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Science

Submission + - Kilogram gets controversial (nature.com)

gbrumfiel writes: As Slashdot has noted, the kilogram has a problem. The SI unit is officially defined as the weight of a 130-year-old platinum-iridium cylinder in France. But the physical object appears to be getting lighter.

Scientists want to replace the cylinder with a new standard based on Planck's constant, but two experiments designed to facilitate the switch keep coming up with different results. Now one researcher is proposing a solution: just average the two diverging experiments and use that value as the official definition.

Not everyone thinks that averaging the two amounts to sound research: "Deciding to just average these two results would be perfectly proper mathematics, but it would not be science," says Michael Hart, a physicist at the University of Manchester, UK.

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Kilogram gets controversial

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