Hubble catches a jet collision

By Phil Plait | April 14, 2009 10:13 am

The Milky Way — our home galaxy — is pretty sleepy, as galaxies go. While bigger than most, it’s a good neighbor, generally behaving itself and keeping the noise down.

M87, on the other hand is a galactic frat house.

Deep in the heart of every big galaxy is a supermassive black hole. The Milky Way is no exception, but our black hole is quiet. The one in the core of M87, though is actively feeding. As material swirls around the Point of No Return, magnetic forces align to channel out twin beams or jets of energy and matter that scream out from just above and below the black hole at nearly the speed of light.

Bad neighbor indeed. At 50+ million light years distant it’s no danger to us, though it does keep astronomers up at night: our view of M87’s jet is pretty clear, and when it hiccups, that can be a mighty eructation! Behold:

HST images of a knot in M87 jet

What you are seeing are ultraviolet images from Hubble of the heart of M87. The bright spot on the left is the core of the galaxy where the black hole sits, and you can see it stays about the same brightness over time. The jet is blasting out to the upper right. The jet isn’t smooth; it’s clumpy, presumably due to past eruptions from the black hole as more matter tries to choke down the drain.

Optical image of the jet in M87
Optical long view of M87’s jet. The black hole
and the HST-1 blob seen in the Hubble image
above are seen here as a single elongated
blob on the left.

The inner clump or knot is called HST-1. This time sequence shows it changing in brightness from 1999 to 2006. It brightens and fades with time, but in 2005 it suddenly increased in brightness so much that it actually blasted out 90 times the energy as its parent black hole!

What could cause such a horrendous explosion of luminosity? No one knows. Maybe a wandering cloud of gas drifted into the jet and got slammed by the relativistically-moving particles, heating up and pouring out high-energy light. Or perhaps the magnetic fields that focus the jet somehow got compressed, squeezing the material in the beam and causing it to glow ever-brighter. It’s hard to say.

But this tremendous surge in energy has some interesting implications for astronomers who study galactic shenanigans. We call galaxies like M87 active for obvious reasons. There are different kinds of active galaxies, and the most energetic of them are called blazars. We think these are galaxies where we are looking straight down the throat of the jet. We see hugely energetic gamma rays from blazars as well as light from across the spectrum. The gamma rays are so tightly focused that if the beam is aimed even slightly away from us we don’t see them.

Blazars are known for being highly variable in their light, fluctuating by a factor of ten or more in brightness over time. It’s always been thought that these changes in brightness are tied to the way the black hole is feeding; if a big ol’ clump of gas suddenly gets caught up near the hole, the jet gets a surge in energy. But now we have reason to question this! The knot that suddenly brightened so much in M87’s jet was a long way from the black hole, far outside the maw of the beast — a million times farther out than where we think the big energy changes happen near the black hole. So it’s possible, even likely, that there are at least two ways a blazar (or any active galaxy) can suddenly blast out huge explosions of energy.

Science is like that. It’s a bit ironic, I suppose: active galaxies caused astronomers headaches for decades. They were all so different from each other! Then it dawned on folks that maybe what we were seeing was the same phenomenon, but seen from different angles (rather like the parable of the blind men and the elephant). It unified the models, and things got a lot simpler. Yay!

And now we see once again that Nature is cleverer than we are, still able to throw a monkey in our wrench. We assumed jets were variable because their engine — the black hole — was eating matter at different rates, but now we see that something else can happen far away from that central engine, and whatever this process is it can dramatically change the appearance of the jet.

I personally like it when things like this crop up. While it can make analysis harder, it makes life more interesting! There are always more mysteries to solve, more puzzles to piece together. In this case we didn’t even know there were more pieces at all!

And so the game goes on.

Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Madrid (McMaster University)

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Astronomy, Pretty pictures, Science
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Comments (108)

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  1. Carnival of Space #99 | April 19, 2009
  1. Wayne

    Great article, but “monkey in our wrench”? Something about that is just so wrong.

  2. Mike

    One thing I never understood is how these large jets can shoot out of black holes. Apparently it is to do with magnetic fields, I now see. Where might I find a good description of this phenomenon?

  3. See, you scientists never get things right! You keep changing your minds when new evidence comes along! Why should we believe you this time?

    Those creationists got it right the first time, and haven’t had to change their ideas ever since!

    Oh, just in case: :-)

  4. Todd W.

    @Phil Plait

    The title of your post makes me wonder, have we ever seen two separate jets collide?

  5. Pieter Kok

    “galactic frat house”: LOL!

  6. Austin L

    @Mike
    Understanding jets is a lot easier if you can find a good picture, like the one found here: http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/blackhole_jets_040817.html

  7. Pieter Kok

    I think you mean “throw a monkey wrench in the works”.

  8. Brian

    Nice overview. Thanks for sharing this, Phil.

  9. M87, on the other hand is a galactic frat house.

    Animal Galaxy?

    J/P=?

  10. Mchl

    OT: Isn’t NASA supposed to announce that Node 3 will be named Serenity today?

  11. I’m confused about how this relates to vaccines, though. :-

  12. Todd W.

    @NBwaW

    Yeah. I miss the vaccine posts, too.

  13. Chad

    “We assumed jets were variable because their engine — the black hole — was eating matter at different rates, but now we see that something else can happen far away from that central engine, and whatever this process is it can dramatically change the appearance of the jet.”

    Couldn’t a variable matter “eating” rate still explain this explosion? If the black hole was eating and ejecting matter at different speeds at different times down the jet, that would explain the clumping to me and any subsequent explosions, similar to a mac truck driving down the highway at 100 MPH into a group of cars only doing 10mph.

  14. Mike

    Thanks for the link, @Austin

  15. Larry White

    Black Holes are supposed to suck everything down via infinite gravity. Something very wrong about ad hoc theories of “jets emanating” from black holes!
    Time to give a look at other theories. One theory that explains the “jets” and many other mysteries is the electric-plasma theory. Google it!
    Larry White

  16. # Mchl Says:
    OT: Isn’t NASA supposed to announce that Node 3 will be named Serenity today?

    Stay up late, it’s supposed to be on The Colbert Report according to Scientific American article (link above)

    J/P=?

  17. Todd W.

    @Larry White

    Are you, perchance, Anaconda or OilIsMastery using a different name? Oh, and when you come onto a blog and post some claim, you really should provide citations, rather than just saying “Google it”. Proper science etiquette.

  18. DrFlimmer

    @ Larry White:

    Do you really know what you are talking about? I’m sorry, but it seems that this is not the case.

  19. Jack Mitcham

    Eructation?

    You don’t want to know how I misread that.

  20. @Larry White “Time to give a look at other theories. One theory that explains the “jets” and many other mysteries is the electric-plasma theory.”

    So EU can explain M87’s jets, yet it can’t predict the luminosity of the sun to within 28 orders of magnitude. Until such time as your theory can explain the simple phenomena we shouldn’t even consider it for explaining the difficult phenomena.

  21. One of the difficulties I’ve always had with M87 and 3C273 is that there is only one jet. If the jets are associated with a magnetic field then the magnetic field should be dipole. There should be a second jet for the opposite magnetic pole. Well, where the heck is it?

    I believe I’ve stumbled upon the solution known as relativistic beaming:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relativistic_beaming

    If the M87 jet is aligned within a few degrees of coming straight towards us then its luminosity will be greatly enhanced due to relativistic effects. On the other hand the luminosity of the counter-beam will be diminished possibly to the point where we can’t see it. So perhaps M87 has a second jet which is too faint to see at the present time.

    Plugging in some numbers let the jet velocity be 0.98c so the relativistic gamma parameter is 5.03. If the jet is aligned 5 degrees to our line of sight then the Doppler parameter is 8.39. So the increase in luminosity of the jet is in the range of 8.39 to 590 times brighter.

    So I’d like to propose an explanation for the brightening of HST-1 which is this. No intrinsic brightening has taken place. Instead the direction of the beam has changed so that it’s angle relative to our line of sight has decreased, causing only the apparent brightness of the knot to increase, not its real brightness. What could cause the change in the jet’s direction? Perhaps some incoming gas with its own magnetic field which influences the plasma particles in the jet.

  22. Ryan

    Black Holes are supposed to suck everything down via infinite gravity. Something very wrong about ad hoc theories of “jets emanating” from black holes!
    Time to give a look at other theories. One theory that explains the “jets” and many other mysteries is the electric-plasma theory. Google it!

    Your statement contains a childish assumption. Nobody here except for you thinks that black holes are supposed to be sucking everything down. They aren’t and they don’t definately have finite gravity.

    Maybe you should have googled black holes first.

  23. Ron Critchfield

    Chad, the problem is that the clump (HST-1) itself is changing, after it’s left the hole. If you look at the pictures above you’ll see that it’s distance from the hole itself hasn’t changed much but it’s brightness did. It looks like there was one smaller spike in 2002 and then the big jump in 2005.

    There’s a decent animation of it up on the HubbleSite
    http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2009/16/video/b/

  24. Here is a radio image of M87 with 100 times the resolution of the Hubble Space Telescope. The line labeled “200 light-days” is 35,000 A.U. long or 0.5 light-years. The collimation of the jet is occurring within 100 Schwarzchild radii of the black hole or 60 A.U.

    http://images.nrao.edu/589

  25. @Myself “The collimation of the jet is occurring within 100 Schwarzchild radii of the black hole or 60 A.U.”

    Correction, the Schwarzchild radius of a 3 billion solar mass black hole is 60 A.U. so 100 Schwarzchild radii would be 6000 A.U. or roughly one sixth the distance labeled “200 light-days”. In the image the line labeled “200 light-days” (or 35,000 A.U.) is 83 pixels long. A 120 A.U. wide event horizon would be 0.3 pixels in this image, so just under the resolution. But techniques are improving every year. It won’t be too long before radio telescopes will be able to resolve the event horizon itself. How cool would it be to actually see the event horizon itself silhouetted against the background jet. Not sure if such a thing is possible or not with all the plasma surrounding it.

    BTW, the picture also shows a faint counter-jet going in the opposite direction of the main jet.

  26. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    Nature is cleverer than we are

    What does that even mean? I have never been able to figure out what this figure of speech is supposed to say. Probably because it annoys me so. 😮

    [It is natural to assume that nature sometimes is more complicated than a first order ansatz, but then again that a first ansatz is enough was never an assumption so why point it out?

    And an annoying thing with bringing up complexity (which is actually rather mundane IMO compared to the fascinating simplicity of things) is that most things in nature are much less complicated than us biological beings. This rightly makes us cleverer than most of nature. Oh, and another annoying thing is that we are nature too.

    Hmm. I feel grumpy today.]

    Instead, what got my “wonder on” some time ago was when ERV in a similar vein IIRC mentioned that, roughly, “viruses know us better than we do ourselves”.

    Seems HIV mutates so rapidly during an infection that it is a quasispecies more than a species. It is thus inhabiting a voluminous cloud in ‘fitness space’ (rather poorly defined in such cases) rather than a few allele fitness coordinates of a regular evolving population.

    This cloud quickly explores its fitness space in the evolutionary process, and if I understood ERV correctly learns it faster, wider, and at higher resolution than our genome has had occasion to, due to the massive difference in population sizes. Which is perhaps why such viruses can hide from even our adaptive immune system, which is the best we have to match any virus for mutational speed, by AFAIU mostly appropriating it for its own uses. (Hijacking its T-cells for replication, IIRC.)

    And since both populations genomes are adaptive systems, perhaps one could meaningfully say that “HIV is cleverer than we are”.

    [I’m sure this relates to vaccines somehow. So there you go! ;-)]

  27. @ Tom Marking,

    Hey, Tom. Over at Universe Today (click on my name for the link), on the same subject as this thread, OilIsMastery is acting like an unmitigated jackass by proclaiming:

    Mathematics is not empirical. Mathematics is a priori.

    There is no observation in mathematics. If you think there is, then Lobachevsky Theorem 20 which falsifies General Relativity is my “empirical” mathematical proof.

    :roll:

  28. @IVAN3MAN “Hey, Tom. Over at Universe Today (click on my name for the link), on the same subject as this thread, OilIsMastery is acting like an unmitigated jackass by proclaiming”

    And OIM making a fool out of himself is news, exactly how? I guess I’ll go on over and have a look-see. From what I’ve heard there are some more substantial EUers there than Snake Man or Oils, which I figured there had to be somewhere.

  29. @ Tom Marking:

    Marking stated: “So EU can explain M87’s jets, yet it can’t predict the luminosity of the sun to within 28 orders of magnitude.”

    Do you have authority for the above statement or is it just rhetroic?

    The scientist who reported this phenomenon doesn’t claim to understand the mechanism for the jet. I understand there are several theories of how thermal friction generates magnetic fields.

    “Researchers assume the material is accelerated by some mechanism related to the black hole. But there are multiple theories.”

    http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/blackhole_jets_040817.html

    I’d also note there is no demonstrated way for thermal friction to generate synchrotron radiation where the electrons spiral around a magnetic field at near relativitstic speed.

    But for every magnetic field there are electric currents that generate it.

    This is fanciful stuff, just like “dark” matter, “dark” energy, and, now “dark” flow.

    There are precious few indirect observations & measurements that suggest the so-called “black hole” hypothesis, There NO direct observations & measurements of “black holes”, period.

    The mathematical equations you see bantied about in support of so-called “black holes” is a thin veneer to cover the reality that they don’t know much about what goes on at the galactic center.

    “We don’t understand the environment at the galactic center very well yet,” said Elizabeth Humphreys of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass.

    Marking, it sounds like you claim to know more than the supposed experts of “modern” astronomy about “black holes”. Or do you just want to sound like you do on this website?

  30. Ryan #2

    Hiyas, I’ve been reading up on black holes and came accross a couple complaints that I’d like to hear y’all reactions to.

    1. If one early step in the derivation of the equation that describes a black hole is to set the energy-momentum tensor equal to zero, aren’t we then describing a system devoid of mass all together?

    2. Puting the first issue asside, if the equation that describes a black hole essentially describes a whole universe containing just that one object, and if the principle of superposition doesn’t apply to GR – that a particular spacial geometry must be solved for for every energy/momentum tensor, then isn’t it an error to speak of the effect that a black hole’s gravity will have on another object?

    Thanks all.

  31. @ Tom Marking:

    You referred to people that have more knowledge about Plasma Cosmology than me. Yes, of course, there are people who do, I think you are referring to solrey who has been commenting at UniverseToday. Yes, solrey has technical knowledge and experience in electrical engineering and I respect his knowledge and experience.

    And there are many people who subscribe to Plasma Cosmology with technical backgrounds.

    @ Ryan #2:

    This answer is not directly on point with your questions, but is worth consideration: The so-called “black hole” hypothesis depends on mathematical derivations from prior general equations describing gravity; if those a priori equations are not an exactly perfect mathematical description of gravity, then any derivations will magnify the error in the a priori equations (there are few indirect observations and no direct observations supporting the “black hole” hypothesis).

    Also, because many of the objects “modern” astronomy claims exist (“black holes” and “neutron” stars) depend on material densities that can’t be replicated in the laboratory and have little if any evidenciary support that they exist in the environoment (deep-space), one can also allow that the a priori equations are accurate enough (I for one question the a priori equations), but the derivations call for matter to achieve density states that are impossible to achieve in the real would.

    (Your first question addresses my second point, I believe.)

    Einstein, in fact, rejected the idea of “black holes” entirely because he felt that the derivative equations that suggested the existence of “black holes” violated cardinal principles of physics as he understood them.

  32. @ Tom Marking:

    Marking states (paraphrase): “A counter jet has been discovered on the opposite side of M87, the Standard Model predicts this, interestingly PC/EU does not.”

    False, Plasma Cosmology most definitely does predict plasma ejections from both ends of the axis of the center of active galaxy. That is why some galaxies are referred to as ‘double radio’ galaxies and Peratt deals with this morphology specifically. Any independent research of PC/EU materials would reveal this to you. Kind of like you didn’t know that PC/EU described helical filaments in Birkeland currents.

    It is apparent that you did little research on you own. Of course, you have no obligation to do research, but then, again, you shouldn’t make statements purporting to accurately represent PC/EU theory when in fact your statements are not accurate.

    It’s called building a strawman and then knocking it down.

    If there are effective counter-arguments against a theory or hypothesis, then there should be absolutely no reason whatsoever to inaccurately state the theory or hypothesis.

    Since you missstate PC/EU theory it suggests you have few if any significant counter-arguments to make against the actual theories, themselves.

  33. ND

    Tom Marking,

    The EU/PC people other that OILs and Anaconda are lurking and following the discussions, since on some rare occasions they will pop in and make a statement.

    Anaconda,

    Is Einstein’s rejection of black holes based on clear scientific grounds or more of a scientist’s gut feeling? If the latter then the Einstein’s rejection isn’t much of an argument against black holes. You said “he felt”.

  34. IVAN3MAN

    Anaconda:

    But for every magnetic field there are electric currents that generate it.

    So, WTF generates the ‘electric currents’ in the first place, then?!

    Yes, solrey has technical knowledge and experience in electrical engineering and I respect his knowledge and experience.

    There are electrical impulses (chemically generated) in the human brain; so, Anaconda, would you put your trust in Solrey to perform brain surgery on you to remove that brain tumour that you obviously have, judging by your circular reasoning, or would you prefer a competent, fully trained brain surgeon to perform the procedure?

  35. @Anaconda “Do you have authority for the above statement or is it just rhetroic?”

    I explained it all in a previous post. Yes, I do have a source:

    http://saturniancosmology.org/files/scott/sun.txt

    “Let us suppose that the effective velocity of a typical interstellar
    electron would be about 105 m/s, corresponding to a kinetic temperature of a few hundred Kelvin. From current estimates of the state of ionization of the interstellar gas, we might conclude that there should be as many as 50,000 free electrons per cubic m.”

    The total kinetic energy absorbed by the sun by those electrons is 0.04 watts.

    “Researchers assume the material is accelerated by some mechanism related to the black hole. But there are multiple theories.”

    Yes, what you neglect to mention is that the multiple theories all involve a black hole of some sort.

    “I’d also note there is no demonstrated way for thermal friction to generate synchrotron radiation where the electrons spiral around a magnetic field at near relativitstic speed.”

    You mean demonstrated in a laboratory? Or demonstrated how exactly? Not all the models even use the thermal effects. Some involve the black hole frame dragging twisting the magnetic fields tighter and tighter.

    “There are precious few indirect observations & measurements that suggest the so-called “black hole” hypothesis, There NO direct observations & measurements of “black holes”, period.”

    Yes, but you say the same thing about neutron stars, that there are no observations. You also deny the high densities of white dwarfs which are routinely observed. You claim that Cygnus X-1 is a white dwarf even though it can’t be seen optically and other white dwarfs have been seen at greater distances. So you claim a lot of things. You’re credibility isn’t exactly great.

    “The mathematical equations you see bantied about in support of so-called “black holes” is a thin veneer to cover the reality that they don’t know much about what goes on at the galactic center.”

    Yes, I’m longing for the day when we get the first direct image of the event horizon. That ought to shut you up for a while until you move onto the next conspiracy theory.

    “Marking, it sounds like you claim to know more than the supposed experts of “modern” astronomy about “black holes”. Or do you just want to sound like you do on this website?”

    I never claimed to know more than the experts. BTW, I will match my credibility versus yours any day of the week.

  36. @Anaconda “False, Plasma Cosmology most definitely does predict plasma ejections from both ends of the axis of the center of active galaxy. That is why some galaxies are referred to as ‘double radio’ galaxies and Peratt deals with this morphology specifically. Any independent research of PC/EU materials would reveal this to you. Kind of like you didn’t know that PC/EU described helical filaments in Birkeland currents.”

    Then why does your diagram which you linked to at:

    http://www.thunderbolts.info/tpod/2005/arch05/050824seeing-circuits.htm

    show a single galactic jet going upward and the current coming down and inward along the spiral arms? There is no bottom jet in the picture? If it’s required then why is it not in the picture? Also, since the currents and magnetic fields in the Birkeland currents are self-contained then why do 2 independent Birkeland currents have to exit the galactic core 180 degrees apart?

    “Since you missstate PC/EU theory it suggests you have few if any significant counter-arguments to make against the actual theories, themselves.”

    I suggest you take it up with the Thunderbolts people. By the way, if 2 Birkeland currents oriented 180 degrees apart are required, then where is the counter-Birkeland current for the Sun-Earth case? It has never been detected. Are you alleging there is a Birkeland current from the sun stretching out 93 million miles in the opposite direction of the earth? Where is the counter Birkeland current in the case of Jupiter and Io? It, too, has never been observed.

  37. @ND “The EU/PC people other that OILs and Anaconda are lurking and following the discussions, since on some rare occasions they will pop in and make a statement.”

    I guess they don’t speak up too much. They may be afraid of making fools of themselves – a fear which Snake Man and Oils apparently don’t share. :)
    Keeping tabs on solrey – so far I am not overwhelmed by his intellect but we’ll see.

  38. @ ND:

    My choice of words, “felt” was poor. Based on Einstein’s understanding of his own theory and his understadning of physics Einstein did not subscribe to the “black hole” hypothesis.

  39. @ Ivan3Man:

    Charge seperation in space generates the electric currents.

  40. ND

    Tom Marking,

    I’m suspicous that solrey might be one of them. I’m not so sure about Anaconda.

    Selacious B on UT is hung up on the conspiracy that there is an anonymous campaign to promote PC/UE on places like UT and Bad Astronomy. These blog discussions do seem to interest them based on the occasional peeps.

  41. IVAN3MAN

    Anaconda:

    Charge seperation [sic] in space generates the electric currents.

    Charge separation requires an input of energy; so, what is that source of energy?

  42. @Anaconda “Charge seperation in space generates the electric currents.”

    NO, NO, NO!!! WRONG!!! WRONG!!! WRONG!!! Charge separation of electric charges causes an electric field to be set up between the charges. But the charges (or other nearby charges) only MOVE in response to it if they are free to. For example, you rub rabbit’s fur on a glass rod electrons shift from the glass rod to the rabbit’s fur. The rabbit fur becomes negatively charged relative to the glass rod. But the electrons are bound to the material. They do not spontaneously fly off into the air from the rabbit fur to the glass rod. In order to get a current flowing the charges must be free to move and the intervening material must be an electrical conductor (or an empty vacuum).

    And like IVAN3MAN says, it takes energy to separate the charges to begin with. Where did the energy come from since you deny nuclear fusion?

  43. @ND “I’m suspicous that Solrey might be one of them.”

    No, say it ain’t so. From what I can tell Mr. Solrey (Sun is King?, get it?) is a flaming EUer right up there with Thornhill and Scott.

  44. @Ryan #2 “1. If one early step in the derivation of the equation that describes a black hole is to set the energy-momentum tensor equal to zero, aren’t we then describing a system devoid of mass all together?”

    A common misconception is that the black hole concept was invented by General Relativity. It was NOT. If you have any type of a system with an escape velocity whether it be gravitational or electromagnetic, there will be an escape velocity greater than the speed of light, in which case light cannot escape from the object and therefore the object will be dark (i.e., a black hole). This is regardless of whether you believe in GR, EU, or any other physics. Once you have an escape velocity you potentially have a black hole.

    So the common equation for the Schwarzchild radius:

    Rs = 2 * G * M / c^2

    Guess who came up with it? You probably think some GRer like Schwarzchild, right? Guess again, it was Pierre Simon de Laplace in 1789:

    http://www.angelfire.com/sc/aether/bh.html

  45. IVAN3MAN

    ND:

    [Salacious B. Crumb] on UT is hung up on the conspiracy that there is an anonymous campaign to promote PC/UE on places like UT and Bad Astronomy.

    According to the Thunderbolts group, that appears to be their hidden agenda, rather like the “Wedge Document” of the creationists. At the Thunderbolts.info web-site, there’s a link called “a role for you” which outlines things to do, of which this is an extract:

    As our Internet presence expands the opportunity to reach independent minded and accredited researchers will continue to grow. Visitors who now have a good sense of the “Electric Universe” hypothesis can be helpful in directing the attention of others to the site. Your active liaison on our behalf will make possible much broader interdisciplinary communication than any of us could achieve on our own.

    In your communications, please be sure that, unless you have developed specific strategies with

    Thunderbolts management, you not identify yourself as a member of the Thunderbolts group, but as a curious or interested observer.

    The editors of scientific media will certainly pay more attention as our Internet presence grows. Communications can also include the science editors of regional newspapers, particularly those who may be looking for emerging scientific controversies. More than once a reader’s simple note, directing an editor or journalist to an “alternative explanation,” has produced surprising results.

    Also, I have noted that “solrey” is a regular commenter on their forum and, just like religious groups, they tend to bicker amongst themselves. For instance, one commenter mentioned the great achievement of NASA to land men on the Moon, to which another commenter retorted that he must be a fool to believe the “Moon landing hoax” and that NASA is “part of the conspiracy of ‘mainstream’ science”. Go figure! :roll:

  46. IVAN3MAN

    Erratum:In the above quote, at the second paragraph, second line, it should read:

    … strategies with Thunderbolts management…

    A rogue paragraph appeared from nowhere while copying and pasting the bloody quote.

  47. ND

    IVAN3MAN,

    Yes Salacious has posted this many times and the fact that some of the EU/PC website owners have on occasion posted under their name lends to this “media-blitz” idea.

    For example Dave Smith on http://www.universetoday.com/2009/03/25/dont-supermassive-me-black-holes-regulate-their-own-mass/#comments

    I also didn’t realize what character Salacious was until I googled. Linked from my name.

    Anaconda also has the habit of showing up on some threads a week or two after its died down to try and get the last word. Sneaky.

    I’ll be going on vacation soon so I’ll be missing out on Anaconda’s antics for 2 weeks.

  48. Robert Carnegie

    Supposedly Einstein wants scientists to “Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.” So a simple theory that accounts reasonably well for your observations is fine, until you get more observations and they don’t fit the theory. THEN your theory is bust and you need a new one.

    Of course, sometimes observations are wrong. But this particular phenomenon is not dust on the lens, or, say, a supernova that happens to be in line of sight. Or a chain of ’em, like in that star formation video game.

    So anyway, in this case I think you have gone from “Expletive-big black holes make stuff next to them blow up” to “Expletive-big black holes can make stuff some distance from them blow up”, which isn’t far.

    I think you do too have empirical math. I bet for Pythagoras’ Theorem or Fermat’s Last or Goldbach’s Conjecture, they started with calculated examples. I think I was told the ancient Egyptians used a three-four-five construction before Pythagoras but they apparently didn’t understand it, at least not the general principle. And of course in the bible 10 x pi = 30 “close enough for government work”. I think the Egyptian pi was 3 also, but that may be coincidence. There’s only one pi in the universe and I think thaey didn’t make circular pyramids.

  49. Ryan #2

    @Tom Marking

    By your answer I’m left wondering what sort of math astronomers are doing when they talk about an object in the gravitational field of a black hole. If not the Schwartzchild solution to GR and the various evolutions of it, what is the mathematical foundation for the gravitational field of a black hole?

  50. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    Mathematics is not empirical. Mathematics is a priori. There is no observation in mathematics.

    That is jackass.

    First, there are famous mathematicians like Chaitin that argues that mathematics itself is quasi-empirical.

    IIRC, the argument goes something like this: Chaitin’s constant, which describes the halting probability of a real program, is not computable since the halting problem is undecidable, and it is random. AFAIU there is but one unspecified bit lacking. So Chaitin’s description is that we can flip a coin to fully decide the probability – the outcome yes/no decides the lacking bit.

    Second, undecidability means both that we have to extend formal systems with new axioms indefinitely, and empirically (as new axioms don’t discover themselves), and that computer algorithms that directly run up against the halting problem are empirical.

    “Proof-Oriented math is analogous to procedure-oriented programming. Computer scientists realized that a procedure is just one out of a plethora of objects, and hence C++ and other object-oriented programming languages are now thriving.

    The computer revolution has spurred a new kind of math: `quasi-empirical’ and experimental (whose central object is the mathematical FACT). Also the amazing symbiosis and dramatic success of theoretical physics gave rise to a whole culture of `non-rigorous proofs’. Borwein et. al even proposed a philosophy and methodology of experimental math, analogous to experimental science. Mathematical purists like Jaffe and Quinn warned for a strict Apartheid between `rigorous’ and `theoretical’ (i.e. non-rigorous). Gregory Chaitin showed that all provable results are ipso-facto trivial, and most mathematical facts are either undecidable, or unprovable in real time. Hence Chaitin endorses empirical math.” [Doron Zeilberger, “Israeli-American mathematician who has made important contributions to the fields of hypergeometric summation and q-Series.”]

    Third, computer scientists like Scott Aaronson thinks algorithms has direct empirical consequences. Read his paper “NP-complete problems and physical reality” where he notes that physical solutions are algorithmic, hence solutions that impose NP-completeness aren’t physical. He makes a similar argument elsewhere that the Church-Turing hypothesis trivially puts time travel in any form as unphysical. And many other results like that.

    Fourth, continuing on to math application in science, it is an empirical matter which math describes the world. Say the geometry of standard cosmology.

    The only thing going for alternative, the ever popular platonian epistemology of most mathematicians as regards physics, is that per Max Tegmark we can simplify a physical reality to a mathematical reality of objects, whatever that “simplification” really means – it is metaphysics, not testable science as I understand it.

    As an empiricist it is as easy to say that parsimony gives that mathematical formal systems don’t exist until they are invented. (While of course the physical action still exists when it is instantiated, see Aaronson above.) And that isn’t a metaphysical notion at all, it is eminently empirical and testable.

    [I note in passing that as a practical matter it is anyway easier and more general to use mathematical facts, with some uncertainty adhered, instead of mathematical provable truths. It would be easily assimilated into science too.

    In fact, I think it would simplify, since it would be less confusing for non-scientists to have one more fundamental and general type of objects (i.e. observable facts) and a more general empirical method to grasp (i.e. science method), and especially here where fundamentalists of pseudoscience will have one less leg to stand on.]

  51. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    the bloody quote

    So that’s why it is colored red?!

    And here I thought you borrowed from Pharyngulas Crank Comic Sans…

  52. Todd W.

    @Torbörn

    I think you just went above Anaconda’s head. Remember, he hasn’t formally studied physics or, presumably, mathematics.

  53. DrFlimmer

    @ Ryan #2

    1. If one early step in the derivation of the equation that describes a black hole is to set the energy-momentum tensor equal to zero, aren’t we then describing a system devoid of mass all together?

    No. What we describe is a regioa devoid of mass. The mass is definitly somewhere, otherwise the resulting universe would be flat. This “somewhere” is probably at r=0 and there the things start to go mad, but as long as you are not touching that point (almost) everything is fine.

    2. Puting the first issue asside, if the equation that describes a black hole essentially describes a whole universe containing just that one object, and if the principle of superposition doesn’t apply to GR – that a particular spacial geometry must be solved for for every energy/momentum tensor, then isn’t it an error to speak of the effect that a black hole’s gravity will have on another object?

    If you apply the Schwarzschild solution to the solar system (e.g.), you can neglect the masses of the planets and they will certainly not disturb the metric too much. The same is true for satallites in orbit around the earth.
    I don’t know, if superposition does not apply to GR. On the other hand, for most problems one can stick to Newton’s law, which is a good approximation if you are not too close to the central mass.

    Btw: If you have doubts about GR, let me tell you that it has been applied to many things. The most common (yet unknown) example is GPS. It would not work without GR – and there are many more examples.
    GR is one of the world’s most tested theories and it is very succesful. It comes right after quantum mechanics.

  54. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    what is the mathematical foundation for the gravitational field of a black hole?

    Anything that works, I believe. A black hole is a consequence of physics, and as of yet there isn’t any complete model of it.

    Actually, I believe I’ve read of string physicists that it is possible that a black hole is a coherent quantum object. In which case you really need a quantum gravity theory to explain it (if there is any doubt at this point).

    And since there is no formal mathematical theory of quantization, nor do I think it is very likely to be one considering the considerable amount of time that has passed [but they are still hashing out what decoherence, holography, et cetera, are so there are remaining questions that may give input], chances are there will be no proof-rigorous “mathematical” foundation, only the original physical.

  55. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    I don’t know, if superposition does not apply to GR.

    I’m fairly certain it applies everywhere the gravitational strength is weak. Because I have seen physicists describe the quantized GR version, where you put up a Lagrangian of GR that is valid for weak fields (i.e. less than 1 normalized to the coefficients) and which then is quantized. Lagrangian = superposition, no?

    So far away from the black hole it gravitationally looks like any other mass (well, duh), as you say.

  56. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    Todd, sorry, I missed this short but sweet comment:

    I think you just went above Anaconda’s head. Remember, he hasn’t formally studied physics or, presumably, mathematics.

    Now why would you destroy a perfectly sensible rant like that? 😉

    Um, OK, how about: “math bad, physics good”?

  57. Todd W.

    @Torbjörn

    Now why would you destroy a perfectly sensible rant like that?

    Sorry. You just seem to have forgotten that little fact.

    Um, OK, how about: “math bad, physics good”?

    Better, but you forgot to grunt at the beginning and/or end.

  58. @Ryan #2 “By your answer I’m left wondering what sort of math astronomers are doing when they talk about an object in the gravitational field of a black hole. If not the Schwartzchild solution to GR and the various evolutions of it, what is the mathematical foundation for the gravitational field of a black hole?”

    Of course, since GR is the current theory being used to explain gravity, black hole theorists are using GR theory. My point was that even if GR collapses completely, is found to be incorrect, etc., etc. you can still have black holes. The only 2 criteria for the possibility of black hole in the universe are these:

    1.) Your physics supports an escape velocity
    2.) Photons adhere to this escape velocity

    These two criteria are met in the case of GR, but also were met in the case of Newtonian gravity with light modeled as particles. They are probably even met in EU theory, you just don’t know it yet. So even if everything you are saying about GR is true (which it isn’t), about superposition, etc., etc. it still would not necessarily invalidate the existence of black holes.

  59. Ryan #2

    @DrFlimmer

    If all the mass is at r=0 and none is at r>0, then aren’t we describing an objet with infinite density? In special relativity the formula for the density of a mass observed by another is

    D = M0/[X0^3(1-v^2/c^2)

    Density becomes infinite when v=c. Doesn’t that mean special relativity forbids infinite density?

    Also, are you entirely sure it is not a mathematical error to calculate a space time geometry for one energy/momentum tensor, and then throw masses into that geometry after the fact and not recalculate the space time geometry for the changed energy/momentum tensor? I know it’s OK to do that with Newton’s equations, add all the masses you like it just yields more forces, but in a non-linear differential equation like GR, don’t different rules apply?

    @Torbjörn Larsson

    If the mathematical foundation for the gravitational field of a black hole is anything that works and since, lacking a formal mathematical theory of quantization, nothing works, shouldn’t we conclude the gravitational field of a black hole has no mathematical foundation? And if so, what’s with all the math people are doing?

    Also, how is a black hole a consequence of physics? What are the original physical foundations? I have been under the impression that the theory was built out of mathematical formulations (General Relativity, Schwartzchild solution etc.)

    Also, how is a black hole a consequence of physics?

  60. Ryan #2

    Wow, I just don’t know how to type in a formula.

    D = Mo/[Xo^3(1-(v^2/c^2))]

  61. Ryan #2

    @Tom Marking

    What error have I made regarding superposition and GR?

  62. Polarization studies of the M87 jet have been going on for more than a decade:

    http://aa.springer.de/papers/7317003/2300637.pdf

    This one was done by the HST in the early 1990’s. They show a very complicated polarization structure within the jets. Go to Fig. 4a and 4b on page 641. They show little lines marking the magnetic field direction in the various jet components.

    For the core (left-most bright glob in Fig. 4a) the magnetic field appears to be circularly aligned. The next bright glob going rightward in the jet (I forget the letter label) has the magnetic field line aligned with the jet direction, just as a Birkeland field-aligned current would have it. The next 3 little blobs also have the magnetic field following the jet direction.

    But look at blob A (the brightest one). What the heck happened? Now the magnetic field is aligned perpendicular to the jet direction. Something must have happened to disrupt the magnetic field here. It is definitely no simple Birkeland current anymore. The magnetic field becomes parallel to jet direction in the next blob, but then shifts to perpendicular or even circular in the last blob.

    So there are major shifts in the direction of the magnetic field throughout the jet.

  63. @Ryan “What error have I made regarding superposition and GR?”

    Let’s go back to your original statements:

    “1. If one early step in the derivation of the equation that describes a black hole is to set the energy-momentum tensor equal to zero, aren’t we then describing a system devoid of mass all together?”

    I believe the correct term is space-time metric. The Schwarzchild solution for a non-rotating black hole has:

    ds^2 = – (1 – 2GM/c^2r)c^2dt^2 + dr^2/(1 – 2GM/c^2r) + r^2(sin^2theta dphi^2 + dtheta^2)

    http://universe-review.ca/R15-17-relativity.htm#blackhole

    The mass M is there in the equation. What zero mass are you talking about? Perhaps you are getting confused with zero radius in the denominator which causes the metric to blow up to infinity.

    “2. Puting the first issue asside, if the equation that describes a black hole essentially describes a whole universe containing just that one object, and if the principle of superposition doesn’t apply to GR – that a particular spacial geometry must be solved for for every energy/momentum tensor, then isn’t it an error to speak of the effect that a black hole’s gravity will have on another object?”

    The one object is used for simplicity since the GR equations are solvable analytically for one spherically symmetric object. If you have multiple objects then you can always solve the equations numerically to get the more precise solution. So the one-body solution is just a simplification from the mathematical point of view, nothing more.

  64. @ Ivan3man:

    Ivan3Man: “Charge separation requires an input of energy; so, what is that source of energy?”

    Yes, there must be an ultimate source of energy. And, that hasn’t been identified, but there is indirect evidence that there is an unknown ultimate source — 99.99% of the visible Universe is plasma with charge seperation. As far as intermediate sources of charge seperation, according to Plasma Universe theory, galaxies have a plasmoid at their center, as opposed to a “black hole”, this plasmoid acts to seperate charge and emits a preponderance of electrons in one direction from its axis of rotation and a preponderance of ions from the other end of the axis of rotation.

    Once this charge seperation has been achieved, the inherent attraction and repulsion of electromagnetism provided the organizational & energy dynamics for large scale structures in the Universe with a significant role for gravity, but not the predominate role — what that role is exactly is unknown.

    Marking asks: “Then why does your diagram which you linked to…show a single galactic jet going upward and the current coming down and inward along the spiral arms?”

    It’s a reasonable question: First, the schematic is of a specific galaxy, M82 (I assume only one jet has been detected, there could be another undetected jet, but due to the M82’s orientation, it’s not observable from Earth’s vantage point), but also, one schematic doesn’t represent a whole theory.

    Again, any sustained independent research of PU/EU theory would inform the researcher that PU/EU theory predicts and discusses double jets from the spin axis of galaxies.

    Marking states: “By the way, if 2 Birkeland currents oriented 180 degrees apart are required [by PC/EU theory]…”

    My understanding is that a 180 degree orientation of the two galactic Birkeland currents is not required, per se, rather, it would be however the field aligned magnetic fields match up (but don’t hold me to that).

    Marking asks: “Are you alleging there is a Birkeland current from the sun stretching out 93 million miles in the opposite direction of the earth?”

    Does the Solar wind stretch all the way out to the heliopause? I understand it does. So the circuit is larger than the Earth, or the other planets, rather Earth and the other planets are “loads”, a capacitor, on a larger string or circuit of electric current. The circuit is between the Sun and the heliopause (and beyond), not the Sun and the Earth or the other planets. (But there maybe some diffused electrons back-drifting from the Earth and other planets after their energy has been dissipated at that “load” in the larger circuit, likely, there is always some leakage in the circuit because of the inherent instability in electrical dynamics.)

    Marking states: “I suggest you take it up with the Thunderbolts people…[if I misstate EU theory].”

    No, if you misstate the theory then knock it down, that doesn’t further your counter-argument does it? So, it pays to accurately state the theory or hypothesis if you want to effectively refute it.

    Marking states: “NO, NO, NO!!! WRONG!!! WRONG!!! WRONG!!! Charge separation of electric charges causes an electric field to be set up between the charges. But the charges (or other nearby charges) only MOVE in response to it if they are free to.”

    In space there is no restriction on MOVEMENT of charged particles, per se, they are restricted by concurrent magnetic fields, and electric fields (and concurrent magnetic fields) cause electron acceleration, movement.

    Double layers are the foundation for this dynamic and various discontinuities in the plasma will stimulate formation of double layers.

    Either, I did a poor job of communicating in our lengthy discussions at the other website (entirely possible) or you failed to study the linked information I provided you regarding double layers (also entirely possible).

    Marking states: “…it takes energy to separate the charges to begin with. Where did the energy come from since you deny nuclear fusion?”

    First, as stated above in response to Ivan3Man’s question, plasma constitutes 99.99% of the visible Universe, so there is evidence that the energy is available to seperate the charges. Second, I don’t deny nuclear fusion, rather I question the standard model that stars have a “nuclear furnace” at their core, and suggest the ‘Electric Sun’ hypothesis be followed up on, rather than be dismissed out of hand, considering all the anomalies observed & measured that deviate from the Standard Model of the Sun’s assumed processes for which the Standard Model has NO explanation.

    Marking states: “A common misconception is that the black hole concept was invented by General Relativity. It was NOT.”

    This is a half-truth.

    What do I mean? Yes, there were hypothesis of “black” bodies before Einstein’s General Relativity, but the “modern” hypothesis of “black holes” is derived directly from Einstein’s equations (or is at least claimed to derive directly from General Relativity). In a way, Marking is partially correct, the mathematical equations that support the “black hole” hypothesis (and as Marking acknowledged, few indirect observations and NO direct observations support the hypothesis) have deviated so far from the original a priori equations (general principles) that one can question the theoretical underpinnings of the so-called “black hole” hypothesis.

    Ryan #2, you are right to question: “…what sort of math astronomers are doing when they talk about an object in the gravitational field of a black hole. If not the Schwartzchild solution to GR and the various evolutions of it, what is the mathematical foundation for the gravitational field of a black hole?”

    Ryan #2, you hit the nail on the head. In reality, there is little “foundation”, rather, the theoretical idea of a “black” body which is so strong gravity overcomes light (again, there is precious little [yes, there is some] evidence of light being effected by gravity), captured the imagination of “modern” astronomers, so then mathematicians provided the “clothes” to legitmize the astronomer’s imagination.

    This tendency to gratify the imagination was kept in check until it was found that gravity didn’t have the strength to hold galaxies together, then the “black hole” hypothesis along with “dark” matter became a necessity to keep the gravity “only” model from being falsified, that’s when “modern” astronomy rallied around the “black hole” concept and by necessity fell in love with abstract mathematicians, who were only too willing to satisfy the need of “modern” astronomy — in a sense, that “necessity” allowed pure mathematicans to sit in the driver’s seat and take control of the wheel of “modern” astronomy.

    Marking is a pure mathematican — this explains his devotion to mathematical justifications for “black holes” and “neutron” stars.

    Marking is a specific example of “modern” astronomy in general. Marking’s abiltiy to reel off mathematical equations that mesmerize and are hard to refute for non-mathematicians, give him power on this website. Similarly, in “modern” astronomy in general, strings of equations substitute for rigorous quantification (the actual observations & measurements don’t provide enough quantification of known physical properties of material substance), while LOOKING like it does provide quantification and rigorous analysis.

    The perfect Emperor’s Clothes.

    At first, astronomers kept pure mathematicans properly subordinated, astronomers the masters, pure mathematicians the servants, but then it became more than a relationship, it became a marriage, then it became a necessity, and now, the pure mathematicians have taken over and so “moden” astronomers in this generation are mostly all pure mathematicans.

    And all those who want to come into the circle of belief must prostrate themselves to the pure mathematicans who “saved” modern astronomy from falsification.

    Which is just fine from the pure mathematician’s point of view.

    So, any threat to the standing of the gravity “only” model, which was propped up and ultimately “saved” by the pure mathematician’s willingness to put clothes of legitimacy on “modern” astronomy, must at all costs be defeated. Observation & measurement have become subordinated to pure mathematical justification for Man’s imagnination.

    In other words:

    Shamanism run wild. And the pure mathematicans are the head Shamans.

  65. DrFlimmer

    @ Ryan #2

    @DrFlimmer

    If all the mass is at r=0 and none is at r>0, then aren’t we describing an objet with infinite density?

    Yes, indeed. But it is also a point that is so small that quantum mechanical effects are inevitable. A classical black hole does probably not exist. Definitly not a “Schwarzschild”BH. They are most likely rotating, what gives some new consequences. But as a long as we lack a theory of a quantum gravitation we cannot derive what really happens inside the event horizon. It is unlikely that we really have a point-mass with infinite density, but it is so far the best explanation.
    But btw: The same is true for Newton’s law of gravitation. It also includes point-masses, which, per definition, would have an infinite density. But since the gravitational pull only depends on the mass that is beneath you, you can “approximate” it with a point-mass. That is done for Newton, and the same is done for GR.
    Btw: An electron is still a “point”. It has no underlying structure. That means that its mass and its charge are concentrated on a point. That in turn means, we have infinite density of mass AND charge (although both values are finite).

    So, black holes are only the consequence of what we are always doing. To calculate the path of the earth around the sun, we consider both to be point masses – and our result is correct.

    Also, are you entirely sure it is not a mathematical error to calculate a space time geometry for one energy/momentum tensor, and then throw masses into that geometry after the fact and not recalculate the space time geometry for the changed energy/momentum tensor? I know it’s OK to do that with Newton’s equations, add all the masses you like it just yields more forces, but in a non-linear differential equation like GR, don’t different rules apply?

    If you, say, calculate what happens if two black holes orbit each other on a very closed orbit, then I guarantee that you have to take both into account.
    But if you calculate, say, a planet orbiting a star, it is ok, to “throw” in the planet after you derived the metric of the star. It is done with mercury’s orbit (calculated with the Schwarzschild metric) and it turns out that it gives the correct answer, where Newton’s law fails.
    You can also derive the correct value of g=9,81m/s^2 (the gravitational acceleration on the surface of the earth) with the Schwarzschild solution; so we have a second test that GR passed.

    And although Anaconda still claims that only few tests have been done to measure gravitational redshift, the effect is well known. It has been done, e.g., in a tower near Bremen, Germany. The tower is about 30m high (afaik) and the redshift of light that travelled up has been measured with an extreamly high accuracy. Third test, third pass.
    It is similar to the light-bending-effect. Heavy objects bend light. It has been measured precisely during a solar eclipse. A star that should have been behind the sun was detected – how is this possible if light is not bend by gravity? Fourth test, fourth pass.

    First, as stated above in response to Ivan3Man’s question, plasma constitutes 99.99% of the visible Universe, so there is evidence that the energy is available to seperate the charges.

    Probably dark energy….
    (this is meant to be ironic…)

  66. @Anaconda “Yes, there must be an ultimate source of energy. And, that hasn’t been identified”

    So Anaconda has just acknowledged that EU/PC has no ultimate source for this energy. It is completely unknown to EU/PC. And he has the nerve to call mainstream science shamanism.

    “galaxies have a plasmoid at their center, as opposed to a “black hole”, this plasmoid acts to seperate charge and emits a preponderance of electrons in one direction from its axis of rotation and a preponderance of ions from the other end of the axis of rotation.”

    Where does this plasmoid get its energy needed to separate the charges?

    “It’s a reasonable question: First, the schematic is of a specific galaxy, M82 (I assume only one jet has been detected, there could be another undetected jet, but due to the M82’s orientation, it’s not observable from Earth’s vantage point), but also, one schematic doesn’t represent a whole theory.”

    Well, the schematic is supposed to represent the theory. If the theory says there should be two jets then the schematic should show it. Since you claim the theory contains something the schematic does not, then I guess you are saying the schematic is wrong. You therefore should not throw the schematic out there for people to look at if you know it’s wrong.

    “Again, any sustained independent research of PU/EU theory would inform the researcher that PU/EU theory predicts and discusses double jets from the spin axis of galaxies.”

    What independent research is possible if the thunderbolts web site, the main purveyor of EU/PC information, contains faulty information concerning the theory they say they are promoting?

    “My understanding is that a 180 degree orientation of the two galactic Birkeland currents is not required, per se, rather, it would be however the field aligned magnetic fields match up (but don’t hold me to that).”

    That’s just the point. Aren’t the magnetic fields in the two Birkeland currents independent of one another? Why do they have to align?

    “Does the Solar wind stretch all the way out to the heliopause? I understand it does. So the circuit is larger than the Earth, or the other planets, rather Earth and the other planets are “loads”, a capacitor, on a larger string or circuit of electric current. The circuit is between the Sun and the heliopause (and beyond), not the Sun and the Earth or the other planets.”

    So you are denying a direct Birkeland current between the sun and the earth, and also between Jupiter and Io? I think you must have switched your position on this issue.

    “In space there is no restriction on MOVEMENT of charged particles, per se, they are restricted by concurrent magnetic fields, and electric fields (and concurrent magnetic fields) cause electron acceleration, movement.”

    Wrong again. Take an electrically charged plate up into outer space. Now pass some neutral hydrogen gas close to it. Do the electrons in the hydrogen gas all of a sudden leave their atoms move toward or away from the plaet? No, they are bound to their atoms. Not every charge in outer space is free to move.

    “Double layers are the foundation for this dynamic and various discontinuities in the plasma will stimulate formation of double layers.”

    Yes, always with the double layers. Double layers can do anything.

    “Second, I don’t deny nuclear fusion, rather I question the standard model that stars have a “nuclear furnace” at their core”

    So you accept nuclear fusion in principle but deny that it powers the sun? Is that right? Do you support a current density of electrons composed of 50,000 electrons per cubic meter moving at 105 meters per second as the direct cause of the sun’s energy?

    “the mathematical equations that support the “black hole” hypothesis (and as Marking acknowledged, few indirect observations and NO direct observations support the hypothesis)”

    Well, you’re wrong as always about that. All of the direct observational evidence is pointing towards black holes whether you like it or not.

    “In reality, there is little “foundation”, rather, the theoretical idea of a “black” body which is so strong gravity overcomes light (again, there is precious little [yes, there is some] evidence of light being effected by gravity)”

    The fact that gravity can bend light has been proven since 1919.

    “Marking is a pure mathematican — this explains his devotion to mathematical justifications for “black holes” and “neutron” stars.”

    Anaconda is a math idiot. He cannot even solve the simplest of algebra problems. That explains his repeated denigration of mathematics.

  67. BTW, Anaconda also denies that white dwarfs have high density. Well, white dwarfs have had their gravitational red shifts measured and they are much larger than those of other normal stars. For example, the white dwarf Sirius B has a gravitational red shift of 80.42 km/sec corresponding to a surface gravity of log g = 8.556 or g = 3.6E8 cm/sec^2 = 360,000 g’s. So the surface gravity of Sirius B is 360,000 times greater than Earth’s. That can only happen if it has a high mass crammed into a small volume – in other words, high density

    http://www.citebase.org/abstract?id=oai:arXiv.org:astro-ph/0506600

  68. DrFlimmer

    @ Tom Marking

    “Does the Solar wind stretch all the way out to the heliopause? I understand it does. So the circuit is larger than the Earth, or the other planets, rather Earth and the other planets are “loads”, a capacitor, on a larger string or circuit of electric current. The circuit is between the Sun and the heliopause (and beyond), not the Sun and the Earth or the other planets.”

    So you are denying a direct Birkeland current between the sun and the earth, and also between Jupiter and Io? I think you must have switched your position on this issue.

    No, I don’t think that was his point. I think, he wants to say that there is a Birkeland current from the sun to the earth, but that the cicuit doesn’t need to be closed, because it’s part of a larger one.
    The real problem is that he still claims that the solar wind is a current. He just fails to see that the solar wind is composed of equal amounts of positive and negative charges and thus the solar wind is neither a current nor does it contribute to any change in any electrical potential (if there were one…).

  69. @Anaconda “Marking is a specific example of “modern” astronomy in general. Marking’s abiltiy to reel off mathematical equations that mesmerize and are hard to refute for non-mathematicians, give him power on this website. Similarly, in “modern” astronomy in general, strings of equations substitute for rigorous quantification (the actual observations & measurements don’t provide enough quantification of known physical properties of material substance), while LOOKING like it does provide quantification and rigorous analysis.”

    Snake Man has an obvious double standard, which I will hereby show:

    “On the Evolution of Interacting, Magnetized, Galactic Plasmas” by Anthony Peratt and James Green contains 13 equations. Empirical data to validate these equations is not provided for any of them.

    “Evolution of the Plasma Universe: I. Double Radio Galaxies, Quasars, and Extragalactic Jets” by Anthony Peratt contains 19 equations. Peratt just throws these equations out there with no empirical backing whatsoever.

    Not one time has Snake Man ever complained about any mathematics in Peratt’s papers or their lack of empirical support. So it’s apparently a sin when I use math but when Peratt does so it’s perfectly fine, as long as it agrees with Anaconda’s preconceived ideas. The hypocracy factor is approaching a google-plex.

  70. Ryan #2

    @Tom Marking

    “ds^2 = – (1 – 2GM/c^2r)c^2dt^2 + dr^2/(1 – 2GM/c^2r) + r^2(sin^2theta dphi^2 + dtheta^2)”

    Is the equation you put forward,

    Equation 14 from the Schwartzschild paper is:

    ds2 = (1 – α/R)dt2 – (1 – α/R)-1dR2 – R2(dθ2 + sin2θdφ2),
    R = (r3 + α3)1/3,
    0 < r < oo.

    Can you explain for me the reasoning behind the substitution of 2m for alpha?

    Also, for numerical method solutions for a two body problem to have any significance wouldn't one need to first prove that a two body solution to GR is even possible?

  71. There seems to be two themes presented in comments prior to my lengthy comment which I didn’t incorporate, but deserve addressing:

    The alleged “conspiracy”:

    First, the word “conspiracy” connotes a dishonest or illegal undertaking by a group with the idea of furthering that dishonest or illegal objective.

    There is nothing dishonest or illegal about expressing an alternative theory of cosmology. You may certainly question the basis of the alternative theory, fine. But there is nothng dishonest about expressing an opinion and then backing it up with scientific evidence.

    That is Science.

    Is there some coordinated plan to promote PU/EU theories?

    If there is, it’s a pretty pathetic effort — I can count the number of commenters on two hands that express the alternative Plasma Cosmology theory both, here, on Bad astronomy, and at UniverseToday. And half of those offer short comments and no follow up comments at all.

    Five at most commenters including myself offer sustained engagement and discussion of Plasma Cosmology at either website. Actually, that is a charitable number. Hardly the evidence of a “plan” by a group of people.

    And some are disasterous. You guys over at UniverseToday must love OilIsMastery. He positively hurts Plasma Cosmology with his very, very poor style of discussion and argumentation.

    Almost all casual readers of his comments come away from his statements baffled or feeling insulted or thinking he’s a nut.

    It’s repelling.

    OilIsMastery comes off as a cartoon character so easily is he mocked and ridiculed.

    So if there was a “plan” he would have been cut out long ago.

    OilIsMastery is the gift that keeps on giving to opponents of Plasma Cosmology.

    I wish there were more folks willing to come onto these comment boards and express their opinions and the reasons for why they hold their opinions that support Plasma Cosmology.

    Alas, such is not the case.

    The fact that two or three sustained and engaged commenters supporting Plasma Cosmology could spawn the reactionary idea that a coordinated “plan” or worse “conspiracy” existed, suggests, in my mind, anyway, that “modern” astronomy sits on a weak foundation, indeed.

    The boiler plate at thunderbolts.info is a plea or wish that people communicate their opinions, is there anything nefarious about that?

    If there were 20 to 30 people commenting both, here, and at UniverseToday in a sustained and engaged fashion supporting Plasma Cosmology, then I would think there was a plan.

    Frankly, it’s too bad there isn’t a plan because in any human activity numbers matter. Yes, science isn’t a democracy, if only one person has the idea that matches reality, that is enough to trump any other consideration. But human nature being what it is, numbers matter.

    Mathematics:

    Mathematics can quantify physical relationships of material substance — indeed, mathematical relationships of physical substances has brought forth the Industrial Revolution and the technological wonders of today.

    This is a great thing. Man can be very thankful for mathematics. I subscribe to the Galileo’s quote: “Mathematics is the language of NATURE.”

    But to have validity it must be based on observation & measurement.

    Mathematics is an indespensible tool of Empiricism. But a priori equations based on general principles are problematic at best and misleading at worst because the a priori equations must be absolutely perfect, because as additional equations are built on top of each other any initial error is compounded.

    It can be “worse” because those committed to the absolute perfection of the a priori equations will have no tolerance for those that question the equations perfect representation of reality and will attempt to prevent any questioning of those initial assumptions and will try and sway those willing followers that everything it right as the equations imagine them to be.

    Such is the case, today, in “modern” astronomy.

    The equations have taken a “life of their own” unhinged from observation and measurement. Those that blindly support the equations are unfaithful to the physical reality those equations were supposed to represent.

    As regarding “black” bodies. There are two questions: Does gravity attract light? Even if there is evidence of such an attraction, then the next question that must be asked is this: Considering how weak a Fundamental Force gravity is, does or can material substance ever achieve the density required for gravity to be strong enough to overpower light?

    Mathematical equations don’t answer this question in an a priori fashion.

    There is no observation & measurement that supports the proposition and much indirect scientific evidence suggesting matter never gets dense enough to overpower light to create a “black” body.

    100 million tons in the tip of my pinkey finger, not likely. And that’s the supposed density of a “neutron” star, that doesn’t even get us close to the density required to overpower light in a supposed “black hole”.

    Mathematics must be the servant of observation & measurement and never the master.

    In it’s proper subordinate role quantifying known and replicated physical relationships mathematics is the most important tool known to Man behind language, itself.

    Unhinged from reality, mathematics is a dangerous stumbling block that can be used to prevent Man from questioning unsupported assumptions and block his understanding of the physical Universe.

  72. @Ryan #2
    “Equation 14 from the Schwartzschild paper is:
    ds2 = (1 – α/R)dt2 – (1 – α/R)-1dR2 – R2(dθ2 + sin2θdφ2),
    R = (r3 + α3)1/3,
    0 < r < oo.
    Can you explain for me the reasoning behind the substitution of 2m for alpha?"

    I don't have the paper in front of me, but from simple dimensional analysis I can see what Schwarzchild is attempting to do.

    ds^2 = (1 – alpha/R) * dt^2 …

    Well, first off he's using some type of normalized units so that the speed of light c equals one, that's why he drops the c^2 factor for dt^2 which would normally have to be there in SI units.

    Since the units for ds^2 and dt^2 match that means that (1 – alpha/R) is dimensionless which makes sense since we know 1 is dimensionless. So alpha has the same dimensions as R which is the radius (in meters for SI units).

    So alpha must also be a distance, actually a radius from the origin just like R. Well, what radius is it?

    Alpha is the Schwarzchild radius which is 2*G*M / c^2 in SI units. Apparently in the unit system Schwarzchild is using both G and c equal 1 so that alpha = 2*M in that system, but it is NOT a mass, rather a distance. Hope this helps. Non-SI units always bug the hell out of me. :)

  73. Ryan #2

    @DrFlimmer

    I found some of what you said a bit troubling, especially “It is unlikely that we really have a point-mass with infinite density, but it is so far the best explanation.” That makes it seem like black hole theory lacks mathematical rigor.

    Are you sure an electron is a point? In QM there is a position opperator that you can plug into the Shroedinger equation and obtain an answer, but it seems a stretch to then conclude that the electron’s shape is as you describe. Given the evidence that an electron either has a wave-like structure or is structured with a tendency to wave, couldn’t it be that the QM position opperator is trying to tell us where the center of the electron is rather than where the entire electron is?

    Is your argument that “But if you calculate, say, a planet orbiting a star, it is ok, to “throw” in the planet after you derived the metric of the star” based on a rule of math? As I understand the rules of non-linear differential equations (like GR), the superposition principle doesn’t apply. Is that not right?

    Also, do properly determine if gravity bends the path of light, wouldn’t we need to control for the prism effect? I might be wrong, but I think the lensing experiments have always looked at the position of the object and not its spectrum. If the bending around the sun is different for different wavelengths then wouldn’t the results be evidence that the corona acts like an ordinary prism?

  74. Ryan #2

    @Tom Marking

    I’m feeling really confused. One of your posts said “The mass M is there in the equation.” The latest post said, “2*M … but it is NOT a mass, rather a distance.” Why would M be a mass when G = G and c = c but not a mass when G = c = 1?

  75. @Ryan “I’m feeling really confused. One of your posts said “The mass M is there in the equation.” The latest post said, “2*M … but it is NOT a mass, rather a distance.” Why would M be a mass when G = G and c = c but not a mass when G = c = 1?”

    If everyone at all times would have used SI units there would NOT be any confusion. The correct equation in SI units is:

    ds^2 = – (1 – (2*G*M/c^2) / r) * c^2 * dt^2 + …

    M means mass in kilograms, G is the gravitational constant in m^3 per kg per sec^2, c is the speed of light in m/s. So 2*G*M/c^2 has units of meters.

    But that is not the formula Schwarzchild had which was:

    ds2 = (1 – 2*M / R) * dt^2 + …

    There is still a c^2 in front of the dt^2 but it is left out because c is 1. The 2*M still has a factor G/c^2 multiplied by it but it is not shown since G is 1 and c^2 is 1. So technically speaking M is still mass in kilograms but the factor 2*M has units of distance since it has a factor of G/c^2 which is not shown.

  76. @Ryan #2 “Also, do properly determine if gravity bends the path of light, wouldn’t we need to control for the prism effect? I might be wrong, but I think the lensing experiments have always looked at the position of the object and not its spectrum. If the bending around the sun is different for different wavelengths then wouldn’t the results be evidence that the corona acts like an ordinary prism?”

    Why don’t you go out and actually do that experiment? If you succeed in showing that the bending of light around the sun has nothing to do with gravity you will get the Nobel prize in physics. There is an upcoming solar eclipse of the sun coming on July 22nd that can be seen in China. I suggest you get your bags packed and try it, instead of just talking about it.

  77. Ryan #2

    @Tom Marking

    Thanks for the clarification on the M issue (why M is a mass and 2M*1 is a distance because of unit normalization). I’m still confused on the rational for changing alpha to 2M in the first place though. It seems ad hoc, like one borrows a newtownian idea and combines it with GR for no apparent reason.

    “Why don’t you go out and actually do that experiment? If you succeed in showing that the bending of light around the sun has nothing to do with gravity you will get the Nobel prize in physics. There is an upcoming solar eclipse of the sun coming on July 22nd that can be seen in China. I suggest you get your bags packed and try it, instead of just talking about it.”

    While that sounds like a real fun time, there is a small matter of funding. Do you know of anyone who would want to help out? I’m also concerned, that maybe someone more skilled and knowlegable in the use of telescopes would be more suited to cary out the experiment. Having not used a telescope in at least a decade, I’m worried I could screw it up. But I mean, if you’re in a position to write a check, I’ll definately make it happen.

  78. DrFlimmer

    @ Ryan #2:

    That makes it seem like black hole theory lacks mathematical rigor.

    It’s not the mathematics, it’s the physics that must be taken into account. As you state correctly for the electron, quantum mechanics tells us that a “point” is practically non-existent. That is the reason that we know (although it is so good) that GR lacks something. At very small distances it cannot be correct, because at small distances even space and time begin to fluctuate – and that behaviour is not described by GR (it can’t be, since it lacks h). So, the reason that there is something wrong with the infinite density comes from a quantum mechanical point of view.

    You are right about the electron. But we can analyse the structure of matter. We have peered into protons and literally found quarks and gluons – we found the substructure of protons and neutrons. But we haven’t found any substructure for the electron down to a resolution of 10^-18m – it must be smaller than that. On the other hand it has to be “bigger” than (I don’t know the exact value) 10^-30m or so, or it would become a black hole.

    Is your argument that “[…]” based on a rule of math?

    No, it’s “physical intuition”. Planets around a star are treated like a “test particle” that does not influence the metric (this is justified, if you compare the masses of the star and the planets).

    Also, do properly determine if gravity bends the path of light, wouldn’t we need to control for the prism effect?

    AFAIK, it doesn’t depend on the “colour” of the light. Since light travels with the speed of light (duh!), it follows “null-trajectories”. Those are the same for every form of light, so there shouldn’t be a prism-effect.

  79. @DrFlimmer “AFAIK, it doesn’t depend on the “colour” of the light. Since light travels with the speed of light (duh!), it follows “null-trajectories”. Those are the same for every form of light, so there shouldn’t be a prism-effect.”

    He’s talking about the passage of starlight through a material medium (e.g., the solar corona). The normal rules of refraction apply so there should be a wavelength-dependent index of refraction. The issue is that the density of the corona is very small, only one trillionth the density of the photosphere so the index of refraction will be very close to 1. So I doubt refraction can explain the light bending.

  80. Ryan #2

    @DrFlimmer

    Thank you for your interesting replies to my questions. And I must admit, that even if treating planets as test particles that don’t affect the metric is not perfectly correct from a mathematical perspective, it certainly makes sense from a common sense intuition perspective.

    On the point about the trajectory and colour of light, I think a measurment of the spectrum as well as location of light from an object in a lensing experiment would determine whether a prism effect or gravitational lensing effect produces the bending. If the bending is the same for each colour then the evidence is in favor of gravitational lensing, but if the bending depends on colour, especially if it does so in a way consistent with known prisms, then the evidence would support the prism effect.

  81. DrFlimmer

    Since the value of the bending is exactly (always taking errors in mind) the same as predicted by GR, I think it is very likely that it is indeed a GR-effect. Tom Marking states correctly, the index of refraction should be really close to 1. That means that a bending due to refraction should be REALLY small…. But I admit that I do not know if such an experiment has been done (although I would guess, it has…).

  82. IVAN3MAN

    Anaconda:

    Yes, there must be an ultimate source of energy. And, that hasn’t been identified, but there is indirect evidence that there is an unknown ultimate source — 99.99% of the visible Universe is plasma with charge seperation [sic].

    Basically, Anaconda, what you mean is that you and your fellow EU/PC proponents do not have a bloody clue! Where is that “indirect evidence” that you speak of? Ask a creationist/ID crackpot where ‘god’ came from, or who designed the ‘designer’, they retort: Oh, er… he/she/it has always existed; he/she/it is ‘outside’ of time. Ask a creationist/ID nutcase for concrete evidence to support their assertions, they obfuscate and say: Our ‘scientists’ are “working on it”. Likewise with EU/PC cranks! :roll:

    As far as intermediate sources of charge seperation [sic], according to Plasma Universe theory, galaxies have a plasmoid at their center, as opposed to a “black hole”, this plasmoid acts to seperate [sic] charge and emits a preponderance of electrons in one direction from its axis of rotation and a preponderance of ions from the other end of the axis of rotation.

    A plasmoid is a coherent structure of plasma and magnetic fields. Plasmoids produced in the laboratory include Field-Reversed Configurations (FRC), Spheromaks, and the Dense Plasma Focus (DPF). All these require an input of energy. So, again, what/where is the ultimate energy source in that EU/PC universe or yours?

    Once this charge seperation [sic] has been achieved, the inherent attraction and repulsion of electromagnetism provided the organizational & energy dynamics for large scale structures in the Universe with a significant role for gravity, but not the predominate role — what that role is exactly is unknown.

    This sounds like fancy EU/PC gobbledygook for perpetual motion — a violation of both the first and second laws of thermodynamics!

    Anaconda, I can provide links to several references to Stellar Energy Sources from mainstream astrophysics, but since you cannot be bloody bothered to read anything from mainstream science that contradicts EU/PC hypothesis, while cherry picking those papers that do, I can’t be bloody bothered to post it either!

    😎

  83. IVAN3MAN

    ERRATUM:In the last paragraph, it should read:

    …, but since you cannot be bloody bothered to read anything from mainstream science that contradicts EU/PC hypothesis — while cherry picking those papers that do not — I can’t be bloody bothered to post it either!

    Man, when the bloody hell are we going to get a preview/edit facility here?! 😐

  84. IVAN3MAN

    Furthermore, as the links referred to are plural, it should be: … I can’t be bloody bothered to post them either!

    D’oh!

  85. IVAN3MAN

    It’s Anaconda’s fault… E’s makin’ me mind go numb!

  86. IVAN3MAN

    Anaconda:

    You guys over at UniverseToday must love OilIsMastery. He positively hurts Plasma Cosmology with his very, very poor style of discussion and argumentation.

    First true thing that you have ever said! 😀

    OilIsMastery is the gift that keeps on giving to opponents of Plasma Cosmology.

    You could not make that guy up! 😆

  87. ND

    Anaconda,

    Unfortunately you’re not helping PC either with your complete lack of knowledge of scientific concepts behind what you’re discussing.

  88. Todd W.

    @ND

    It would probably help if he had actually studied physics under those who actually work with it, rather than just attending the university of Google.

  89. ND

    Ryan #2: “…measurment of the spectrum as well as location of light from an object in a lensing experiment would determine whether a prism effect or gravitational lensing effect produces the bending.”

    Or both, no? These would be two separate phenomenon acting on the same photons.

  90. Ryan #2

    @ND

    “Or both.”

    That’s right isn’t it? Well, a little egg on my face there. Not to try to change the subject too badly, but does anyone know the technological barriers that would need to be crossed in order to reproduce a corona environment (high temperature, low density) in a laboratory? If we had a corona to test we could probably tell the difference between the causes, but of course that assumes we see any variance with wavelength at all. So at least in the case where there’s no colour variability we’ll still get useful information. Still though, good point.

  91. DrFlimmer

    @ Ryan #2

    Theoretically it would be possible to creat a “corona” in the lab. The biggest problem is probably to creat the thinness – it is more than a “perfect vacuum on earth” (10^-12 kg/m^3). Heating should not be such a big problem.

  92. ND

    Ryan #2

    There was the Cassini experiment from a few years ago using radio ways to test general relativity. Cassini was passing behind the sun and this gave an opportunity to test GR. Since dispersion goes down with increase in wavelength efraction would be much less for radio waves compared to light. The idea being that with radio waves dispersion *could* be insignificant if it’s observable in visible light. But I have no idea how these would compare affects from GR. Just guessing.

  93. Ryan

    @DrFlimmer

    So we make a prize. $15 Million in taxpayer money to the first team to achieve such and such temperature and density. I can’t think of many applications of research, but the machinery to make it happen might have collateral benefit to industry and in that situation prizes have spurred private investment. The Lunar X program is an example.

    @ND

    Putting an emitter on a satellite seems pretty obvious after you point it out. It seems like that would be even better than looking at a star because you can be very certain about what light the satellite emits.

  94. ND

    Ryan,

    I believe the Cassini test was the most precise testing of GR’s prediction so far. I could be remembering that incorrectly but it was a significant experiment supporting GR.

  95. IVAN3MAN

    Todd W.:

    It would probably help if he had actually studied physics under those who actually work with it, rather than just attending the university of Google.

    Google is like a pasture: Lots of rich, fresh grass, but beware the nettle and mind that you don’t step in the bull****!

  96. Todd W.

    @IVAN3MAN

    Don’t forget the poison ivy.

  97. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    @ Todd:

    You just seem to have forgotten that little fact.

    But that is the purpose of rants, no? 😮

    [Seriously, we can’t expect to teach incompetents. Ever. But we can strive to clarify things for us, and for bystanders.

    … , OK, I guess it might have gone over the head of some bystanders as well. Sorry.]

  98. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    @ Ryan:

    shouldn’t we conclude the gravitational field of a black hole has no mathematical foundation?

    Not a formal, proof-rigorous, no. That doesn’t preclude mathematics to be used, to great advantage.

    how is a black hole a consequence of physics?

    Tom Marking gave an excellent summary in the comment just above your question.

    [More generally you can see the claim that as a singularity it is a consequence akin to other singularities of theory pointing to “new physics”, say the infinite field strength around point charges of classical field theory pointing to quantum theory and its explanation of charges. But that isn’t as specific as TM’s summary.]

  99. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    @ Ryan:

    Given the evidence that an electron either has a wave-like structure or is structured with a tendency to wave, couldn’t it be that the QM position opperator is trying to tell us where the center of the electron is rather than where the entire electron is?

    Given the evidence that an electron is structured with a field that has a tendency to quantize, couldn’t it be that the QM position operator is trying to tell us where it is likely that the electron is rather than where the entire electron is?

    Actually, I believe that is what it is telling us. So whether it behaves like a particle then observed in one experiment or like a wave in another, out comes that probability.

    Now, how do you show that an elementary particle has a width? (Especially considering the problems that runs up with, for example the meaning of spin.) Theories there particles have width are structured differently, for example string theory there AFAIU you have a size.

  100. IVAN3MAN

    Todd W.:

    Don’t forget the poison ivy.

    Yeah, you’re right, and also I forgot the preposition “of”, and the letter “s”; so I should have written it as:

    Google is like a pasture: Lots of rich, fresh grass, but beware of the nettles and [the poison ivy], [and] mind that you don’t step in the bull****!

  101. IVAN3MAN

    Hmm… after eventually finding the news report, “General Relativity passes Cassini test”, that ND was referring to, I now find that everybody else has buggered off this thread and it’s just me and the…

    *Crickets*
  102. DrFlimmer

    You can still post it, anyway. Could be useful in future discussions with our good EU-friends 😉

  103. ND

    IVAN3MAN,

    I am dah partee poopah. Unless when I’m being ignored :)

  104. IVAN3MAN

    Hmm… I’m just checking to see if you-know-who has sneaked in the last word… no, he’s pissed off! Good!

    DrFlimmer:

    You can still post it, anyway. Could be useful in future discussions with our good EU-friends

    Don’t worry, it will keep… I’ve bookmarked it for the next time! 😉

    @ ND,

    The real “partee poopah” is Anaconda — about as welcome as a snake in a lucky dip. 😛

  105. Becky

    Thanks for this interesting discussion! I was asking the web a question, and I found this, in a nutshell:

    If all the mass is at r=0 and none is at r>0, then aren’t we describing an objet with infinite density? In special relativity the formula for the density of a mass observed by another is

    D = Mo/[Xo^3(1-(v^2/c^2))]

    Density becomes infinite when v=c. Doesn’t that mean special relativity forbids infinite density?

    Also, are you entirely sure it is not a mathematical error

    Thanks again for your opinions! I don’t believe for a moment in the ‘singularity’. I do believe in the existence of black holes, but they have mass, size and rotation (based on their resulting from a large imploding star…. & certainly super massive black holes are spinning out super fast jets and rotating at extremely high speeds).

    Interesting that electrons can be squished into a soup when a white dwarf is formed, fused into neutrons when a neutron is formed, but when a black hole is formed, that neutron is squeezed into ??? Well I believe all the space is squeezed out of the matter entirely. It exists in space but contains no space. But I didn’t want to discuss a lot because I don’t relish the thought of being laughed out of town here. I just wanted to pop in and say Thanks!

  106. Becky

    In my last paragraph I meant to say electrons are fused into neutrons when a neutron star is formed. Further collapse into a black hole squishes the neutron into ??? It is the black hole that exists in space but contain no space within it. 100% matter with all spaces squeezed out of it. Just to clarify what I previously said :)

  107. Becky

    p.s. It’s not a matter of ‘infinite’ density, as it is ‘maximum’ density. The big bang could not start from a singularity. The most dense objects in space, super massive black holes, are believed to have a size of about our solar system. The accretion disk pulsates like a heartbeat, spanning approximately the distance between neptune & pluto in the time of a heartbeat, observably. You can’t compress matter any further than ‘maximum density’…. but not ‘infinite’ density.

    I further believe that there may be an implosive force so great, that gravity “ceases to exist” for a “split second” and in that moment…. is a big bang. It is my understanding the Big Bang theory hints at that, whereby ‘gravity separates from the other 3 forces’ I believe at the moment just before the big bang….. What? We’re still trying to come up with the ‘unification’ of the forces? The only force of the fundamental 4 that exists within a black hole (theoretically) is gravity.

    Electromagnatism is “extinguished” by the implosive force creating a white dwarf. The weak force is extinguished by the implosive force creating a neutron star. The strong force is extinguished by the implosive force creating a black hole. It follows then, that there ‘may’ be an implosive force so great that for a ‘moment’ in time, gravity would lose it’s hold on all that ‘maximum’ density, and WOW what a big bang that would be.

    As for the expanding universe, this is just for discussion lol.. but when you try to blow up a balloon, it is difficult at 1st, and slowly the air works into the rubber and begins to expand it. It takes a lot of energy to get it started. Once the rubber begins to stretch, the balloon begins to expand very quickly. Maybe our expanding universe is similar, expanding faster all the time. OR, again just for discussion.. maybe the stuff of the universe is like the shifting continents on some ‘tectonic plate’ very loosly speaking.. maybe all the galaxies are ‘shifting’ … but toward what??

    Also, it is not true that all the galaxies are flying away from each other, as some scientists avidly state. Andromeda is heading straight for the Milky Way…..

    One other thing, I really get annoyed with black holes depicted as a round sphere. It would look more like a flat tire, bulging at the equator like any celestial object. In fact, were I to believe in white holes, and were the centrifugal force greater than the gravity that binds the object, I would say that galaxies look very much like a super massive black hole that ‘spun out’.

    It seems that the speed of spin and the size of the black hole is limited by the very stuff it consumes.. the accretion disk. The matter falling in creates an immense magnetic field, so you have gravity tight as can be, centrifugal force, wanting to tear the thing apart, you have the rotation speeding up as it takes on more matter, approaching the speed of light. Of course there is a limit there.. and what the accretion disk does is ‘deflect’ matter along the magnetic field it creates, shooting charged particles (electrons) out the poles at immense speeds, which ‘fertilize’ ionized hydrogen particles so they can incubate new stars.

    But what’s this about guasars and galaxies producing hydrogen? That’s the big mystery. Where does the hydrogen come from?

    And what of magnetars? Am I to believe these ‘neutron stars’ have the strongest magnetic field in all the univers, including these super massive jet-flinging black holes?

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