Pure logical thinking cannot yield us any knowledge of the empirical world: all knowledge of reality starts from experience and ends in it. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
Physics constitutes a logical system of thought which is in a state of evolution, whose basis (principles) cannot be distilled, as it were, from experience by an inductive method, but can only be arrived at by free invention. The justification (truth content) of the system rests in the verification of the derived propositions (Principles) by Sense Experiences. .. Evolution is proceeding in the direction of increasing simplicity of the logical basis. .. We must always be ready to change these notions - that is to say, the axiomatic basis of physics - in order to do justice to perceived facts in the most perfect way logically. (Albert Einstein, Physics and Reality, 1936)
As a Philosopher of Science who has taught Science for several years, and having two parents who where teachers, I naturally have an interest in Education, and in particular the Education of Science.
So what is Science? Science is founded on two things, our Senses (Observation and Experiment), and Principles (Theories) and their Logical Deductions. The aim is to unite these two sources of truth such that there is harmony between our Theories and their predictions, and the Science Experiments which we construct to test our Theories (as Albert Einstein beautifully wrote).
With respect to the Education of Science (and thus Science Fair Projects / Science Experiments) I believe that there are three important things we should remember.
1. Education should be fun (most of the time) and should inspire enthusiasm and curiosity as the foundation for learning (not force / threats, which never work).
2. Science Experiments should focus on teaching us about Reality, i.e. learning critical thinking skills such that we can determine the truth for ourselves (not learning things to pass exams).
3. Science Fair Projects and Experiments need not be complex. We all exist in reality so any simple experiment is still a valid observation of the real world which requires a Scientific explanation.
Below you will find five simple and very famous Science Experiments from famous Philosophers of Science:
i) Sir Isaac Newton's experiment of rotating a bucket of water. (What is the Motion relative too?)
ii) Ernst Mach's rotation of a body relative to all other matter in the universe. (How does matter across the Universe instantly communicate forces?)
iii) David Hume's Experiment of dropping a stone. (Why does it fall to the Earth, what is Gravity, what is the connection between the Earth and stone?)
iv) Michael Faraday's Induction of Electricity by the relative motion of a magnet and conductor. (What is Electricity, what causes Electric and Magnetic Fields?)
v) Young's Two Slit Light Experiment and Richard Feynman's explanation. (What is Light, how can Light behave both as a wave and a particle?)
While these Science Experiments are all very simple (and fun to do as a Science Fair Project) what is most important is to try and understand what Reality is such that we can understand why light and matter behave in this manner. Currently modern physics is founded on Particles and Forces in relative Space and Time, though the explanation of how the particles 'generate' forces which act-at-a-distance on other particles across the Universe has never been explained.
There is now a new simple explanation for these Science Experiments, founded on the Spherical Standing Wave Structure of Matter in Absolute Space (Space is a Wave Medium). It is the purpose of this website to show how the Wave Structure of Matter (WSM) explains and solves not only these simple science experiments, but most of the major problems of Physics, Philosophy and Metaphysics.
I hope you enjoy these experiments and that they stimulate you and your students to further thoughts on the true foundations of Science, how matter exists, moves and interacts with all other matter in this Space of our Universe.
The above image shows a simple experiment, conducted by Newton, which involves somewhat mysterious results. The cross section view shows a bucket which contains water and is suspended by a cord so it is free to rotate around its centerline. To prepare for the experiment the bucket has been turned many revolutions around the centerline so the cord is twisted and exerts a torque on the bucket. The surface of the water is flat when the bucket is held motionless relative to Earth.
When the bucket is set in motion around its centerline so that the twisted cord contributes to this motion, the water gradually recedes from the middle of the bucket and rises up at the sides of the bucket creating a concave surface. Why does this occur? This question was debated in the 1700's by G. Leibniz, L. Euler, I. Kant, and others. In the 1880's Ernst Mach wrote as follows.
Newton's experiment with the rotating vessel of water simply informs us, that the relative rotation of the water with respect to the sides of the vessel produces no noticeable centrifugal forces, but that such forces are produced by its relative motion with respect to the mass of the Earth and the other celestial bodies. (Ernst Mach) (From http://www.peterallport.com)This can be summarised as follows;
Now Newton assumed Absolute Motion relative to Absolute Space, an idea that is currently ridiculed. Instead the ideas of Leibniz, Mach and Einstein have prevailed - that motion is not relative to Space (Absolute Motion), but only to other matter in Space (Relative Motion), which is what we in fact observe. As Einstein explains;
But on the other hand there is a weighty argument to be adduced in favour of the ether hypothesis. To deny the ether is ultimately to assign that empty space has no physical qualities whatever. The fundamental facts of mechanics do not harmonise with this view. For the mechanical behaviour of a corporeal system hovering freely in empty space depends not only on relative positions (distances) and relative velocities, but also on its state of rotation, which physically may be taken as a characteristic not appertaining to the system in itself. In order to be able to look upon the rotation of the system, at least formally, as something real, Newton objectivises space. Since he classes his absolute space together with real things, for him rotation relative to an absolute space is also something real. Newton might no less well have called his absolute space 'Ether'; what is essential is merely that besides observable objects, another thing, which is not perceptible, must be looked upon as real, to enable acceleration or rotation to be looked upon as something real. (Albert Einstein, Leiden Lecture 1920)
It is true that Mach tried to avoid having to accept as real something which is not observable by endeavouring to substitute in mechanics a mean acceleration with reference to the totality of the masses in the universe in place of an acceleration with reference to absolute space. But inertial resistance opposed to relative acceleration of distant masses presupposes action at a distance; and as the modern physicist does not believe that he may accept this action at a distance, he comes back once more, if he follows Mach, to the ether, which has to serve as medium for the effects of inertia. But this conception of the ether to which we are led by Mach's way of thinking differs essentially from the ether as conceived by Newton, by Fresnel, and by Lorentz. Mach's ether not only conditions the behaviour of inert masses, but is also conditioned in its state by them. (Albert Einstein, Leiden Lecture 1920)
Recapitulating, we may say that according to the general theory of relativity space is endowed with physical qualities; in this sense, therefore, there exists an ether. According to the general theory of relativity space without ether is unthinkable; for in such space there not only would be no propagation of light, but also no possibility of existence for standards of space and time (measuring-rods and clocks), nor therefore any space-time intervals in the physical sense. But this ether may not be thought of as endowed with the quality characteristic of ponderable media, as consisting of parts which may be tracked through time. The idea of motion may not be applied to it. (Albert Einstein, Leiden Lecture 1920)
So how do we solve this problem that has puzzled Humanity for many centuries. To do this we shall now look at Ernst Mach's Principle, that the rotation of a body is relative to all the other bodies in the Universe.
Mach (1883) stated that Newton's law of Inertia F=m.a, was established by all the matter of the universe. At that time the unknown origin of Newton's inertia law attracted frequent attention. Mach (very cleverly) saw the connection between inertia and distant matter in the universe from considerations on the following experiment, which produces two fundamentally different ways of measuring a body's rotation in Space: First, without looking at the sky, one can measure the centripetal (inertial) force on a rotating mass m using Newton's law in the form F=ma=mv2/r to find circumferential speed v. The second way is to compare an object's angular position and circumferential speed v relative to the distant fixed stars. Remarkably, both methods give exactly the same result and this was a great mystery at the time. Mach realized that the inertia law required a means to link the inertial behavior of each body with all other matter (the stars) of our universe.
The obvious problem of the particle conception of matter is to explain how all the distant matter of the universe could instantaneously act upon a moving body here on earth. This paradox is completely resolved by the Wave Structure of Matter (WSM) which shows that all distant matter establishes its presence throughout the universe by their In-waves and Out-waves which produce a nearly uniform mass-energy density of space throughout Space. Thus the 'presence' of distant matter from our universe already exists at each point in our Space. Nothing is instantaneous and the waves only travel at speed c. Further, the Equation of the Cosmos confirms that the mass of an object is determined by all the other matter in the universe (as it is their Out-waves that form our In-waves, and thus our mass-energy density of space and Mass) as required by Mach's Principle.
Thus the universe is finite (within an infinite Space), spherical and Machian, as required by Einstein's general relativity;
I must not fail to mention that a theoretical argument can be adduced in favor of the hypothesis of a finite universe. The general theory of relativity teaches that the inertial mass of a given body is greater as there are more ponderable masses in proximity to it; thus it seems very natural to reduce the total inertia of a body to interactions between it and the other bodies in the universe, as indeed, ever since Newton's time, gravity has been completely reduced to interaction between bodies. The results of calculation indicate that the universe would necessarily be spherical. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
The Wave Structure of Matter effectively unites Isaac Newton's Absolute Space with Gottfried Leibniz, Ernst Mach and Albert Einstein's Relative Motion of Matter to all other Matter. The rotation of the bucket is relative to both matter and space because matter exists as the Spherical Wave Motion of Space (Matter and Space are united). Thus the rotation of the bucket is not relative to Absolute Space alone, nor is it relative to all other Matter, but is in fact relative to both.
(Why does it fall to the Earth, what is Gravity, what is the Necessary Connection between the Earth and Stone?)
It must certainly be allowed, that nature has kept us at a great distance from all her secrets, and has afforded us only the knowledge of a few superficial qualities of objects; while she conceals from us those powers and principles on which the influence of those objects entirely depends.
When we look about us towards external objects, and consider the operation of causes, we are never able, in a single instance, to discover any power or necessary connexion; any quality, which binds the effect to the cause, and renders the one an infallible consequence of the other.
... experience only teaches us, how one event constantly follows another; without instructing us in the secret connexion, which binds them together, and renders them inseparable.
We then call the one object, Cause; the other, Effect. We suppose that there is some connexion between them; some power in the one, by which it infallibly produces the other, and operates with the greatest certainty and strongest necessity. (David Hume, 1737)
The solution to Hume's Problem of Causation is realized by understanding how Matter Exists in Space as a Spherical Standing Wave whose Wave-Center (or Focal Point) creates the 'Particle' Effect of Matter. And once we understand the Cause of the 'Particle' Effect, thus we can logically deduce the Motion of the Wave-Center ('Particle'). By simply considering how the Velocity of the Spherical In-Wave changes as it flows in through other matter in the Space around it, we can logically determine where those Spherical In-Waves will meet at their Wave-Center thus we can determine the future 'motion' of the 'Particle' Effect.
So let us consider David Hume's simple problem of why a stone falls to the Earth.
Firstly, we must realize that the stone Exists as many trillions of Spherical (Ellipsoidal) Standing Waves whose Wave-Centers / Focal Points are trapped resonating together in the Space that we call the Matter of the stone. Thus the reason why the stone falls to the Earth is simply because the Spherical (Ellipsoidal) In-Waves travel more slowly through the higher mass-energy density of Space that we call the matter of Earth than they do in the opposite direction from Space through the Earth's atmosphere. This causes the Wave-Center (where the Spherical In-Waves meet at their Focal Point) to move (accelerate) towards the earth - which we see as the stone falling. Thus as Hume demanded, we have replaced Inductive Logic from repeated observation of Effects with Deductive Logic from the Principles of the WSM, which demonstrate the Cause of the 'Particle' Effect.
Induction of Electricity by the Relative Motion of a Magnet & Conductor. What is Electricity, what causes Electric & Magnetic Force Fields?
It is fascinating to muse: Would Faraday have discovered the law of electromagnetic induction if he had received a regular college education? Unencumbered by the traditional way of thinking, he felt that the introduction of the 'field' as an independent element of reality helped him to coordinate the experimental facts. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
In 1820 the Swede Hans Oersted (1777-1831) had demonstrated the connection between electricity and magnetism when he held a compass needle near a wire connected to a battery. The compass needle swung round so that it pointed at right angles to the current. When he reversed the current the needle pointed the other way. Faraday realised that if an electric current could affect a magnet then a magnet might produce an electric current. In 1831 he mounted a copper wheel so that its rim passed between the poles of a magnet. When the wheel was turned, a current was produced in the copper, which could be led off down a wire. Michael Faraday had discovered ELECTROMAGNETIC INDUCTION, the basis for all electrical generators.
On 29th August 1831, using his 'induction ring', Faraday made one of his greatest discoveries - electromagnetic induction: the 'induction' or generation of electricity in a wire by means of the electromagnetic effect of a current in another wire. The induction ring was the first electric transformer. In a second series of experiments in September he discovered magneto-electric induction: the production of a steady electric current. To do this, Faraday attached two wires through a sliding contact to a copper disc. By rotating the disc between the poles of a horseshoe magnet he obtained a continuous direct current. This was the first generator.
I cannot conceive curved lines of force without the conditions of a physical existence in that intermediate space. (Michael Faraday)
When a mathematician engaged in investigating physical actions and results has arrived at his own conclusions, may they not be expressed in common language as fully, clearly, and definitely as in mathematical formulae? If so, would it not be a great boon to such as well to express them so --- translating them out of their hieroglyphics that we might also work upon them by experiment?
( Michael Faraday, to James Clerk Maxwell in 1857)
Faraday came from no learned academy; his mind was not burdened with traditional ideas and theories.
(Max Born, Einstein's Theory of Relativity)
The greatest change in the axiomatic basis of physics - in other words, of our conception of the structure of reality - since Newton laid the foundation of theoretical physics was brought about by Faraday's and Maxwell's work on electromagnetic field phenomena. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
Faraday developed the mathematical concept of the 'electromagnetic force field' as a way of mathematically describing action-at-a-distance for charged particles (i.e. electrons and protons). This is a continuous mathematical 'plotting' of the effects (forces and thus accelerated motions) that matter has on other matter in the Space around it, thus it is a description of effects (inductive / a posteriori) rather than cause (deductive / a priori). And as we have explained, this is important because the ultimate Principles of Physics must be a priori, not a posteriori. It is also important to remember that the electromagnetic (e-m) field is a vector (directional) quantity that defines force and direction of acceleration of many charged particles upon one another. It is continuous in the sense that the distance and force between particles can vary by infinitely small amounts. As Einstein explains;
Faraday must have grasped with unerring instinct the artificial nature of all attempts to refer electromagnetic phenomena to actions-at-a-distance between electric particles reacting on each other. How was each single iron filing among a lot scattered on a piece of paper to know of the single electric particles running round in a nearby conductor? All these electric particles together seemed to create in the surrounding space a condition which in turn produced a certain order in the filings. These spatial states, today called fields, would, he was convinced, furnish the clue to the mysterious electromagnetic interactions. He conceived these fields as states of mechanical stress in an elastically distended body (ether). (Einstein, 1954)
Let us now briefly consider the famous double slit experiments for both photons and electrons. There is a fundamental contradiction in the assumption that a single photon, as a particle, is able to go through both slits simultaneously, and thus produce an interference pattern. Yet experimental observation confirms the existence of an interference pattern. Feynman explains this experiment as such;
... very weak light of one color - one photon at a time - goes from a source at S to a detector at D. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Fig. 5 Two small holes (at A and B) in a screen that is between a source S and a detector D let nearly the same amount of light through (in this case 1%) when one or the other hole is open. When both holes are open, interference occurs; the detector clicks from zero to 4% of the time, depending on the separation of A and B.
One would normally think that opening a second hole would always increase the amount of light reaching the detector, but that's not what actually happens. And so saying that light goes either one way or the other is false. I still catch myself saying, Well, it goes either this way or that way, but when I say that, I have to keep in mind that I mean in the sense of adding amplitudes: the photon has an amplitude to go one way, and an amplitude to go the other way. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
As before, quantum theory calculates the correct answer, by considering both paths as possible, and therefore 'probability interference' occurs. But this still contradicts the very idea that light is a particle, for how is it possible for one particle go through both slits and produce an interference pattern?
The Wave Structure of Matter clearly solves these problems of the interference of light in the double slit experiment. From memory I think it was Feynman who said that a credible theory of reality must explain the double slit experiment. He was correct. So let us have a brief look at this famous experiment by Thomas Young (in 1801 I think).
Fig. 6 The interference of light in Young's double slit experiment.
Young's double slit experiment provides a method for measuring the wavelength of light. In fact, Young used this technique to make the first measurement of the wavelength of light. Additionally, the experiment gave the wave model of light a great deal of credibility. It was inconceivable that particles of light coming through the slits could cancel each other in a way that would explain the regions of darkness. (Serway)
In this experiment we find similar interference results for electrons as observed for light passing through two slits. As with the previous experiment, we also find that if we close either slit, then the interference pattern disappears. The Wave Structure of Matter does sensibly explain this interference of the 'particle' with both slits. This 'particle', being caused by the Wave-Center of a SPherical Standing Wave, does pass through one slit. But we must also consider that the other slit will have some effect on the incoming spherical (ellipsoidal) waves, which determines the future position of the wave-center 'particle'. In the two slit experiment, the effect of the other slit must always be non symmetrical, it effects only the incoming waves on one side of the wave-center, dependant upon which slit the wave-center passes through. It is this interference that logically causes the interference pattern for electrons in this experiment.
Fig. 7 The Electron in the Two Slit Experiment
This view of things from the foundation of the WSM is consistent with modern physics.
In order to interpret these results, one is forced to conclude that an electron interacts with both slits simultaneously. (Serway)
Below is another very closely related (and also very famous) physics experiment on the reflection of light by a mirror.
Before reading this explanation it would help if you read the page on Light.
Quantum Theory: Light Quanta (Photons) - Very briefly, Light is a wave phenomena, but Standing Wave Interactions (Resonant Coupling) only occur at discrete frequencies. The electrons in matter are effectively bound to the nucleus and form complex (oscillating) standing wave patterns. Only discrete standing wave patterns are allowed and light is emitted and absorbed as electrons move from one wave pattern to another. This explains Schrodinger's wave equations which correspond to the discrete energy states of Matter and Light Quanta (Photons).
For a mirror, the light waves are not really reflected. Instead, high energy / wave state electrons in the light source resonantly couple with the electrons in the mirror, causing these to move into a higher energy wave state. These electrons in the mirror then effectively become the light source, and resonantly couple with electrons in the detector, giving the appearance that light has gone from the source to the detector by 'reflecting' of the mirror.
Let us now examine Feynman's experiment of light reflecting from a mirror (p-39) to show how a contradictory photon/particle structure of light and matter is sensibly replaced by the Wave Structure of Matter and Light.
Fig.1 The classical view of the world says that the mirror will reflect light where the angle of incidence is equal to the angle of reflection.
At S we have a source that emits light of one color at very low intensity. The source emits one photon at a time. At P, we place a photomultiplier to detect photons.
Now we would expect that all the light that reaches the detector reflects of the middle of the mirror, because that's the place where the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection. And it seems fairly obvious that the parts of the mirror out near the two ends have as much to do with the reflection as the price of cheese, right? (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Feynman is correct in saying this, based upon classical wave theory, which we know is wrong.
But based upon the idea of light as resonant coupling between two spherical standing waves (electrons) bound in oscillating wave patterns in atoms / molecules, then we find a sensible explanation to Feynman's strange theory of light and matter. It becomes obvious that the Spherical Wave Structure of Matter predicts that the light source will interact with the whole mirror, as Feynman explains.
Fig.2 As Light is a Transitional / Oscillating Spherical Standing Wave Interaction, it has an effect on all of the Matter of the Mirror.
Although you might think that the parts of the mirror near the two ends have nothing to do with the reflection of the light that goes from the source to the detector, let us look at what quantum theory has to say. Rule: The probability that a particular event occurs is the square of the final arrow that is found by drawing an arrow for each way the event could happen, and then combining the arrows. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Fig. 3 The quantum view of the world says that light has an equal amplitude to reflect from every part of the mirror, from A to M.
You might think I'm crazy, because for most of the ways I told you a photon could reflect off the mirror, the angles aren't equal. But I'm not crazy, because that's the way light really goes. How can that be? ... (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Feynman is not crazy, he has simply confirmed what the Wave Structure of Matter tells us is true. Spherical Waves do 'take all possible paths' and thus can 'reflect' of any part of the mirror. What is crazy is the idea that a single photon particle can 'reflect / bounce' of all these different places. This does not make sense because it is not true. Light is not a particle it is a spherical standing wave interaction.
So the theory of quantum electrodynamics gave the right answer - the middle of the mirror is the important part for reflection - but this correct result came out at the expense of believing that light reflects all over the mirror, and having to add a bunch of little arrows together whose sole purpose was to cancel out. All that might seem to you to be a waste of time - some silly game for mathematicians only. After all, it doesn't seem like real physics to have something there that only cancels out! (Richard Feynman, 1985)
The Wave Structure of Matter obviously explains how waves cancel out. Light, as resonant coupling between two spherical standing waves (electrons) interacts with all the matter of the mirror. It is only where the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection that the waves do not cancel each other out. Therefore we see light as traveling on this classical path only.
Feynman tests his theory that the whole mirror can reflect in the following way;
Let's test the idea that there really is reflection going on all over the mirror by doing another experiment. First, let's chop off most of the mirror, and leave about a quarter of it over on the left. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Fig. 4 When light reflects from only part of the mirror, then the waves cancel out, and no light is observed at P.
Feynman then demonstrates that no reflection is observed because the sum of all the paths cancels out. He then cleverly proves this in the following way.
But let's suppose we carefully scrape the mirror away in those areas whose arrows have a bias in one direction. (Which is causing the waves to cancel out.) (Richard Feynman, 1985)
We would expect that if we only allow waves to interact on paths that constructively interfere, and we eliminate paths where waves cancel, that light should now 'reflect' of this segmented mirror (diffraction grating). It does. As Feynman says;
Isn't it wonderful, - you can take a piece of mirror where you didn't expect any reflection, scrape away part of it, and it reflects. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
It is also wonderful that the Wave Structure of Matter sensibly explains this experiment. That resonant coupling between electrons only occurs when their waves interfere in a constructive way (which the diffraction grating allows). Effectively, for spherical standing waves, we must consider the wave interference of all possible paths in space. Feynman agrees.
Demonstrating the reality of reflection from all parts of the mirror shows that there is an amplitude for every way an event can happen. So light doesn't really travel only in a straight line; it smells the neighbouring paths around it. (Richard Feynman, 1985)
Yes, well 'smells the neighbourhood' is one way of saying it, but it leaves science in a bad state of affairs. The Wave Structure of Matter clearly explains the phenomena of light reflecting from a mirror in a way that does not require any of Feynman's strangeness (strange being a uniquely human trait I suspect).
To achieve an exact calculation of how light reflects, we must consider the oscillating spherical wave patterns from the light source to the mirror, and then from the matter of the mirror to the detector. Thus it is necessary to consider the wave interference of all these waves, the net result being that only where the angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection do the waves not cancel out, and thus the electrons / spherical standing waves can resonantly couple with one another. By scraping away some of the electrons from the mirror, we are able to make a mirror / grating which only allows electrons to emit light waves which are in phase and result in constructive interference, such that the mirror / grating is able to reflect light.
We begin with two very famous quotes from Newton on Absolute Space and Time. Let us first say that Newton's comments on Absolute Space being the foundations of the Relative Motions of Matter in Space is absolutely correct and very astute as Newton effectively predicts the evolution of relativity (that it is easier to measure the motion of matter relative to other matter, rather than to Space itself!)
Absolute Space, in its own nature, without regard to any thing external, remains always similar and immovable. Relative Space is some moveable dimension or measure of the absolute spaces; which our senses determine, by its position to bodies; and which is vulgarly taken for immovable space.
... And so instead of absolute places and motions, we use relative ones; and that without any inconvenience in common affairs; but in Philosophical disquisitions, we ought to abstract from our senses, and consider things themselves, distinct from what are only sensible measures of them. For it may be that there is no body really at rest, to which the places and motions of others may be referred.
... Absolute, True, and Mathematical Time, of itself, and from its own nature flows equably without regard to any thing external, and by another name is called Duration: Relative, Apparent, and Common Time is some sensible and external (whether accurate or unequable) measure of Duration by the means of motion, which is commonly used instead of True time; such as an Hour, a Day, a Month, a Year.
... For the natural days are truly unequable, though they are commonly consider'd as equal, and used for a measure of time: Astronomers correct this inequality for their more accurate deducing of the celestial motions. It may be, that there is no such thing as an equable motion, whereby time may be accurately measured. All motions may be accelerated and retarded, but the True, or equable progress, of Absolute time is liable to no change. The duration or perseverance of the existence of things remains the same, whether the motions are swift or slow, or none at all. (Newton, 1687)
Newton is also largely correct that Time is intimately connected to Motion, for Time is ultimately caused by the Wave-Motions of Space. It is also correct to assume an absolute Time (like QT rather than Relativity) such that we have a constant reference to measure the changing velocity of wave-motion. (But Time does not exist as a 'thing in itself' like Newton thought!)
Let us now consider Albert Einstein's analysis of Newton's Mechanics (which is lucid and logical as reflects the greatness of Albert Einstein).
The first attempt to lay a uniform theoretical foundation was the work of Newton. In his system everything is reduced to the following concepts:
i) Mass points with invariable mass
ii) Instant action-at-a-distance between any pair of mass points
iii) Law of motion for the mass point.
Physical events, in Newton's view, are to be regarded as the motions, governed by fixed laws, of material points in space. This theoretical scheme is in essence an atomistic and mechanistic one. There was not, strictly speaking, any all-embracing foundation, because an explicit law was only formulated for the actions-at-a-distance of gravitation; while for other actions-at-a-distance nothing was established a priori except the law of equality of actio and reactio. Moreover, Newton himself fully realized that time and space were essential elements, as physically effective factors, of his system. (Albert Einstein, 1940)
We now realise his obvious error was to introduce discrete 'particles' with Motion, rather than the Motion of Space itself, i.e. Spherical Standing Wave Motion, which creates the 'particle effect' at its Wave-Center.
Newton's endeavours to represent his system as necessarily conditioned by experience and to introduce the smallest possible number of concepts not directly referable to empirical objects is everywhere evident; in spite of this he set up the concept of absolute space and absolute time. For this he has often been criticized in recent years. Therefore, in addition to masses and temporally variable distances, there must be something else that determines motion. That something he takes to be relation to absolute space. He is aware that space must possess a kind of physical reality if his laws of motion are to have any meaning, a reality of the same sort as material points and their distances. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
Albert Einstein considered matter to be spatially extended (and represented by Spherical Force Fields) thus he did not believe in the existence of a fundamental Space or Time that was separate from Matter. As with Leibniz and Mach, Albert Einstein believed that all motion of matter in Space could instead be understood as motion of matter relative to other matter, thus the concept of an absolute Space became unnecessary.
In Newtonian physics the elementary theoretical concept on which the theoretical description of material bodies is based is the material point, or particle. Thus matter is considered a priori to be discontinuous. This makes it necessary to consider the action of material points on one another as action-at-a-distance. Since the latter concept seems quite contrary to everyday experience, it is only natural that the contemporaries of Newton - and indeed Newton himself - found it difficult to accept. Owing to the almost miraculous success of the Newtonian system, however, the succeeding generations of physicists became used to the idea of action-at-a-distance. Any doubt was buried for a long time to come. (Albert Einstein, 1950)
The solution though is obvious once known - to discard the discrete particle in Space and replace it with the Spherical Standing Wave (SSW) in Space. Then instant action-at-a-distance between discrete particles becomes action-at-a-distance between the In and Out-Waves of the Wave-Centers 'particles' in Space. This leads to a clear understanding of how matter interacts with other matter at-a-distance in Space, as it is the interaction of the In-Waves and Out-Waves with other SSWs (and particularly their Wave-Centers) that explains all matter to matter interactions in Space. These interactions are limited by the velocity of the In-Waves and Out-Waves which is the velocity of light c. Thus actions-at-a-distance are not instantaneous as Newton had assumed, but are limited by the velocity of the In-Waves (velocity of light c, as Albert Einstein realised).
On the other hand, with respect to an absolute Space, it is one purpose of this article to show that in fact Newton was correct, there does exist a fundamental physical Space which acts as a wave medium and necessarily connects all things. Newton's error was to further assume the existence of the motion of material particles in this Space, rather than the (Spherical) Wave-Motion of Space itself.
Newton's error, of assuming too many existents, leads to two insurmountable problems;
As Born explains;
One obvious objection to the hypothesis of an elastic Aether (Space) arises from the necessity of ascribing to it the great rigidity it must have to account for the high velocity of Waves. Such a substance would necessarily offer resistance to the motion of heavenly bodies, particularly to that of planets. Astronomy has never detected departures from Newton's Laws of Motion that would point to such a resistance. (Born, 1924)
While Born is correct that Space is very rigid and this explains the high Wave-Velocity, he (along with most physicists) mistakenly assumes that separate 'particles' exist in this Space, and thus it is inconceivable that Space itself can exist as it would resist the motion of these particles. The obvious solution is to replace the concept of matter existing as discrete particles with matter existing as Spherical Standing Waves in this Space, thus the motion of the particle becomes the apparent motion of successive Wave-Centers.
Newton simply assumed that discrete particles could act instantly on other particles at-a-distance in Space (Newton's instantaneous action-at-a-distance) though he was well aware of this problem as he explains in his famous letter to Bentley;
It is inconceivable that inanimate brute matter should, without mediation of something else which is not matter, operate on and affect other matter without mutual contact. ... That gravity should be innate, inherent and essential to matter, so that one body may act upon another at-a-distance, through a vacuum, without the mediation of anything else by and through which their action may be conveyed from one to another, is to me so great an absurdity that I believe no man, who has in philosophical matters a competent faculty of thinking, can ever fall into it.
So far I have explained the phenomena by the force of gravity, but I have not yet ascertained the cause of gravity itself. ... and I do not arbitrarily invent hypotheses. (Newton. Letter to Richard Bentley 25 Feb. 1693)
Action-at-a-distance has puzzled philosophers and physicists since Newton first assumed instantaneous action-at-a-distance for gravitational Mass. For if matter is assumed to be a tiny particle, how could it interact (instantly!) with other matter at a distance in Space (across the entire universe)? For example, how do we, here on earth, sense the heat and light from the sun so distant in Space.
We now realize that matter is not small, it is large. Indeed Albert Einstein was very close to the truth - matter is spherically spatially extended, thus as we have said, Newton's instant action-at-a-distance from a particle becomes action-at-a-distance from the Wave-Center of Spherical Standing Waves in Space, due to the interaction and change in velocity of their In and Out-Waves.
(i.e. As a consequence of Principle Two, the In-Waves of the Spherical Standing Wave in Space interact with other SSWs in Space (particularly their high Wave-Amplitude/Density Wave-Centers) as they flow in through them and change their velocity accordingly. This determines where each successive In-Wave will ultimately meet at their respective Wave-Center (i.e. the future position of the Wave-Center / 'particle') which causes the apparent motion (acceleration) of the 'particle'. This then explains action-at-a-distance (from the Wave-Center) and why it is not instantaneous, but rather, is limited by the velocity of the In-Waves / Velocity of light c.)
It is true that Newton tried to reduced light to the motion of material points in his corpuscular theory of light. Later on, however, as the phenomena of finite velocity, polarization, diffraction, and interference of light forced upon this theory more and more unnatural modifications, Huygens' undulatory wave theory of light prevailed. (Albert Einstein, 1936)
Albert Einstein clearly realized, as did physicists of the time, that the particle concept of light is unable to explain experimental phenomena like polarization, diffraction, and interference, which are obviously explained by wave phenomena. This divide between Newton's particle conception of light and Huygens' wave theory of light was decided by Thomas Young's (1801) famous double slit experiment which showed interference patterns that could only be explained by a wave theory. For how could a single particle travel through two slits and interfere with itself?
Further, as Albert Einstein argues, it is impossible to explain how particles of matter emit and absorb particles of light.
What in that case becomes of the material points of which light is composed when the light is absorbed? (Albert Einstein, 1931)
So while Newton's particle theory for light and matter had substantial logical (mathematical) success at explaining certain phenomena, particularly the orbits of planets, it clearly produced many paradoxes due to its fundamental error of assuming the existence of discrete particles.
Yet no serious doubt of the mechanical (particle) foundation of physics arose, in the first place because nobody knew where to find a foundation of another sort. Only slowly, under the irresistible pressure of facts, there developed a new foundation of physics, 'Field' physics. (Albert Einstein, 1954)
We shall shortly consider the 'Field' physics, but before this we need to finally explain Newton' famous Law of Inertia;
An object at rest will remain at rest and an object in motion will continue in motion with a constant velocity unless it experiences a net external force. (Serway, 1992)
(Mass is caused by the Relationship between Change in Velocity c of the In-Waves and the resultant Change in Location of the Wave-Center / Acceleration of the 'Particle')
It is necessary to correctly understand the Principles of the Wave Structure of Matter as this explains Newton's Law of Inertia F=m.a which is at the very heart of Physics.
i) Any Change in Velocity of the Spherical In-Waves from One Direction Changes where these In-Waves meet at their respective Wave-Center which we see as the Accelerated Motion of the 'Particle'. (This is the Cause of All Forces, i.e. Newton's Law of Inertia F=m.a)
ii) The Spherical In-Waves are formed from the Huygens' Combination of Out-Waves from All other Matter in our Finite Spherical Universe. (This is the Cause of Mach's Principle - the Mass (mass-energy density of space) of an object is determined by all the other matter in the Universe.)
Principle Two explains how matter 'particles' (as Wave-Centers) are 'Necessarily Connected' to other Matter in the Space around them, and thus leads to the explanation of 'Force' and Newton's famous and most important Law of Inertia Force = Mass * Acceleration (F=m.a)
Let us consider the Spherical In-Waves of One Electron / Spherical Standing Wave (SSW). If there is no change in the velocity of the Spherical In-Wave then there can be no change in the apparent motion of the Wave-Center / 'particle'. i.e. If the Spherical In-Waves comes in with the same velocity in all directions then the Wave-Center / 'particle' will remain stationary in the same place in Space. Conversely, if there is a change in velocity of the Spherical In-Waves in one direction then this will also cause a change in motion (acceleration) of the Wave-Center / 'particle'. So when we consider the future motion of a particle we must actually consider the velocity of the Spherical In-Waves only, for it is logical that this alone determines where these In-Waves will meet at their future Wave-Centers.
This is the underlying cause of the Law of Inertia and the concepts of force, mass and acceleration. We can now translate the language of physics into the language of the WSM. When we apply a Force to an object we are in fact changing the velocity of their In-Waves, and this causes an acceleration (change in apparent motion) of the particle effect at the Wave-Center. It is this relationship between the change in velocity of In-Waves and the change in Motion of the Wave-Center that causes the concept of Mass and explains the necessary connection between things that exist. (i.e. Action-at-a-distance).
Though this is perhaps a little confusing upon first reading, with time it becomes more obvious that the Spherical Wave Structure of Matter simplifies and solves the problems of Newton's Mechanics by removing the concept of discrete 'particles' and replacing this with Spherical Wave Motions of Space whose Wave-Center's Cause the 'Particle' Effect.
Let us now consider the next major evolution in the theoretical foundation of Physics, Faraday's Electromagnetic Force Fields.
Michael Faraday's Continuous Electromagnetic Force Field is a Mathematical Approximation
of Many Discrete / Quantum Standing Wave Interactions
The greatest change in the axiomatic basis of physics - in other words, of our conception of the structure of reality - since Newton laid the foundation of theoretical physics was brought about by Faraday's and Maxwell's work on electromagnetic field phenomena. (Albert Einstein, 1931)
Faraday (1832) developed the mathematical concept of the 'electro-magnetic force field' as a way of mathematically describing action-at-a-distance for charged particles (i.e. electrons and protons). This is a continuous mathematical 'plotting' of the effects (forces and thus accelerated motions) that matter has on other matter in the Space around it, thus it is a description of effects rather than causes (Inductive / a posteriori rather than deductive / a priori. And this becomes important when you read Hume and Kant, for they explain that the ultimate Principles of Physics must be a priori, not a posteriori!).
This field concept replaced Newton's instant action-at-a-distance between discrete particles. Importantly, the electromagnetic (e-m) field is a vector (directional) quantity that defines force and direction of acceleration of many charged particles upon one another. It is continuous in the sense that the distance and force between particles can vary by infinitely small amounts.
For example, electrons near one another in Space experience a mutual force of repulsion and this behaviour can be mathematically described using Faraday's e-m field which quantifies this force and describes how it varies with distance and direction. As Albert Einstein explains;
Faraday must have grasped with unerring instinct the artificial nature of all attempts to refer electromagnetic phenomena to actions-at-a-distance between electric particles reacting on each other. How was each single iron filing among a lot scattered on a piece of paper to know of the single electric particles running round in a nearby conductor? All these electric particles together seemed to create in the surrounding space a condition which in turn produced a certain order in the filings.
These spatial states, today called fields, would, he was convinced, furnish the clue to the mysterious electromagnetic interactions. He conceived these fields as states of mechanical stress in an elastically distended body (ether/space). For at that time this was the only way one could conceive of states that were apparently continuously distributed in space. The peculiar type of mechanical interpretation of these fields remained in the background - a sort of placation of the scientific conscience in view of the mechanical (Newtonian) tradition of Faraday's time. (Albert Einstein, 1940)
It seems that the 'electromagnetic force field' is a poorly understood concept which causes considerable confusion. It is quite basic though, as it is nothing more than a mathematical description of how matter affects and moves other matter in the Space around it. This mathematical 'force field' is a very powerful tool for mathematical physicists (as is the particle) and as a consequence many physicists (including Faraday, Maxwell, and Lorentz) imagined this 'field' to be real and therefore assumed that an 'Aether' (made up of many smaller particles!) must exist in Space as the medium for this 'field'. Born describes the ether as follows;
The undulatory, or wave theory, on the other hand, sets up an analogy between the propagation of light and the motion of waves on the surface of water or sound waves in air. For this purpose it has to assume the existence of an elastic medium that permeates all transparent bodies; this is the luminiferous ether. The individual particles of this substance merely oscillate about their positions of equilibrium. That which moves on as the light wave is the state of motion of the particles and not the particles themselves. (Born, 1924)
In fact there is no 'ether' simply because there are no 'force fields'. Both are mathematical constructions (rather clumsy and confusing ones at that) to try to explain how matter 'particles' interacted with other 'particles' in the space around them. Once we understand the Spherical Wave Structure of Matter in Space though, then we no longer need these mathematical ideas, instead we realise that Space itself is a continuous wave medium (which necessarily connects all things) and there are no such things as discrete particles.
I grew up watching this eccentric old Professor, Julius Sumner Miller, who made science fun and exciting. My thanks to Pete Brown Mountain Man for the article below. I wonder if anyone out there knows how to get copies of some of his old TV shows such that I could edit them as Digital Videos for the internet?
WHY IS IT SO? - WHAT THIS BOOK IS ALL ABOUT and HOW IT HAS COME TO BE
(Prologue to the first book of Millergrams) written by Professor Julius Sumner Miller
All of a half-century ago-when I was a little boy on the farm in my native New England - I remember asking all kinds of questions. What is the Earth made of? Why is the sky blue? Why is the sunset red? How does a bird soar? Why does a brook gurgle? How does an earthworm crawl? Why is a dewdrop round? Why does corn pop? Why does a wood fire crackle? And a thousand like questions. To a few I got the answers in reading. To some I got the answers in dialogue with my Mama and my Papa and with my teachers. Some I thought out - not too well, to be sure - but I was learning to THINK. By this device - ever questioning - ever uncertain - I gathered up a rather massive body of knowledge.
It is now some fifty years that I have been engaged in this very same gymnastic - asking questions and seeking out their answers. It has all been an extraordinary engagement and it has added abundantly to the fullness of my life - intellectual-emotional-spiritual. It has freed me from the shackles of a fettered mind and it has brought me ever closer to the Wonderful Things all about us - those Things unnumbered which make up the World of Nature. At first it was - as Newton said - "a pretty divertissement". But now in my later years I see the great virtue it all possesses. First there was the engaging business of gathering up the Knowledge - by asking questions - by reading abundantly - by dialogue - by trying to SEE when I looked and by trying to HEAR when I listened. Now, with a reservoir of knowledge to draw upon, an UNDERSTANDING is slowly coming un-veiled. It has, you see, taken half a century for this. As I am given to say - lots of people know lots of things but our understanding is frightfully weak. And before understanding can emerge a sovereign body of knowledge must exist to draw upon. There can be no meal without the grain to grind.
Now too I must say a - word of another sort. It is this: The human MIND is designed for - it has for its Purpose most certainly - the Intellectual Process. This can only be nourished and enlivened by Thought and Contemplation. There lies, I say, in every human creature what is beautifully expressed by the word enthusiasm - which is from the Greek en theos and it means 'a god within', 'possessed by the gods'. It is this Spirit which we all possess but which few ever awaken. Once awakened it grows with unbounded fever and it can drive a boy or a girl or a man or a woman to wondrous things. I have seen it. A tiny spark can set the world aflame and the light of a single candle can pierce the darkness.
Now, how did this book come to be? There are already books no end - big books and little books - the world is full of books - and every one presumably has a message. Homer delivered his beautifully in the Iliad; John Locke did it with consummate skill in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding. Descartes accomplished it with uncommon strength in Le Discours de la Methode. Plutarch and Chaucer and Rabelais - they all did it magnificently, as did Spinoza and Berkeley and Hume and Adam Smith and Karl Marx and Dostoevski. And you can name a thousand others done as well and still more thousands less ably done. And there are others still - countless in number - of much less pretentious cut - in all the bodies of knowledge human kind has gathered up - exercise books in physics - in chemistry - in everything that people know. But I am going astray !
Some months ago one Arnold Earnshaw ('Martin Collins') of The Australian in Canberra invited some questions. The scheme was this: A question today, Professor, with the answer tomorrow along with another question. He named the thing MILLERGRAM and I am beholden to him for this new coin. Now come forth the publishers: Let us put your questions in a book - or maybe a series of books. And for this invitation I am further beholden. It is strange indeed that everywhere in the world my questions have had a contagious appeal and this rewards me in an uncommon way.
So there and here our purpose the same - our message the same: some enchanting questions for enquiring minds - for housewives - merchants - secretaries - clerks - doctors - dentists - boys and girls and PEOPLE. Mindful then of the many pleasures these things have brought to me - incessantly engaged in question - I am delighted to share with young and old alike these exciting adventures. It is as Leibniz put it: 'I hope that others will add the beauty of their minds to the labor of mine.'
So here we have an array of questions on THINGS - JUST THINGS - some simple - some not so - but all, I hope, of an inviting kind. I urge you to engage yourself with a question, bringing to it the passion which living creatures do in abundance possess but which too often lies hidden for want of a proper stirring. You will, I hope, be as was Pascal, 'inflamed with the desire'. The hope I have here is simply summed up: To stir your imagination, awaken your interest, arouse your curiosity, enliven your spirit - all with the purpose of bringing you to ask, as young Maxwell put it, "What's the go of it?" - or, as Kepler had it, "why things are as they are and not otherwise". Or, more simply in my own phrase, "WHY IS IT SO?"
Finally, a word on how to tackle a question. Read it. Read it quietly. Read it out loud to yourself or to someone who listens intently. Get your IMAGINATION in gear ! Draw a picture in your mind or a real one on paper or on the sand with your finger or with the toe of your boot. Get into dialogue on it. Use your hands - your arms - gesture - flail them - get excited! - show a passion! Find an analogy - what is it like? Talk to yourself. Get 'mad' with it. At the table engage your family - do the experiment - come alive! Soon a faint light emerges - the light grows - an understanding comes forth. Soon too the enthousiasmos - that divine possession - so long fettered by inactivity - blossoms forth. Leonardo put it well: "Quiet water becomes stagnant. Iron rusts from disuse. So doth inactivity sap the vigour of the mind."
And - once again finally - a word of caution - Do NOT GO TO THE ANSWER until you have felt the joy of your own intellectual gymnastic. It were better indeed that you never had this book if your only purpose is to learn the answers.
Julius Sumner Miller
My Study, California, November 1965
IPL Kidspace: Science Fair Project Resource Guide - 'Creative investigations into the real world.' This site provides a complete guide to science fair projects.
for Kids - Science Fair Projects - Successful Science Fair Projects.
Some of the best science fair projects I have seen have also been the simplest.
Science Fair Project on the web - Learn how to create science fair projects and science fair experiments based on the scientific method.
Science Fair Resource - Ideas, Information, Help. The Complete Handbook
of Science Fair Projects - this book has many ideas for projects and tells
you how to design, construct, display, and present your science project.
'The Gift of Truth Excels all Other Gifts.' (Buddha)
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Truth & Reality
The Spherical Standing Wave Structure of Matter (WSM) in Space
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Truth & Reality
Truth & Reality