Everyone knows the universe exists in three dimensions, right? Maybe not. For some time now serious physicists have been pondering the seemingly absurd possibility that three-dimensional space is merely an illusion--and that we actually live in a two-dimensional "hologram."
And now scientists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois have launched a mind-blowing experiment to show once and for all what sort of universe we live in.
"We want to find out whether space-time is a quantum system just like matter is," Dr. Craig Hogan, director of Fermilab's Center for Particle Astrophysics, said in a written statement. "If we see something, it will completely change ideas about space we've used for thousands of years."
According to quantum theory's uncertainty principle, it's impossible to know both the precise location and the exact velocity of a subatomic particle. If the same uncertainty principle applies to space as well as to matter, space too should have built-in fluctuations--a.k.a. "quantum jitter" or "holographic noise," according to the statement.