New Physics promised a vague allegiance, but stopped short of publicly admitting an association. This article suggests that, having reluctantly adopted a number of dimensions and the strong possibility of multiple universes, Physics might just be teetering on the brink of something big.
On the trail of dark energy, physicists propose Higgs boson 'portal'
is the unassuming title of the fascinating paper you can read by clicking on it.
Now I've long been sceptical of SUSY and heavily inclined to slate Standard Models. I don't like constants being applied to cosmology simply because I feel it's disrespectful to assume that a Universe we know practically nothing about is going to buckle itself into some kind of cardboard box-shaped parameter we precociously put in front of it, and then allow us to declare that it's Flat. "Here, Universe, there's a good Universe, in you go," is not the sort of language one should use for the Universe. Best reserved for your new puppy. No wonder Dark Matter has proved so elusive. There in the Dark, we are going to find some real gems of information we had no idea were there, and the Universe is not going to hand those gems over on a plate to a bunch of scrabbling children.
That might sound very schoolmarmish, but I can get really excited when a scientist starts meddling with interdimensional doorways. When a scientist comes along whose mind really IS open enough to be ignoring the box altogether and getting on with the job of assuming him/herself to be an intelligent being with some kind of universally-bound intellect that isn't tied up tightly in constraints, I'm inclined to breathe a sigh of relief. They are rare, these people. I know, I've mixed with the prizewinners, the freshers, the lecturers and the puritans. I've had conversations with cosmologists and partied with particle physicists. A race apart scientists may be, but they are people first. There are flocks, and there are those who refuse to follow flocks. I've met a few wildcards, and some of them might call me a friend. At least on the quiet.
Krauss and Dent, the authors of this exciting new paper, are suggesting the existence of 'another background field' which in itself is going to demand of us to peep round the dimensional corner. We might find all those other dimensions aren't curled up in the corner at all, but wagging their tails and looking just the same as our very own pet dimension here at home. We might find we don't have to do some strange trick with right-angles after all, but can just move forward a couple of steps and hey, there's the interdimensional doorway! Who knows?
One thing, I think, is for sure. While the bets are still even on WIMPs and Axions are coming in at 66-1, my money is on the only solution I saw presented at Durham this summer that made any sense - the possibility that photons can oscillate, light to dark. Only we don't know that yet, cos we're still getting to grips with neutrinos, and why a neutrino has to be sterile before we can even think about it getting close to Dark Matter is just another clue as to the lengths we will go in order to assert our authority over the way we think things ought to be.