Sunday, January 21, 2018

Weyl and Quasiparticles



Jim and Randy discuss quasiparticles recently found in condensed matter systems that mirror particles theorized nearly a hundred years ago, but never found in the vacuum. Weyl particles are massless fermions, and once it was hoped that neutrinos would turn out to be this kind of particle, and Majorana fermions have real-valued wave functions and therefore many strange and possibly useful properties.

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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:
2.  Popular papers we may have read:
3. Original Papers:
4. I was wrong.  "Weyl" rhymes with "pile," not with "pail."

5. Our subreddit.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Origin of Inertia



Randy tells Jim about a scheme that uses Mach's Principle - the idea that there is a preferred background frame with respect to the fixed stars - to explain the origin of inertia. Why exactly does an object in motion stay in motion?

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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. In addition, Randy sent me a lot of blog and other forum posts for background:


3. Our discussion on Gravitoelectromagnetism..

4. Our discussion of Aharonov and Rohrlich's Quantum Paradoxes, nine of the ten recorded episodes. I don't think we get into the retrocausal part of it.

5. Our subreddit.