Physics

The creation, trapping and storage of antihydrogen atoms for up to 1,000 seconds not only represents the longest time period so far that antihydrogen has been captured, but it also brings us closer to answering the question, do matter and antimatter obey the same laws of physics?

Antimatter particles are routinely produced in particle accelerators as well as in space, but holding onto them, particularly the neutral ones, is difficult because antimatter and matter will annihilate on contact and conventional containers are made of matter.
If a particle satisfies the minimum mandated by the uncertainty relation and is subject to no force, the fuzziness of its momentum causes the fuzziness of its position to increase, while the fuzziness of its momentum remains the same. So the amount of information available for predicting the outcome of a momentum measurement remains the same, while the amount of information available for predicting the outcome of a position measurement decreases.
Last time I invited you to consider the following "game": Three "players" (Andy, Bob, and Charles) compete agains three "inter­roga­tors".

Two things can happen: either all players are asked for the value of X, or one player is asked for the value of X while the two other players are asked for the value of Y. The pos­sible values of X and Y are +1 and 1.

You know the James Randi Challenge right? James offers $1000000 to anyone that can demonstrate paranormal abilities under laboratory conditions. Well, today we have something big to announce: A very similar challenge (now officially on the archive here), but much easier to accomplish.

The rewards are immediate fame (in a few weeks from now if you like) and the reception of the Nobel prize in physics later on – no doubt about it.

The following is my email correspondence with Joy Christian. It shows how seriously he took my bait and how he quite agreed with my main point, namely that the “Quantum Crackpot Randi Challenge” should be earnestly attempted.

Summer conferences are just around the corner, and the LHC experiments are putting together O(1 fb) samples as we speak (in another post I will report on the progress of data collection at CMS, which has already collected over 650 inverse picobarns of useful data). It seems that this is a good time to make the point of where we stand with Higgs boson searches.

I am speaking, of course, of the Standard Model (C) Higgs boson, the only one which exists (maybe). Fancier concoctions, predicting five, eleven, or exp(pi) new scalars will be reviewed another day when I am under drugs.

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WTF. A pleasant, unexpected surprise awaited me in the CMS Times, the online periodical which reports on the status of the CMS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider, the research activities, the people participating in the experiment.
The fact that I am swamped by the too many activities I am involved in these days can be gauged by things like the following: I get to know about important new physics results coming from an experiment I am part of by... private communications from amateurs! Knowledgeable and informed ones, of course -but that's not the point.
The video “Why Quantum Mechanics is Weird” (25k views) won the 2005 Berkeley Video&Film Festival Best of Festival Award in Education. That is second place, behind a Grand Festival Award which went to a film on polar bears (much cuter than me talking for 27 minutes). In this blog, I will go through the math behind the video which provides a novel, entirely mathematical explanation for why causality is different between classical and quantum mechanics. Calculus done correctly in spacetime may turn out to provide the correct answer, completely philosophy-free, as it must be.

Why does local realism being wrong imply that non-local reality is true? Such is widely opined to be the only sober solution because it conserves good old reality, the scientists’ fort that is to be defended against the onslaught of magic.

However, reality with “spooky actions at a distance” is not non-magical either. Nevertheless, the issue is known as “non-locality in quantum physics”, never as “non-reality in quantum physics”. How about keeping localism and instead accepting that realism is a god of the gaps in retreat? Don’t like it? Well, how about at least not being so sure about it for starters?