Neutrinos seemingly aren’t slowed by ‘spacetime foam’ | Science News

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One particle’s trek suggests that ‘spacetime foam’ doesn’t slow neutrinos

The nearly massless particles appear to travel at virtually the speed of light

By
7:00am, July 19, 2018
an illustration of a neutron being blasted from a blazar

SPEED TEST  A neutrino blasted from a bright galaxy known as a blazar (illustrated) along with a flare of light reveals that neutrinos travel at roughly the speed of light.  

An intergalactic race between light and a bizarre subatomic particle called a neutrino has ended in a draw.

The tie suggests that high-energy neutrinos, which are so lightweight they behave as if they’re massless, adhere to a basic rule of physics: Massless particles travel at the speed of light.

Comparing the arrival times of a neutrino and an associated blaze of high-energy light emitted from a bright, flaring galaxy (SN Online: 7/12/18) showed that the neutrino and light differed in speed by less than a billionth of a percent, physicists report in a paper posted July 13 at arXiv.org.

Massless particles — including the particles of light known as photons — consistently move about 300,000 kilometers per second, while massive particles move more slowly. Although neutrinos have mass, their heft is so

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