Science!: Red Mohawked Dinos, Photons and Anti-Hunger Pills

Science!: Red Mohawked Dinos, Photons and Anti-Hunger Pills

Inside: We can't travel faster than the speed of light, but we can at least pretend.

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There are quite a few things in the universe faster than light.
One is the early expansion called Inflation after the Big Bang.
Another is the rate at which matter falls into a Black Hole, hence light cannot escape a Black Hole because it is travelling too slowly.
There are also faster than light events at the quantum level, some of which appear to happen at infinite speed, ie simultaneously.

Lauren Admire:
(amusing images of cantaloupe-shaped mice rolling around their cage like soccer balls fill my head)

Great, now you've got me thinking of it too. Thanks Lauren.

Nah, just kidding. The mice in my head are shaped like giant pears.

Quantum physics is really confusing. Look into it and quantum physicists seem to even question if even light really moves at the speed of light or if it just seems to do that because it knows we are watching it. I don't know, I don't understand, don't blame me.

All I really want to know is if we can have internet connections without any lag.

chrisstevens:
There are quite a few things in the universe faster than light.
One is the early expansion called Inflation after the Big Bang.
Another is the rate at which matter falls into a Black Hole, hence light cannot escape a Black Hole because it is travelling too slowly.
There are also faster than light events at the quantum level, some of which appear to happen at infinite speed, ie simultaneously.

The reason that light can't escape from a black hole is not that it falls faster but that the escape velocity (ie. the velocity needed to escape from the BH) is larger than the speed of light.

If I remember correctly the Quantum effects you are talking about is entanglement, which is that information travels faster. no ohysical object travels faster than the speed of light but information can.

I can't remember the explanation for the inflation (it has been years since I learned about and used it).

chrisstevens:
There are quite a few things in the universe faster than light.
One is the early expansion called Inflation after the Big Bang.
Another is the rate at which matter falls into a Black Hole, hence light cannot escape a Black Hole because it is travelling too slowly.
There are also faster than light events at the quantum level, some of which appear to happen at infinite speed, ie simultaneously.

Incorrect:
1) Inflation - "In an early time after the Big Bang, there is evidence that the universe expanded at speeds greater than light. But special relativity was not violated, because this was an expansion of SPACE and no matter or information was carried between two points at faster than light speed. General relativity allows inflation to be incorporated into Big Bang cosmology."[1]

2) Black Hole - the forces may equal, but not exceed, the speed of light: "To be 'sucked' into a black hole, one has to cross inside the Schwarzschild radius. At this radius, the escape speed is equal to the speed of light, and once light passes through, even it cannot escape."[2]

3) Quantum Physics
  a) Tunneling - "The photons don't violate relativity: it's just a question of interpretation. Steinberg explains Nimtz and Stahlhofen's observations by way of analogy with a 20-car bullet train departing Chicago for New York. The stopwatch starts when the centre of the train leaves the station, but the train leaves cars behind at each stop. So when the train arrives in New York, now comprising only two cars, its centre has moved ahead, although the train itself hasn't exceeded its reported speed."[3]

"... the tunneling time is given by a credible expression, which approaches a constant for thick barriers, implying an issue concerning superluminal propagation. However, I have argued that physical causality is not violated." [4]

  b) Quantum Entanglement - "... quantum entanglement still does not imply faster than light communication. You cannot affect which state the particle goes into, even though it doesn't 'decide' on its state until you observe it."[5]

paulgruberman:

chrisstevens:
There are quite a few things in the universe faster than light.
One is the early expansion called Inflation after the Big Bang.
Another is the rate at which matter falls into a Black Hole, hence light cannot escape a Black Hole because it is travelling too slowly.
There are also faster than light events at the quantum level, some of which appear to happen at infinite speed, ie simultaneously.

Incorrect:
1) Inflation - "In an early time after the Big Bang, there is evidence that the universe expanded at speeds greater than light. But special relativity was not violated, because this was an expansion of SPACE and no matter or information was carried between two points at faster than light speed. General relativity allows inflation to be incorporated into Big Bang cosmology."[1]

chrisstevens didn't say it violated general relativity, just that it was faster than light, which is confirmed by your quote.

paulgruberman:
2) Black Hole - the forces may equal, but not exceed, the speed of light: "To be 'sucked' into a black hole, one has to cross inside the Schwarzschild radius. At this radius, the escape speed is equal to the speed of light, and once light passes through, even it cannot escape."[2]

And at less than that radius, the escape speed would be greater than the speed of light. Also, forces and speed are not the same thing.

Your third footnote link is broken (need to change "hre" to "href").

I have never, ever been able to wrap my head around that whole "light seems to go faster than light through certain materials" thing. To me, it's like if I jumped off a building and you took the stairs, and yet you got to the bottom before me. I'd be like, "Dude, how the hell did you-" *CRUNCH*.

Also, huzzah Labrynth! You get a mention!

We have footnotes? Real, honest to God footnotes? Holy crap!

Um, great article, Admire. I kind of understand this whole quantum physics thing, but some of it is mind breaking. Once you start getting into Einstein's thought experiments you will never be able to put a ladder into a garage the same way.

Wasn't quantum entanglement related to this thingy they did to some subatomic particle or other that caused the state of two of them to remain the same no matter how far apart they were (at least in theory)? That means if you put them inside a computer, and sent one half to a friend on one side of the galaxy and one to the other on the other side, one could operate the computer and the other would also see their operation, which I guess they would use to IM. Or am I confusing it with something else?

Hmm...Science keeps doing all these cool things, and these articles help me keep up with it without all the fancy lingo of science websites. Thanks Lauren!

I imagine those scientists just decided to make fat mice then when they realised they'd used up all of their funding quickly set to work coming up with a plausible explanation. They're starting to live up to the Aperture Science motto.

The Random One:
We have footnotes? Real, honest to God footnotes? Holy crap!

Um, great article, Admire. I kind of understand this whole quantum physics thing, but some of it is mind breaking. Once you start getting into Einstein's thought experiments you will never be able to put a ladder into a garage the same way.

Wasn't quantum entanglement related to this thingy they did to some subatomic particle or other that caused the state of two of them to remain the same no matter how far apart they were (at least in theory)? That means if you put them inside a computer, and sent one half to a friend on one side of the galaxy and one to the other on the other side, one could operate the computer and the other would also see their operation, which I guess they would use to IM. Or am I confusing it with something else?

I think that is string theory, that electrons are just the perceivable ends of a true elementary particle that is basically a string with two dots on the ends.

Lauren Admire:
These elaborately-colored feathers were likely used in courtship displays, similar to how colorful modern day birds use their feathers

For some odd reason, I read this as a completely different type of "bird".

Outlaw Torn:
I imagine those scientists just decided to make fat mice then when they realised they'd used up all of their funding quickly set to work coming up with a plausible explanation. They're starting to live up to the Aperture Science motto.

Soon we will have cake and computers with a sardonic sense of humour!

Very interesting this time.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't light made of photons? So, wouldn't they be expected to move at the speed of light?

I think I may have missed something in there somewhere :/

If you think of it in a roundabouts sort of fashion, would the universe have to move faster thatn the speed of light so light has somewhere to move in? Unless the universe only counts for the real matter in an infinite vaccum, or maybe light just stands still, and !!!

I wonder if, a few generations from now, people will look at our current dinosaur books and common images as horribly quaint; if the birdlike traits will completely alter what people believe dinosaurs looked like.

The interesting thing about Leptin is that high fructose corn syrup can stop it from functioning. Or at least thats what I've read. (it might inhibit some other whatsit in the brain hoozit. Who knows?)

SharedProphet:

chrisstevens didn't say it violated general relativity, just that it was faster than light, which is confirmed by your quote.

The question then becomes whether inflation during the Big Bang affected light as well.

SharedProphet:

And at less than that radius, the escape speed would be greater than the speed of light. Also, forces and speed are not the same thing.

Escape speed exceeding the speed of light is only an issue if something escapes. As nothing that we are aware of has crossed the Schwarzschild radius outbound, the point stands.

Link fixed, thanks!

Love these articles, keep them up.

Onyx Oblivion:
Hmm...Science keeps doing all these cool things, and these articles help me keep up with it without all the fancy lingo of science websites. Thanks Lauren!

Zeeky Agrees, "Science!" is one of Zeeky's favourite articles on the escapist, and thus he hopes that it will never change, unless for the glory of the HypnoToad.

I really enjoy these articles, cutting out all of the really geeky techno language and just telling us all the "really cool" bits.
Though sometimes, due to the fact that I'm a bit of a science geek, it does leave me wondering about things that I spend a good while surfing the net looking at.

STAND BACK! I'M GOING TO TRY SCIENCE!

That's right, it's a verb now.

those pills are good and bad.
im sure if they wouldbe abused and people would be very unhealthy

Donrad:
those pills are good and bad.
im sure if they wouldbe abused and people would be very unhealthy

It would be the new smoking. I just wish people would do the whole "excercise" thing instead of looking for a quick fix...

Frizzle:

Donrad:
those pills are good and bad.
im sure if they wouldbe abused and people would be very unhealthy

It would be the new smoking. I just wish people would do the whole "excercise" thing instead of looking for a quick fix...

That's the American Dream, and it's infecting other countries.

Darn, I was excited about the superluminal photons. Oh well. At least it's the lightspeed equivalent of a sonic boom. And that is awesome.

 

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