Scientists at the Imperial College London have managed to conduct the first string theory test, destroying previous beliefs that it was untestable.
Previous views on string theory saw it as a method to describe the fundamental particles and forces that make up the universe, but the new research released today reveals a surprising discovery: that string theory can predict the behaviour of entangled quantum particles. The latter can be laboratory tested, which means the former can now be tested too.
“If experiments prove that our predictions about quantum entanglement are correct, this will demonstrate that string theory works to predict the behaviour of entangled quantum systems,” said Professor Mike Duff FRS, primary author of the study from the Department of Theoretical Physics at Imperial College London.
The research was conducted by Imperial College London with the help of Standford University, with partial funding by the UK Science and Technology Facilities Council. The discovery will please physicists, most of whom consider string theory the best available for explaining the universe.
Duff said that the discovery does not prove that string theory is the correct theory, but it does allow theoreticians to test whether or not string theory actually works, “even if its application is in an unexpected and unrelated area of physics.” The ability to test the theory is essential to proving its validity, which could open new avenues of exploration for modern science.
The paper detailing the discovery will be published in full tomorrow in the science journal Physical Review Letters.