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Virtual Particles

  1. Jan 2, 2012 #1
    All I ever hear about Feynman’s virtual particles is that they are created then destroy each other in a short period of time. I was wondering what else we know about these particles? How often is this occurring? How big are these particles? What if any affects do these particles have on spacetime, matter, and light? Do these particles on exist in the vacuum of space? Thanks
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 2, 2012 #2


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  4. Jan 2, 2012 #3
    Ignore the part about reactive energy in the near field of an antenna being composed of virtual photons. That's all wrong.

    The electrostatic (DC) fields are virtual photons but the AC near fields are real photons.
  5. Jan 2, 2012 #4
    In addition to the reference mentioned above:

    Virtual particles are theoretical and have never been observed [not experimentally verified].
    For some reason I haven't figured out, people think virtual photons play a part in near field antenna radiation.

    Here is a closely realated article:


    I'll excerpt just a few key ideas:

    ...Hawking Radiation from another source.....(also not directly observable)

    (I know Wikipedia also discusses Hawking Radiation)

    Hawking's mathematical development of Hawking Radiation does not explicitly involve virtual particles; he used virtual particles as an intuitive description of how radiation might originate.
  6. Jan 3, 2012 #5


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    please use the search function here in the forum; there are many threads regarding virtual particles and both their usefulness and uselessness
  7. Jan 3, 2012 #6


    As I posted already, I never could make sense of virtual photons there...have you any
    source...especially anything I can read online..
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