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Neutrinos Break The Law?

The BBC reports on the possibility of a major problem for physics: Speed-of-light experiments give baffling result at Cern

Puzzling results from Cern, home of the LHC, have confounded physicists – because it appears subatomic particles have exceeded the speed of light.

Neutrinos sent through the ground from Cern toward the Gran Sasso laboratory 732km away seemed to show up a tiny fraction of a second early.

The result – which threatens to upend a century of physics – will be put online for scrutiny by other scientists.

In the meantime, the group says it is being very cautious about its claims.

“We tried to find all possible explanations for this,” said report author Antonio Ereditato of the Opera collaboration.

“We wanted to find a mistake – trivial mistakes, more complicated mistakes, or nasty effects – and we didn’t,” he told BBC News.

“When you don’t find anything, then you say ‘Well, now I’m forced to go out and ask the community to scrutinise this.'”

We know that sub-atomic particles are weird, but if any of them can travel faster than light, it is back to the drawing board for a lot of what we think we know.

September 23, 2011   16 Comments

Worth A Read

Sean Paul at The Agonist compares the Middle East with the Old West, and likens the Palestinians to the Comanches. YMMV, but I can see the analogy.

Meanwhile the ABC has some analysis of what the author believes is the real existential threat to Israel, the Ultra-Orthodox Jews.

I was aware of some of this, but I don’t think I considered the long-term implications having having the fastest growing segment of the Jewish population in Israel being totally unproductive.

September 23, 2011   Comments Off on Worth A Read

Autumnal Equinox

According to Archæoastronomy the equinox occurred at 4:04 PM CDT this morning.

It’s time to man the rakes in northern climes.

September 23, 2011   Comments Off on Autumnal Equinox

Tropical Storm Ophelia – Day 4

Tropical Storm OpheliaPosition: 16.0N 54.5W [10PM CDT 0300 UTC].
Movement: West-Northwest [300°] near 14 mph [22 kph].
Maximum sustained winds: 50 mph [ 85 kph].
Wind Gusts: 70 mph [110 kph].
Tropical Storm Wind Radius: 260 miles [415 km].
Minimum central pressure: 1006 mb ↑.

Currently about 490 miles [ 790 km] East of the Leeward Islands.

The wind shear is really impacting the storm, but it managed to regain some strength through the afternoon.

Here’s the link for NOAA’s latest satellite images.

[For the latest information click on the storm symbol, or go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Hurricanes” for all of the posts related to storms on this site.]

September 23, 2011   Comments Off on Tropical Storm Ophelia – Day 4

Friday Cat Blogging

Introducing …

Friday Cat Blogging

Buzz off!

[Editor: The Big Tipper. He is not a feral cat. He is probably an abandoned cat, left behind when someone moved, or dumped. It is all too common these days. He has been around a while, but I only see him near sun down, which is why the flash went off. Fortunately, as a tom, he can stay. Females are chased off by the ferals.]

Friday Ark

September 23, 2011   6 Comments