I enjoy stories like this one about experiments on Einstein’s theories. Gravity Probe- B, launched into space in 2004? You don’t remember that either?
Faith and reason are compatible, see. Thankfully there are rocket-scientists that get the funding to study warping of space and time. Neat! Especially when you consider that the idea to do these types of experiments came about 40 years ago, you know, when computers were still the size of large rooms.
The satellite’s observations show the massive body of the Earth is very subtly warping space and time, and even pulling them around with it. Scientists were able to see these effects by studying the behaviour of four perfectly engineered spinning balls carried inside the probe.
The results will be published online in the journal Physical Review Letters.
They are significant because they underline once again the genius of the great German-born scientist, but also because they provide more refined tools to understand the physics that drives the cosmos.
On a more human level, the findings represent the culmination of an extraordinary odyssey for the leading lights of the mission, some of whom have dedicated more than five decades to the quest.
These include Francis Everitt, the mission’s principal investigator at Stanford University – a researcher who was there at the inception of the Gravity Probe B (GP-B) idea in the late 1950s.
Like I said earlier. Neat! Read the rest here.