Tuesday, November 4, 2014

More on big blobs and little blobs

Two months ago, I have introduced you to what I called big blobs. In the end, just a big heap of particles, which act in unison. As announced there, I have meanwhile produced new results on this topic. So, what did I find?

In this investigation I tried to disentangle what relevance big blobs of gluons have for a single gluon. To do this, I somehow had to get my hands on blobs. To do this, I performed computer simulations of the strong force. Without any further modifications, this would deliver a mixture of small and large blobs, many, many individual gluons, and everything rather unorganized. This would not help much.

Fortunately, clever people have found a way how to isolate the blobs from this mixture. This is a method which is nowadays called smearing or cooling. The names are not quite accurate. What is actually done is to remove anything which even remotely resembles single gluons at high energies. This is really hand-waving, and nobody should take this too literal. But it gives a good idea, and avoids a lot of technicalities. In the end, the important thing is that this gave me a lot of blobs.

But the blobs alone were not interesting for me. Also, many people have studied them in the last forty years or so. I wanted something different. So I took the blobs, and then injected a single gluon into this heap of blobs. Then, I checked how the gluon behaved.

The first result was that at short distances, much shorter than the size of the blobs or the distance between them, the gluon did not feel anything. It just behaved as it would travel through empty space. This was not yet too surprising. After all, the big blobs are separated, and as long as the gluon did not crash into one, how should it know about it.

The second result was also not too surprising. If I let the gluon travel very far, it behaved essentially as if I would not have filtered everything out but the blobs. It was just plain normal. Also this makes sense. If the distances become much longer than the blob's size and their separation, the gluon just gets an average picture. And this picture should, and seems to be, not too different from the real thing.

But then came something, which surprised me at first. Though I later learned that somebody else has anticipated it long ago. If the gluon travels distances roughly of the size of the blobs, it behaved substantially different than normal. This behavior was actually what one would expect in the first place for something which is so strongly interacting as gluons do. That would be quite reassuring, as it was exactly this behavior which has been looked for in gluons since a long time. This would mean that just all the stuff which I have filtered out to get to the blobs would normally obscure it.

Since this sounds to good to be true, it probably is. Hence, a necessary next step must be to check this result, in some way. In the manuscript, I have developed some ideas, but none of them will be easy. They are thus part of future research. But it must be checked. After all, its science, and one should always check and try to falsify the results. And this one certainly deserves to be checked.