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Einstein's theory of everything

  1. Sep 13, 2009 #1
    Does anybody know how Einstein's theory of everything worked. I've heard that it failed to mesh with either Quantum or relativity, but I've never heard what the concepts were that were the real base of the theory, besides its attempt to meld gravity with EM. How did he propose to do that?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 14, 2009 #2


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    Look up Kaluza-Klein theory on say wikipedia.
  4. Sep 23, 2009 #3
    Einstein never actually did achieve a theory of everything. He worked toward one all of his life. The Kaluza-Klein theory only unites Einstein's field equations with those of Maxwell, or the gravitational force and the electromagnetic force. It does not describe, for example, what makes the stars shine or radioactive decay and Einstein was aware of this. Physicists have since named these forces, respectively, the strong and the weak. So we end up with four forces. EM, the strong force, and the weak have been succesfully united by quantum mechanics, a science which Einstein ironically chose not to accept even though he helped create it. QM makes use of Einstein's SR theory but cannot succesfully incorporate gravity. String theory seems to succesfully unite all four of these forces. It predicts the existence of a particle (string, not a zero-size particle) called a graviton. Scientists are still looking for evidence of the graviton, and providing that evidence is the goal of super colliders like the LHC.
  5. Sep 24, 2009 #4
    Here's a description Einstein's UFT as it was proposed in 1946-7 in collaboration with Schrodinger. Freeman Dyson called it "junk" and it was clearly incomplete, even by 1947 standards. However, it's being re-evaluated in the light of the current questioning of models based on background dependence and symmetries. That's not to say it provides any new insights, but maybe it wasn't 'junk' either. Modern modifications of the theory draw connections between Maxwell's tensors and those of GR (according to the author).


    It should be noted that this link is a pet project of the author. Here's another reference:

    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
  6. Sep 25, 2009 #5
    It seems to me that it was David Hilbert who joined (or proposed to join) EM and gravity and A. Einstein just followed this approach.
  7. Sep 26, 2009 #6
    My reference (link Einstein-Schrodinger, post 4) states that the geometric UFTs, in their original form (Einstein, Kaluza-Klein, Cartan, etc), do not successfully unite GR and EM because they do not predict a Lorentz force between charged particles.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2009
  8. Sep 26, 2009 #7


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    No need to sugar coat it, SW :]
  9. Sep 27, 2009 #8
    Yeah, but go back and read some of the recent modifications cited in the Einstein-Schrodinger link. (the author provides links to these papers). To quote from the author: "The cosmological constant (CC) which multiplies the symmetric tensor is assumed to be nearly canceled by the Schrodinger "bare constant" which multiplies the asymmetric tensor resulting in a total CC that matches measurement. The fact that the two CCs multiply two different fields has the effect of creating a Lorentz force."

    I've also read some of the recent links the author provided re these modifications, but I'm not in a position to judge whether these papers are useful in the current debates. I'm sure others in this forum are.
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