UFO Buster Radio News – 412: Observed Reality Problems, China’s Space Agency Almost Takes Out A School and Starlinks At A 100 Megabits…and c
New quantum paradox throws the foundations of observed reality into question
If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? Perhaps not, some say.
And if someone is there to hear it? If you think that means it obviously did make a sound, you might need to revise that opinion.
We have found a new paradox in quantum mechanics — one of our two most fundamental scientific theories, together with Einstein’s theory of relativity — that throws doubt on some common-sense ideas about physical reality.
Quantum mechanics vs. common sense
Take a look at these three statements:
•When someone observes an event happening, it really happened.
•It is possible to make free choices, or at least, statistically random choices.
•A choice made in one place can’t instantly affect a distant event. (Physicists call this “locality”.)
These are all intuitive ideas, and widely believed even by physicists. But our research, published in Nature Physics, shows they cannot all be true — or quantum mechanics itself must break down at some level.
Quantum mechanics works extremely well to describe the behavior of tiny objects, such as atoms or particles of light (photons). But that behavior is … very odd.
In many cases, quantum theory doesn’t give definite answers to questions such as “where is this particle right now?” Instead, it only provides probabilities for where the particle might be found when it is observed.
For Niels Bohr, one of the founders of the theory a century ago, that’s not because we lack information, but because physical properties like “position” don’t actually exist until they are measured.
And what’s more, because some properties of a particle can’t be perfectly observed simultaneously — such as position and velocity — they can’t be real simultaneously.
Observer – In 1961, the Hungarian-American theoretical physicist Eugene Wigner devised a thought experiment to show what’s so tricky about the idea of measurement.
He considered a situation in which his friend goes into a tightly sealed lab and performs a measurement on a quantum particle — its position, say.
However, Wigner noticed that if he applied the equations of quantum mechanics to describe this situation from the outside, the result was quite different. Instead of the friend’s measurement making the particle’s position real, from Wigner’s perspective the friend becomes entangled with the particle and infected with the uncertainty that surrounds it.
Chinese rocket booster appears to crash near school during Gaofen 11 satellite launch
A Chinese Long March 4B rocket successfully launched a new Earth-watching satellite Monday (Sep. 7) but the booster’s spent first stage narrowly missed a school when it fell back to Earth, witness videos show.
The Long March 4B rocket lifted off from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China, at 1:57 p.m. local time (1:57 a.m. EDT, 0557 GMT). It carried the powerful Gaofen 11 (02) Earth observation satellite, an optical observation satellite capable of returning high resolution images, showing features as smaller than 3 feet (1 meter) across.
Amateur footage posted on Chinese social media site Weibo following the launch apparently shows the first stage of the Long March 4B falling to Earth and exploding into a cloud of orange smoke. The footage was captured near the Lilong village, Gaoyao Town in the Luonan county of Shaanxi province, according to its author.
One piece of footage appears to be taken from a school yard with children’s voices audible and a plume of smoke visible in the distance.
The Long March 4B first stage uses a mix of toxic hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide for propellant. Contact with either could bring serious effects on health.
China’s main state-owned space contractor said in January it would aim for around 40 launches in 2020, with commercial launch service providers additionally carrying out their own missions.
SpaceX says its Starlink satellite internet can download 100 megabits per second, and ‘space lasers’ transfer data between satellites
In private beta testing of its Starlink internet satellites, SpaceX says it has found low latency and high download speeds of 100 megabits per second.
“Space lasers” also transferred hundreds of gigabytes of data between two Starlink satellites during a test, the company said.
Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
SpaceX says early tests of its rapidly growing fleet of internet-providing satellites are yielding promising results.
Internal tests of a beta version of internet service from the company’s Starlink project show “super low latency and download speeds greater than 100 [megabits] per second,” Kate Tice, a SpaceX senior certification engineer, said during a live broadcast of a Starlink launch on Thursday.
“That means our latency is low enough to play the fastest online video games, and our download speeds are fast enough to stream multiple HD movies at once and still have bandwidth to spare,” Tice added.
The Starlink initiative eventually aims to send tens of thousands of broadband satellites into orbit, blanketing Earth in affordable, high-speed internet. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said that he hopes Starlink will get rural and remote regions online. Already, the company has launched more than 700 satellites.
Tice also announced that SpaceX recently completed a test of two orbiting satellites that are equipped with inter-satellite links — informally known as “space lasers.” This technology enables Starlink satellites to transfer data directly to each other in orbit, instead of beaming it to the ground and back.
“With these space lasers, these Starlink satellites were able to transfer hundreds of gigabytes of data. Once these space lasers are fully deployed, Starlink will be one of the fastest options available to transfer data around the world,” she said.
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