Physicists looking for a way to test their theory about strings might make more progress if they tangle them up.
String theory — equations that aspire to explain all of nature’s particles and forces — has extended its reach to the strange quantum behavior known as entanglement, physicists report September 2 in Physical Review Letters. Repurposing string theory mathematics allowed physicists to solve a hard problem involving entanglement, a strange feature at the heart of quantum mechanics. In doing so, the new study also points out a way to test whether the co-opted string theory equations are actually correct.
“String theory has not had a lot of success in making falsifiable predictions,” says study coauthor Michael Duff of Imperial College London. “But in the field of quantum information theory, it can.”
Note: To comment, Science News subscribing members must now establish a separate login relationship with Disqus. Click the Disqus icon below, enter your e-mail and click “forgot password” to reset your password. You may also log into Disqus using Facebook, Twitter or Google.