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Monday, August 30, 2010

Virtual Particles

The curious concept of particle physics and quantum field theory, virtual entities, are the briefest temporal existences in the cosmos. Other aspects of existence trump them in being briefer but alas are not separate existences in themselves. The frequency of a virtual photon is of necessity such as to provide a period inferior to that of the photon itself but is only an aspect of that virtual photon.

This raises the concept of a negative infinity or the idea of an absolute zero. Heisenberg rules out such absolutes in terms of the Uncertainty Principle. The absolute vacuum of quantum theory far from being empty is awash with virtual entities with vanishingly small temporal existences. The negative infinity reveals an infinite world of the infinitesimal.

What does this new world view portend for the philosophical outlook of humanity. Should our innate fear of nothingness be replaced by the warmth of the never ending virtual sea of the vacuum?

These virtual worlds are realms only recently revealed to us via the great scientific endeavours culminating in the current Large Hadron Collider project at CERN. Philosophy has new doors being opened for it by science. Only a few intrepid explorers have ventured to enter this brave new world.

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