERN says a neutrino beam fired from a particle accelerator near Geneva to a lab 454 miles (730 kilometres) away in Italy travelled 60 nanoseconds faster than the speed of light. Scientists calculated the margin of error at just 10 nanoseconds, making the difference statistically significant. But given the enormous implications of the find, they still spent months checking and rechecking their results to make sure there was no flaws in the experiment.

You might not want to start building the Enterprise just yet.  The neutrino is a (mostly) massless particle, so there’s not a lot of M to be multiplied by C-squared to equal E.   Maybe neutrinos get the hall monitor to give them a pass allowing them to run in the corridors.

But now, if you want to start an interstellar civilization, all you have to do is transform yourself into neutrinos, shove off the planet with energies equal to or greater than those of CERN, and somehow re-assemble yourself on the other end.

I’ll try to get started on that this weekend.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

TC/Writer Underground September 23, 2011 at 3:59 am

Wow. Twenty years from now this could be one of those “where were you when you first heard about…” moments.

And to think it was a sci-fi novelist’s blog.

Given your perfect timing with the release of Deep State, is your FTL-driven Dagmar novel getting boxed at the printer as we speak?

Mitch White, the Chile Doctor September 23, 2011 at 2:45 pm

Well, I’m not surprised that an SF author is out on point on this one. Kudos! I’ve eaten some chiles that were so hot they made my head spin ’round faster than light, but that’s a separate observational class. Maybe the secret to their heat is the neutrino content?

You figure out the transport, I’ll work on the perfect society we’ll all enjoy when we get there. You can bet it’ll include plenty of Hot Stuff…

TC/The Writer Underground September 23, 2011 at 2:53 pm

On reflection, your “beam people into space via Neutrino” sounds like the an ideal way to conclude the next Republican Presidential debate…

DensityDuck September 24, 2011 at 6:32 am
Nalliah Thayabharan September 24, 2011 at 12:57 pm

All of my investigations seem to point to the conclusion that they are small particles, each carrying so small a charge that we are justified in calling them neutrons. They move with great velocity, exceeding that of light – Nikola Tesla 1932

Neutrinos have a small non-zero rest mass. Einstein’s theories of relativity says that nothing with non-zero rest mass can go faster than the speed of the light. But zero rest-mass particles can go faster than the speed of the light. We should understand the relation between local and nonlocal events like the dynamics of universal structure. In any physical theory, it is assumed that there is some kind of nonlocal structure and this nonlocal structure itself violates causality. Experimental tests of Bell’s inequality have shown that microscopic causality must be violated, so there must be faster than light travel – hence faster than light interactions are a necessity and they provide the non local structure of the universe. If Neutrinos are traveling faster than light, then Neutrinos must be on the other side of the light barrier going backwards in time – an inverted universe, where the future can interact with the past.

Rich September 24, 2011 at 7:51 pm

What I want to know is how the formula changes when you substitute “M” with “little m”?

Ralf The Dog September 26, 2011 at 7:21 am

I was under the impression that a particle with an imaginary mass would move faster than light. It could slow down to near the speed of light but could never hit C. They are just like us, however, they are on the other side of the asymptote.

Yes, you could convert a person to neutrinos transmit them someplace else, then convert them back to themselves, however, you would need to have a receiving station set up at the target, and unfortunately, the amount of energy to convert, then deconvert a person would require doing a mass energy conversion of every scrap of matter inside the Hubble Radius. I think destroying the universe might violate international law.

Ralf The Dog September 26, 2011 at 7:22 am

One more question, could the neutrino have just chosen that point in time to tunnel, much like a photon striking a light bridge? (I think it was the space marmots.)

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