Einstein Wrong? Maybe Just Faulty Wiring

A simple loose cord may explain last year's controversy
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Feb 23, 2012 6:00 AM CST
This undated file photo shows famed physicist Albert Einstein.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – More evidence that last year's furor over the accuracy of Albert Einstein's work got blown way out of proportion: Physicists believed they'd seen particles traveling faster than light, a phenomenon that would disprove the theory of relativity. But the controversial observations may have been the result of nothing more than a loose wire, experts say. A GPS error may have caused the mistake, says a scientist at CERN, where the initial results were reported.

"A possible explanation has been found. But we won't know until we have tested it out with a new beam" sending neutrinos to the Gran Sassa underground lab, the CERN rep tells Reuters. While the initial observations caused an uproar, most scientists probably don't believe they're accurate, says a physics professor. "I don't think I met anyone who said I bet it's going to be true. I think the people on the experiment worked as carefully as they could and I think they ran out of ideas of what could be wrong and they decided to present it." (Read more Albert Einstein stories.)

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