Strangely overstated (updated)

Whoa, the University of Adelaide’s PR machine is apparently in overdrive!

What the HAPPEX experiment has done — and our letter announcing our final results has just been submitted for publication — is to measure, or rather to set precise limits on, the strange quark contributions to the charge radius and magnetic moment of the proton. (Both are consistent with zero.) And what Leinweber et al. have published is a theoretical calculation of the charge radius contribution — one of many such calculations. This one apparently has smaller uncertainties than previous calculations, though.

I don’t pretend to understand the theory, but this looks like a nice, significant step forward in our little corner of the particle physics field. To read the press release, though, you’d think they’d set the entire world of particle physics on its ear with an earth-shattering result. Can you say “hype”?

“Billions of dollars are going to be spent, based on this result.” Really? No one’s giving HAPPEX any billions of dollars, I know that.

Update: I didn’t even look at the comments on the physorg site before posting the above; normally they aren’t as enlightening as this. As jwgh points out, it only took five comments before someone brought up the Nazis.

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3 thoughts on “Strangely overstated (updated)

  1. * In 2076, proton maglev suspensions will be required on all personal hoverways sold in the US. The cost will run into the billions. * “Unless you’ve studied mathematics for years, you should shut up and nod….” I think I’ll have that made into a needlepoint for my office wall. * You’re looking for the Holy Grail, too? So am I!

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