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Top physics stories for 2013 include four-quark particle and possible dark matter signal

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estimated distribution then and now/NASA

Dark matter, which we cover when something big happens, was in the number 3 spot of 11 stories chosen by the editors of Physics:

Dark Matter is Still Obscure

2013 was an eventful year in dark-matter research, with leading search efforts releasing long-awaited results—though the puzzle of what makes up the dark matter remains unsolved. In April, the collaboration running the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer aboard the International Space Station reported the observation of an excess of positrons in the cosmic ray flux. This could well originate from the annihilation of dark-matter particles in space, but data at higher energies are needed to rule out other explanations. Two other Earth-bound experiments instead attempted to capture candidate dark-matter particles called WIMPs as they pass through Earth. The Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (CDMS) experiment at Fermilab in Illinois caused a stir when it announced it had detected a few blips in its scintillators that could potentially be assigned to WIMPs. But the excitement was soon dampened by the Large Underground Xenon (LUX) experiment in South Dakota. LUX, with nominally much better sensitivity, saw no evidence of such dark-matter particles. Both experiments are now racing to improve their sensitivities and hoping to deliver unequivocal dark-matter signals.

See also: Dark matter so far not detected, but researchers find cause for hope in that fact  (If it is really a quarter of the universe, how strange that we never detect it.)

Is there really any dark matter? (Quote: “It’s ghost-like matter.”)

What if the Higgs boson exists … but dark matter doesn’t? (Is it like the Higgs… or like phlogiston?)

Other Top Tens here and here.

Hat tip: Rob Sheldon

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3 Replies to “Top physics stories for 2013 include four-quark particle and possible dark matter signal

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    If I were looking for resolution as to what makes up dark matter (and dark energy) I would not look to exotic particles, and/or to string theory which have no experimental support, but I would look to quantum information. The reason I say this is because atoms themselves (and photons) are now shown, empirically, to reduce to ‘quantum’ information:

    Here are my references for the claim that “energy and mass both reduce to information”:

    Ions have been teleported successfully for the first time by two independent research groups
    Excerpt: In fact, copying isn’t quite the right word for it. In order to reproduce the quantum state of one atom in a second atom, the original has to be destroyed. This is unavoidable – it is enforced by the laws of quantum mechanics, which stipulate that you can’t ‘clone’ a quantum state. In principle, however, the ‘copy’ can be indistinguishable from the original (that was destroyed),,,

    Atom takes a quantum leap – 2009
    Excerpt: Ytterbium ions have been ‘teleported’ over a distance of a metre.,,,
    “What you’re moving is information, not the actual atoms,” says Chris Monroe, from the Joint Quantum Institute at the University of Maryland in College Park and an author of the paper. But as two particles of the same type differ only in their quantum states, the transfer of quantum information is equivalent to moving the first particle to the location of the second.

    New Breakthrough in (Quantum) Teleportation – video

    Quote from preceding video:
    “There are 10^28 atoms in the human body.,, The amount of data contained in the whole human,, is 3.02 x 10^32 gigabytes of information. Using a high bandwidth transfer that data would take about 4.5 x 10^18 years to teleport 1 time. That is 350,000 times the age of the universe.”

    Physicists set new record for quantum teleportation with matter qubits – Apr 16, 2013
    Excerpt: “The greatest significance of our work is the dramatic increase in efficiency compared to previous realizations of matter-matter teleportation,” Nölleke said. “Besides, it is the first demonstration of matter-matter teleportation between truly independent systems and constitutes the current record in distance of 21 m. The previous record was 1 m.”

    How Teleportation Will Work –
    Excerpt: In 1993, the idea of teleportation moved out of the realm of science fiction and into the world of theoretical possibility. It was then that physicist Charles Bennett and a team of researchers at IBM confirmed that quantum teleportation was possible, but only if the original object being teleported was destroyed. — As predicted, the original photon no longer existed once the replica was made.

    Quantum Teleportation – IBM Research Page
    Excerpt: “it would destroy the original (photon) in the process,,”

    Unconditional Quantum Teleportation – abstract
    Excerpt: This is the first realization of unconditional quantum teleportation where every state entering the device is actually teleported,,

    It is also very interesting to note that the quantum state of a photon is actually defined as ‘infinite information’ in its uncollapsed quantum wave state:

    Quantum Computing – Stanford Encyclopedia
    Excerpt: Theoretically, a single qubit can store an infinite amount of information, yet when measured (and thus collapsing the Quantum Wave state) it yields only the classical result (0 or 1),,,

    Explaining Information Transfer in Quantum Teleportation: Armond Duwell †‡ University of Pittsburgh
    Excerpt: In contrast to a classical bit, the description of a (photon) qubit requires an infinite amount of information. The amount of information is infinite because two real numbers are required in the expansion of the state vector of a two state quantum system (Jozsa 1997, 1) — Concept 2. is used by Bennett, et al. Recall that they infer that since an infinite amount of information is required to specify a (photon) qubit, an infinite amount of information must be transferred to teleport.
    — per phil faculty Duwell

    As a side light to this, leading quantum physicist Anton Zeilinger has followed in John Archibald Wheeler’s footsteps (1911-2008) by insisting reality, at its most foundational level, is ‘information’.

    “It from bit symbolizes the idea that every item of the physical world has at bottom – at a very deep bottom, in most instances – an immaterial source and explanation; that which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes-no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that things physical are information-theoretic in origin.”
    John Archibald Wheeler

    Why the Quantum? It from Bit? A Participatory Universe?
    Excerpt: In conclusion, it may very well be said that information is the irreducible kernel from which everything else flows. Thence the question why nature appears quantized is simply a consequence of the fact that information itself is quantized by necessity. It might even be fair to observe that the concept that information is fundamental is very old knowledge of humanity, witness for example the beginning of gospel according to John: “In the beginning was the Word.”
    Anton Zeilinger – a leading expert in quantum teleportation:

    Verses and Music:

    John 1:1-3
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.

    Colossians 1:17
    He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

    Job 9:8
    He alone spreads out the sky and walks on the waves in the sea.

    Twila Paris – God Is All Around Us

  2. 2
    Mapou says:

    In my opinion, dark matter and dark energy are analogous to the missing Darwinian gradations between simple Precambrian shellies and complex Trilobites.

    They are there, we are told. We just have to redouble our efforts to find them. We need more money, Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer. Lots more money.

    Translation: We’re gonna take your money and feed you as much BS as you can take and there’s nothing you can do about it.

  3. 3
    Jaceli123 says:

    Mapou I agree with you. Let me summarize what the science community does in a general sense. Instead of spending billions and millions of dollars on curing diseases like cancer, they think its a better idea to send a telescope into space. Oh but thats not enough because humanity does not matter to them. They need more toys. Then they spend millions on CERN. Oh look another child died of cancer. We don’t care because we take the side of science. They lie and tell people we have it figured out that they know what happened and were we came from but if you don’t mind we found a galaxy that does not fit our theory. Can we borrow a few billions of dollars and supplies to make a new telescope and send it to space because our old one isn’t good enough. – They are our current scientific community. Everybody lets give them around of Palouse.

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