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News: An ECHO of Black Holes

  1. Dec 13, 2005 #1
    An ECHO of Black Holes
    Sound waves in a fluid behave uncannily like light waves in space. Black holes even have acoustic counterparts. Could spacetime literally be a kind of fluid, like the ether of pre-Einsteinian physics?
    By Theodore A. Jacobson and Renaud Parentani
    When Albert Einstein proposed his special theory of relativity in 1905, he rejected the 19th-century idea that light arises from vibrations of a hypothetical medium, the "ether." Instead, he argued, light waves can travel in vacuo without being supported by any material--;unlike sound waves, which are vibrations of the medium in which they propagate. This feature of special relativity is untouched in the two other pillars of modern physics, general relativity and quantum mechanics. Right up to the present day, all experimental data, on scales ranging from subnuclear to galactic, are successfully explained by these three theories.

    Nevertheless, physicists face a deep conceptual problem. As currently understood, general relativity and quantum mechanics are incompatible. Gravity, which general relativity attributes to the curvature of the spacetime continuum, stubbornly resists being incorporated into a quantum framework. Theorists have made only incremental progress toward understanding the highly curved structure of spacetime that quantum mechanics leads them to expect at extremely short distances. Frustrated, some have turned to an unexpected source for guidance: condensed-matter physics, the study of common substances such as crystals and fluids...

    What do you think about it?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 13, 2005 #2

    ZapperZ

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    1. Please pay attention to the different forums we have in PF. This topic belongs either in SR/GR or General Astronomy.

    2. When you are copying stuff off some sources, please CITE THE SOURCE clearly. If not, you are plagarizing, or worse still, violating copyrighted material, such as the one from this site:

    http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?articleID=000ADA62-D854-137C-962A83414B7F0000

    Zz.
     
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