On this page we will see what the aether-wave-rotation model of light and electromagnetism has to say about a range of observations that are challenging in existing theory.
When we start looking for these, we find an array that in current theory is bewildering.
HL Fizeau, in a very clever experiment in 1851, examined the transmission of light through moving water. He found that the speed of light was affected by the motion of the water, but only by around half of the speed of the liquid. One possible conclusion from this was that the aether was partially dragged along by the water. Another was that there was a mixture of static aether and moving water within the pipe and the light travelled partly through each. The possibility of interference between these separated signals would appear to rule out the latter.
The Esau James model provides a natural explanation for this, as ‘drag’ is an inherent aspect: vortex ring particles influence each other rotationally, and this is transmitted through drag on the surrounding aether. We would therefore expect drag in the Fizeau experiment.
Stellar aberration, identified by Bradley in 1725, is when a star appears in a slightly different position due to the orbital motion of the Earth. This is explained in this model by refraction between the interplanetary aether and that dragged along with the Earth. Airy in 1871 attempted to compound the two effects by using a telescope filled with water.
Michelson famously got a negative result when he searched for the aether. The two alternative ‘explanations’ (beside relativity) were aether drag and Lorentz shortening. The new model supports both effects, and so does not provide complete clarity on this as yet.
Dayton Miller identified a ‘drift’ in Michelson’s results and confirmed this repeatedly. Noble prize winner for economics, Maurice Allais, performed interesting experiments with a paraconical pendulum, and postulated a form of aether drag. These results have been treated as false due to their conflict with current theory, but can now be re-investigated. Aether drag, natural in this model, is of course a physical explanation for the frame dragging of (extended, rotational) general relativity.
The paraconical pendulum, also known as a Foucault pendulum, swings freely, and does not rotate with the Earth. This identifies a background that we also assume when we measure the advance of perihelion of Mercury against the background of stars. This is the famous principle of Mach, that inertia is dependent on the distant stars.
The new model does not suggest a detailed mechanism for this, but offers the prospect of one. While the model is essentially based on a background aether, it also describes a further background of (gravitational) wave radiation, and it is this background that we can identify with Mach.
One puzzle in current theory is in relation to planetary orbits. Newtonian calculations do not allow for a finite time of travel for gravitational effect to pass from the Sun to a planet, such as Jupiter. Consequently, some authorities, such as the magnum opus ‘Gravitation’ by Misner, Thorne and Wheeler, considered to be definitive, have gravity travelling at light speed (as does the Esau James model), while others assume it is much greater, to avoid the following problem.
If gravity travels at light speed, as in the new model, or any finite speed, then its attraction is directed to where the Sun was at the time of transmission. This would tend to accelerate the planet slightly, but this is not observed. For binary stars the effect would be dramatic. The new model suggests that aether drag on the planet would act as a counter to this, but does not quantify the latter effect.
Claims of curious effects on gravity during a lunar eclipse of the Sun have been extensively tested, with ambiguous results. The new model suggests a rather more complex effect than has previously been considered.
In observations of our solar system and beyond there are a lot of gravitational anomalies, far more than we can detail or discuss here. They are currently explained by a range of different ‘dark matter’ and black hole configurations and other guesses more scientific in nature:
The outer reaches of galaxies don’t rotate as they should
The centres of galaxies don’t rotate as they should
Pioneer spacecraft leaving our solar system decelerate at a rate that is not what is predicted
The flyby anomaly: consistently, the paths of spacecraft returning to Earth and flying past do not fit current gravitational theory
Astrophysics is currently engaged in picking off these anomalies one at a time. New matter is invented (and called dark matter) for the rotation of galactic clusters, and then re-invented in a different configuration for galactic rotation, and then invoked for the miraculous normality of the Universe a bare 100 million years after the supposed big bang.
‘Supermassive’ black holes are imagined at galactic centres, even though the associated supermassive bending of light is entirely absent.
The Pioneer anomaly is considered ‘solved’ by creating more and more models until one gets the right answer. Then you stop. But this isn’t science; if you do enough calculations, then eventually one will correspond with the figure you want, even if this is a random process.
Repeated failures of our existing gravitational models suggest an obvious conclusion, that those models are not correct. The problem with inventing alternative formulae to Newton’s inverse law of gravitation – such as MOND – is that these are also ad hoc.
What is required is a physical basis to work from, something that will guide and anchor speculation, and this is provided by this model.
Ignoring the motion of the Earth and solar system relative to a background medium, for example, would be expected to create problems for 'flyby' calculations.
Abandoning the big bang is not required by the new model, but it is strongly suggested by the newly restored requirement for traditional scientific principle.
The big bang hypothesis originally assumed that the cosmological redshift was a Doppler effect caused directly by speed of recession. This idea failed when redshifts exceeded 1, indicating recession velocities greater than the speed of light. At that point the theory added the speculative and untestable idea that (some) space was itself expanding. Abandoning the big bang and the Doppler interpretation avoids this unscientific requirement.
Hubble’s Law is the proportional relationship between redshift and distance applied initially to low redshifts. This was also modified, giving massive changes to distance at high redshift. Without these adjustments, the Hubble Law indicates that the farthest visible galaxies are at distances of around 200 billion light years.
The theoretical origins of dark energy are also challenging. Robert Kirshner was part of a team that investigated a particular type of cosmological ‘standard candle’, a ‘type 1a supernova’, and identified a disparity between distance and apparent luminosity. Kirshner asks why ‘the objects found at a redshift z = 0.5 [are] approximately 25% fainter than [those] we see nearby’i. Of course, we expect that they are not, and Kirshner and others use this to create the model of an accelerating Universe with the consequent requirement for dark matter. What is never mentioned is that this invokes velocity-modified distances, and that without this distance adjustment the evidence for dark energy disappears.
As we have seen, there are a host of challenges to the big bang age of the Universe:
We don’t have an explanation of the heavy elements in our Sun and other stars that fits into the big bang timeframe
There are several ways to calculate the age of our own galaxy: through radioactive dating of thorium and uranium isotopes, viewed as lines in the spectra of stars; through their beryllium content, similarly; through the cooling of white dwarf stars; and through the dating of main sequence stars. All these methods give a set of ages for our own Milky Way galaxy that start at the supposed big bang age and stretch upwards
There are a host of curious phenomena in electromagnetism that make sense once they are interpreted as rotational.
Some have been dismissed as superficial. The rotation of planets and of their cores is associated with magnetic field in astrophysics as well as in the geophysics of the Earth. There are also links between charge and ‘spin’ in quantum theory, between rotational weather systems and electric discharge, and even similarities in the appearance of a lightning bolt and a tightly twisted towel.
The electrophorus, which the Reader can look up, can be understood as the sharing of rotational energy between discs of different materials.
In Faraday’s ice pail, all the electric charge moves from an inner conductor to an outer one, and rotationally this would be a simple centrifugal effect. Similarly, all of the charge on a current-carrying wire is found on the outer skin, something confirmed by measurements on a hollow conductor. Maxwell’s vortices are known colloquially as Faraday tubes and, according to Misner, Thorne and Wheeler, ‘provide the most direct geometric representation that anyone has ever been able to give for the machinery by which the electromagnetic field acts on a charged particle.’ii
AG Kelly did experiments that involved rotating all or part of an electromagnetic circuit. In 1995, in the American Journal of Physics, Pelligrini and Swift asked: ‘Maxwell's equations in a rotating medium: Is there a problem?’ And concluded, as had Kelly, that there is. They observe that the ‘field equations for a rotating object are well known and the analysis is straightforward, but the result disagrees with the Wilson experiment’, and ‘that the conventional theory applied in the current way does not describe the results of existing experiments.’
There is a curious effect in electromagnetism known as Aharonov-Bohm. This identifies a region surrounding a magnetic field where light is affected as if it is a wave travelling through a rotating medium. In the new model the wave and rotating medium actually exist, where the field, the bundle of vortices, drags the surrounding medium around. Cook, Fearn and Milonni, in the American Journal of Physics in 1995, suggest ‘that the Aharonov-Bohm effect, like many other quantum effects, can in large part be regarded as a general sort of wave phenomenon rather than a distinctly quantum mechanical one.’iii
So how does the electromagnetic attraction and repulsion between charged particles work? This is tricky to calculate hydrodynamically, and I have not attempted it, but qualitatively it seems to work. Not only that, but it becomes more complex at close approach, suggesting the strong and weak nuclear forces.
The central feature of matter is mass, and the distinguishing feature of mass is inertia: it takes effort to get mass moving, and also to slow it down again.
In this model mass is a primitive. It is already there in the reasoning of Maxwell. He invokes vortices as magnetism, and mass and inertia are the essential component of vortex motion: the inertial tendency of each small element to fly off at a tangent is balanced by a pressure difference, and it is the low pressure centre of the vortex that provides magnetic attraction.
It is there before Maxwell in our understanding of longitudinal waves. The pressure forces that maintain the oscillation are required to overcome inertia in just the same way as for vortices.
Another puzzle is what ‘Gravitation’ calls ‘the miraculous identity of particles of the same type’iv. In the new model there is an equilibrium between the noisy background and the vortex ring particle, which further suggests that the sizes of these particles are determined by their noisy environment, producing the uniformity of particles that we observe. One test of this suggestion would be if an extreme environment produced significant differences in these otherwise identical particles. Professor Humphrey Maris, a British physicist and expert in liquid helium from Brown University, Rhode Island, gained notoriety through his claims that the electron has been ‘split’v, albeit under unusual conditions .
We have seen elsewhere on this site that the discovery of the ‘Higgs boson’ is the discovery of a Higgs-like field, at an energy other than that predicted. The reasoning behind the Higgs is that it is the field that gives particles inertia, that slows them down and prevents them travelling at light speed, but it also maintains that speed. This idea doesn't quite work.
The aether, in contrast, is a physical entity. Light and gravity, being wave mediated, travel at the natural speed for waves in the medium. Particles, being rotational structures formed of aether, can travel at different speeds, but not at light speed or greater.
Instead of a Higgs field as a background that mediates motion, we have an old fashioned aether background that does exactly what we would expect for light and electromagnetism. It has mass and inertia and, while these are not yet understood in any detail, it offers the prospect of cause and effect explanation for gravitational and inertial behaviour in a way that science is supposed to.
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i. Robert P. Kirshner, of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Perspective: Supernovae, an accelerating universe and the cosmological constant, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 96, Issue 8 (1999) pages 4224-4227.
ii. Charles W Misner, Kip S Thorne, John Archibald Wheeler, ‘Gravitation’ (WH Freeman, NY, 1973) page 101.
iii. Cook, Fearn and Milonni, American Journal of Physics 63 (1995) page 706.
iv. Charles W Misner, Kip S Thorne, John Archibald Wheeler, ‘Gravitation’ (WH Freeman, NY, 1973) page 1215
v. Humphrey Maris, J. Classen, C-K. Su, M. Mohazzab, Electrons and Cavitation in Liquid Helium, Phys. Rev. 57 (1998) page 3000