Dec 24, 2014

If c-global can save the World: Why is it being shunned? An Xmas Carol

Posted by in categories: existential risks, particle physics

Imagine there existed a proof that the most reluctantly accepted feature of Einstein’s gravitation theory – that c is no longer a global but only a local constant – was unnecessary: Would that not be wonderful?

The proof was greeted with planet-wide neglect: c-global exists in the Schwarzschild metric of general relativity since 2008 and so in the more fundamental equivalence principle since 2012. It hence also holds true for the full Einstein equation – only the pertinent transform has yet be written down to enable direct unification with quantum mechanics: a holy grail.

Hence most everyone is bound to be working on this in physics? The answer is no given the embarrassment of riches that is implicit. This professional modesty is a sympathetic human trait when you look at it in a detached mood. However, the result in question has also an applied side to it. In light of the latter, a prestigious collective activity has ceased to be safe.

Such collisions of interest do usually sort themselves out spontaneously with time. Here, bad luck for once wills that the unsafe collective activity – the re-ignition of a Nobel-decorated experiment at twice its former world-record energy – has been scheduled to start in only ten weeks’ time.

Since many thousand scientists are involved, it is difficult to launch the requisite public debate within the few weeks that are left: This is an ocean-liner, not a boat. And: should the public be involved in the learned discussion about the difference between a globally constant speed of light c and a merely everywhere locally constant speed c ? I must be kidding!

But there is one point every child can ask and understand: “Does there exist a public Safety Report for the experiment in question (the “LHC” experiment at CERN)?” The answer is: “yes but”: Such an official report exists (LSAG) but it stems from early 2008 – before the safety-relevant new result was published.

This fact is known to the scientific community and to the media, but is being treated as a taboo topic. Europe – with Germany in the leading role payment-wise – thrives on the world-wide public credit granted: “They would not go ahead if they were not convinced it is safe.”

In the case of the Eniwetak catastrophe, a timely Safety Report would have been the rescue. This time around, the risk is infinitely higher due to the black-hole danger implicit in c-global.

We obviously need a public arbitration process in order to save time. There is one world-renowned public hero who has a vested interest in the LHC experiment getting started at twice world-record energy on schedule: Stephen Hawking.

I offer the world a public debate with my famous younger colleague as a substitute for the lacking safety report – to enable the experiment to proceed on time if he wins the debate.

I predict that Stephen Hawking will accept the offer as a bet because he is a sportsman. And because his courage spares CERN the trouble of having to renew its safety report in the short time span left before the scheduled start. A positive response will be a Christmas present to all.


Comments — comments are now closed.

  1. Tom Kerwick says:

    Here we go again. This refers back to your opinion that Einstein’s relativity needs to be ‘re-scaled properly’ in relation to the outside observer perspective of speed of light in a gravitational field. Leading into a curious argument on Hawking Radiation. The CERN safety report however looks at not just Hawking Radiation but other factors such as astronomical observation — which I have debated at length both here and with the LSAG — and accretion estimates of hypothetical stable micro black holes. Perhaps the more pertinent question is whether the safety report is solid enough given that Hawking Radiation as a theory has yet to be experimentally verified, regardless of any postulated disproof (I would suggest it is), and whether this undermines the safety report sufficiently to be of any concern. Happy Christmas, Otto. ;-) Keep your feet on the ground. –Tom.

  2. I mentioned already that all planetary media are of the “opinion” that 7 years of new research cannot possibly have changed the safety equation of the “Big-Bang experiment.“
    You make it harder for the Lucasian professor if you tell him that this is the point he has to defend. Merry days to all readers!