Sunday, February 4, 2007

Cosmology May Be The Key

I've said it before and now I have reason to say it again: Cosmology may be the field which will determine the properties of fundamental physics in the future. You may not be able to build a particle accelerator powerful enough to reach the plank length, but the big bang was energetic enough to possibly probe those energies.

Another one from Science Daily:
Peering backward in time to an instant after the big bang, physicists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have devised an approach that may help unlock the hidden shapes of alternate dimensions of the universe. A new study demonstrates that the shapes of extra dimensions can be "seen" by deciphering their influence on cosmic energy released by the violent birth of the universe 13 billion years ago. The method, published today (Feb. 2) in Physical Review Letters, provides evidence that physicists can use experimental data to discern the nature of these elusive dimensions - the existence of which is a critical but as yet unproven element of string theory, the leading contender for a unified "theory of everything."
So using data from the Big Bang we now should be able to tell the geometry of the extra dimensions. The group says the new Planck Satellite going up may be sensitive enough to determine the geometries. It's a great time to be going to graduate school. If they can tell the extra dimensions are there it would be strong evidence for string theory.

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