Thursday, June 6, 2019

The Positive Energy Theorem

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Recorded: 12/9/2017 Released: 6/6/2019

Randy introduces a theory that purports to allow negative mass to Jim. It has been thought for quite a long time that negative mass was incompatible with general relativity, because it is possible to show that negative mass solutions are impossible. However Paranjape and his students noticed the proofs of this all relied on a flat background (zero cosmological constant). When trying to extend the theorems to a space with a negative cosmological constant, they found instead that negative mass is not prohibited.
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Additional related paper for the positive energy theorem.:
3. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:



4. Details about just how well general relativity works can be found in Wills' Theory and Experiment in Gravitational Physics, whose work we reference in the podcast.

5. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Friday, May 3, 2019

Entropic Gravity

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Recorded: 4/4/2019 Released: 5/3/2019

Randy and Jim discuss Eric Verlinde's theory of emergent gravity that relies on statistical methods to produce both gravitational attraction and inertial effects.
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Additional related paper I half-read and we discussed:
3. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:



4. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Sunday, February 24, 2019

The Chameleon Field

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Recorded: 11/3/2019 Released: 2/24/2019

Randy and Jim discuss the chameleon field - scalar field that mimics the effects of dark energy.
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:
  • Coming Soon



3. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Octonions

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Recorded: 10/20/2018 Released: 12/23/2018

Randy tells Jim about the octonions, a cousin to the complex numbers in eight dimensions that Cohl Furey has made some headlines with by categorizing elementary particles with them. By looking at, basically, stable sets in the octonions, she has found representations that act like the elementary particles, and found ways to characterize some of their parameters, e.g., the charge, with them.
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Related Papers:

3. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:



4. Books mentioned in this podcast:

5. John Baez' webpage for all things octonion.

6. Cohl Furey's video series on the octonions and the standard model.

6. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Sunday, December 9, 2018

Negative Effective Mass

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Recorded: 9/29/2018 Released: 12/9/2018

Randy introduces Jim to gravitational effects on quasiparticles in materials. The inertial quality of the mass of a quasiparticle gets modified by the lattice, giving rise to an effective mass in the material. But how does the effective mass behave when confronted with a gravitational field?
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Related Papers:

2. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:

We referenced a lot of old episodes in this one:

Don't bother looking for our discussion of Manu Paranjape's essays on the "possibility of generating an negative effective mass in space-time" in the episode entitled "The Positive Energy Theorem." We're working on getting those up, but there's a content issue that we may not be able to resolve.

3. Books mentioned in this podcast:
  • I mentioned that some of this is textbook stuff, when Jim Napolitano finished J.J. Sakurai's Modern Quantum Mechanics, he included he discusses Colletta, Overhauser and Werner's gravity induced phase changes that can be measured through interferometry. Somewhere Napolitano writes that he includes these interesting tidbits because he is an experimentalist and thinks it's helpful for understanding. I just know they're fun. Be advised that, although it's not as heavy going as Cohen-Tannoudji (which, thanks only to the trauma induced by graduate school, I somehow spelled right), is a graduate level quantum mechanics textbook. Just a very well written one.

4. You can watch Martin Tejmar's talk at the 2016 breakthrough propulsion workshop put on by the Space Studies Institute

5. Martin Tejmar's group at TU-Dresden, and his publications page.

6. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Sunday, November 25, 2018

The Dimensionality of Space Time

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Recorded: 9/8/2018 Released: 11/25/2018

Jim and Randy discuss why space-time is four dimensional. Much of what they discuss is anthropic in nature: what sort of universe can we exist in? But they also discuss the stability of orbits, the predictability of nature, and so on, all of which constrain the universe to have three (3) macroscopic dimensions of space and one of time (or one of space and three of time, but that's not us).
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. Other papers mentioned in this program:

3. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:

4. Books mentioned in the podcast:
  • Tegmark talked about results discussed in Gravitation by Misner, Thorne and Wheeler. This is a standard text in the field, which I'm sad to say I never picked up. Although I did order a copy last week, and its on its way to my office right now.
  • After recording the podcast, I decided I needed to look a little deeper at partial differential equations. I failed because I started reading Partial Differential Equations for Scientists and Engineers by Farlow. The presentation is very practical, not theoretical, so it doesn't address the problems in this podcast directly. However, the methods used in the text seem to directly contradict the general discussion in Tegmark (since every problem is both an initial value problem and a boundary value problem, simultaneously). I haven't worked my way through it, so maybe I'll change my mind, but not at present. I have fallen in love with the presentation. I think that if you'd like to learn to solve PDEs and have a sufficient background, this is the book for you (because this book makes me feel smart).

5. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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Monday, October 29, 2018

The Einstein-Cartan Torsion Field Theory

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Recorded: 6/10/2018 Released: 10/29/2018

Randy explains some recent developments in the Einstein-Cartan torsion field to Jim. This theory introduces at least one tensor field representing the intrinsic angular momentum at a space-time point, and was originally intended to remove singularities from general relativity.
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Notes:

1. The papers we read for this program:

2. My review of Will's book. This paper serves as something of an update of it. A true update is scheduled to come in December 2018.

3. Related Episodes of Physics Frontiers:

4. Contact Randy at randy@physicsfm.com to take him up on his offer. Actually, I don't know if those e-mail redirects really work. I set them up some time ago, but I've never seen anything come in from them.

5. Please visit and comment on our subreddit, and if you can help us keep this going by contributing to our Patreon, we'd be grateful.

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