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Speed of light may not be constant, physicists say (Whoops)
Fox Live Science ^ | 4-29-2013 | Jesse Emspak

Posted on 04/29/2013 6:40:36 PM PDT by equalator

The speed of light is constant, or so textbooks say. But some scientists are exploring the possibility that this cosmic speed limit changes, a consequence of the nature of the vacuum of space.

The definition of the speed of light has some broader implications for fields such as cosmology and astronomy, which assume a stable velocity for light over time. For instance, the speed of light comes up when measuring the fine structure constant (alpha), which defines the strength of the electromagnetic force. And a varying light speed would change the strengths of molecular bonds and the density of nuclear

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Science
KEYWORDS: electrogravitics; lightspeed; physics; science
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1 posted on 04/29/2013 6:40:36 PM PDT by equalator
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To: equalator

They’ve been able to slow light down in lab tests for a few years now.


2 posted on 04/29/2013 6:43:07 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: cripplecreek

it is so slow in ‘rats they can’t even see it


3 posted on 04/29/2013 6:45:12 PM PDT by bigheadfred
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To: equalator

Hussein’s halo is going dark.


4 posted on 04/29/2013 6:49:02 PM PDT by Jyotishi (Seeking the truth, a fact at a time.)
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To: equalator

It slows down considerably when it hits 0bama’s skull.


5 posted on 04/29/2013 6:49:37 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( ==> sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: equalator

Thanks for the article now I get to go read on Mach’s Principle and compare it with this.

http://www.arxiv.org/abs/gr-qc/0511038


6 posted on 04/29/2013 6:49:57 PM PDT by bigheadfred
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To: smokingfrog

ill probably get yelled at again for this but according to afrophysics obama isnt really black he is just so dense light bends around him


7 posted on 04/29/2013 6:51:29 PM PDT by bigheadfred
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To: equalator

Shocker (not). I’m also figuring it’s a matter of time (possibly soon, considering this post) before they figure out that light isn’t actually the speed limit, light has “mass”, and that dark matter/energy doesn’t exist because it isn’t needed to satisfy their observations.

Addressing the universe mathematically will teach you an awful lot, but it doesn’t solve everything. I believe it’s a “forest for the trees” problem.

Of course, to a mathematician I’m an unqualified boob - but it’s not the first time I’ve sat back and said “well duh” at one of these “discoveries”.


8 posted on 04/29/2013 6:53:43 PM PDT by TheZMan (Buy more ammo.)
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To: stylecouncilor
M-Theory
9 posted on 04/29/2013 6:59:00 PM PDT by onedoug
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To: equalator

Refraction, like in a prism, is due to light slowing down in speed as it enters the prism medium.


10 posted on 04/29/2013 7:01:30 PM PDT by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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To: bigheadfred

He’ll never see the light.


11 posted on 04/29/2013 7:02:37 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( ==> sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: equalator

I distinctly remember being taught the speed of light varied with the density of the material it was going through.

Light is photons right?

If you can stop it then it seems to me that the speed of those photons changed.


12 posted on 04/29/2013 7:02:57 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do ithat when I have a fire.)
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To: equalator

I’ve been saying this for years, almost always to the great derision of the scientific types. If it was that important to me I could probably go back and find the FR threads.


13 posted on 04/29/2013 7:10:34 PM PDT by EternalVigilance (Life, liberty, property, family, RKBA, sovereignty, security, borders, independence, the oath.)
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To: betty boop; Alamo-Girl

Pinging my favorite cosmologists. In the past, we have had some discussions where I posited that the speed of light is not really a constant.


14 posted on 04/29/2013 7:26:16 PM PDT by Kevmo ("A person's a person, no matter how small" ~Horton Hears a Who)
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To: TheZMan

"Screw you guys. I'm not giving back my Nobel Prize.

GO NAVY!"

15 posted on 04/29/2013 7:26:51 PM PDT by USNBandit (sarcasm engaged at all times)
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To: equalator
It goes really slowly through a right hand turn.

So slowly that you risk ramming it from behind.

16 posted on 04/29/2013 7:37:01 PM PDT by Last Dakotan
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To: USNBandit

Who is this fellow?


17 posted on 04/29/2013 7:37:12 PM PDT by Ken522
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To: Rides_A_Red_Horse

Bump


18 posted on 04/29/2013 7:40:38 PM PDT by Rides_A_Red_Horse (Why do you need a fire extinguisher when you can call the fire department?)
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To: equalator

BOOKMARK.


19 posted on 04/29/2013 7:44:00 PM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin......Nuff said.)
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To: equalator

Speed Limit: 186,000 miles per second
It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law.


20 posted on 04/29/2013 7:45:04 PM PDT by preacher (Communism has only killed 100 million people: Let's give it another chance!)
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To: James C. Bennett
Refraction, like in a prism, is due to light slowing down in speed as it enters the prism medium.

Yes but in matter, light propagates as a "dressed" particle. That is, it is repeatedly absorbed and re-emitted by interactions with the electrons in the medium, and it is the propagagation of this complex interaction that has the lower speed.

This is analogous to the theory of the Higgs boson imparting mass to the various elementary particles by "dressing" them with its interactions, AFAIUI.

21 posted on 04/29/2013 8:55:33 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: equalator

Which begs the question. Is the universe really as d as we have been told?


22 posted on 04/29/2013 9:12:13 PM PDT by Yellowstone Joe
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To: equalator

Which begs the question. Is the universe really as old as we have been told?


23 posted on 04/29/2013 9:14:06 PM PDT by Yellowstone Joe
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To: Yellowstone Joe
Is the universe really as old as we have been told?

If my memory is accurate, it is older than I am. More I cannot say. ;-)

24 posted on 04/29/2013 9:22:29 PM PDT by Tau Food (Never give a sword to a man who can't dance.)
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To: equalator
Still think there are certain regions in space, not talking about in the vicinity of a large gravitational field (Blackhole), where
space/time and therefore the speed of light, get *screwy* compared to the physics in the reference frame we occupy.
25 posted on 04/29/2013 9:27:30 PM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin......Nuff said.)
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To: driftdiver

Yes. And the “speed of light” is defined as “the speed of light in a vacuum”.

And now this paper is saying that there are different kinds of vacuum.


26 posted on 04/29/2013 9:32:53 PM PDT by CharlesWayneCT
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To: cripplecreek

Slowing photons down is easy, all you have to do is send them through a medium. Are they slowing them down in a vacuum?


27 posted on 04/29/2013 10:01:31 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: TheZMan

I don’t think that they will find that light has mass. It makes intuitive sense that they can’t both have mass and travel at the speed of light. At that speed, length contraction will cause them to become 2 dimensional, and I can’t conceive that a 2 dimensional object can have mass which would effect 3 dimensional objects. So, just a hunch, I doubt they have any mass, and if they did, they’d become something other than a photon, and travel slower than c.


28 posted on 04/29/2013 10:13:32 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Yellowstone Joe

Well, these guys aren’t theorizing that the universal light speed can change or decay, they’re just talking about the local light speed. Essentially, they’re saying the vacuum isn’t just a vacuum, because it’s full of virtual particles, so there is a local light speed in every region of space.

Though, if they are correct, and if something caused the density of the vacuum particles to vary over time, then that could have implications essentially the same as if the universal speed of light varied.


29 posted on 04/29/2013 10:23:08 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Boogieman

Well, are they then the ‘missing mass’ being looked for.


30 posted on 04/29/2013 10:39:55 PM PDT by Pikachu_Dad (Impeach Sen Quinn)
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To: USNBandit
GO NAVY!


LCDR Albert Michelson, in 1918

31 posted on 04/29/2013 10:52:22 PM PDT by cynwoody
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To: Pikachu_Dad

Makes a lot of sense, solves a lot of problems.
And now seems we don’t know much about nothing...er...vacuums.


32 posted on 04/29/2013 11:00:23 PM PDT by ctdonath2 (Making good people helpless doesn't make bad people harmless.)
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To: TheZMan

I’ve always thought that gravity has a x*3 term which is repulsive. In most normal scales, it has no function. On the galactic and intergalactic scales it can come to dominate the x*2 term which we are more familiar.


33 posted on 04/29/2013 11:25:06 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas is a state of mind - Steinbeck)
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To: equalator; blam

So when I tell my boys

186,000 miles per second

I’m a liar!

Man those Max Planck folks are into everything....how many fields of science are they in to?

I looked it up....80....and old Max while not a Christian at least believed in God

Unlike most smart big forehead sorts today

Light.....DNA....


34 posted on 04/29/2013 11:46:59 PM PDT by wardaddy (wanna know how my kin felt during Reconstruction in Mississippi, you fixin to find out firsthand)
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To: Last Dakotan

“CAUTION: Light Brakes for Ephemeral Virtual Unstable Elementary Particles”


35 posted on 04/30/2013 1:17:01 AM PDT by silverleaf (Age Takes a Toll: Please Have Exact Change)
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To: Ken522

Albert Michelson, the guy who determined the speed of light. He won the Nobel prize and was a graduate of Annapolis.


36 posted on 04/30/2013 1:23:18 AM PDT by USNBandit (sarcasm engaged at all times)
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To: wardaddy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3K86Vge0Gc
Chuck Missler study in genesis goes into the whole light speed thing , mostly in the 2nd session . Quite interesting


37 posted on 04/30/2013 1:56:53 AM PDT by sopwith (don't tread on me)
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Bookmark for later read..


38 posted on 04/30/2013 2:06:00 AM PDT by Las Vegas Dave
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To: Boogieman

“length contraction will cause them to become 2 dimensional”

And I can’t conceive that ever making any sense.


39 posted on 04/30/2013 5:30:16 AM PDT by TheZMan (Buy more ammo.)
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To: Yellowstone Joe

Couple this with gravitational time dilation [per one Albert Einstein] and then the long ages for the Earth and Universe become much more ‘apparent’...

101 Evidences for a Young Age of the Earth...And the Universe
http://creation.com/age-of-the-earth

See also:

Starlight and Time by Russell Humpheys
The key to the starlight and age of the universe is ‘gravitational time dilation’.


40 posted on 04/30/2013 5:56:59 AM PDT by BrandtMichaels
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To: TheZMan

Well the object itself doesn’t really become 2-d, it just appears that way to outside observers.


41 posted on 04/30/2013 6:12:39 AM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Pikachu_Dad

No, the “missing mass” is most likely not missing at all, it’s just a plug they have used to make their faulty equations match up better with observed reality.

Basically, if reality behaved according to the way the math predicts, then the spiral arms of galaxies would rotate slower than the center of the galaxy. Instead, we see the arms rotating at the same speed. The physicists try to wallpaper over this problem by saying their could be a bunch of mass conveniently hidden just where they need it, in order to accelerate the spiral arms to just the right speed. The entire idea, though, is patently ludicrous.


42 posted on 04/30/2013 6:21:24 AM PDT by Boogieman
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To: ctdonath2

ctdonath2 wrote:
Makes a lot of sense, solves a lot of problems.
And now seems we don’t know much about nothing...er...vacuums.

I can tell you that they suck. Does that warrant a grant of millions?


43 posted on 04/30/2013 7:13:54 AM PDT by ro_dreaming (G.K. Chesterton, “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting. It’s been found hard and lef)
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To: Kevmo; Alamo-Girl
...the idea is that the speed of light might change as one alters assumptions about how elementary particles interact with radiation. Both treat space as something that isn't empty, but a great big soup of virtual particles that wink in and out of existence in tiny fractions of a second.

Hi Kevmo! Ultimately, isn't the speed of light a function of time? Our "human view" of time is that it is serial and linear, moving inexorably from past, to present, to future. Our concept of time is pretty "flat." Now we have these virtual particles that wink in and out of existence. These particles do not appear (to me) to be the sort of things that conform to our standard model of serial, linear time — which is essentially based on observation and convention. The idea of a universal vacuum field also does not comport with this model — for this vacuum is universal. Rather it seems the behavior of virtual particles points to anther temporal dimension that is not directly observable by humans, and is definitely not "flat."

I dunno. I'm reasoning as a philosopher, not a scientist. What I do know is that certain high-energy physicists/cosmologists — for example the distinguished Israeli physicist Avshalom Elitzur — have suggested that our current notions of time are very likely inadequate and are acting as a constraint on new breakthroughs in the physical understanding of our universe.

Just some thoughts, FWTW.

Thanks for the ping!

44 posted on 04/30/2013 10:26:23 AM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: betty boop; Alamo-Girl

Ultimately, isn’t the speed of light a function of time?
***It could be a function of (dependent upon) something else as well. In Physics we see C all over the map in equations, and if it’s a function rather than a constant, then our universe is far more complicated.


45 posted on 04/30/2013 11:19:19 AM PDT by Kevmo ("A person's a person, no matter how small" ~Horton Hears a Who)
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To: Kevmo; Alamo-Girl
In Physics we see C all over the map in equations, and if it’s a function rather than a constant, then our universe is far more complicated.

Or perchance far more simple than we think???

It's a marvelous thing to wonder about.

Thank you so much for writing dear Kevmo!

46 posted on 04/30/2013 1:26:42 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: betty boop; Alamo-Girl

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2491839/posts?page=24#24

What if the speed of light is not a constant?
***Then many of these items have a better than average chance of being true.

SubQuantum Kinetics, wide ranging unifying cosmology theory by Dr. Paul LaViolette
Wednesday, August 22, 2007 12:00:43 PM · by Kevmo · 68 replies · 1,683+ views
THE STARBURST FOUNDATION ^ | January 2007 | Dr. Paul LaViolette

Rethinking relativity: Is time out of joint?
Monday, November 02, 2009 9:29:43 PM · by Kevmo · 58 replies · 2,178+ views
New Scientist ^ | 21 October 2009 | Rachel Courtland
Re-Analysis of the Marinov Light-Speed Anisotropy Experiment
Friday, June 12, 2009 11:25:41 PM · by Kevmo · 27 replies · 1,526+ views
http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/physics/pdf/0612/0612201v2.pdf ^ | Reginald T. Cahill
Gamma-ray burst restricts ways to beat Einstein’s relativity
Thursday, October 29, 2009 6:58:41 PM · by SunkenCiv · 15 replies · 842+ views
Symmetry ^ | Thursday, October 29, 2009 | David Harris
Non-Gravitational Fifth Force? Research Could Change Most Widely Held Scientific Theories...
Wednesday, October 28, 2009 1:26:53 AM · by bogusname · 25 replies · 990+ views
BCN ^ | Oct 28, 2009 | Teresa Neumann
Discovery of ‘magnetricity’ marks important advance in physics
Thursday, October 15, 2009 2:51:38 PM · by Free ThinkerNY · 35 replies · 1,611+ views
timesonline.co.uk ^ | Oct. 15, 2009 | Hannah Devlin
Anti-gravity propulsion comes ‘out of the closet’
Tuesday, July 30, 2002 8:22:27 AM · by Fitzcarraldo · 126 replies · 2,631+ views
Jane’s Data Service ^ | 29 July 2002 | Nick Cook
‘Lifters’ may change the world the way Segway didn’t
Monday, May 13, 2002 8:09:32 AM · by mhking · 35 replies · 2,193+ views
Wired News ^ | 5.11.02 | Michelle Delio
NASA’s Controversial Gravity Shield Experiment Fails to Produce
Wednesday, October 10, 2001 12:45:11 PM · by RightWhale · 111 replies · 746+ views
space.com ^ | 10 Oct 01 | Jack Lucentini

24 posted on 04/12/2010 11:05:33 PM PDT by Kevmo (So America gets what America deserves - the destruction of its Constitution. ~Leo Donofrio, 6/1/09)


47 posted on 04/30/2013 1:42:14 PM PDT by Kevmo ("A person's a person, no matter how small" ~Horton Hears a Who)
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To: equalator

Speed of light is constant... In a vacuum.

Why do people keep leaving that last part off?


48 posted on 04/30/2013 1:45:56 PM PDT by Dead Corpse (I will not comply.)
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To: Boogieman

Right, which is one of my fundamental disconnects (read: problems) with how objects at speed are discussed.

How it appears to an outside observer is completely inconsequential. The object itself is still the same size/shape it was at rest because the entirety of the object is moving at the given speed.

Which leads to another part of the discussion - the question over whether turning on a flash light at light speed would project light forward onto something likewise moving at the speed of light. Again without being one of the aforementioned mathematicians I say “yes, it does” because I can’t see why the flash light/filament/photons care that they’re already moving at the speed of light. The source and target are comparatively stationary.

If the target were moving away from the source at the “speed of light”, sure, the light never makes it to the target because “that’s how fast light goes”.

The real question should be - “why is the speed of light...the speed of light?” There is so much we don’t know about this universe, and likely never will.


49 posted on 04/30/2013 5:35:22 PM PDT by TheZMan (Buy more ammo.)
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To: TheZMan

“How it appears to an outside observer is completely inconsequential.”

Well, no, it is consequential, because it effects simultaneity. So, because of the apparent length contraction, events can’t happen at the same time for the observer and the observed. Going back to the photon as an example, when one is emitted, we see that it takes a certain amount of time to traverse space. However, for the photon, it appears to take zero time to travel any distance. You can’t say that we are right and the photon is wrong, because in either frame of reference everything behaves as if your observations are correct. So, both of those things are true, even though it seems to be a contradiction.

“Which leads to another part of the discussion - the question over whether turning on a flash light at light speed would project light forward onto something likewise moving at the speed of light”

Well, theoretically, you should see the light project forward. However, that’s completely theoretical, because no physical object with mass that could emit photons will ever be able to reach c. The trickier question is whether an outside observer would see the light beam project forward or not.

“The real question should be - “why is the speed of light...the speed of light?””

Yes that is the real question, and I don’t have much clue as to the answer to that.


50 posted on 05/01/2013 6:38:34 AM PDT by Boogieman
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