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Space & Astronomy

General relativity is proven right once again

By T.K. Randall
July 5, 2018 · Comment icon 8 comments



This triple star system is quite unusual. Image Credit: NRAO/AUI/NSF; S. Dagnello
A new study has managed to prove that Einstein's theory still holds up even under extreme conditions.
According to Einstein's general theory of relativity, two objects will always fall at the same rate, regardless of how much they weigh or what they are made of.

Scientists have been able to prove that this is the case on Earth multiple times over the years, but how does the theory hold up when we substitute small test objects for super-dense stars ?

In a recent study, an international team of astronomers used several powerful telescopes to observe PSR J0337+1715 - a triple star system located around 4,200 light years from Earth.
What makes this particular solar system so intriguing is its unique configuration of a neutron star and white dwarf star orbiting around a second white dwarf star situated slightly further away.

If Einstein's theory is correct, the incredibly dense neutron star and the inner white dwarf star should both be falling at the same rate towards the outer white dwarf star.

After extensive observations of the system, astronomers have determined that this is indeed the case.

Einstein, it turns out, was right all along.

Source: Astronomy Now | Comments (8)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by RabidMongoose 4 years ago
Well... except for gravity at the quantum and galactic scales.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Rolci 4 years ago
Those are hardly the exception as for them to be exception they would need well-defined boundaries where those scales start and end. But since it's all a spectrum the theory either applies across the spectrum with no exception or it does not apply anywhere but will be more accurate at certain scales and less accurate at others. No?
Comment icon #3 Posted by RabidMongoose 4 years ago
Maths isn't reality and doesnt accurately represent reality. The problem is its irrational numbers with there being an infinite number of them between 0 and 1 (or any other two numbers you might pick). If you take any aspect of the universe such as area and keep dividing it in two you eventually reach the point you cannot divide any further. Not being able to divide any further is at odds with irrational numbers. It means maths gives you answers that can never exist in our universe. It also means that the relationship between variables in an algebraic formula can never exist in our universe. G... [More]
Comment icon #4 Posted by bmk1245 4 years ago
Really? Please express pi in number "you cannot divide any further".
Comment icon #5 Posted by RabidMongoose 4 years ago
Precisely, as it has infinite decimal places so does the area of a circle as predicted by maths. Something which is impossible as area comes in discrete units. If you quote the area of a circle to 56 decimal places your answer is incompatible with reality.
Comment icon #6 Posted by bmk1245 4 years ago
Please elaborate "area comes in discrete units".
Comment icon #7 Posted by RabidMongoose 4 years ago
The problem with maths is it assumes the universe isn't made out of fundamental building blocks. However at the smallest scale we have such building blocks. Length, width, and depth, come in planck length units. So do mass and time. Irrational numbers are incompatible with reality and because there are an infinite number of them between any two whole numbers the relationships between variables in algebraic formulas also are incompatible with reality. The difference between what  maths predicts and what is might be small but if it aint right then it aint right. I have often said that maths base... [More]
Comment icon #8 Posted by Rolci 4 years ago
From Wiki: "The Planck length is the scale at which quantum gravitational effects are believed to begin to be apparent, where interactions require a working theory of quantum gravity to be analyzed.[5] The Planck area is the area by which the surface of a spherical black holeincreases when the black hole swallows one bit of information.[6] The Planck length is sometimes misconceived as the minimum length of spacetime, but this is not accepted by conventional physics, as this would require violation or modification of Lorentz symmetry." To believe that things like time comes in quanta would req... [More]


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