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How Hot Is Hot? – Energy, High Energy Physics and Cosmology

July 24, 2010

On a hot summer day, one wonders when will it  break and finally cool off. On the other hand, it may be fitting an proper to ask, “How hot can it get.” It seems this question is not so silly after all. Though I agree those ground in reality and everyday life may find this question more prone to those are “theoretically impaired” and should immediately seek proper mental care.

Nevertheless, a Google search on this questions, resulted in finding a PBS, NOVA program titled “Absolute Hot” by Peter Tyson. According to Peter:

“The highest-temperature question gets to the heart of current inquiries and proposed theories in cosmology and theoretical physics. Indeed, scientists who work in these fields are zealously trying to answer that question. Why? Because, in some sense, nothing less than the future course of physics rests on the answer.”

Peter continues by pointing out that: “Well, the answer, depending on which theoretical physicist you ask, is yes, no, or maybe. Huh? you ask. Yeah, that’s how I felt. And the question doesn’t just mess with the minds of physics dummies like me. Several physicists begged off of trying to answer it, referring me to colleagues. Even ones who did talk about it said things like “It’s a little bit out of my comfort zone” and “I think I’d like to ruminate over it.” After I posed it to one cosmologist, there was dead silence on the other end of the line for long enough that I wondered if we had a dropped call.”

To read the entire incomprehensible article go to:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/zero/hot.html

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