Posts Tagged ‘Antonio Ereditato’
Daylife/AP Photo used by permission
The team which found that neutrinos may travel faster than light has carried out an improved version of their experiment – and confirmed the result. If confirmed by other experiments, the find could undermine one of the basic principles of modern physics.
Critics of the first report in September had said that the long bunches of neutrinos (tiny particles) used could introduce an error into the test. The new work used much shorter bunches.
It has been posted to the Arxiv repository and submitted to the Journal of High Energy Physics, but has not yet been reviewed by the scientific community.
The experiments have been carried out by the Opera collaboration – short for Oscillation Project with Emulsion (T)racking Apparatus…
The initial series of experiments, comprising 15,000 separate measurements spread out over three years, found that the neutrinos arrived 60 billionths of a second faster than light would have, travelling unimpeded over the same distance.
The idea that nothing can exceed the speed of light in a vacuum forms a cornerstone in physics – first laid out by James Clerk Maxwell and later incorporated into Albert Einstein’s theory of special relativity…
When the Opera team ran the improved experiment 20 times, they found almost exactly the same result.
“This is reinforcing the previous finding and ruling out some possible systematic errors which could have in principle been affecting it,” said Antonio Ereditato of the Opera collaboration.
“We didn’t think they were, and now we have the proof,” he told BBC News. “This is reassuring that it’s not the end of the story…”
“So far no arguments have been put forward that rule out our effect,” Dr Ereditato said.
Several months – or longer – lie ahead of independent testing of the original and recent results. Exciting stuff for old geeks like me.