Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Following Up: Muon Propagation Restraints

So, and ahead of schedule, I've read the two papers I talked about in the previous post.

The second paper I liked, Cohen and Glashow's New Constraints on Neutrino Velocities, was chiefly concerned with a value δ, which was (through a series of convoluted mathematical proofs) intrinsically linked to the amount of energy that would be lost by a muon neutrino travelling faster than the speed of light, even in vacuum. They demonstrated the value of δ based on previous experimentation, including measurements from the Super-Kamiokande and Ice Cube experiments, as well as measurements from a supernova, SN1987a, with relevant energy levels to the neutrinos used in the ICARUS experiment by OPERA.

The newer paper, which specifically refutes the superluminal designation described by OPERA, is based on the smaller of the two ICARUS data sets, which was performed in 2010. The 2011 data set has not been fully analysed.

What this all washes out to is that the papers are rigorous, but they are simply non-reviewed papers refuting other non-reviewed papers. Time will tell what appears in the pages of Nature or other peer-reviewed scientific literature.

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