There’s been a lot of buzz lately in the science blogosphere about a recent experiment where physicists created a gas of quantum particles with a negative temperature – negative as in, below absolute zero.
Here’s the short answer. It is possible to create negative temperatures. It was actually first done in 1951. But it’s not what it sounds like – these temperatures aren’t colder than absolute zero.
For instance, you can’t keep cooling something down to make its temperature drop below absolute zero. In fact, as I’ll try to explain, objects at a negative temperature actually behave as if they’re HOTTER than objects that are at any positive temperature.
I put Andromeda and the Higgs boson in the same category, plus throw in exceeding the speed of light. And in that very scepticism is affirmation of the physical laws and science in general. Scepticism about the new hypotheses only means belief in the former.