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Exploring Superstrings in the Lab

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the knitting-a-scarf dept.

Science 312

ultracool writes "Physicists at Utrecht University in the Netherlands have come up with a way of observing a superstring by utilizing Bose-Einstein condensation (BEC). A one-dimensional BEC in an optical lattice is rapidly rotated, causing a quantized vortex to form. The bosonic part of the superstring consists of this vortex line. Inside the vortex, they would trap an ultracold cloud of fermionic atoms. Hopefully this will allow observation of the supersymmetry between bosons and fermions, thus providing the first experimental evidence to support superstring theory."

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312 comments

Woah.. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532587)

I almost understood a word of that.. Almost.

Let me explain. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532633)

What they don't know is that such an event would likely trigger a spontanious phase transition of the vacuum. This will precipitate a new "big bang" and the universe will be destroyed, and a new one born, in Norway.

Forget Norway! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532847)

More like Snoreway.

Just don't forget (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532947)

Poland

Re:Woah.. (2, Funny)

inode_buddha (576844) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532670)

Let's hope and pray the Marketing Dept. doesn't turn all that into a buzzword.

"Pro-actively enabling the supersymmetry between bosons and fermions..."

Re:Woah.. (1)

pocketfullofshells (722066) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532719)

I left my superstring in my other pants so I cant show you.

Re:Woah.. (1)

flydude18 (839328) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532793)

I understood the word "the", unless they have a new meaning for it. Do they!?

Re:Woah.. (1)

HermanAB (661181) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532857)

No, fortunately Clinton wasn't a nuclear scientist, so the word 'the' still has its traditional meaning...

Re:Woah.. (1)

Mother Sha Boo Boo (883424) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532821)

So that's why Einstein looks so tired in this icon...

Re:Woah.. (3, Funny)

STrinity (723872) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532912)

It's really simple. By reversing the fermionic tachyon waves of the Bose-Einstein condensation, they'll create bosonic quarks which will reveal, through quantum entanglement of anti-protons, the supersymetry of n-dimensional strings! Gah, it's so simple a pre-schooler could understand it.

Re:Woah.. (2, Informative)

seanmeister (156224) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532952)

I *almost* understood it. These books [amazon.com] went a long way towards helping...

These books went a long way towards helping... (2, Informative)

falconwolf (725481) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533028)

Though I haven't compleated it yet I'll got "The Elegant Universe. Richard Morris [amazon.com] also wrote some good books before he died.

Falcon

Re:Woah.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12533013)

Jimmy Newtron!

Why was this posted? (-1, Flamebait)

darweidu (530107) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532588)

For the 0.5% of the slashdot crowd that understands it? A summary that explains the relevance (instead of the technical details) would be preferable.

Re:Why was this posted? (4, Informative)

simcop2387 (703011) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532628)

this is the first experiment that could confirm the existence or non existance of super strings. This would begin to give emperical evidence to support String Theory. up until now most work on String Theory has been unable to provide a working way to test it. this could easily change the face of theoretical physics in the labs and particle accelerators.

Re:Why was this posted? (2, Informative)

pocketfullofshells (722066) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532673)

String Theory was unknown to me until I saw the awesome Nova special on it..

from the article : String theorists attempt to explain all the fundamental particles as vibrations on tiny strings on length scales of about 10-33 metres. The theory naturally includes "supersymmetry" - a symmetry that connects particles with integer spin, known as bosons, to particles with half-integer spin, which are known as fermions. The particles that carry the fundamental forces of nature, such as the photon and the gluon, are bosons, while the quarks and leptons that make up matter are fermions. Although superstring theory is the leading candidate for a theory of everything, there is no experimental evidence to date for strings or supersymmetry.

Here's the Nova Special - watch it online (4, Informative)

datafr0g (831498) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532840)

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/elegant/program.html [pbs.org]

All 3 hours of it are avaliable on PBS's website.
It's amazing stuff.

The book "The Elegant Universe" by Brain Greene is what the TV Special above is based on.
Definitly worth a look at - if you enjoy the TV special, have a look around for the book... It goes into a LOT more detail.

Re:Here's the Nova Special - watch it online (1)

mpathetiq (726625) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532975)

I was trying to watch this the other night and it kept crashing firefox and IE using both quicktime alternative and real quicktime. GRR. anyone else experience this?

I use super-strings all the time (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532601)

http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.5.0/docs/api/java/lang/ StringBuilder.html [sun.com] .
They're great. You can modify them and they aren't synchronized so they're fast, too. If these scientists are only just now discovering them they should try reading some newsgroups.

Re:I use super-strings all the time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532811)

+1 hysterical! Thanks.

More info... (5, Informative)

KeiserSoze (657078) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532602)

A more detailed explanation of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superstrings [wikipedia.org] superstri ngs.

Re:More info... (1)

bryan986 (833912) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532624)

Unfortunately Slashdot has cut up your superstring

Beneath all of the optimism... (1)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532772)

...it looks like there's a few years yet before Vortex Cool Transportation Inc opens its first showrooms.

No Way! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532604)

Supersymmetry between bosons and fermions is not possible in your universe. We have seen to that.

Yes it is. (2, Funny)

game kid (805301) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532804)

Of course it's possible to see symmetry between bosoms and females--

(hears enraged Slashdotters worldwide screaming bosons and fermions)

--what? nah, I've no idea about those.

I saw that episode (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532611)

It's the one in which Q inverts a universal constant, right?

It might not hurt... (5, Informative)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532615)

...to refer people to more information on Bose-Einstein condensates (BEC):

BEC wikipedia page [wikipedia.org]
BEC home page at Colorado [colorado.edu]
BEC at NIST [nist.gov]
What is a BEC? [physlink.com]

Re:It might not hurt... (1)

kihjin (866070) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532659)

Why was this rated Flamebait? The author is clearly providing additional information to the article...

I want a room temp condensate (1)

mnmn (145599) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532619)

A liquid or solid condensate at room temp exhibiting BEC properties will be nice. I wonder if liquid helium can be made that way.

Just pop open the bottle and show friends how the BEC flows up the wall.. down the bottle, over your arm and onto the floor..

I thought liquid helium was the best way to learn about BECs

Re:I want a room temp condensate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532656)

'best way' in what sense?

liquid He4 might be a BEC indeed, but not a very good example. flowing up walls or whatever is a diversion, caused by the forces between He4 atoms that cause them to remain liquid. gas BECs are a much purer way to study the subject.

Re:I want a room temp condensate (1)

imsabbel (611519) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532663)

What you want to show is superfluidity, like helium 4 has beneath 2.1 Kelvin (or so IIRC).

Re:I want a room temp condensate (3, Funny)

BillX (307153) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532849)

A liquid or solid condensate at room temp exhibiting BEC properties will be nice. I wonder if liquid helium can be made that way.

If you can flow liquid helium up your arm at room temperature, it's time to talk to your landlord ASAP.

And here's what they'll see... (1)

isny (681711) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532622)

- (This added to get past slashcode)

Re:And here's what they'll see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532790)

It's possible to post a comment that is apparently blank - but I have no idea how people do it. I'm imagining an html code for a character that doesn't display.

I've never been bored enough to find out :)

Re:And here's what they'll see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532942)

fdas

Summary (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532629)

Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah Bose-Einstein Condensate blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah quantum blah blah blah blah blah blah superstring blah blah blah blah blah blah . Hopefully blah blah blah blah blah blah.

Supersymmetry != string theory (5, Insightful)

n0mad6 (668307) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532644)

I am not a condensed matter physicist (I'm a high-energy physicist), but it seems like this is a way to demonstrate a supersymmetry (a symmetry between fermions and bosons) rather than a demonstration of a string theory. In experimental high-energy physics, its widely believed that supersymmetry will be proven or disproven conclusively within the next decade. String theory is an entirely different matter.

Any string theorists out there want to chime in?

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (5, Informative)

Stalyn (662) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532704)

Witten said that proving supersymmetry would be helpful in understanding string theory. From what I understand supersymmetry down the road implies string theory. So if supersymmetry is disproved by implication so is string theory. However if supersymmetry is proved is does not prove string theory. But rather add towards understanding and maybe later proving string theory.

but IANAST.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (1)

mshawatmit (825042) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533019)

No, not true. Supersymmetry is a property of the universe predicted by string theory. But string theory is not necessarily the only theory that would lead to supersymmetry in nature. So, its nice circumstancial evidence, but far from proof.

On the other hand, BEC is really cool.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532712)

I'm also not a string theorist, but I believe that (string theory) + (supersymmetry) = (superstrings). This seems to be an attempt to construct a condensed matter analog of the superstring theory that could underly particle physics. In other words, it's an analog that doesn't necessarily mean that superstrings are or are not the underlying fundamental theory of physics.

MOD PARENT UP! (5, Interesting)

Dr. Weird (566938) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532797)

This is an important point that I think the article really butchers: as far as I can tell (and I am a condensed matter physicist), they are *NOT* actually creating fundamental superstrings, i.e. those predicted by string theory. Rather, they are creating objects in BEC's that behave in exactly the same way as predicted by that theory.

To use a computational analogy, they are simulating the equations of string theory using a BEC as the computer. So whatever results they get had better agree with string theory! They aren't actually testing whether these explain the world, just exploring the equations of string theory with an efficient computer -- the BEC.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (1)

mikeg22 (601691) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532771)

I'm far from a string theorist, but this supersymmetry is something that would have to be true for string theory to be true. If the supersymmetry is not true, string theory as it is understood today will be disproven.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (0, Offtopic)

NoMoreNicksLeft (516230) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532961)

If you're really a physicist, make yourself useful and tell me when I can expect my quantum entanglement wireless transcievers, and what kind of bandwidth we're likely to see with first generation technology.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12533012)

If this is not a troll, you should know that quantum entanglement cant be used to transmit information.

Re:Supersymmetry != string theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12533048)

And if it is a troll, then it can be used to transmit information? Neat!

Richards! Behold Doom's UltraGammatronic Ray! (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532649)

I swear. This type of science is sounding more and more like Stan Lee's Marvel dialog every year.

I've been a science geek my whole life, and I have barely an idea of what they are talking about. I thought there was some disagreement about the existence of the multidimensional strings. Is that over now?

We're going to wake up one day and someone in Portugal will have a wormhole operating in his lab, or an antimatter explosion will accidently be set off in Japan. Careful, boys, we're getting into comic book territory now.

Re:Richards! Behold Doom's UltraGammatronic Ray! (1)

timford (828049) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532681)

If there was no disagreement about the existence of superstrings, why would these people be trying to find the first proof of them?

Re:Richards! Behold Doom's UltraGammatronic Ray! (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532799)

Agreed, the math has yet to catch up with the notion (theory), but the measurable evidence will always be secondary evidence, as a superstring is, by definition, smaller than the Plank constant, and therefore unobservable directly.

You call yourself a science geek? (1)

efuseekay (138418) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532810)

The fact that it sounds farfetch does not mean it is any less likely/unlikely that what is true.

Yes, the high energy physics jargon is terrible and inviting ridicule such as yours. But, remember the Top, Bottom, Charm, Strange, or even the Big bang theory?

The article is terribly written, but it has a link to the original arxiv scientific article. So you are welcomed to go try to understand it.

Btw, this statement by you :
I thought there was some disagreement about the existence of the multidimensional strings. Is that over now?

is condescending and shows a lack of understanding of the scientific process.

Re:You call yourself a science geek? (1)

GregoryKJohnson (717981) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532989)

Condescending? You could argue that it didn't adequately caputure the nuance of the process, but I'd hardly call it condescending. (And it's not entirely unreasonable, I'd argue, to wonder whether a consensus has developed about a particular matter.)

Were you perhaps reading some snideness into the post that wasn't intended?

Re:Richards! Behold Doom's UltraGammatronic Ray! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532830)

String theory is one of the proposed method for Grand Unification. It requires more than the three spatial dimentions that we're familiar with, so it tends to get rather complicated.

Re:Richards! Behold Doom's UltraGammatronic Ray! (1)

dmaxwell (43234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532890)

We're going to wake up one day and someone in Portugal will have a wormhole operating in his lab, or an antimatter explosion will accidently be set off in Japan. Careful, boys, we're getting into comic book territory now.

As long as I get superpowers out of the deal, that's cool. Then I'll make the unscrupulous bastards who gave me superpowers pay and pay and pay. Oh yeah, and I'll dominate the world while I'm at it.

Think of the applications! (4, Funny)

dj245 (732906) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532654)

The bosonic part of the superstring consists of this vortex line. Inside the vortex, they would trap an ultracold cloud of fermionic atoms.

This has direct implications for the food industry. No longer will superstring cheese have to be refrigerated, the fermionic atoms will maintain an ultracold cloud around the superstring cheese, keeping it tasty and fresh. Yum.

Don't believe in superstrings ... (1)

quax (19371) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532666)

... so I am very curious to see if they will come up with anything.

I hope they dont "believe" in it either.... yet (3, Insightful)

deft (253558) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532996)

Good scientitst might have a good feeling, a hunch, but are ready to be disproved so they can move on, because a negative value is just as good as a positive (if not as exciting).

That beleive stuff is for tooth fairies and god(s) :)

Proving Superstring Theory would be useful . . (3, Interesting)

Glaz (883674) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532667)

If they can demonstrate that the predictions of superstring theory hold true, and that it can actually be used to connect Quantum Physics with Relativistic Physics, we might actually be able to stop some of the bickering that goes on among Physicists today.

What does that mean for us? Well, when Newton found physical laws that worked more generally than Aristotle thought, Physics was born and we were launched into a new era of science. Einstein's Special (and then, afterward) General Relativity made what we consider the modern era possible.

Quantum Physics and Relativity have always been at odds, though. After all, what makes gravity operate at a quantum level? Superstring theory is one of several "theories of everything" that would allow us to explain the world in more general terms--and in the past, every time that has happened, society and technology has taken leaps and bounds forward.

What will happen if we find out that Superstring theory really is the theory of everything? It's liable to be as outlandishly unthought of as space travel to the people of the turn of the 20th century.

Re:Proving Superstring Theory would be useful . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532891)

unthought of as space travel? Jules Vern is an figment of my imagination?

In Korea... (0)

blue_adept (40915) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532669)

In Korea only old people rapidly rotate a one-dimensional Bose-Einstein condensation in an optical lattice to cause a quantized vortex to trap an ultracold cloud of fermionic atoms.

I suppose it makes sense to physicists (1)

zerbot (882848) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532676)

Here's what I don't get. The article on Physics web says, "The particles that carry the fundamental forces of nature, such as the photon and the gluon, are bosons, while the quarks and leptons that make up matter are fermions." Then it goes on to say, "Bosonic atoms such as rubidium-87 can enter such as state because, unlike fermions, they do not obey the Pauli exclusion principle." What makes atoms bosonic versus fermionic? Just whether or not they follow the Pauli exclusion principle?

Re:I suppose it makes sense to physicists (1)

timford (828049) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532692)

All atoms are bosonic by definition.

Re:I suppose it makes sense to physicists (1)

timford (828049) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532748)

Oops... I meant fermionic, of course :)

Re:I suppose it makes sense to physicists (1)

Dr. Weird (566938) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532809)

Some are bosonic, some are fermionic. See my reply to parent.

Re:I suppose it makes sense to physicists (5, Informative)

Dr. Weird (566938) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532747)

If some object is made up of an even number of fermions, it is a boson, otherwise it is a fermion (the neutrons and protons that make up the nuclei of the atom are each fermions, as are the electrons surrounding it).

Now, for the reason: if you know some quantum physics, think of taking two composite objects and interchanging them; fermions wavefunctions change sign under this interchange. For the composite object, its wavefunction looks like (an anti-symmetrized) product of single-particle wavefunctions. If those are fermionic and there are an odd number of them in the composite wave function, interchanging the two composite wavefunctions will produce an odd number of sign changes in the product, for an overlal sign change. If there are instead an even number of fermionic single-particle wavefunctions in the composite wavefunction, the resulting even number of sign changes under interchange produces no net sign change in the many-body wavefunction.

This is easily extended to composite objects that are a composite of both bosons and fermions.

Re:I suppose it makes sense to physicists (4, Informative)

Mark_in_Brazil (537925) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532898)

What makes atoms bosonic versus fermionic? Just whether or not they follow the Pauli exclusion principle?
No, obedience or non-obedience of the Pauli exclusion principle does not define what is a fermion or a boson. It is just a property of fermions that they obey the Pauli principle, and a property of bosons that they do not.
So what's the definition of a fermion or a boson, and in this specific case, of a fermionic or bosonic nucleus?
Bosons have integer spin, and fermions have half-integer (n+1/2, where n is a nonnegative integer) spin. The spins of the individual quarks in nucleons (protons and neutrons) always add up to a half-integer, so nucleons are fermions. The quarks themselves are too. The spins of the nucleons in a nucleus can add up in different ways, depending on the number of each kind (proton and neutron) present. When the spins add to become an integer, the nucleus is bosonic. When the spins add to a half-integer, the nucleus is fermionic.
If a given nucleus is fermionic, then identical nuclei of that type obey the Pauli exclusion principle. If the nucleus is bosonic, then the Pauli exclusion principle does not apply to it, and the possibility of a collection of that kind of nucleus forming a BEC exists.

big load of horse manure (-1, Troll)

Adult film producer (866485) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532683)

super-string theory is crackpot science thought up by dope smoking physicists that were desperate for one-size-fits-all solution to the universe. Besides this experiment not proving anything about their whacked out theory, there exists no evidence to even suggest what they dreamed up in their orgy of delusion even exists! Super-string theory is dead.

Roll 'em (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532685)

Humans really have got some sophisticated toys running these days. Is it any easier to create a black hole from BEC than from "STP" matter? If so, I'd like to hear about some research on rotating cylindrical ones, and their effects on signal propagation in their peculiar spacetime neighborhood. Conducted far out in space, preferably ;).

Re:Roll 'em (1)

ironrhino (796539) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533039)

By 'STP', do you mean Stone Temple Pilots?

mod dowN (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532690)

Far Stringtopia (2, Interesting)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532700)

Interstellar space is "ultracold", and there are some accumulations of bosonic and fermionic atoms there. Could these superstringy conditions be found there, and observed by instruments on Earth?

Re:Far Stringtopia (1)

dmaxwell (43234) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532813)

Interstellar space will have at least a 4 degrees Kelvin temperature due to the background microwave radiation. AFAIK Einstein-Bose condensates are only possible thousanths of a degree or less above absolute zero (O degrees Kelvin). Under idealized lab conditons, we earthlings can generate cold far below what you usually find in interstellar space. That is needed for the observational evidence these guys are looking for.

Re:Far Stringtopia (1)

birge (866103) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533027)

Mod parent up; he's absolutely correct. The fact that the "vacuum" of space isn't even cold enough for BEC just shows how amazing the accomplishment is. Apparently when Ketterle was first doing the BEC experiments, Building 26 at MIT was host to the coldest place in the universe. Pretty remarkable if you think about it.

Re:Far Stringtopia (3, Informative)

zerbot (882848) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532856)

Intrastellar space is not ultracold, it's pretty darn hot (4 Kelvin) when you contrast that to the temperatures needed to form a BEC (around 170 nanoKelvin).

Re:Far Stringtopia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532905)

No its not. Space is actually not cold enough to produce a BEC. See energy left over from the big bang acutally creates a 5 kelvin (approximate of course, I forget what the decimals are) temperature. In order to create a BEC you need something really close 0 K, its impossible to reach 0 K but as long as you get below 1 K you should be able to produce BEC in certain atoms. At least thats my understanding of it. As for the experiment actually working I highly doubt it. Come on, trying to spin a single or a few atoms whose physical properties are only really theorized and haven't really been tested is kinda ridiculus. BEC are a single blob whos parts cannot be seperated. So good luck in creating a vortex to see the seperate parts.

The only way this is gonna work is if Einstien is wrong or there is some loop hole which I don't know about. However, BEC's where used to prove the the Quantum theory was not wrong in that it is impossible to determine a particles location and speed without changing it. See people thought that by reaching absolute zero they could freeze electrons and other particles into place. However at this temperature the sperate particles meld together and become inseperable. I don't think you can create a vortex and I am pretty sure this will fail. But if it works then there is some serious rethinking to do. Actually as a am typing I am trying to find some literature on BEC's and when people started thinking they could be spun into vortexs. I've never heard of this before, and I have read and alot on it, so I am kinda skeptical.

Re:Far Stringtopia (1)

birge (866103) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533043)

I haven't RTFA, but I don't think you should be so quick to dismiss these guys. As you implied, you don't really have the background to do so. (Nor do I, for the record.) I think it's the case that just because the wavefunctions of the atoms in the BEC become one, that doesn't mean there is some sort of single, minimal allowed wavefunction. I don't see why you couldn't have a BEC where the atoms' wavefunction had angular momentum.

char array (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532706)

It's still a char array, no matter how sophisticated MSDN tries to make it sound.

Superstrings are unscientific (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532709)

There are so many flaws in superstring theory that it can best be described as a fanatical religion not unlike militant Islam! Better to believe in a supernatural designer, which has good analogical support. In God's creation, there exists a "Divine Proportion" that is exhibited in a multitude of shapes, numbers, and patterns whose relationship can only be the result of the omnipotent, good, and all-wise God of Scripture. This Divine Proportion--existing in the smallest to the largest parts, in living and also in non-living things--reveals the awesome handiwork of God and His interest in beauty, function, and order.

These shapes, numbers, spirals, and the divine proportion are ubiquitous in their presence throughout all of creation. They are found in living and nonliving phenomena. Their symmetry, beauty, and mathematical preciseness are evident in every aspect of nature. Although absolute perfection is not found in all of these (due to the effects of Adam' sin), their very presence virtually everywhere and in everything argues against their having occurred by blind chance or evolutionary processes. The only rational conclusion is that the Creator of the universe is a personal, intelligent Being, who created these things as a visible fingerprint of His invisible, yet personal existence. This great, wise, powerful, creative, and sovereign God of creation is the One revealed in the Bible, of whom it can be said, "Great things doeth He, which we cannot comprehend" (Job 37:5). He is worthy of worship. And what is His name? The Lord Jesus Christ. "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created" (Revelation 4:11).

Re:Superstrings are unscientific (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532741)

What the fuck is wrong with you?

MOD PARENT UP! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532841)

It is about time that string theory is exposed as the sham that it is!

Give me a break... (1, Interesting)

kavau (554682) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532723)

Hopefully this will allow observation of the supersymmetry between bosons and fermions, thus providing the first experimental evidence to support superstring theory.

The scientists are creating a system here that looks quite similar to superstring theory in some ways from a mathematical point of view. They have no way of observing "real" superstrings at these energies. While certainly interesting in its own right, this experiment can in no way provide experimental evidence that superstring theory really describes reality.

Superstring? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532724)

Don't you just puss the button on top of the can and the superstring sprays all over the lab?

So last season... (1)

kumachan (618013) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532744)

That is taken straight from that episode of Star Trek last season

Add a smidgen of force.... (1)

Solder Fumes (797270) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532745)

Toss all this in a flashlight casing and some foggy-headed obscure physics nerd gets to be the first one to play Jedi.

Uh huh (2, Funny)

Shky (703024) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532752)

"The bosonic part of the superstring consists of this vortex line. Inside the vortex, they would trap an ultracold cloud of fermionic atoms. Hopefully this will allow observation of the supersymmetry between bosons and fermions, thus providing the first experimental evidence to support superstring theory."

Pfft. Well, obviously.

polarity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532762)

Have they tried reversing the polarity?

Ahh.. (2, Funny)

bigattichouse (527527) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532785)

And if we channel a reverse impulse through the reflector dish, the superstring will disperse the space-time anomoly. Aren't you waiting for some of this quantum research to accidentally unleash a super-mega-quantum bomb.. "safety tip - avoid trying to look under God's skirts".

Aha! (1)

mcc (14761) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532851)

I knew Wil Wheaton had an account somewhere on slashdot, I was WONDERING what his username was!

Well, that's good (1)

bigsexyjoe (581721) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532808)

The big problem with String theory is lack of experimental evidence (or even experiments) to prove it. It's detractors like to say it is just a religion with no proof. However, this looks more like an experiment to prove supersymmetry which doesn't necessarily prove string theory.

Nice to measure something for a change (1)

snarkasaurus (627205) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532877)

It will be rather nice to have an actual TEST of superstring theory that can prove or disprove something, rather than the usual hot gasses issuing from competing theorists.

An ounce of experimental data is worth a ton of mathematics.

Really? (1)

JoeCommodore (567479) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532894)

Wow, me and 'da guys were just tossing around that idea at the construction site during lunch just last week. Who wouldda thunk!

I hope they'll have no success. (0, Troll)

sqar (884082) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532913)

I particularly dislike the string theories. If they could prove that string theories are right this would diminish my respect for god as a smart guy/girl/whatever. I hold the quantum-loop theory or the heim theory in much higher regards as they are smarter.

http://www.heim-theory.com/Contents/contents.html [heim-theory.com]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heim-Theory [wikipedia.org]

regards, sqar

Ummm... Reality check. (5, Informative)

volsung (378) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532914)

Not to rain on anyone's parade, but based on that article, this is NOT a test of supersymmetry or string theory in the sense the article blurb leads you to believe. (Surprised?) These physicists have thought up a clever way to create an analog to a superstring out of a macroscopic quantum system. The neat thing about condensed matter physics is that you can concoct systems that behave like more fundamental systems which you can't easily create. You can then test the implications of a particular mathematical model.

So this is very cool (literally!) science, but NOT a test of superstring theory as a way to describe fundamental particles or interactions. At best, it will provide some interesting checks of the mathematical predictions of string-like theories, but only translated into this system. You still won't know if string theory has any hope of describing real electrons, photons, gravitons, etc.

NOT *really* superstrings *or* supersymmetry! (4, Insightful)

dr. loser (238229) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532927)

IAAP (I am a physicist), and again we have an physics article posted by someone who doesn't know the difference between reality and an analogy.

The system that these folks propose to study (quantized vorticity in a Bose-Einstein condensate) can be described with the same type of mathematics that is used in superstring theory. The proposed experiments would test the validity of the math. These experiments would say nothing about whether the math of superstring theory is a valid description of the world!

A similar situation would be the following: observing a weight on a spring would confirm the math behind simple harmonic oscillators. It would not, however, tell me anything about whether the vibrational modes of the sun obey those same equations.

Analogy != equivalence!

From wikipedia (1)

PrivateDonut (802017) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532932)

Superstring Theory [wikipedia.org] - Excerpt: "Superstring theory is an attempt to explain all of the particles and fundamental forces of nature in one theory by modeling them as vibrations of tiny supersymmetric strings." How does this differ from String Theory?

Re:From wikipedia (1)

(el)Capitan.Nick (860795) | more than 9 years ago | (#12532983)

String Theory is just a shorthand name for Superstring Theory.

Re:From wikipedia (1)

oneiron (716313) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533079)

Initially, there was string theory. After it had been around for a while, other physicists came up with other versions of the theory that conflicted with the original. I think there were around 5 different conflicting "string theories". Then, some really weird looking dude who's probably the smartest human being alive came up with a single theory that sort of united the 5 conflicting theories. He named it "M" theory, but no one calls it that. Everyone just refers to it as string theory.

Hope I got all that right...

Duh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12532943)

"Hopefully this will allow observation of the supersymmetry between bosons and fermions, thus providing the first experimental evidence to support superstring theory." Where's the news? Any third-grader worth his salt could tell you this.

whatever this proves (0, Troll)

Internet_Communist (592634) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533008)

I'm somewhat tired of these silly theories of everything thought up by pseudo-intellectuals by piling theories on top of theories.

and then in the end someone will ask, where do strings come from? And you'll work out another 10 theories to figure that out, only until someone asks where whatever that came from as well.

whether you put the blame on silly self-serving religious ideals or theorised theories of theories, I'll pick the third option: sun god.

Oh wait.

so yeah go prove superstrings or whatever. I still think the string theory is a big load of shit made up by people who idolize Einstein a little too much...maybe if these people thought for themselves they could see the obvious truth to things.

Ack! (1)

driftingwalrus (203255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12533009)

Great scott! That just sounded like a scene from star trek!

Girl, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12533035)

You must be an Einstein-Rosen bridge because after I come in you I'm going to be somewhere else.
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