The Planck paper with results on dust in the BICEP2 patch of sky is now out, see here. I’m sure experts will weigh in soon and I’ll link to such discussions, but my non-expert take is that Planck is saying that what BICEP2 saw is likely just dust. See section 6 of the paper, especially figure 9 which appears to show that BICEP2’s claimed value of r=.2 is just what you’d expect from dust.
Update: More details from Natalie Wolchover and Sean Carroll.
Looks like Scientific American will have to pulp this month’s magazine, with its Lawrence Krauss cover story about how BICEP2 is experimental evidence for quantum gravity and the multiverse.
The best explanation for all this that I’ve seen of course is from a blogger, Sesh Nadathur at Blank on the Map.
Update: Jester has a sensible take on this fiasco here. It now seems that release of the full Planck polarization results has been pushed back from October to “late November”, just before the early December conference planned long ago to discuss the results. The joint analysis of BICEP2/Planck data that will show if there’s any evidence of something besides dust is supposed to be released at the same time.
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