FEEDBACK NOTE NO. 9

RESPONSE TO TONY ERICKSON


Copyright, Harold Aspden, 2002


On April 16, 2002 Tony Erickson, Tony@lasersafety.com, sent me an E-Mail which was insulting in declaring that I had made numerous untrue statements on my website concerning electromagnetic radiation. His message read:
Your site is filled with inaccuracies and out-right lies. You make suppositions about problems with the propagation of electromagnetic radiation that have been proven to be true from multiple directions. You would be well served to learn some actual physics. Your types of lies support the crazy anti-science groups that are the enemies of civilization. You can not take "hunches" and post them as facts. You should be ashamed of yourself.

My polite response to this was my E-Mail message to him dated April 22, 2002 (sent at 8.06 am) which was:
"Will you kindly point to one section of my website where I make an untrue statement concerning electromagnetic radiation - a statement that is contrary to what you believe has been proven to be true from multiple directions? Identify the statement that concerns you and I will correct it and explain in my FEEDBACK section of my website why I have corrected it or I will otherwise give a full explanation of why I adhere to what I have said in the light of your criticism."

Some 8 hours later at 16.10 on April 22, Erickson sent me his E-Mail response, as presented below, and only 25 minutes later at 16.35 on April 22, he sent a further response, also presented below, in which you will see that he declares to me, as his point 4, 'You are crazy, but I assume you knew that', before signing off as "Tony Erickson, A REAL scientist."

Now I have had very many E-mail messages supporting my efforts and congratulating me on my website presentations and I must admit that it comes as a surprise to find that here is someone who can get so 'hot under the collar' about an opinion on the debatable issues of, to use his own words, 'REAL science'. Confronted with his insulting style of expression I have chosen not to respond to any further messages he might send me, but I will, for the benefit of those readers who may be interested in how I could refute his assertions, deal specifically and openly with the remarks he has made in his two communications below.

Erickson's Message No. 1:
"The problem with this argument is that the photon is supposedly travelling at the speed of light, but that speed needs a reference frame and, to ...."

WRONG! It does NOT need a reference frame. Please read up on Einsteinís theories (both general and special relativity while youíre at it) and you will see that the 'reference frame' is built into the very fabric of space/time. For the record, they are not even just theories, relativity has been proven to be correct countless times.

That one was so easy as to not even be worth correcting you.

I will provide you with one per day if you like. Your bible based 'science' is quite amusing and FULL OF HOLES.

Tony

Erickson's Message No. 2:
"It is that every electromagnetic wave travels in company with a companion wave of the same frequency. They serve to assist in at least partially balancing one another dynamically in their oscillations lateral to the direction of propagation, but they have different displacement amplitudes in terms of both their electric and their magnetic field properties. Analysis then shows that the wave frequency is coded into the relative strengths of those displacement amplitudes. As a result the wave in transit through space can be intercepted by quasi-material particles in its path and so shed energy in a way which progressively modifies that ratio of displacements, so affecting the coded data and reducing the wave frequency."

1. You have NO evidence at all that 'every electromagnetic wave travels in company with a companion wave of the same frequency'. Pure supposition and speculation.

2. "As a result the wave in transit through space can be intercepted by quasi-material particles in its path and so shed energy in a way which progressively modifies that ratio of displacements, so affecting the coded data and reducing the wave frequency." Just PLAIN WRONG! You even make up a new form of matter with an off-hand remark like 'quasi-material'. There is no evidence at all to support such a claim and all you are doing is taking explainable, observable phenomena like photon propagation and adding on some sort of extra physics that has no need or evidence.

3. I assume you need to shed this energy and reduce the frequency so that you can prove the universe is young and small.

4. You are crazy, but I assume you already knew that.

Tony Erickson
A REAL scientist.


You will see that his first concern is my apparent ignorance of Einstein's theory of relativity and his second concern is my lack of evidence in support of my companion wave hypothesis and my assumption that a form of 'quasi-matter' exists everywhere in so-called empty space. I will try to embrace both of these issues in one overall commentary.

In 1916 Einstein wrote a book in which he set out to give 'an exact insight into the theory of Relativity to those readers who, from a general scientific and philosophical point of view, are interested in the theory, but who are not conversant with the mathematical apparatus of theoretical physics'. His book was aimed at the student community having reached university entry requirements and Einstein explains how he has purposely treated the empirical foundations of his theory in a "step-motherly" fashion to make it easy for readers to follow. Now, I presume that Tony Erickson, being 'A REAL scientist', will be fully conversant with the necessary mathematics that go with a full in-depth study of Einstein's theory, as indeed I am myself, but as his concerns are expressed in simple language so that will suffice for this response.

Still concerning that Einstein book, one finds that by 1952 it had reached its final edition form, as the Fifteenth Edition, when a 23 page Appendix V was added. That Appendix was entitled 'Relativity and the Problem of Space'. So, you see, 'space' as such was still a problem even in Einstein's eyes, some 36 years after his theories of Special and General Relativity were cast in a form which those with only a high school education could understand. Indeed, one may well wonder how, as Tony Erickson insists, it has ceased to be a problem over the intervening half century since 1952.

Now, to get to the specifics of Erickson's concern, I will quote a few words from the Appendix IV of Einstein's book, which was only 2 pages in length. It is a note on 'The Structure of Space according to the General Theory of Relativity'. You see, 'space' as such does have a 'structure'. In Einstein's own words:
"My original considerations on the subject were based on two hypotheses: (1) There exists an average density of matter in the whole of space which is everywhere the same and different from zero. (2) The magnitude ("radius") of space is independent of time. Both of these hypotheses proved to be consistent, according to the general theory of relativity, but only after a hypothetical term was added to the field equations, a term which was not required by the theory as such nor did it seem natural from a theoretical point of view ("cosmological term of the field equations").

Einstein then goes on to explain how a different hypothesis according to a Russian mathematician Friedman was more appropriate and how the later discoveries of Hubble concerning the spectral red shift seemed to confirm Friedman's ideas. Then Einstein asserts: "There does arise, however, a strange difficulty. The interpretation of the galactic line-shift discovered by Hubble as an expansion leads to an origin of the universe which lies only about 109 years ago, while physical astronomy makes it appear likely that the development of individual stars and systems of stars takes considerably longer. It is in no way known how this incongruity is to be overcome."

Now, Erickson states that I have 'no evidence at all that every electromagnetic wave travels in company with a companion wave of the same frequency', without, it seems, being aware that I find that I can derive the value of the Hubble constant by adopting this assumption. Bear in mind here that the alternative 'assumption' is that an electromagnetic wave has no companion wave, meaning that somehow its electric field can oscillate sideways as it advances at the speed of light and yet that oscillation has no counterpart to, as it were, push against in its passage over vast distances across empty space. I submit that the truth is that we have no evidence to prove the latter, albeit standard, assumption and that in terms of physics, as opposed to mathematics, and as guided by Newtonian dynamics we do need a companion wave to provide that dynamic balance within the composite wave system. As to evidence for my proposition, the evidence comes from the onward application of that proposition to explain quantitively and qualitatively something observed that is otherwise inexplicable, namely the Hubble constant. After all, one can hardly be impressed by the assumption that it arises from Doppler effects in a universe that is ever expanding from a singularity in space at time zero. That really is quite an arbitrary assumption and it means that once upon a time the whole mass and energy of the universe appeared as if from nowhere in a void having no field presence, a breathtaking proposition that defies all logic!

Then Erickson goes on to affirm that I am "PLAIN WRONG!" in suggesting that if there are two waves advancing together in an anti-phase lateral motion so as to provide that dynamic balance, then, in shedding energy, the ratio of the amplitudes of the two waves must change and that could result in a progressive reduction of wave frequency. Yet, as I have stated, this is how I explain the physics governing the Hubble constant, a physical account which tells that the universe need not be expanding but can be steady state. To account for the obstruction in space which causes wave energy to be shed at a very modest by finite rate I point to the quasi-matter presence which I see as Nature's ongoing attempts to create matter everywhere throughout space, attempts which only succeed, except transiently, should there be a surplus of field energy somewhere within that space medium. I support this by showing how those attempts do create the occasional proton along with an electron, the basic components of matter, and going on to derive by pure theory the precise value of the proton-electron mass ratio. Keep in mind also that reference by Einstein to a uniform distribution of matter throughout space and add to that the current cosmological belief that there is a significant amount of so-called 'missing matter' that is active in making theory match observation but that is not seen in the stellar system of matter.

Of course, this notion that Nature has a process for transiently creating matter throughout space is a hypothesis, but a working hypothesis that gives results that explain what is hitherto not explained. That is how physics works and it really is not 'extra physics' to assert that there is a quasi-matter presence in space. After all, this is admitted by Einstein himself in that quoted text above and it is in any event recognized as existing by quantum physicists who study the lepton creation and annihilation properties of what we call the 'zero-point' energy of space.

I find it a curious observation for Erickson to say "I assume you need to shed energy and reduce the frequency so that you can prove the universe is young and small". In fact, I have no idea how large the universe might be or how old it might be and, if anything, my theory, though deriving the Hubble time period as some 14 or so billion years, suggests a steady-state universe of greater extent and longer existence than followers of Einstein assume.

Then there is, in the first of Erickson's above messages, that question of the 'reference frame'. He says that the speed of light does not need a reference frame but then tells me to read up on Einstein's theories where I will see that the 'reference frame' is built into the very fabric of space-time. Then he says that Einstein's theories are not even theories because Relativity has been proven to be correct countless times.

So a reference frame is not needed but yet it exists in Einstein's theories and those theories are not even theories. What can Erickson mean to convey by such a self-contradictory style of expression?

On this point I quote Einstein's own words from page 9 of Chapter 3 of his book 'Relativity' referred to above:
Moreover, what is meant here by motion 'in space'? from considerations of the previous section the answer is self-evident. In the first place we entirely shun the vague word 'space', of which we must honestly acknowledge, we cannot form the slightest conception, and we replace it by 'motion relative to a practically rigid body of reference'.

Note here that sweeping assumption ".. of which we must honestly acknowledge, we cannot form the slightest conception..". Surely, no would-be physics student should be exposed to such nonsense! "We must shun the vague word 'space' because we have no idea how to imagine the form of that medium!" Einstein was doing a selling job and grinding his own axe here in saying "Give up trying! It is too difficult! Buy a pair of spectacles from me that will allow you to see a distorted version of whatever you are looking at, a version that avoids the difficulties of simple logic, and with it comes a drug that will allow you to sense the passage of time at a different rate to the one of your natural experience."

Seemingly the word 'relative' is where one gets the name 'Relativity', just as I maintain that an electromagnetic wave has a transverse electric field oscillation that arises from a relative displacement as between two companion waves. It takes two of something to define a relationship! So Einstein tells us that we need not imagine space as being something real because everything is 'relative' to a 'practically rigid body of reference'.

Having noted that Tony Erickson's E-Mail address includes the word 'laser' it is appropriate here to suggest that the electromagnetic wave activity that exists in the laser in the space we shun is an activity defined solely by motion relative to the reflecting mirrors at each end of the laser. Undoubtedly, when the laser is transported at high speed, the light waves travelling between those mirrors have no dependence whatsoever on that motion of the laser, the only rigid body of relevance. However, if I say there is an aether medium and that it has a structure that shares the motion of the laser and defines an electromagnetic frame of reference for light within (but not external to) that laser, does experiment prove me wrong and Einstein right? Does Einstein tell you how light escaping from that laser can travel onwards on its journey through space, always governed by its intrinsic ability to maintain a steady speed referenced solely on that laser source and do that without dependence upon the speed of transport of that laser? You are told to shun space and replace it by something called 'space-time', which is a mathematical notion, and accept Einstein's doctrinaire ideas without question, even though they make no sense.

Einstein tells you to shun the aether and even space itself so long as you have objects which provide the reference body for the speed of light. If that is so why is space given a new name 'space-time' and assigned special mathematically defined properties that govern how time itself can adopt different clock rates dependent upon the value of the speed of light in vacuo?

I have yet to hear of any evidence which proves Einstein's theory along with a confirmation of the implicit assumptions involved. The theory stems from the errors of an era of experimentation leading to a formulation of physical principles that were extrapolated beyond the scope of the experiments. Two relevant examples are (1) the assumption that the speed of light waves is not affected by encounter with the reflected form of the same light waves travelling in an opposite direction and (2) the assumption that electrodynamic interaction between two discrete charges in relative motion is identical to such an interaction as between a current element of a closed circuital current and a discrete moving charge.

If Einstein's theory has anything worthwhile to offer why is it that it has no predictive power leading to new discovery, given that it was expressly formulated to explain certain experimental facts that were already known?

Einstein himself in his final Appendix V dating from 1952 evidently gets himself confused in twisting his ideas about space around and around to make them coherent. He writes:
"In accordance with classical mechanics and according to the special theory of relativity, space (space-time) has an existence independent of matter and field. In order to be able to describe at all that which fills up space and is dependent on the co-ordinates, space-time or the inertial system with its metrical properties must be thought of as at once existing, for otherwise the description of 'that which fills space' would have no meaning. On the basis of the general theory of relativity, on the other hand,, space as opposed to 'what fills space', which is dependent on the co-ordinates, has no separate existence."

Later, in the same paragraph, we read:
"There is no such thing as empty space, i.e. space without a field. Space-time does not claim existence on its own, but only as a structural quality of the field. Thus Descartes was not far from the truth when he believed he must exclude the existence of an empty space. The notion indeed appears absurd, as long as physical reality is seen exclusively in ponderable bodies. It requires the idea of the field as a representative of reality, in combination with the general principle of relativity to show the true kernel of Descartes' idea; there exists no space 'empty of field'."

So there you are! Tony Erickson tells me to study Einstein's theories for true enlightenment concerning the 'reference frame' and the 'very fabric of space-time' and here I am somewhat confused by what Einstein says. It is absurd to conceive of space being empty as it contains 'space-time', but space-time does not exist on its own, it being the 'structural quality of the field'. The 'field' is something that exists in space, but it is not 'seen exclusively in ponderable bodies'.

So if I say that electromagnetic waves propagate as field disturbances that is O.K. but if I say that an electric field as part of an electromagnetic wave attributable to the physical separation of electric charge of opposite polarities then I am introducing something into space other than the field and that is not permissible, according to Einstein.

Well I would rather take the facts of experiment as a basis and infer from that that the vacuum medium that I regard as filling space has properties consistent with those observations. I choose to ingore Einstein's philosophical ideas and his notion of a space metric interwoven with time, according to a mathematical formulation that has no logical basis other than being a convenient empirical excuse for dodging the fundamental issues. Those fields according to Einstein can be electric or magnetic in nature, though Einstein seems obsessed with gravitational fields because his general theory of relativity hinges around the latter. He failed to explain gravitation in terms of electromagnetic action but soldiered on in pontificating as to the governing truths of the space medium. Instead, I prefer to give meaning to electric field theory and explore the nature of space, building on Maxwell's formulations, this then obliging me to see space as containing electric charge that can be displaced. The displacement involves relative separation of two components of an electromagnetic wave and further, in the absence of such waves, displacement of charge from what otherwise would be a state of rest in a system devoid of motion. This assures that what would otherwise be a prevalent state of negative potential energy is virtually one of zero potential energy. In its turn this implies motion to sustain the charge separation, motion which one can link to the quantum of action we see as governing electron states in atoms. The same motion implies the need for dynamic balance and that introduces the the role of the graviton charges that give account of the phenomenon of gravitation, an electrodynamic phenomenon. So I see space as alive with action and a sea of electric charge in motion, but it complies with our observation of its elusive character.

In summary, whereas Einstein ended his quest by admitting that he could only conceive of space as a field system and could not form the slightest conception as to its composition, I began by regarding space as a sea of electric charge of one polarity permeated by discrete charges of opposite polarity and set about the arduous mathematical task of investigating how its properties matched what was observed. By 'observed' here I mean the implicit regulating parameters we see in Planck's quantum of action and G, the constant of gravitation, leading on from there to understanding the electromagnetic wave property that we see in the findings of Hubble.

I accept that Ivor Erickson believes what he understands as Einstein's theories and I see no point in trying to educate him as to the real truths that pervade science. It is not my wish to seek to discredit belief in Einstein's doctrines, this being an assumption made by many who read of my research in its early stages years ago. My sole objective was to fathom the truths of the anomalies that beset my early experimental efforts, anomalies which I could only explain by wandering a little off-track by exploiting weaknesses I could see in standard theory. The prime example is the factor of 2 saga concerning the gyromagnetic ratio of the electron, which makes ferromagnetism an electron spin property of atoms rather than one involving electron orbital motion. This led me into a study of magnetic field reaction properties of space itself, that medium which Einstein would have us see only as a system of fields conforming with his special and general way of looking at things. Space had be occupied by a real aether and so my search for the truth began and Ivor Erickson's intervention now is merely an amusing distraction which I hope will enliven this FEEDBACK section of my web site.

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Harold Aspden
April 29, 2002