Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

How to unbalance Nothingness

28.10.2011
Physicists of the Universities Jena and Graz Calculate the Time Development of the Vacuum Decay

Nothingness – this is the research subject-matter of a team of theoretical physicists from the Universities Jena (Germany) and Graz (Austria). “The ground state of our world can’t be described by the absence of all matter,” Professor Dr. Holger Gies from the Institute of Theoretical Physics of the Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena and the Helmholtz-Institute Jena explains. ”This so-called quantum vacuum rather turns out to be a complex state of constantly fluctuating quantum fields with physical properties.”

The world-wide community of physicists is hoping to be able to witness a particularly spectacular characteristic in a few years’ time: the spontaneous decay of the vacuum into pairs of particles of matter and antimatter in super strong electric fields. Due to the new research results of the Austro-German team of physicists, this goal came a few steps closer.

Although first theoretical consideration concerning the spontaneous decay of the vacuum dates back to the year 1931, its comprehensive understanding is still in its infancy. „A great challenge in modern theoretical physics is the description of quantum fields out of equilibrium,” Professor Gies explains. “We are facing this problem in phase transitions in the early Universe as well as in many experiments in solid state physics." Therefore experimental proof of the vacuum decay – as it might be delivered by high intensity lasers in the near future – will provide knowledge exceeding this particular field.

The scientists from Graz and Jena now succeeded calculating the time evolution of the vacuum decay in detail. ”Even we were surprised by the results," Professor Gies confesses. According to the results particles of matter and antimatter behave in a novel self-focusing way and therefore the possibility of discovering them is higher than expected. "The quantum vacuum has already had some surprises in store,” says the Heisenberg-Professor for Theoretical Physics. “To unbalance this nothingness could develop into a new prolific field of research."

The results of this co-operation have just been published in the renowned scientific journal ‘Physical Review Letters’: http://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.180403.

Original-Publication:
F. Hebenstreit, R. Alkofer, H. Gies: Particle Self-Bunching in the Schwinger Effect in Spacetime-Dependent Electric Fields, Phys. Rev. Lett. 107, 180403 (2011), DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.180403
Contact Details:
Prof. Dr. Holger Gies
Institute of Theoretical Physics of Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena
& Helmholtz-Institute Jena
Max-Wien-Platz 1
D-07743 Jena
Tel.: 0049 (0)3641 / 947190
Email: Holger.Gies[at]uni-jena.de

Axel Burchardt | idw
Further information:
http://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.180403
http://www.tpi.uni-jena.de/~gies/welcome.html

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form
18.08.2017 | Cornell University

nachricht Astrophysicists explain the mysterious behavior of cosmic rays
18.08.2017 | Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>