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False Vacuum

  1. May 9, 2003 #1
    I have heard of the expression False Vacuum, but don't understand what it is. Could anyone explain it for me? Also, is it true that if enough energy was produced (ie. in an accelerater or solar radiation hitting the atmosphere) that it could be colapsed. Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 9, 2003 #2


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    False vacuum and true vacuum form a metastable system. True vacuum is the name applied to a condition of the true lowest energy state of the vacuum. False vacuum, on the other hand, refers to a condition with an elevated vacuum energy density. The two conditions are separated, of course, by some energy barrier -- which is why they form a metastable system.

    If the current universe is in a state of false vacuum, it is conceivable that some experiment would concentrate enough energy into a small enough place to coax the vacuum over the energy barrier and into the true vacuum state. This could perhaps be catastrophic!

    The idea hinges on two assumptions: first, that false vacuum really exists. It is supposed by theory, but that doesn't mean it really exists. Second, we assume that our experiments are significant. In reality, astronomical events like black hole mergers and so on occur that make our little particle physics experiments look like a kid's sparkler. There's really no worry.

    - Warren
  4. May 9, 2003 #3
    i just wanted to add something

    In a vacuum there's something called absolute Zero in which there's no heat or air and that's supposed to be -150.14 degrees C. I kinda forgot the decimals, but that's all i know so i can't say anything else. haha
  5. May 9, 2003 #4


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  6. May 10, 2003 #5


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    .3, if I remember correctly
  7. May 10, 2003 #6
    haha! i found my notebook! Absolute Zero is -273.15 degrees C. haha, at least i was around .15.
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