What’s the current status of space in Physics? By Manuel Lozano Leyva

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Today superstrings and branes are outdated. It’s the age of M theories. They’re the unification of all those kinds of theories, which try to unify, as you said before, the concept of the macroscopic, the Universe as a whole, that is, that which is governed by the force of gravity. On one hand we have Einstein’s theory of gravitation. It’s perfectly well described. On the other hand we have Quantum Mechanics, which describes perfectly, up to an astonoshing detail, the microcosmical world, that is , atoms, nuclei and the particles that come out of it. At that level we have three forces: the electromagnetic force, the weak nuclear force and the strong nuclear force. Those are unified reasonably well. And the other force -and that’s all with forces- is gravitation. Theoretical Physics tries to unify all of them, because that’s what we’ve always done. The history of Physics is a history of unifications, of trying to generate as much as we can from a unified point of view. And, furthermore, to express it mathematically. Well, we’re having a lot of problems with this last unification. We have conjectures. First we started with strings, then with superstring. Now we need 11-dimensional spaces, instead of the four we used to have. And, in order to show these extra dimensions, we need energies at a range we’re unable to achieve. And now the Physics community is trying, with every means available, to find some experimental confirmation of these theories, the M ones in particular. And that cannot be done with current technology. Therefore: are M theories Physics? Because, if there’s no experiment, if there’s no checking to be done in the same conditions, that’s not science. What Galileo taught us, where science’s greatness lies, is that we need experiments. That, if I publish some results and I say how I got them, anyone else -with the same means- can obtain the same results. That’s science. And if that cannot be done with M theories, we can discuss if what they’re doing is science or some new kind of philosophy, expressed mathematically.

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