A region of space devoid of any fluid molecules resulting in a zero pressure in ideal cases. In practice, even space has a small but finite number of molecules.

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14
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7answers
2k views

Can energy be taken out of the QFT vacuum?

There have been recent questions about the vacuum. In my simplified knowledge the vacuum is like a ground state energy level, and also that there might even exist other lower energy levels than the ...
17
votes
2answers
4k views

How does space affect the human body (no space suit, no space craft)

How does "outer space" affect the human body? Some movies show it as the body exploding, imploding or even freezing solid. I know space is essentially a vacuum with 0 pressure and the dispersion of ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Measured Higgs mass and vacuum stability

There is such a thing, called "stability bound" on mass of the Higgs boson. The basic idea (as I understand it) is that we take Higgs self-coupling, and calculate its renormalization running. And it ...
77
votes
7answers
11k views

How can a black hole produce sound?

I was reading this article from NASA -- it's NASA -- and literally found myself perplexed. The article describes the discovery that black holes emit a "note" that has physical ramifications on the ...
10
votes
3answers
523 views

What is the difference between $|0\rangle $ and $0$?

What is the difference between $|0\rangle $ and $0$ in the context of $$a_- |0\rangle =0~?$$
-1
votes
3answers
988 views

Anti-laser: How sure we are that energy is transported?

Reading this PE question can-we-transport-energy-over-infinite-distances-through-vacuum-using-light, a related question arises naturally: Is energy transported (by light)? -- (I did believed in this ...
10
votes
6answers
4k views

Does anything exist in the intergalactic space?

I am a part time physics enthusiast and I seldom wonder about the intergalactic space. First, it is my perception that all(almost all) the objects in the universe are organized in the forms of ...
22
votes
4answers
4k views

Is space “real”, or is it some sort of accepted postulate?

What is space? It seems to be everywhere in the equations of physics, as some sort of postulate or hidden hypothesis. We also have a direct experience of it, but is it "real"? The fact that we ...
6
votes
1answer
330 views

How do instantons cause vacuum decay?

From what I read about on instantons (Zee, QFT in a Nutshell, pg 309-310), an instanton is a vacuum solution that maps $S^3 \rightarrow S^3$ (the boundary of Euclideanized spacetime), which comes from ...
3
votes
4answers
5k views

How is a vacuum able to propagate light?

We say that sound waves need a medium to propagate and we know that light doesn't need such a thing. But is that really how that works? There's no such thing as "nothing" according to Quantum ...
2
votes
2answers
666 views

Beryllium Vacuum Sphere Boat/Aircraft

Is it possible to make a solid rigid evacuated "balloon" out of Beryllium or other elements or alloys? The critical buckling pressure at which an evacuated sphere is given as $$ ...
57
votes
6answers
11k views

What is the speed of sound in space?

Given that space is not a perfect vacuum, what is the speed of sound therein? Google was not very helpful in this regard, as the only answer I found was 300 km/s, from Astronomy Cafe, which is not a ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

What are the calculations for Vacuum Energy?

In wiki the Vacuum Energy in a cubic meter of free space ranges from $10^{-9}$ from the cosmological constant to $10^{113}$ due to calculations in Quantum Electrodynamics (QED) and Stochastic ...
10
votes
3answers
245 views

Are vacuum fluctuations really happening all the time?

In popular physics articles and even some physics classes I've been to, the vacuum of space is described as being constantly full of quantum fluctuations. Supposedly, all sorts of ...
2
votes
6answers
8k views

Does vacuum (empty space) exist? [closed]

Added: 5 times down vote for now! Down voter is this religion or physics, please try to explain your decision. I'm confused about this. In physics we know for a vacuum, but I think that there is a ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

Does time exist in a vacuum?

Imagine a perfect vacuum devoid of all matter and radiation. Irrespective of whether such a space can even exist, my intuition tells me that time would not exist within such a space. What this thought ...
5
votes
2answers
13k views

What exists in the Space between atoms

Apologies to all if this has been asked before, I searched but was unable to find one similar. This is a question that has been bugging me for a while that i haven't really been able to find a ...
3
votes
5answers
3k views

Nothing vs. empty space

This question quotes Hawking saying: [...] you enter a world where conjuring something out of nothing is possible (at least, for a short while). That's because at this scale particles, such as ...
17
votes
6answers
1k views

Do all massive bodies emit Hawking radiation?

It is known that any accelerated observer is subject to a heat bath due to Unruh radiation. The principle of equivalence suggests that any stationary observer on the surface of a massive body should ...
9
votes
1answer
663 views

The vacuum in quantum field theories: what is it?

In Section 10.1 of his textbook Quantum Field Theory for Mathematicians, Ticciati writes Assuming that the background field or classical source $j(x)$ is zero at space-time infinity, the presence ...
7
votes
3answers
770 views

What really goes on in a vacuum?

I've been told that a vacuum isn't actually empty space, rather that it consists of antiparticle pairs spontaneously materialising then quickly annihilating, which leads me to a few questions. ...
5
votes
3answers
841 views

Vacuum and repulsive gravity

How can one show from General Relativity that gravity is attractive force, and under which conditions it becomes repulsive, also why positive energy vacuum drives repulsive gravity?
6
votes
1answer
304 views

Spontaneous symmetry breaking: How can the vacuum be infinitly degenerate?

In classical field theories, it is with no difficulty to imagine a system to have a continuum of ground states, but how can this be in the quantum case? Suppose a continuous symmetry with charge $Q$ ...
4
votes
1answer
259 views

After using annihilation operator on vacuum state, why it is $0$ instead of vacuum?

For bosonic systems, why $a|0\rangle=0$ and not $a|0\rangle=|0\rangle$?
1
vote
3answers
199 views

Why is it impossible to have a perfect vacuum?

In another question someone mentioned that it couldn't happen. Why not? For example I asked about the speed an object would have to move at sea level to create a vacuum behind it; in the comments ...
10
votes
5answers
3k views

What causes the permittivity and permeability of vacuum?

When light travels through a material, it gets "slowed down" (at least its net speed decreases). The atoms in the material "disturb" the light in some way which causes it to make stops on its path. ...
8
votes
4answers
397 views

Direct exposure to the vacuum of space

I was watching a few sci-fi movies and was wondering the real science explaining what would happen if you were to be subject to the conditions of outerspace. I read the wikipedia article on space ...
2
votes
2answers
640 views

Speed of light in a vacuum

I see many references to the speed of light in a vacuum implying that it is only truly a constant measurement in a vacuum. I can live with that, but what kind of vacuum? Are we still talking about ...
1
vote
2answers
323 views

Does spacetime have a “mass” value? or What is “Spacetime” made out of?

When measuring the MASS within the Universe, does "space" or "spacetime" have a value? I only ask, because when speaking of expansion, space is expanding. Could it be possible, to reverse the ...
3
votes
1answer
911 views

Why does Hauksbee's electrostatic machine produce light?

I'm reading on the history of the discovery of electricity and the electron, and I've went from reading about Rutherford's gold leaf experiment all the way back to Francis Hauksbee's spinning glass ...
2
votes
2answers
143 views

What is the physical meaning of $a_{\vec{p}} \! \mid \! 0 \rangle$

$a^\dagger_{\vec{p}} \! \mid \! 0 \rangle = \mid \! p \rangle$ is interpreted as a creation of a particle with momentum $p$ from the vacuum. $a_{\vec{p}} \! \mid \! p \rangle = \mid \! 0 \rangle$ is ...
1
vote
2answers
798 views

What is space made of?

General Relativity posits that matter curves spacetime, such that geodesics point towards the object in question, hence, gravity. Now, how does matter do this? What is spacetime "made of", anyway, ...
1
vote
2answers
847 views

How electromagnetic fields travel through vacuum?

How electromagnetic fields travel through vacuum is it right to say that they propagate or travel? do they alternately form each other by charged particles?
0
votes
1answer
106 views

Does time pass fastest in isolated, resting space?

While it is fairly established that both fast movement and the presence of gravity make time pass slower as compared to a system at rest / free of gravity, does that mean that there is no way for time ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there an intuitive description of vacuum entanglement?

People often refer to the fact that the vacuum is an entangled state (It's even described as a maximally entangled state). I was trying to get a feeling for what that really means. The problem is ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Are we living in a false vacuum? Is there any way to tell?

I was thinking of the noted 1980 paper by Sidney Coleman and Frank de Luccia--"Gravitational effects of and on vacuum decay"-- about metastable vacuum states that could tunnel to a lower energy "true ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Water in vacuum (or space) and temperature in space

So, water in vacuum will boil first and then freeze. I don't know how the freeze happens. As pressure lowers to zero, what happened to freezing point? (I know heat taken by vapor, and the water cool ...
4
votes
1answer
187 views

Vacuum energy extraction: What happens to the cosmological constant?

If the vacuum energy is extracted, then what will happen to the cosmological constant? Will it remain the same? .
1
vote
2answers
680 views

What is the expectation value of the number operator when the vacuum has a VEV?

The number operator N applied to a field whose vacuum has zero VEV gives $N|0>=0$. What if we apply it to the Higgs field? The background of this question is that in popular scientific accounts, ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Bell in a vacuum, where does the sound energy go?

I'm not educated in physics, but I learned that a bell struck in a small vacuum chamber will not be heard by people around it (in a school science lab). If it had been surrounded by air, there would ...
12
votes
1answer
1k views

How to interpret vacuum instability of Higgs potential

If the Higgs mass is in a certain range, the quartic self-coupling of the Higgs field becomes negative after renormalization group flow to a high energy scale, signalling an instability of the vacuum ...
4
votes
3answers
818 views

Creation of particle anti-particle pairs

I was reading some QFT notes and there is one point that I don't understand, they are justifying why we need QFT saying that the number of particles is not preserved once we consider special ...
3
votes
0answers
163 views

Is everything made of space? [closed]

I had been studying quantum field theory for a while now, and how there had been many efforts in physics to finally create a "Theory of Everything" (TOE). But while I was learning about all this, I ...
1
vote
2answers
479 views

The virtual particles are only a fictive tool in equations? DO they exist or DON'T? And if they exist, why do we call them VIRTUAL?

There is no "action at a distance" in nature. Attraction of a piece of iron by a magnet, attraction between distant electric charges of opposite sign, have to be mediated by something. The virtual ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

If I put a ping pong ball in a vacuum, would it pop?

If I put a ping pong ball in a vacuum, would it pop? If so, at what point would it happen? Any standard table ping pong ball is acceptable.
4
votes
1answer
329 views

What are the current (popular(ish)) approaches to modelling the quantum nature of spacetime at the Planck scale?

My guess at a list of them would be: spin foams, casual sets, non-commutative geometry, Machian theories, twistor theory or strings and membranes existing in some higher-dimensional geometry... ...
2
votes
0answers
50 views

Why does Hauksbee orb or a similar device produce light?

This essentially fits well to the question asked earlier but had to placed as a separate question... An interesting and detailed answer was provided. However, there are few points, originating from my ...
2
votes
5answers
470 views

Can computers survive bubble nucleations?

According to string landscape theory, our vacua with a cosmological constant of $10^{-123}$ is a metastable vacua which can decay to a supersymmetric vacua with either a zero or negative cosmological ...
1
vote
0answers
48 views

Are topological vacua of QCD Lorentz invariant?

Are topological vacua of QCD Lorentz invariant or they mix under boosts?
1
vote
1answer
216 views

Different density objects falling on Earth's atmosphere?

So I finally understood why 2 objects with different masses, free falling from the same distance reach Earth's surface at the same time (due to the objects Inertia). Now when the objects fall in the ...