Does STR need modifying?

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wolram
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http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0508294

Authors: Theodore G. Pavlopoulos
Comments: 9 pages, no figures

From recent observations of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), it appears that spectral time lags between higher-energy gamma rays photons and lower-energy photons vary with energy difference and time (distance) traveled. These lags appear to be smaller for the most luminous (close) bursts but larger for the fainter (farther away) bursts. From this observation, it has been suggested that it might be possible to determine the distance (L) these bursts have traveled from these time lags alone, without performing any red-shift measurements. These observed spreads (dispersion) of high-energy electromagnetic pulses of different energies with time contradict the special theory of relativity (STR). However, extended theories (ET) of the STR have been developed that contain a dispersive term, predicting the above observations. An example of such an ET is presented, allowing us to derive a relationship between time lags of gamma rays of different energies and distance L traveled from their origin. In addition, this theory predicts the origin of X-ray flashes
 

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HallsofIvy
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Of course it does! Every physical theory can be improved because we can never know everything! Relativity, like any theory, can always be improved.
 
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wolram
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HallsofIvy said:
Of course it does! Every physical theory can be improved because we can never know everything! Relativity, like any theory, can always be improved.

May be i should ask, are these observations reason enough ? and if they can be
falsified ?
 
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EnumaElish
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If they violate STR, then do they necesarily violate GTR? Or is it more along the lines of, "we had to simplify the model, so we assumed STR is a valid description of the universe"? (Perhaps locally?)
 
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wolram
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If the findings reported are correct, then some thing else must be wrong.
 
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gurkhawarhorse
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how about joao's faster than light speculation?
gurkha
 
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pervect
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wolram said:
May be i should ask, are these observations reason enough ? and if they can be
falsified ?

I'd need a couple more things to happen before I could believe in the new theory.

1) The data that produced it would have to be replicated by another experimenter.

2) Other explanations (properties of the interstellar media, for instance) would have to be ruled out. If the new theory could make some other predictions that that could be experimentally confirmed, that would be fairly convincing.
 

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