24th Sep2011

Results from OPERA Neutrino experiment claim faster-than-light speeds

by Skibs

CERN has released a paper with experimental results suggesting that neutrinos may be moving slightly faster than the speed of light. The OPERA experiment, sent neutrinos from a source in Switzerland to a detector at Gran Sasso in Italy. The neutrino got there 60 nanoseconds ahead of when a particle moving the speed of light would be expected. The researchers conducting the experiment were only able to account for 10 nanoseconds worth of error in their measurement.

The result disagrees with current models of the theory of relativity, and because this is the first time such results have arisen, physicist are skeptical about the accuracy of the results. Potential sources of error that are currently being investigating include: distance errors, time-of-flight errors, and errors in the timing of neutrino production.


[Sources: ars technica #1, ars technica #2, Cornell University Library]

29th Aug2011

LHC experiments still not supporting simple supersymmetry theory

by Skibs

Data from the Large Hadron Collider Beauty experiment  were presented during the recent Lepton Photon science meeting in Mumbai. The results failed to support the simple super-symmetry theory, which is causing super-symmetry advocates to investigate new, more complex versions of the theory- or to reject it outright.

Professor Jordan Nash, who is working on one of the LHC experiments, said “The fact that we haven’t seen any evidence of it tells us that either our understanding of it is incomplete, or it’s a little different to what we thought – or maybe it doesn’t exist at all.”

[Source: BBC]