Professor Einstein, you can relax. E still equals mc2. Probably …

Saturday, September 24, 2011 - 17:30 in Physics & Chemistry

Renowned physicist Frank Close urges caution before we abandon the theory of relativity and prepare for time travelThe barman said: "Sorry, we don't serve neutrinos." A neutrino enters a bar.This is but one of many tweets inspired by the news that neutrinos – ghostly subatomic particles – may travel faster than light. If so, science fiction could become science fact, with wonderful paradoxes such as effects preceding their causes. One example would be the punchline preceding the story (in case, like me, it took a while for you to decode the joke).As a scientist I have grown up to believe this law of nature: the only thing that travels faster than light is a rumour. The story that scientists at Cern, Europe's giant particle physics laboratory near Geneva, had apparently created neutrinos that travelled faster than light, hit the news on Friday morning while I was half asleep and seemed...

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