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Speed Of Light May Be Challenged?


davehsug

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Posted
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet

Hi Dave...actually at the time I posted that, for some odd reason, it cut off the rest of my post, so it seemed a bit abrupt...sorry about that! I went on to post quite a long piece about m-theory and the hypothesized 'Alcubierre' drive but 'Summer Blizzard' has already posted about it so I won't repeat the post word for word..For anyone interested on FTL travel, I recommend getting hold of a copy of the book 'Physics of the Impossible' by Michio Kaku...Hard-core astrophysics in layman's english!.....there's also a very good wiki entry which is factually very accurate at http://en.wikipedia....lcubierre_drive ......Anyhoos, good thread Dave, my favourite topic! good.gif

A thought occured that if this reasearch is validated then would it not be potentially possible to ride a neutrino wave or would time dialation apply?

Also, it is good to see that theoretical space travel is progressing even if the political will is sadly not there, we have propulsion theory and even a theoretical idea on how to produce artificial gravity (bose-einstein condensate). All we need now is replicators.

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Posted
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.

I suspect that there was an error in the measurement. It's rather more probable than no error having been detected in 100 or so years.

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Posted
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL

I suspect that there was an error in the measurement. It's rather more probable than no error having been detected in 100 or so years.

Maybe but they obviously think it strange enough to open up the data for others to have a good ponder over. Even if the data is duff, you can't compare the level of detection to anything that has been used in the past. I'm afraid I can't suspect anything because I don't know enough about the equipment, the data they are collecting or the methods used. It's way over my head.

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Posted
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.

Me too, but opening up the data smacks of "We can't work out where the error is, help!", which is a first for any scientist as far as I can tell as most seem to assume that when observational data doesn't match the theory, it's the observational data that are wrong not the theory, as in the "solar neutrino problem" in which there aren't enough neutrinos of solar origin being detected. Bless 'em, they call it the "solar neutrino problem" rather than admit there's something wrong with the theory.

Either that, or you can change the laws of physics...

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Posted
  • Location: Horsham, West sussex, 52m asl
  • Location: Horsham, West sussex, 52m asl

Either that, or you can change the laws of physics...

who says its the law? the physics police?

"The Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us, and penetrates us. It binds the galaxy together."

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Posted
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.
  • Location: Lower Brynamman, nr Ammanford, 160-170m a.s.l.

It was thought to be a constant, wasn't it?

Einstein on relativity:

"Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. That's relativity." Does that help at all?

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Posted
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL
  • Location: Swallownest, Sheffield 83m ASL

I'm just thinking that if you move towards a light source then relatively speaking, light would appear to travel faster than its constant.

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

I'm just thinking that if you move towards a light source then relatively speaking, light would appear to travel faster than its constant.

Not true. Relativity states that the speed of light whoever does the measuring is the same for that individual observer irrespective of the speed they are travelling at.

If you move towards a light source, the speed of the light (photon speed) you measure for yourself is constant. However the wavelength of the light (time between electromagnetic peaks and troughs) appears to shorten - the apparent blue-shift in the observed spectrum.

This is explained as a natural consequence of the laws for conservation of energy. i.e. Mass and Energy equivalence as stated in Einstiens E=Mc^2

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

Some scientists postulated as far back as 1984 that certain types of high energy neutrino (>3Gev) may indeed have the property that they can travel faster than massless photons which is why the violation of e=mc^2 is causing consternation and excitement. i.e. it violates the conservation of energy laws since neutrinos have mass. Prior to the OPERA collabortion results, FTL neutrino results were observed at the Fermilab MINOS experiments in the early 1980's. But one side of the measurement error bands were within light-speed and so the upper result limits are widely accepted measurement error.

This conclusion was also corroborated by obesrving Supernova SN1987A where the high energy neutrinos from that explosion were obeserved to be consistent with energy-conservation laws and did not violate FTL velocity.

The neutrino as a tachyon

Alan Chodos, Avi I. Hauser

<a href="http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0370269385904605#AFF1" name="bAFF1"> V. Alan Kostelecký

Theoretical Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87545, USA

Received 30 October 1984; Available online 24 March 2003.

Abstract

We investigate the hypothesis that at least one of the known neutrinos travels faster than light. The current experimental situation is examined within this purview.

Work supported in part by the United States Department of Energy under contract no. DE-AC-02-76 ERO 3075.

ffO.

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Posted
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet
  • Location: Leeds/Bradford border, 185 metres above sea level, around 600 feet

The speed of light is a constant that is relative to the observer.

More than likely, we simply don't have a good enougth understanding.

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

The speed of light is a constant that is relative to the observer.

More than likely, we simply don't have a good enougth understanding.

Understanding is a subjective word. Relativity, quantum mechanics, even Newtonian mechanics are but mere descriptions of observed physical behaviour. i.e. mathematical models.

And when observation does not fit with the model something is in error: either the observation or the model or a combination of the two.

Hence the reason why the scientists have said 'please find the fault as we're stumped'. And if no fault can be found, then it's time to look at the model.

Still far too early in the process to say that the results show the model is incorrect. But it is sharpening the knife which may eventually peel back another layer of the thoeretical onion.

ffO.

ffO.

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Posted
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark

The speed of light is not constant and never was. Light travels at different speeds through different materials.

http://en.wikipedia...._speed_of_light

The problem that has arisen in this thread is caused by poor teaching. As soon as physics in the classroom comes to relativity, teachers start warbling about the constant. What they in fact mean is the believed maximum speed of light. But as I wrote about A level maths, teaching is often very poor, and students are required to cram rather than understand. Thus so many people entertain the idea that light always travels at one single speed; it doesn't.

I'm just thinking that if you move towards a light source then relatively speaking, light would appear to travel faster than its constant.

That's why Einstein proposed that time passes at different rates accoring to who is doing the looking, so to speak. According to him, if Pottyprof approaches a light source at the speed of light, time is standing still for Pottyprof.

In my view this is not physics, but metaphysics

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaphysics

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

The speed of light is not constant and never was. Light travels at different speeds through different materials..........

In my view this is not physics, but metaphysics

Perhaps my ommission was the words 'vacuum' amd 'maximum speed'.

So let me re-qualify: The maximum 'speed' of light in a vacuum devoid of all other external forces and measured by any observer will be the same measured relative to their 'own' frame of reference.

Light travelling at different speeds through different materiels does not violate that statement.

However, you make the erroneous assumption that space and time are both physically independent and unrelated realities.

But what is time other than the relative measurement of two events be that the hands of a clock ticking or the oscillation of a quartz crystal or the electromagnetic energy emitted by say....a ceasium atom?

Time as defined by humans is itself merely a reference to one of these physical properties so that two different 'events' can be measured against that common inertial-reference frame but NOT agreed upon by observers in different reference frames. This is another way of saying the variables in the equaitions must be agreed between different observers before the experimental results can be scientifically verified. i.e. consistent and repeatable.

For everyday purposes, Newtons laws of motion suffice for the very tightly bounded existence of humans on Earth. (same reference frame) Enough to get us to the moon.

For applications in which tye reference frame is differnt, both general and special theories of relativity are needed.

Change our reference by adding a massive object into the vacuum and observational time references will change. This is not me saying this, it is the physical reality proven every time someone uses a GPS receiver as a very real example. Without the compensation defined by Einsteins equations, GPS would drift at a rate of 10km per day and be unable to give the same answer within seconds (GPS incidentally is a good programming application of the Newton-Raphson iterative method used to compute the roots to the linear equations for determining the 3-dimesnional co-ordinates of the oberver)

In other words a very physical manifestation of your so called metaphysical concept.

ffO.

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Posted
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark

Well I just googled relativity thought experiments, and one of the first sites that came up was this;

http://aether.lbl.go...xperiment1.html

If you read the introduction you will find assumption 2 is the constancy of the speed of light. Basta. No mention of vacuums. What a very poor mode of expression for a supposed pedagogue.

Experiment 1 involves a world where we all walk about in a pure vacuum. If that isn't metaphysical, then I sure don't know what is.

I can't be bothered to go through the other thought experiments, because that website seems reminiscent of the others I have seen on the same subject.......a fantasy world with boxes in which a light pulse bounces backwards and forwards supposedly acting as a clock.

Anyway, never mind what I think, here are a couple of people who really have a complaint to make about special relativity....

http://www.wbabin.ne...nce/mueller.pdf

It can be a bit prolix - like me - so maybe you would like to go straight to page 18 where begins the extensive list of errors the writers claim were made by Einstein and relativists in the meantime . I particularly like the following critcisms of Einstein and his followers, which are epistemological;

- They derive assertions out of negations

- Einstein lacked consistency when desribing time dilation, sometimes putting the same things are, and sometimes appear to be.

- They claim while almost everything is relative, the speed of light is not, yet never proved it so.

- They claim that theories of relativity uniquely explain certain observations, as though there never will be other valid explanations

- They ridicule common sense, though fail to explain how their metaphysical speculations are in any way superior.

And now we have this latest suspicion about particles going faster than light. Hmmm. I think I'll keep an open mind.

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

What a very poor mode of expression for a supposed pedagogue.

Ahhhh. The dilemma faced when trying to explain complex concepts to a very varied lay-audience, who may have a curiosity but are not equiped with the necessary skills or inclination to understand the mathematical modelling or indeed the philosophical and metaphysical arguments. And that really is not meant in any condescending or patronising way.

I firmly believe one has to give room for artistic license or the concepts would never gain mainstream discussion and science would continue down the path of perceived elitism. But one also has to accept the pitfalls of a description which has anything other than the brevity of the most elegant mathematical description. I'm all for accessibilty to education that breeds curiosity which leads to a lifetime of searching for the truth and spawns untold benefit for the good of humanity and our planet.

Epistemological criticism?

You know, (and I'm sure you do) that metaphysicists wage a constant battle with science which verges on the analogous religious arguments for existence and creation.

For example, the substantivalists dogma is to prove the existence of physical fact which transcend that required by General Relativity.

Science rarely gives a straight answer to a metaphysical question much to the chagrin of the metaphysicists.

That's not to say that science is about dogma. The one common approach is the search for truth. For me at least, science is all about keeping an open mind, since any theory only holds true as long as experimental results do not contradict prediction.

But when it does, be prepared to think again and continue the search for truth.

In my own opinion, we are still a long way from disproving Einstein but perhaps the day is drawing nearer - dependent on your frame of reference of course!

ffO.

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Posted
  • Location: Sunderland
  • Weather Preferences: Hot Summer, Snowy winter and thunderstorms all year round!
  • Location: Sunderland

To Alan & ffO

On behalf of the NetWeather community, I have but one question..

"Do you speak English??" laugh.png

(Just joking chaps, thought provoking stuff indeed, for those that understand, that is....)

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Posted
  • Location: Rochester, Kent
  • Location: Rochester, Kent

As I understand it, special relativity only prohibits accelerating any given mass to the speed of light, since the energy required to accelerate such a mass to such speeds is, for all intents and purposes, infinite.

However, you could have a particle that was born travelling at faster than the speed of light and special relativity remains intact. But instantaneous existence at a velocity faster than the speed of light seems a little, too, er, existential.

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Posted
  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

I don't think one should overlook the important last paragraph of the report.

Despite the large significance of the measurement reported here and the stability of the

analysis, the potentially great impact of the result motivates the continuation of our studies in

order to investigate possible still unknown systematic effects that could explain the observed

anomaly. We deliberately do not attempt any theoretical or phenomenological interpretation of

the results.

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Posted
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark
  • Location: Taasinge, Denmark

To Alan & ffO

On behalf of the NetWeather community, I have but one question..

"Do you speak English??" laugh.png

(Just joking chaps, thought provoking stuff indeed, for those that understand, that is....)

Well at very least, those who are keen on relativity might at least accept that in the future, there may be produced still better explanations for some observable phenomena than Einstein's explanations; otherwise I have to say that religious people who say scientists are hypocritical, have a point. Relativity is not a scientific panacea, and it is likely that sooner or later something else will come along as flavour of the month.

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Posted
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL
  • Location: Crowborough, East Sussex 180mASL

Well at very least, those who are keen on relativity might at least accept that in the future, there may be produced still better explanations for some observable phenomena than Einstein's explanations; otherwise I have to say that religious people who say scientists are hypocritical, have a point. Relativity is not a scientific panacea, and it is likely that sooner or later something else will come along as flavour of the month.

I don't think many scientists would disagree with that statement except that tarring all science with the same brush of hypocrisy is a tad disingenuous. No tautology intended! lol.

ffO.

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Posted
  • Location: Sunderland
  • Weather Preferences: Hot Summer, Snowy winter and thunderstorms all year round!
  • Location: Sunderland

Well at very least, those who are keen on relativity might at least accept that in the future, there may be produced still better explanations for some observable phenomena than Einstein's explanations; otherwise I have to say that religious people who say scientists are hypocritical, have a point. Relativity is not a scientific panacea, and it is likely that sooner or later something else will come along as flavour of the month.

I don't think many scientists would disagree with that statement except that tarring all science with the same brush of hypocrisy is a tad disingenuous.

ffO.

I totally agree with both posts...I, for one, have never been a believer that Einstein's theories of relativity are the 'be all and end all' of physics....and adding to this statement, IMO relativity only works in the 3 spacial dimensions and one dimension of time..M-Theory speculates that there are 11 spacial dimensions, 7 of which are curled up so small that they only exist on the quantum level, 3 spacial dimensions that we are aware of and that which our universe is structured upon, and one other large spacial dimension (call it for arguments sake the 4th large spacial dimension) nicknamed 'The Bulk' of which our universe is but a 3-dimensional membrane floating in this 4 dimensional 'Bulk' (hence M-theory speculates that there are an infinite number of 3 dimensional universes floating around in 'The Bulk' and each universe might only be separated by just millimeters in the 4th spacial dimension..A hypothetical 4 dimensional being would be able to materialize and de-meterialize at will at any point in our universe making the 'Light Speed Barrier' irrelevant, and Relativity utterly fails in this theoretical scenario...Indeed to take it a stage further, some cosmologists & particle physicists believe that the reason why Dark Matter is so elusive yet comprises of 23% of all matter in the universe, is because Dark Matter is actually Baryonic matter floating in the Bulk, or even physical structures in another membrane universe separated from our universe by the 4th large spacial dimension, thus what cosmologists detect is a shadow or cross-section of these such structures

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I totally agree with both posts...I, for one, have never been a believer that Einstein's theories of relativity are the 'be all and end all' of physics....and adding to this statement, IMO relativity only works in the 3 spacial dimensions and one dimension of time..M-Theory speculates that there are 11 spacial dimensions, 7 of which are curled up so small that they only exist on the quantum level, 3 spacial dimensions that we are aware of and that which our universe is structured upon, and one other large spacial dimension (call it for arguments sake the 4th large spacial dimension) nicknamed 'The Bulk' of which our universe is but a 3-dimensional membrane floating in this 4 dimensional 'Bulk' (hence M-theory speculates that there are an infinite number of 3 dimensional universes floating around in 'The Bulk' and each universe might only be separated by just millimeters in the 4th spacial dimension..A hypothetical 4 dimensional being would be able to materialize and de-meterialize at will at any point in our universe making the 'Light Speed Barrier' irrelevant, and Relativity utterly fails in this theoretical scenario...Indeed to take it a stage further, some cosmologists & particle physicists believe that the reason why Dark Matter is so elusive yet comprises of 23% of all matter in the universe, is because Dark Matter is actually Baryonic matter floating in the Bulk, or even physical structures in another membrane universe separated from our universe by the 4th large spacial dimension, thus what cosmologists detect is a shadow or cross-section of these such structures

I've always thought that there is more to meet the eye - with my lack of knowledge I was thinking along the lines of parallel universes but this really does add further dimensions and once more is known it will no doubt answer many questions plus giving us more to think about - it's all out there waiting to be discovered.

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