[meteorite-list] Gravitational Waves or Just Space Dust?

From: Joshua Tree Earth & Space Museum <dorifry_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Fri, 6 Jun 2014 12:10:22 -0400
Message-ID: <6CE804D42CD04B189E95C25B560CD5A0_at_terryPC>

Yet another rush for publicity before you get debunked:


Gravitational waves turn to dust after claims of flawed analysis
Astronomers who thought they had detected echoes of the big bang may have
only seen the effects of space dust
It was hailed as one of the most important scientific discoveries of the
century, the birth of a new era in physics and a shoo-in for a Nobel prize.

The claim from Harvard University that it had discovered gravitational
waves - and thereby evidence for the theory of cosmic inflation and the
existence of a multiverse - caused a worldwide sensation in March. But the
celebrations are now looking decidedly premature.

Rather than securing a trip to Stockholm to receive a Nobel medal, the
Harvard team may have detected nothing more than space dust.

Writing in the journal Nature on Wednesday, Paul Steinhardt, director of the
Centre for Theoretical Physics at Princeton University, argues that the
Harvard team made an unfortunate blunder in its calculations. "Serious flaws
in the analysis have been revealed that transform the sure detection into no
detection," he writes.

Cosmologists working on Harvard's Bicep2 (Background Imaging of Cosmic
Extragalactic Polarization) telescope at the south pole unveiled their
surprise discovery at a press conference at Harvard, before they had
published their results in a peer-reviewed journal. The purpose of
independent vetting by peer reviewers is to catch flawed studies before they
become part of the scientific literature.

Phil Whitmer

Joshua Tree Earth & Space Museum
Received on Fri 06 Jun 2014 12:10:22 PM PDT

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