Lancaster Ultra-Low Temperature Group in Nature Physics
Story supplied by LU Press Office
Low-temperature physicists at Lancaster University may have found a laboratory test of the 'untestable' string theory.
The test - which uses two distinct phases of liquid helium - is reported online this week in Nature Physics (published 23 December). Their paper will also be published as the cover article in the paper edition of Nature Physics in January.
String theory is a multidimensional theory based on vibrating strings, as opposed to the point particles described in the Standard Model.
Within string theory, a brane is a large surface embedded in higher dimensional space - our Universe could occupy such a brane.
A collision between a brane and an antibrane can leave behind topological defects, including perhaps the Big Bang itself. But however elegant this theory, it makes no falsifiable predictions, or at least none using current technology.
Richard Haley and the ULT Group have taken a lateral step to address this barrier. They cool the helium-3 isotope to a superfluid state - that is, a quantum fluid with non-classical properties such as completely frictionless flow. Adding a magnetic field creates a second superfluid phase, and the interface between these two phases behaves like a two-dimensional brane.
Fri 21 December 2007
A Faculty team representing science, technology, engineering and maths took part in EDF Energy's 'Science Day' on Saturday 21st March at Heysham Power Station.
Wed 25 March 2015
Professor Roger Jones has replaced Professor Peter Ratoff as Head of the Physics Department. Roger gained a PhD studying neutrino interactions at CERN and Fermilab before starting his career at CERN working at the Large Electron-Positron (LEP) Collider.
Tue 24 March 2015
As part of British Science week, 170 students from 14 schools across the region came to Lancaster University on Wednesday 18th March to compete in science, technology, engineering and mathematics challenges.
Mon 23 March 2015
Lancaster University’s new flagship Engineering Building will provide a beacon of excellence for research and recruitment for the UK’s buoyant and significant engineering industry.
Mon 23 March 2015