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Force carrier particles i.e. gravitons, photons

  1. Mar 15, 2010 #1


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    How do force carrier particles work? For example, if I drop an object, the force of gravity is carried by gravitons. Does this mean that there is a long stream of gravitons underneath/all around the object? Because the wave would need to be carried through the medium of gravitons. Is this true?

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  3. Mar 16, 2010 #2


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    Well, this is all hypothetical, so it may not be true. I'm guessing there isn't much evidence for force carrier particles?
  4. Mar 16, 2010 #3


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    They're a mathematical convenience.

    The Hamiltonian operator of the force is an infinite sum of products of a finite number of creation and annihilation operators of particles.

    For the electromagnetic force between two electrons, for example, or between an electron and a photon, those operators are of electrons and photons.

    But that doesn't mean that any electron or photon is actually annihilated or created.

    The photon being a "carrier" or "mediator" for the electromagnetic force only means that its operators appear in the Hamiltonian, not that they themselves actually appear in the interaction. :smile:
  5. Mar 17, 2010 #4


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    I'm confused.... they're there, but also not there?

    I have never heard of the Hamiltonian operator, I will google it.
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