America About To Experience a Civil Disobedience Moment

by Tommy on 10/12/2016

You’ll just have to trust me on this one too. Washington DC.

December 19, 2016. January 20th, 2017.

Be There. Or Be Square.

Washington DC Trump Russia Protest

Washington DC Trump Russia Protest

America Going South Korea On Donald Trump

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Steven Seagal Vladimir Putin – America’s Favorite Commies

by Tommy on 10/12/2016

Americans just love ‘commies’. They’re so … patriotic.

Steven Seagal - Vladimir Putin - America's Favorite Commies

Steven Seagal – Vladimir Putin – America’s Favorite Commies

Representative Sean Duffy of Wausau, Wisconsin especially loves his commie patriots.

Secret CIA assessment says Russia was trying to help Trump win White House.

I will tell you this, Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. Let’s see if that happens.

Donald Trump Speaking on July 27, 2016

Comrade Donald Trump – Deep Cover Commie.

Comrade Sean Duffy – Out of the Closet Commie.

Update: There were over 10,000 comments in an hour on the Washington Post article.

The funniest one I saw fly by was ‘Donald Trumpovich’.

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The Insane Christian Nutjob Cathy McMorris Rodgers

by Tommy on 10/12/2016

The insane Christian Nutjob Cathy McMorris Rodgers has been nominated by Donald Trump for Interior Secretary of the United States of America. Now you know you be fucked. Totally fucked.

Insane Christian Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Insane Christian Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Let’s see …

Science Denier. Check

Evolution Denier. Check.

Global Warming Denier. Check.

Insane Christian Nutjob. Check.

Literal Bible Believer. Check.

Insane in the brain. Check.

US Interior Secretary. Check.

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Michael Griffin To Bring Back Ares 2 With The AJ-260-2

by Tommy on 9/12/2016
Ares 2 AJ-260 SRB

Ares 2 AJ-260 SRB

Upside down and straight into the ground.

And Steve Cook is gonna git er done.

That will get US to the ISS.

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NORDITA Stockholm University Dark Matter Axion Conference

by Tommy on 9/12/2016

Frank Wilczek hosts first workshop on axions as professor at Stockholm University

Axion Dark Matter Workshop Conference – NORDITA – Stockholm University

Axion Dark Matter Workshop Conference Timetable

Today is the discussion day.

It should be over now.

All hail the probe.

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Mechanical Diamond Model of Topological Physics

by Tommy on 9/12/2016

Here is a very cool idea.

Edge states of mechanical diamond and its topological origin, Yuta Takahashi, Toshikaze Kariyado and Yasuhiro Hatsugai (8 December 2016)

A mechanical diamond, a classical mechanics of a spring-mass model arrayed on a diamond lattice, is discussed topologically. Its frequency dispersion possesses an intrinsic nodal structure in the three-dimensional Brillouin zone (BZ) protected by the chiral symmetry. Topological changes of the line nodes are demonstrated associated with modification of the tension. The line nodes projected into two-dimensional BZ form loops which are characterized by the quantized Zak phases by 0 and π. With boundaries, edge states are discussed in relation to the Zak phases and winding numbers. It establishes a bulk-edge correspondence of the mechanical diamond.

And what a wonderful exposition of their results.

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Climate Dissenter is Politically Correct for Insane Nutjob

by Tommy on 7/12/2016

AKA – Scott Priutt – Science Denier – Corporate Whore – American Fascist.

The Next United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator.

Welcome to the next four years of far worse than George W. Bush’s Amurka.

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Interstitial Inter Galactic Dark Matter is Somewhat Smooth

by Tommy on 7/12/2016
Galactic Dark Matter Interstitial Voids

Galactic Dark Matter Interstitial Voids

This is getting a lot of press, mostly misinterpretive.

KiDS-450: Cosmological parameter constraints from tomographic weak gravitational lensing, H. Hildebrandt, et al., and the KiDS Collarboration, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, MNRAS, 465, 2, 1454-1498 (21 February 2017), doi:10.1093/mnras/stw2805

We present cosmological parameter constraints from a tomographic weak gravitational lensing analysis of ∼450 deg2 of imaging data from the Kilo Degree Survey (KiDS). For a flat Λ cold dark matter (ΛCDM) cosmology with a prior on H0 that encompasses the most recent direct measurements, we find S8 ≡ σ8 √Ωm/0.3 = 0.745 ± 0.039. This result is in good agreement with other low-redshift probes of large-scale structure, including recent cosmic shear results, along with pre-Planck cosmic microwave background constraints. A 2.3σ tension in S8 and ‘substantial discordance’ in the full parameter space is found with respect to the Planck 2015 results. We use shear measurements for nearly 15 million galaxies, determined with a new improved ‘self-calibrating’ version of lensfit validated using an extensive suite of image simulations. Four-band ugri photometric redshifts are calibrated directly with deep spectroscopic surveys. The redshift calibration is confirmed using two independent techniques based on angular cross-correlations and the properties of the photometric redshift probability distributions. Our covariance matrix is determined using an analytical approach, verified numerically with large mock galaxy catalogues. We account for uncertainties in the modelling of intrinsic galaxy alignments and the impact of baryon feedback on the shape of the non-linear matter power spectrum, in addition to the small residual uncertainties in the shear and redshift calibration. The cosmology analysis was performed blind. Our high-level data products, including shear correlation functions, covariance matrices, redshift distributions, and Monte Carlo Markov chains are available at

I apologize that I not longer have time for long author lists and extensive HTML formatting of complex abstracts. Sorry. This is not an unexpected result for me. I’ll need to read it, though.

Meanwhile I will continue to smoove you with my theory of gravitational dark matter axions.

Just call me The Smoove.

I will smoove you.

I’m smoooovy.

Smoove me!

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Hall Viscosity and Drag for Effective Mass in Superfluids

by Tommy on 7/12/2016

This is a remarkably different perspective on this matter.

Transport in Superfluid Mixtures, Michael Geracie (5 December 2016)

We present a general method for constructing effective field theories for non-relativistic superfluids, generalizing the previous approaches of Greiter, Witten, and Wilczek, and Son and Wingate to the case of several superfluids in solution. We investigate transport in mixtures with broken parity and find a parity odd “Hall drag” in the presence of independent motion as well as a pinning of mass, charge, and energy to sites of nonzero relative velocity. Both effects have a simple geometric interpretation in terms of the signed volumes and directed areas of various sub-complexes of a “velocity polyhedron”: the convex hull formed by the endpoints of the velocity vectors of a superfluid mixture. We also provide a simple quasi-one-dimensional model that exhibits non-zero Hall drag.

Read it, and grok it (or at least try), even when life itself is a drag.

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Quantum Critical Point Behavior in Simple Lattice Models

by Tommy on 7/12/2016

Asymptopia is my new favorite word for the day.

Superconductivity and bad metal behavior near a nematic quantum critical point, Samuel Lederer, Yoni Schattner, Erez Berg and Steven A. Kivelson
(5 December 2016)

Using determinantal quantum Monte Carlo, we compute the properties of a lattice model with spin 1/2 itinerant electrons tuned through a quantum phase transition to an Ising nematic phase. The nematic fluctuations induce superconductivity with a broad dome in the superconducting Tc enclosing the nematic quantum critical point. For temperatures above Tc, we see strikingly non-Fermi liquid behavior including a “nodal – anti nodal dichotomy” reminiscent of that seen in several transition metal oxides and “bad metal” behavior of the conductivity.

Bad metal. Very Bad Metal!

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Topological Space Group Symmetries Catagorized

by Tommy on 6/12/2016

Gauging spatial symmetries and the classification of topological crystalline phases, Ryan Thorngren and Dominic V. Else (2 December 2016)

We put the theory of interacting topological crystalline phases on a systematic footing. These are topological phases protected by space-group symmetries. Our central tool is an elucidation of what it means to “gauge” such symmetries. We introduce the notion of a “topological crystalline liquid”, and argue that most (and perhaps all) phases of interest are likely to satisfy this criterion. We prove a Crystalline Equivalence Principle, which states that in Euclidean space, topological crystalline liquids with symmetry group G are in one-to-one correspondence with topological phases protected by the same symmetry G, but acting *internally*, where if an element of G is orientation-reversing, it is realized as an anti-unitary symmetry in the internal symmetry group. As an example, we explicitly compute, using group cohomology, a partial classification of bosonic symmetry-protected topological (SPT) phases protected by crystalline symmetries in (3+1)-D for 227 of the 230 space groups. For the 65 space groups not containing orientation-reversing elements (Sohncke groups), there are no cobordism invariants which may contribute phases beyond group cohomology, and so we conjecture our classification is complete.

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Breakthroughy Truthiness Prize – Life ‘MIGHT’ Be Emergent

by Tommy on 5/12/2016

The Cosmic Evolution of Autobiogenesis

That’s the funniest takeaway from last evening’s festivities.

Besides all of the tuxedos, the limousines and the private jet aircraft.

Udo Seifert’s stochastic energetics guarantees it. James Crutchfield proved it.

And of course the breaking of time reversal symmetry made it happen.

It has little if anything to do with RNA. That came much later.

Oh … the humanity! The blobbyness!

Welcome to the pseudogap.

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String Theory Has No Connection To Experimental Reality

by Tommy on 5/12/2016

Breakthroughy truthiness has spoken in the post-truth fact free world.

They do it for the money. I get that now.

Black holes are lucrative too.

To the catholic church.

Update: The irony of all this, is what I have done for all of these string theorists with the gravitationally flexible cosmic QCD axion is simply push their theories up the the Planck scale and into the black holes and downshifted their simulations into the clever tabletop laboratory gonkulaters. The infamous real world. Condensed matter physics theory and experiment.

Cold and harsh, but that’s the way it is.

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Dark Matter Curvatons in a Double Cosmic Inflation Scenario

by Tommy on 4/12/2016

It took me a while to slog through this. The model is a bit ad hoc, and the math oversimplied with lots of speculative assumptions. But I must say I like the idea of a double inflation now. The only sense I Can make out of all of this is that the great fall from the Planck scale to the Higgs scale is the secondary inflation, either accompanied by or followed by the reheating of the quark gluon particle plasma flux. In this case initial inflation event represents the entire Einstein mass energy equivalent of all of the gravitational field of space (time) itself, along with all of the mass energy equivalent of the dark matter and baryons contained within it. That’s a whole lotta stuff. Wow.

Curvaton as dark matter with secondary inflation, Jinn-Ouk Gong, Naoya Kitajima and Takahiro Terada, APCTP Pre2016-022, KIAS-P16084 (28 November 2016)

We consider a novel cosmological scenario in which a curvaton is long-lived and plays the role of cold dark matter (CDM) in the presence of a short, secondary inflation. Non-trivial evolution of the large scale cosmological perturbation in the curvaton scenario can affect the duration of the short term inflation, resulting in the inhomogeneous end of inflation. Non-linear parameters of the curvature perturbation are predicted to be fNL ~ 5/4 and gNL ~ 0. The curvaton abundance can be well diluted by the short-term inflation and accordingly, it does not have to decay into the Standard Model particles. Then the curvaton can account for the present CDM with the isocurvature perturbation being sufficiently suppressed because both the adiabatic and CDM isocurvature perturbations have the same origin. As an explicit example, we consider the thermal inflation scenario and a string axion as a candidate for this curvaton-dark matter. We further discuss possibilities to identify the curvaton-dark matter with the QCD axion.

I have to tell you that my mind is really completely boggled now.

So I guess it’s a big bang followed by a little bang.

Followed by a whole lotta hot non-nothing.

Cool. I like this already.

Update: Followed by the giant dark matter vacuum cleaner event.

The Cosmic Universe as Non Equilibrium Energy Conversion

The ‘Little Bounce’.

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Chern Simons Axion Physics Coupling Theorem Explored

by Tommy on 4/12/2016

This is a nice clean presentation of axion physics in condensed matter physics systems.

Surface theorem for the Chern-Simons axion coupling, Thomas Olsen, Maryam Taherinejad, David Vanderbilt and Ivo Souza (24 November 2016)

The Chern-Simons axion coupling of a bulk insulator is only defined modulo a quantum of e2/h. The quantized part of the coupling is uniquely defined for a bounded insulating sample, but it depends on the specific surface termination. Working in a slab geometry and representing the valence bands in terms of hybrid Wannier functions, we show how to determine that quantized part from the excess Chern number of the hybrid Wannier sheets located near the surface of the slab. The procedure is illustrated for a tight-binding model consisting of coupled quantum anomalous Hall layers. By slowly modulating the model parameters, it is possible to transfer one unit of Chern number from the bottom to the top surface over the course of a cyclic evolution of the bulk Hamiltonian. When the evolution of the surface Hamiltonian is also cyclic, the Chern pumping is obstructed by chiral touchings between valence and conduction surface bands.

All your model are belong to us.

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Santa Was An Unfortunate Accidental Misspelling of Satan

by Tommy on 4/12/2016

Celebrate Bad Evil Satan Day

Bad Evil Satan Santa Day

Bad Evil Satan Santa Day

It’s your fake and fraudulent religion and religious holiday.

Enjoy your ill gotten gains while you’ve got them.

Santa will be back for your soul.

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Loren Thompson Makes Forbes Look Like Breitbart

by Tommy on 4/12/2016

Forbes Magazine can’t be happy with Loren Thompson dumbing them down to Breitbart.

How President Trump Can Avert A Crisis In U.S. Space Policy

By Loren Thompson Writing for Forbes Magazine.

Just keep the gravy and pork flowing.

Heckava job there Mr. Forbes.

Mouthpiece for failure.

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Freedom Will Die a Very Quick Death Under Jeff Sessions

by Tommy on 2/12/2016

You’ll just have to trust me on this one too. America – Insane in the Mem Brain.

Constitutionally guaranteed and protected American freedom of expression is great, no?

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Science Now Shows That Drugs Are Good and Religion is Bad

by Tommy on 2/12/2016

It’s official now. Both Psilocybin and MMDA ecstasy are effective therapies, as are many others.

Life on Earth is both difficult, and ultimately fatal, on a planet infested with insane religious nuts. Drugs make this situation, living on a world filled with terrible illnesses, greedy corporations, easily available weapons, endless wars, gangsters and mafia thugs, toxic emissions, blatant fascism, evil dictators and insane criminal theocrats, just barely tolerable. So lets all give Mr. Jeff Sessions a big FUCK YOU flip off. Your world is long gone, Mr. Maybe Attorney General.

I will not let you destroy the shitty world we still have left to salvage from assholes like yourself.

Religion is Bad, Drugs are Good.

Religion is Bad, Drugs are Good.

Psilocybin produces substantial and sustained decreases in depression and anxiety in patients with life-threatening cancer: A randomized double-blind trial, Roland R Griffiths, Matthew W Johnson, Michael A Carducci, Annie Umbricht, William A Richards, Brian D Richards, Mary P Cosimano, Margaret A Klinedinst, Journal of Psychopharmacology, 30, 12, 1181-1197 (December 2016), doi:10.1177/0269881116675513

Cancer patients often develop chronic, clinically significant symptoms of depression and anxiety. Previous studies suggest that psilocybin may decrease depression and anxiety in cancer patients. The effects of psilocybin were studied in 51 cancer patients with life-threatening diagnoses and symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. This randomized, double-blind, cross-over trial investigated the effects of a very low (placebo-like) dose (1 or 3 mg/70 kg) vs. a high dose (22 or 30 mg/70 kg) of psilocybin administered in counterbalanced sequence with 5 weeks between sessions and a 6-month follow-up. Instructions to participants and staff minimized expectancy effects. Participants, staff, and community observers rated participant moods, attitudes, and behaviors throughout the study. High-dose psilocybin produced large decreases in clinician- and self-rated measures of depressed mood and anxiety, along with increases in quality of life, life meaning, and optimism, and decreases in death anxiety. At 6-month follow-up, these changes were sustained, with about 80% of participants continuing to show clinically significant decreases in depressed mood and anxiety. Participants attributed improvements in attitudes about life/self, mood, relationships, and spirituality to the high-dose experience, with >80% endorsing moderately or greater increased well-being/life satisfaction. Community observer ratings showed corresponding changes. Mystical-type psilocybin experience on session day mediated the effect of psilocybin dose on therapeutic outcomes.

I love science and chemistry, it makes life worth living sometimes.

Life is a lot better at it than we are.

Drugs good, religion bad.

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Weyl Semimetals, Fermi Arcs and Chiral Anomalies Reviewed

by Tommy on 2/12/2016

Hasan is a leader of this field, but only because his name is recognizable.

Weyl Semimetals, Fermi Arcs and Chiral Anomalies (A Short Review), Shuang Jia, Su-Yang Xu, and M. Zahid Hasan, Nature Materials, 15, 1140-1144 (25 October 2016), DOI:10.1038/nmat4787

Physicists have discovered a novel topological semimetal, the Weyl semimetal, whose surface features a non-closed Fermi surface while the low energy quasiparticles in the bulk emerge as Weyl fermions. Here they share a brief review of the development and present perspectives on the next step forward.

So this has been fun over the last few years.

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Christianity Will Die a Very Quick Death Under Lamar Smith

by Tommy on 1/12/2016

You’ll just have to trust me on that.

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I Guess I am Now Officially a Science and Physics Disruptor

by Tommy on 1/12/2016
Science Physics Disruptor Disrupting Disruption

Science Physics Disruptor Disrupting Disruption

Those are my new favorite words now.

This is going to be great fun.

But it won’t be pretty.

Science never is.

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The Master’s Thesis of Molly Rebecca Sexton at Oklahoma

by Tommy on 30/11/2016

This isn’t a very definitive Master’s thesis result, and it certainly isn’t PhD grade, but it is admirable that they all took the time to look into these nanodiamonds more closely. That being said, this doesn’t bode well for the Younger Dryas boundry layer sediments and sedimentary nanodiamonds, anywhere in the sedimentary record at all, so I guess I will all have to wait for more definitive results on this subject. It would be great if anyone could definitively identify and demonstrate the existence of sedimentary nanodiamonds, besides at known impact sites.

Statigraphic and Textural Analysis of Nanodiamonds Across the Younger Dryas Boundary Sediments of Western Oklahoma, Molly Rebecca Sexton, Master’s Thesis, Andrew Elwood Madden, Advisor, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma (2016)

Exposed sediment profiles of the panhandle of western Oklahoma have previously been shown to contain two peak abundances of nanodiamonds, one dated approximately to the Younger Dryas and the other from the Late Holocene. The sediments of the Bull Creek Valley contain numerous Clovis culture artifacts and megafauna remains that disappeared after the Younger Dryas Boundary Layer. Firestone et al. have proposed that the reason for this sudden disappearance is a bolide impact that broke apart in the atmosphere, scattering debris across the world (2007).

Nanodiamonds could be evidence for such an impact. In this study, I examined 12 additional samples collected at the same time as those reported by Bement et al. (2014) but not analyzed for nanodiamond content using Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM). These samples were collected at various locations along the same Bull Creek valley, Oklahoma, including sediments older than those analyzed by Bement et al. (2014) and an additional nearby location that crosses the Younger Dryas Boundary. No nanodiamonds were found in these samples. However, the results may not be indicative of the true nanodiamond abundance. In a further test, a grid was prepared from a sediment digest solution shown by Bement et al. (2014) to have a peak abundance of nanodiamonds. No nanodiamonds were observed in this sample, suggesting that the nanodiamonds may have a finite lifetime when preserved in an ammonium hydroxide suspension. Additionally, Raman spectroscopy was investigated and ruled out as a means of screening samples for nanodiamond content more quickly and easily. Prepared samples of sediment solution previously confirmed to have nanodiamonds showed no Raman peaks associated with diamonds, though this could also have been the result of the ammonium hydroxide suspension storage. However, samples of untreated commercial nanodiamonds also did not exhibit any characteristic diamond peaks, though possible peaks may have been obscured by heavy fluorescence.

Finally, the samples that were confirmed by Bement et al. (2014) to have nanodiamonds were divided into groups based on the ages of their sediments and highresolution (HRTEM) images of them were examined for the textures of individual grains in order to gain a better insight of how they may have formed. The textures were categorized as having no lattice fringes, partial fringes, continuous fringes, linear twins, nonlinear twins, or star twins. The nanodiamond grains in the Younger Dryas Boundary group had the lowest ratio of linear to nonlinear grains and one of the highest ratios of star twins to twins, both of which are indicative of a chemical vapor deposition formation mechanism.

This is the first study to analyze and compare nanodiamond textures from the same stratigraphic area. The differences found between the older and younger nanodiamonds suggests that further studies comparing textures across spatial and temporal boundaries could lead to more definite signatures indicative of their origins.

It’s a start, again, I guess. Hopefully she will look at it again, for her PhD.

Unless, of course, sedimentary impact nanodiamonds don’t exist.

That could very well be true, but I don’t see how.

Maybe they just all burn up in the air.

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Dark Matter Crackpots and Crank Magnets Hit The Internets

by Tommy on 30/11/2016

I predicted this would happen a year ago.

The Topological Axion PhD Thesis of Ken Shiozaki at Kyoto

Edward Witten Topological Field Theory and Order on the ArXiv

First there is Natalie Wolchover at Quanta Magazine, a science reporter so mathematically inept that she couldn’t distinguish an axion from a WIMP, who reads a bunch of pulp magazine reporting on Eric Verlinde’s crank gravity theory, and since she could not possibly understand the reasoning contained within, she immediately declares dark matter dead. No Quanta for me.

The Case Against Dark Matter, by Natalie Wolchover of Quanta Magazine

The self admitted and self appointed dark matter expert Natalie Wolchover has spoken.

I’m giving up on the axions, clearly they don’t exist.

What a difference a year makes.

More on this as I have time.

It gets much worser.

And even betterer.

Update: And as promised, here it is. Betterer and betterest.

Another article hot on the heels of a bunch of articles by the world renowned dark matter expert.

Natalie Wolchover, resident quantum gravity physics expert at Quanta Magazine.

Quantum Gravity’s Time Problem, by Natalie Wolchover, of Quanta Magazine.

Mathematician, physicist and koolaide connoisseur extraordinaire.

The money must be very good at Quanta Magazine.

Of course she banned me now.

Update 2: She didn’t ban me!

My comment was posted at exactly 4:20 PM, that is so awesome.

She’s really digging the entropic gravity thing.

But I threw my lot in with the axions.

After a whole lotta research.

Update 3: Note that in a previous incarnation of ‘The Blob‘ I have defined the ‘lotta’ as the metric prefix for the numerical value of 1027 That was after I defined (sorry, I mean named) the SI unit of momentum as the ‘Fritz‘, denoted by the symbol ‘I‘ and equivalent to the SI units of kg m/s.

A zillion here and a zillion there, and pretty soon that’s a whole lotta axions.

I, Tommy – I’m Naming the SI Unit of Momentum After Myself

I am just loving all the physics disruption here.

Everything has to have a name, right?

Planet Graboid. That’s it.

Update 4: I see Natalie Wolchover is shilling her crank article over at The Atlantic now too.

The money must be good. Maybe I should start shilling crank string theories.

I could win a breakthroughy truthiness prize some day!

Or pull in $7 million dollars of funding.

Update 5: As promised, crank astronomer Pavel Kroupa at Aeon and The Wire.

It must be true. They’ve said it enough times.

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Formal Gravitationally Induced Quantum Thermal Hall Effect

by Tommy on 30/11/2016

And here is the breakthrough. I’m cracking up. Again. Only formally now. Over.

Laughlin’s argument for the quantized thermal Hall effect, Ryota Nakai, Shinsei Ryu and Kentaro Nomura (29 November 2016)

We extend Laughlin’s magnetic-flux-threading argument to the quantized thermal Hall effect. A proper analogue of Laughlin’s adiabatic magnetic-flux threading process for the case of the thermal Hall effect is given in terms of an external gravitational field. From the perspective of the edge theories of quantum Hall systems, the quantized thermal Hall effect is closely tied to the breakdown of large diffeomorphism invariance, that is, a global gravitational anomaly. In addition, we also give an argument from the bulk perspective in which a free energy, decomposed into its Fourier modes, is adiabatically transferred under an adiabatic process involving external gravitational perturbations.

I can only suggest you give this a very careful reading.

Like I will do when I have the time.

I mean space. Or energy.

It doesn’t matter.

See also:

Finite-temperature effective boundary theory of the quantized thermal Hall effect, Ryota Nakai, Shinsei Ryu and Kentaro Nomura, New Journal of Physics, Volume 18 (10 February 2016)

A finite-temperature effective free energy of the boundary of a quantized thermal Hall system is derived microscopically from the bulk two-dimensional Dirac fermion coupled with a gravitational field. In two spatial dimensions, the thermal Hall conductivity of fully gapped insulators and superconductors is quantized and given by the bulk Chern number, in analogy to the quantized electric Hall conductivity in quantum Hall systems. From the perspective of effective action functionals, two distinct types of the field theory have been proposed to describe the quantized thermal Hall effect. One of these, known as the gravitational Chern–Simons action, is a kind of topological field theory, and the other is a phenomenological theory relevant to the Strěda formula. In order to solve this problem, we derive microscopically an effective theory that accounts for the quantized thermal Hall effect. In this paper, the two-dimensional Dirac fermion under a static background gravitational field is considered in equilibrium at a finite temperature, from which an effective boundary free energy functional of the gravitational field is derived. This boundary theory is shown to explain the quantized thermal Hall conductivity and thermal Hall current in the bulk by assuming the Lorentz symmetry. The bulk effective theory is consistently determined via the boundary effective theory.

So quantum gravity is something like a thermal gradient.

The takeaway is that gravitons are diffusive.

This article is open access.

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Theory of Learning Subjected to Stochastic Thermodynamics

by Tommy on 30/11/2016

It’s more costly to learn from stored information than it is to store that information.

Stochastic Thermodynamics of Learning, Sebastian Goldt and Udo Seifert (November 2016)

Virtually every organism gathers information about its noisy environment and builds models from that data, mostly using neural networks. Here, we use stochastic thermodynamics to analyse the learning of a classification rule by a neural network. We show that the information acquired by the network is bounded by the thermodynamic cost of learning and introduce a learning efficiency η ≤ 1. We discuss the conditions for optimal learning and analyse Hebbian learning in the thermodynamic limit.

Who is Udo Seifert again? Didn’t he just win a Breakthrough Prize?

Some things are difficult to forget.

It takes too much energy.

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Natural Orbital Theory for Electronic Structure Calculations

by Tommy on 30/11/2016

At first I thought this was Marvin L. Cohen, but as usual, I was wrong. It’s Morrel H. Cohen.

A well-scaling natural orbital theory, Ralph Gebauer, Morrel H. Cohen and Roberto Car, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, PNAS, 113, 46, 12913-12918 (27 November 2016), DOI:10.1073/pnas.1615729113

Computations of locations of nuclei and movement of electrons within molecules and materials are widely used in science and technology. Direct computation of a system’s wave function for that purpose becomes impractical as system size grows. Current alternative methods can have difficulty with strongly correlated electron motion or spurious electron self-interaction. By using “natural spin-orbitals” to describe the motion of individual electrons, solving for them together with their joint and individual probabilities of occurrence within the system, we are able to account better for electron correlation when strong while avoiding self-interaction and maintaining the growth of computation cost with system size at the level of Hartree–Fock theory. Our numerical results for some small test molecules are very good.

We introduce an energy functional for ground-state electronic structure calculations. Its variables are the natural spin-orbitals of singlet many-body wave functions and their joint occupation probabilities deriving from controlled approximations to the two-particle density matrix that yield algebraic scaling in general, and Hartree-Fock scaling in its seniority-zero version. Results from the latter version for small molecular systems are compared with those of highly accurate quantum-chemical computations. The energies lie above full configuration interaction calculations, close to doubly occupied configuration interaction calculations. Their accuracy is considerably greater than that obtained from current density-functional theory approximations and from current functionals of the one-particle density matrix.

Same provenance, it seems.

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Aaron Blake Washington Post and Jeff Bezos’ Fascist Reporter

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

Donald Trump tweets that Americans protesting America, Americans and their American government should be relieved of their United States citizenship, and now a Washington Post reporter by the name of Aaron Blake, working for Jeff Bezos, seems ok with that. In his article on the issue he strives to minimize the United States Constitution’s opinions on such matters.

Donald Trump’s basic position on flag-burning isn’t really all that controversial

By Aaron Blake of the Washington Post, a newspaper owned by Jeff Bezos.

Hey Aaron, you know that Jeff Bezos reads this blog, right? Like every day?

Aaron Blake Washington Post Jeff Bezos' Fascist Reporter

Aaron Blake Washington Post Jeff Bezos’ Fascist Reporter

Get that Linkedin resume updated quickly, Aaron.

Responsible reporter you are not, Aaron Blake.

You’re just another American prick with a mic.

Your boss can take that mic away from you.

You are an embarrassment to journalism.

And you have also embarrassed me.

When that happens, I protest.

Directly to your employer.

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Yet Another Low Frequency Microwave Cavity Axion Detector

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

That might work, or not. You gotta start somewhere. I’m leaning towards a gravitational detector.

Unless someone beats me to it. Something ultrasensive to gravitational perturbations, like LIGO.

Gravity and gravitation have consequences, even for generic sterile axionic bosons at 100 μeV.

Design and Operational Experience of a Microwave Cavity Axion Detector for the 20-100 μeV Range, S. Al Kenany, M. A. Anil, K. M. Backes, B. M. Brubaker, S. B. Cahn, G. Carosi, Y. V. Gurevich, W. F. Kindel, S. K. Lamoreaux, K. W. Lehnert, S. M. Lewis, M. Malnou, D. A. Palken, N. M. Rapidis, J. R. Root, M. Simanovskaia, T. M. Shokair, I. Urdinaran, K. A. van Bibber and L. Zhong (22 November 2016)

We describe a dark matter axion detector designed, constructed, and operated both as an innovation platform for new cavity and amplifier technologies and as a data pathfinder in the 5−25 GHz range (∼ 20 − 100 μeV). The platform is small but flexible to facilitate the development of new microwave cavity and amplifier concepts in an operational environment. The experiment has recently completed its first data production; it is the first microwave cavity axion search to deploy a Josephson parametric amplifier and a dilution refrigerator to achieve near-quantum limited performance.

All hail the probe.

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Laws of Thermodynamics Rederived from a First Principle

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

So it turns out the universe is just work storage space for a spacetime gravitational energy field.

And we’re just work storage space for the universe.

Large Deviation implies First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics, Hiroyasu Tajima, Eyuri Wakakuwa and Tomohiro Ogawa (22 November 2016)

To reconstruct thermodynamics based on the microscopic laws is one of the most important unfulfilled goals of statistical physics. Here, we show that the first law and the second law for adiabatic processes are derived from an assumption that “probability distributions of energy in Gibbs states satisfy large deviation”, which is widely accepted as a property of thermodynamic equilibrium states. We define an adiabatic transformation as a probabilistic mixture of the energy-preserving unitary transformations on the many-body systems and the work storage. As the second law, we show that an adiabatic transformation from a set of Gibbs states to another set of Gibbs states is possible if and only if the regularized von Neumann entropy becomes large. As the first law, we show that the energy loss of the thermodynamic systems during the adiabatic transformation is stored in the work storage as “work,” in the following meaning; (i) the energy of the work storage takes certain values macroscopically, in the initial state and the final state. (ii) the entropy of the work storage in the final state is macroscopically equal to the entropy of the initial state. As corollaries, our results give the maximam work principle and the first law for the isothermal processes.

This is really a fine piece of work.

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Weyl Physics in FCC Topological Nodal Superfluids Simulated

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

Ok so maybe I can still slog through all this breakthroughyness.

Besides the Nature Physics pseudogap result, which got press before I even saw the ArXiv version tonight (that will require a separate post), there was the topological crystalline magnets (wouldn’t you know), and then this piece which goes with the previous Weyl semimetal work.

Weyl points and topological nodal superfluids in a face-centered cubic optical lattice, Li-Jun Lang, Shao-Liang Zhang, K. T. Law and Qi Zhou (26 November 2016)

We point out that a face-centered cubic (FCC) optical lattice, which can be realised by a simple scheme using three lasers, provides one a highly controllable platform for creating Weyl points and topological nodal superfluids in ultracold atoms. In non-interacting systems, Weyl points automatically arise in the Floquet band structure when shaking such FCC lattices, and sophisticated design of the tunnelling is not required. More interestingly, in the presence of attractive interaction between two hyperfine spin states, which experience the same shaken FCC lattice, a three-dimensional topological nodal superfluid emerges, and Weyl points show up as the gapless points in the quasiparticle spectrum. One could either create a double Weyl point of charge 2, or split it to two Weyl points of charge 1, which can be moved in the momentum space by tuning the interactions. Correspondingly, the Fermi arcs at the surface may be linked with each other or separated as individual ones.

These are all, of course, the cosmological simulations I am now looking for. That was fast.

I am now officially freaked out. Again.

I feel a song coming on …

Cool. I mean hot. No, now that I think about it, cool.

I change my mind a lot sometimes.

I’m still allowed to do that.

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Holographic Conformal Field Theory of Phonons Developed

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

So moving along it gets worse right away in a hurry, as far as more work that I now have to do.

I can’t believe how much trouble I have gotten myself into, and I only just discovered the axion.

A holographic perspective on phonons and pseudo-phonons, Andrea Amoretti, Daniel Arean, Riccardo Argurio, Daniele Musso and Leopoldo A. Pando Zayas (28 Novevember 2016)

We analyze the concomitant spontaneous breaking of translation and conformal symmetries by introducing in a CFT a complex scalar operator that acquires a spatially dependent expectation value. The model, inspired by the holographic Q-lattice, provides a privileged setup to study the emergence of phonons from a spontaneous translational symmetry breaking in a conformal field theory and offers valuable hints for the treatment of phonons in QFT at large. We first analyze the Ward identity structure by means of standard QFT techniques, considering both spontaneous and explicit symmetry breaking. Next, by implementing holographic renormalization, we show that the same set of Ward identities holds in the holographic Q-lattice. Eventually, relying on the holographic and QFT results, we study the correlators realizing the symmetry breaking pattern and how they encode information about the low-energy spectrum.

See also:

Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking and Nambu-Goldstone Bosons in Quantum Many-Body Systems, Tomas Brauner, Symmetry, 2, 609-657 (7 April 2010), DOI:10.3390/sym2020609

Spontaneous symmetry breaking is a general principle, that constitutes the underlying concept of a vast number of physical phenomena ranging from ferromagnetism and superconductivity in condensed matter physics to the Higgs mechanism in the standard model of elementary particles. I focus on manifestations of spontaneously broken symmetries in systems that are not Lorentz invariant, which include both, nonrelativistic systems as well as relativistic systems at nonzero density, providing a self-contained review of the properties of spontaneously broken symmetries specific to such theories. Topics covered include: (i) Introduction to the mathematics of spontaneous symmetry breaking and the Goldstone theorem. (ii) Minimization of Higgs-type potentials for higher-dimensional representations. (iii) Counting rules for Nambu-Goldstone bosons and their dispersion relations. (iv) Construction of effective Lagrangians. Specific examples in both relativistic and nonrelativistic physics are worked out in detail.

These are all long, comprehensive, significant, breakthroughy papers.

I especially like the latter’s handling of the screened Coulomb interaction.

There are a couple more papers tonight alone like this that I still have to read.

I have to warn you though, this is easily a couple of months work for a normal human.

Update: But since I was raised by aliens, I’m good to go. I’m unskilled and I’m aware of that.

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The Differential Topology of Weyl Semimetal Quantum Phases

by Tommy on 29/11/2016

Tuesday never lets me down on the ArXiv. Monday night.

This is something dear to my heart and I can actually read it.

Unfortunately this is really looking like at least several months work.

Differential topology of semimetals, Varghese Mathai and Guo Chuan Thiang (28 November 2016)

The subtle interplay between local and global charges for topological semimetals exactly parallels that for singular vector fields. Part of this story is the relationship between cohomological semimetal invariants, Euler structures, and ambiguities in the torsion of manifolds. Dually, semimetal invariants can be represented by Euler chains from which the surface Fermi arc connectivity can be deduced. These dual pictures, and the link to insulators, are organised using geometric exact sequences. We go beyond Dirac-type Hamiltonians and introduce new classes of semimetals whose local charges are subtle Atiyah-Dupont-Thomas invariants globally constrained by the Kervaire semicharacteristic, leading to the prediction of torsion Fermi arcs.

I like the way they talk about the decomposition of global and local charges. I can use that.

This is really good, but I haven’t read this kind of mathematics for a while.

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Early Cosmic Topology Modeled by Neutron Star Physics

by Tommy on 28/11/2016

This is as close to cosmogenesis physics as you are ever going to get.

3P2 Superfluids Are Topological, Takeshi Mizushima, Kota Masuda and Muneto Nitta (25 July 2016)

We clarify topology of 3P2 superfluids which are expected to be realized in the inner cores of neutron stars and cubic odd-parity superconductors. 3P2 phases include uniaxial/biaxial nematic phases and nonunitary ferromagnetic and cyclic phases. We here show that all the phases are accompanied by different types of topologically protected gapless fermions: Surface Majorana fermions in nematic phases and a quartet of (single) itinerant Majorana fermions in the cyclic (ferromagnetic) phase. Using the superfluid Fermi liquid theory, we also demonstrate that dihedral-two and -four biaxial nematic phases are thermodynamically favored in the weak coupling limit under a magnetic field. It is shown that the tricritical point exists on the phase boundary between these two phases and may be realized in the core of realistic magnetars. We unveil the intertwining of symmetry and topology behind mass acquisition of surface Majorana fermions in nematic phases.

But this is much closer than I thought I would ever get.

Bismuth iodide anyone?

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Theory of Electron Confinement in Superconductors Resolved

by Tommy on 28/11/2016

And of course it gets even better very quickly.

Meissner effect and a stringlike interaction, Chandrasekhar Chatterjee, Ishita Dutta Choudhury and Amitabha Lahiri (19 November 2016)

We find that a recently proposed interaction involving the vorticity current of electrons, which radiatively induces a photon mass in 3+1 dimensions in the low-energy effective theory, corresponds to confining strings (linear potential) between electrons.

Beautiful math and a beautiful result, what more can I say.

Things are really coming together.

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