Exotic Physics

A Lab Experiment to Test Spacetime Distortion

September 18, 2012

Sonny White’s work on exotic propulsion has galvanized the press, as witness this story in the Daily Mail, one of many articles in newspapers and online venues. I was fortunate enough to be in the sessions at the 100 Year Starship Symposium where White, an engaging and affable speaker, described what his team at Eagleworks […]

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Exotic Detections: Wormholes and Worldships

August 22, 2012

SETI always makes us ask what human-centered assumptions we are making about extraterrestrial civilizations. When it comes to detecting an actual technology, like the starships we’ve been talking about in the last two posts, we’ve largely been forced to study concepts that fit our understanding of physics. Thus Robert Zubrin talks about how we might […]

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Resolving the Pioneer Anomaly

July 18, 2012

Anomalies are always fascinating because they cause us to re-examine our standard explanation for things. But in the case of the so-called ‘Pioneer anomaly,’ the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Slava Turyshev, working with a group of scientists led by JPL’s John Anderson, needed an explanation for practical reasons. The possibility that there was new physics to […]

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FTL Neutrinos: Closing In on a Solution

February 24, 2012

The news that the faster-than-light neutrino results announced to such widespread interest by the OPERA collaboration have now been explained has been spreading irresistibly around the Internet. But the brief piece in ScienceInsider that broke the news was stretching a point with a lead reading “Error Undoes Faster-Then-Light Neutrino Results.” For when you read the […]

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New Work on FTL Neutrinos

December 28, 2011

A paper in the December 24 issue of Physical Review Letters goes to work on the finding of supposed faster-than-light neutrinos by the OPERA experiment. The FTL story has been popping up ever since OPERA — a collaboration between the Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS) in Gran Sasso, Italy and the CERN physics laboratory […]

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The SN 1987A Experiment

September 24, 2011

If neutrinos really do travel at a velocity slightly higher than the speed of light, we have a measurement that challenges Einstein, a fact that explains the intense interest in explaining the results at CERN that we discussed on Friday. I think CERN is taking exactly the right approach in dealing with the matter with […]

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On Neutrinos and the Speed of Light

September 23, 2011

If you’re tracking the interesting news from CERN on neutrinos moving slightly faster than the speed of light, be advised that there is an upcoming CERN webcast on the matter at 1400 UTC later today (the 23rd). Meanwhile, evidence that the story is making waves is not hard to find. I woke up to find […]

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Progress Toward the Dream of Space Drives and Stargates

May 23, 2011

by James F. Woodward I first wrote about James Woodward’s work in my 2004 book Centauri Dreams: Imagining and Planning Interstellar Exploration, and have often been asked since to comment further on his research. But it’s best to leave that to the man himself, and I’m pleased to turn today’s post over to him. A […]

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Support for Dark Energy

May 20, 2011

The far future may be a lonely place, at least in extragalactic terms. Scientists studying gravity’s interactions with so-called dark energy — thought to be the cause of the universe’s accelerating expansion — can work out a scenario in which gravity dominated in the early universe. But somewhere around eight billion years after the Big […]

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Key Effects of General Relativity Confirmed

May 5, 2011

Gravity Probe B has confirmed two of the most interesting effects predicted by Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity. The geodetic effect, which describes the warping of spacetime due to the mass of the Earth, has been confirmed to an accuracy of 0.28 percent. The frame-dragging effect, in which the Earth’s rotation drags or stirs local […]

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