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Wave-particle duality

  1. Feb 3, 2004 #1
    It has become almost axiomatic that whenever there is a discussion about the wave-particle duality of light it is inevitable that the double slit experiment is brought into the discussion as being the final and irrefutable proof of this property of the photon , since the existence of both wave properties and particle properties of the photon are shown to manifest themselves simultaneously in the same experiment. This is still true , as can be seen from the many postings on the subject in this forum to take just one instance , in spite of the fact that for at least the past fifty years or so , quantum mechanics under first Paul Diriac and later Richard Feynman had successfully argued for the existence of a “virtual “ electromagnetic field being present at every point in the Universe. The existence of such a “virtual” universally existing electromagnetic field would , of course , serve to negate every claim for the double slit experiment since from this view point the diffraction that takes place , whether for a single photon or for a stream of photons is self explanatory. It is also interesting to note that the results being claimed for the EPR experiment involving two entangled photons would also be similarly explained . Yet in all the hundreds of posts on wave-particle duality it is truly amazing that not one has ever referred to the existence of a universally present “virtual” electromagnetic field as postulated by Diriac and Feynman and others and which is a cornerstone of present day physics. Evidently the instinct to comparmentalise our learning is still strong.
    Returning to the subject of the wave-particle duality of light . It is unpalatable but nevertheless true that the wave-particle duality of light is suggestive of the same kind of thought processes that went into the description of an elephant by the six blind men of Hindustan. One feeling the body of the elephant reported it as resembling a wall , another feeling the legs described an elephant as a tree trunk , yet another feeling the ears described it as being something like a sail and so on. The analogy is apt because just as the six men involved could not see what they were describing , so too physicists cannot see a photon to describe its physical structure. The question is , given these limitations would it be possible to describe what an elephant really looked like ? The answer is that it should be possible given that they knew that they were describing some sort of animate life form. The point is are we making the same mistake by accepting two seemingly impossible and incompatible properties for the photon , that of being simultaneously both a particle and a wave ? In fact if we take the analogy further and deduce that all matter has both wave like and particle properties then the photon is merely the most extreme ( or fundamental ) manifestation of this duality it would even begin to make some sense. Yet before this extreme step is taken , namely the acceptance of a seemingly impossible contradiction , it is necessary to consider if any other solution would exist to explain the seemingly incompatible qualities attributed to the photon. In undertaking this exercise a deserving place to start would be with the fact that the photon is a mass less particle , if it does have mass it is too small to measure. One would think that what would follow naturally from this would be to consider other phenomenon which physically manifest themselves yet have no mass , yet this aspect does not seem to have been considered as an alternative , except in retrospect . ( The classical interpretation of the EM field was electron -> field -> electron whereas the quantum explanation is electron -> photon -> electron ) The phenomenon that we are familiar with that manifest themselves physically yet have no mass are :- electric fields , magnetic fields and a combination of the two namely electromagnetic fields , it is thought that while an electric field can exist independently a magnetic field is always accompanied by an electric field. . Taking this line of reasoning further , we could consider other properties of the photon , namely that it is an electrically neutral particle i.e it has no charge. If we examine the phenomenon that have no mass and are electrically neutral one configuration that comes to mind is that of a solenoidal electromagnetic field . So this is a possible configuration of the photon .
    The objection which could immediately be raised to the photon being some sort of electromagnetic configuration , is that electromagnetic fields interact with each other which means that it should be possible to deflect a photon , something which doesn’t happen , to which the obvious answer would be that if the correct frequency of electromagnetism were available photons of the same frequency would interact , this has already been established. In any case similar deductive reasoning could be followed which have not yet been exhausted . The point that is being made here is , has an adequate effort been made to establish the structural nature of the photon ? The culminating point in this post is where exactly does this leave us vis-a-vis the wave-particle duality of light.
     
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  3. Feb 3, 2004 #2

    Tom Mattson

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    I don't know why this is in Classical Physics, but I'm moving it to Quantum Physics.

    No, that experiment is not offered as proof of the wave-particle duality of light.

    The double slit experiment shows the wave nature, the photoelectric effect shows the particle nature. Both pictures are needed to understand the whole thing.

    No, it is a well-known fact that there is no single experiment that shows both the wave and particle nature of light. That is precisely why it is called a "duality".

    The idea of a field of virtual photons comes from perturbation theory. Since nature doesn't care about perturbation theory, I wouldn't ascribe too much reality to this virtual field. It is simply a mathematical conveniece.

    It would not negate the claim, even if you could observe this virtual field, which you can't.

    ???

    That is probably due to the fact that we tend to associate real things with things that can be measured.

    That's just it: no photon is ever observed to be simultaneously both a particle and a wave. It is observed to be either one or the other. But I agree that "particle" and "wave" are inappropriate constructs and that a different picture is needed.

    However, the "virtual field" is not it, since it is in real photons that the duality is observed.

    How does that idea make it more sensible?

    No, it isn't, and furthermore it leads to an even worse contradiction than the one you think you are pointing out. The field of a solenoid is a macroscopic field which is, in the "virtual field" picture mediated by countless virtual photons. Now you're saying that this is a possible configuration of a single photon. Furthermore, the static magnetic field in a solenoid is not the time-varying field that we call "light".

    No, they don't!

    No, it hasn't!

    Photons do not directly interact with each other. EM currents only couple to matter currents, not to other EM currents.

    The photon has no structure.

    It leaves it right where it was before today.
     
  4. Feb 4, 2004 #3
    wave-particle duality of light.

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    I don't know why this is in Classical Physics, but I'm moving it to Quantum Physics.
    -----------------------

    Tom , since you have decided to move my post , even though it was in effect a suggestion rather than a statement , I welcome your decision to shift the post to quantum physics , where a more unrestricted discussion may be conducted.

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    No, that experiment is not offered as proof of the wave-particle duality of light.

    The double slit experiment shows the wave nature, the photoelectric effect shows the particle nature. Both pictures are needed to understand the whole thing.
    -------------------------------------

    On the contrary the double slit experiment is widely held to be the decisive experiment as far as wave-particle duality is concerned because a single photon follows the same pattern of diffraction as a stream of photons. The photoelectric effect is of course a more definitive verification of the particle properties of a photon and therefore serves to reinforce the double slit experiment.

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    No, it is a well-known fact that there is no single experiment that shows both the wave and particle nature of light. That is precisely why it is called a "duality".
    ---------------------------------



    “THE WAVE PARTICLE DUALITY IN ONE AND THE SAME EXPERIMENT !

    Experiments with beams of light or of electrons have been made such that both aspects - waves and particles - are observed. For interference to occur it is among other things also necessary for the beam to have available more than one path from source to detector (e.g. a screen). Interference is explained by the wave picture. When the beam intensity is sufficiently low and the detector suitable the impact of particles one by one can be observed. The energy quanta are then localised as if particles in space and time.”
    The above quote , including the title , is taken from the Nobel archives , if you wish to disagree that is your perogative.



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    The idea of a field of virtual photons comes from perturbation theory. Since nature doesn't care about perturbation theory, I wouldn't ascribe too much reality to this virtual field. It is simply a mathematical conveniece.

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    This is a particularly biased statement , for the reason that it ignores reality. Take the actual propagation of electro-magnetic waves . Charged particles moving with non-zero accelerations emit electromagnetic waves . This motion (i.e that of electrons ) is perpetual and ubiquitous , so that the whole of space , composed of particles , is filled with electromagnetic waves . What this means in effect is that if you deny the existence of an ubiquitous EM field you deny the existence of matter itself , the electrons have to emit “virtual” photons failing which they would fall into the nucleus in 10 –11 secs. Therefore the argument is in favour of an ubiquitous EM field.



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    It would not negate the claim, even if you could observe this virtual field, which you can't.
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    I disagree if a “virtual” EM field exists it would function more or less like the aether and hence would definitely affect any particle.


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    That is probably due to the fact that we tend to associate real things with things that can be measured.
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    Tom you might not be aware of it but the main gist of this post is to show that things that cannot be explained or measured are the most suspect !

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    No, it isn't, and furthermore it leads to an even worse contradiction than the one you think you are pointing out. The field of a solenoid is a macroscopic field which is, in the "virtual field" picture mediated by countless virtual photons. Now you're saying that this is a possible configuration of a single photon. Furthermore, the static magnetic field in a solenoid is not the time-varying field that we call "light".
    ----------------------------------

    Right this is the crux of the problem and your statement is really a blindly thrown out and unsupported one. What you are saying in effect is that there is no local effect. Grains of sand cannot make up a beach , atoms cannot make up matter ! When we speak of the electromagnetic field of a photon we are dealing with miniscule distances, fractions of the size of the photon. When you talk about the effects of a vibrating ion , which according to present theory gives rise to an electromagnetic field , you are talking in terms of billions or quadrillions or numbers not yet invented in terms of distances !


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    The photon has no structure.

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    I disagree , if electric fields and electromagnetic fields have a structure a photon also must , and I underline this , have a structure. I will go further and state that this structur must give rise to an electromagnetic field!
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2004
  5. Feb 4, 2004 #4

    Tom Mattson

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    I don't think so. In order to see the particle nature of light, you have to measure some things that are related to particle behavior. One of those things is trajectory. The bare minimum information one has to obtain to get some idea of the trajectory of a particle is two data points on the position of the particle. But in the case of the double slit experiment (in which there are no detectors at the slits), we do not obtain that information. We only have one point, namely the point at which the photon strikes the detector. We do not know which slit the photon passed through. Indeed, if we were to alter the experiment to obtain that information it would destroy the pattern on the screen.

    The particle nature of light is not observed in this experiment, it is simply inferred.

    I am simply stating the Bohr Complementary Principle, which says that there is no way to simultaneously observe both the particle and wave nature of matter or light. Experiments have been done that demonstrate this. An example is this one from 1998:

    http://www.aip.org/enews/physnews/1998/split/pnu362-2.htm

    Like those scientists, I do not see how you can say that the particle nature of light or matter is "observed" if you cannot even identifiy two points through which the particle has passed.

    Answer me this: How do you think reality is known?

    I think that reality is known by observation, myself. In view of that, and in view of the fact that no one can observe a virtual photon, it is not difficult to understand why I think your remark above is nonsense.

    I'm with you so far.

    This is simply begging the question. You are assuming that there really are these things called "virtual photons" that are responsible for the EM field, and then saying that denying the reality of these virtual photons is tantamount to denying the reality of the charged matter that gives rise to the field. You are doing this without demonstrating any connection between the two, and you are ignoring the origin of the concept of the virtual photons to begin with.

    Speaking of the origin of the concept of virtual photons, I am becoming convinced that you really do not know what that origin is. It is just as I said: when we calculate a process perturbatvely in QED, we encounter propagators for photons that are off shell. But the real quantum electrodynamic interaction is not the result of just one or two terms in the perturbation series, but rather it is the result of all of them.

    Of course, I myself have said at this very message board that the EM interaction is mediated by virtual photons, but it is always with the understanding that virtual photons are just a convenient mental construct.

    I'll say it again, with emphasis:

    Virtual photons cannot be detected.

    Even if a virtual photon is emitted and becomes free prior to reabsorption, it would not be detected as a virtual photon, but rather as a real photon.

    I certainly was not aware that that was your point, because you are ascribing reality to something that cannot be observed or measured!

    Boy, did you misunderstand what I wrote!

    I'll spell it out more explicitly. You claim that the EM field is mediated by virtual photons. You then say that the field of the solenoid can represent the "configuration" of a single photon (whatever that means).

    To connect this to your beach analogy, according to you the virtual photons are the grains of sand and the classical EM field is the beach. And then by saying that the solenoidal field (which is decidedly classical) can represent the configuration of a single photon, you are in effect saying that not only can beaches be made of grains of sand, but also that grains of sand can be made of beaches!

    This is a fundamental misunderstanding of yours. We do not speak of the electromagnetic field of a photon. Photons are more fundamental than electromagnetic fields.

    Don't understand this part. "billions or quadrillions" of what?

    Do you have even a single jot of evidence for that claim?

    This does not follow from any present experimental result, nor from any currently accepted theory, nor from a priori logic.
     
  6. Feb 5, 2004 #5
    wave particle duality

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    Tom: Answer me this: How do you think reality is known?

    I think that reality is known by observation, myself. In view of that, and in view of the fact that no one can observe a virtual photon, it is not difficult to understand why I think your remark above is nonsense.
    ------------------------------------------


    I have been going over my post and it has occurred to me that I might have been a little too defensive or aggressive , both of which qualities are not conducive to a healthy discussion. At the same time I also found much of interest in what you have to say. Continuing the discussion .Here is a quote :
    --------------------------------------------
    “THE ATOMIC FACT “ All things are made of atoms – little particles that move around in perpetual motion , attracting each other when they are a little distance apart , but repelling upon being squeezed together .” ( Richard Feynman.)
    --------------------------------------------
    If we take what is being said as true , then we acknowledge that some kind of force exists between these little particles. If we take it further we would have to admit of the possibility that this force is the result of the emission and absorption of photons ( mediation ) . Since this is so , how is the photon supposed to convey this force since it has no mass ? If the photon conveys the force through it’s energy , what kind of energy is it ? If it is electromagnetic energy as is generally believed , in what form does it exist within the photon ?
    Going further with your comment about observation. There is a simple experiment which anyone may conduct . Two metal strips are glued side by side but separated by a small distance onto a glass plate , they are then charged with opposite signs of charge , one plate is charged with a negative charge and the other plate with a positive charge. (i.e to all purposes a capacitor ). There is found to exist a field between the two plates which is indistinguishable from an electromagnetic field. The field will deflect a compass needle or cause iron filings to arrange themselves in the direction of the field. Yet this should be an electrostatic field. Consider the same experiment if the plates are moved apart , the field still exists but no longer has the power to influence either a magnetic needle or iron filings. What do we conclude from this ? Do we conclude that at close distances the field is electromagnetic and at further distances the field is electrostatic ? Or do we conclude that there is in fact no electrostatic field but only an electromagnetic field which grows weaker .with distance or with a lesser charge? It is generally accepted that photons are emitted and absorbed by electrons (i.e photons have their origin in electrons ). It is also accepted that the electron is a charged particle. What could be more natural then that the electron releases and absorbs energy through the emission and absorption of pulses of electrical energy .? Think of what this means ? By this process the electron would be in a position to very accurately control the quanta of energy it emits and absorbs. What happens to the pulses or bands of energy emitted by the electron , it must be assumed that the first bands of energy emitted are more negatively charged than the succeeding bands of energy , this being so we have a situation very similar to that of the simple experiment with the two metal plates detailed above , namely a positive – negative configuration separated by a di-electric , is it too much to assume that under these conditions an electromagnetic field is formed around the bands of energy. Taken together this configuration , which resembles a capacitor , could be a possible model for the photon. It has long been known that condensors (capacitors) can be used to store energy and this is exactly what the photon does , it preserves its energy intact . This preservation of energy would also explain how the photon , although mass less , has the properties of a particle since it would deliver its energy as a whole or as a quanta. Such a configuration would have no mass and at the same time exhibit wave properties also. To take the matter further , suppose just for a moment that it was possible for these photons to link together as perhaps might be possible if a field of virtual photons did exist , the energy would travel along the line of linked photons and be delivered intact at its destination at the speed of light. At this point I will risk a quote :
    quote:
    ------------------------------------------
    Mcqueen:
    Charged particles moving with non-zero accelerations emit electromagnetic waves . This motion (i.e that of electrons ) is perpetual and ubiquitous , so that the whole of space , composed of particles , is filled with electromagnetic waves .

    Tom: I’m with you so far.
    --------------------------------------------
    By observation we have arrived at a model of the photon which explains all of its properties. A simple way to discount this hypotheses would be to say that it is a load of rubbish , or to state that to conjecture that the photon might have its own electromagnetic field is an absurdity , but is the existing explanation in any way a better or more reasonable explanation than the one here outlined ? In fact the existing explanation is more of a tabling of properties of the photon than an explanation. We are told that the photon is mass less , no explanation or conjecture is made as to why it is mass less. That a photon has the properties of both a particle and a wave , again no explanation or conjecture on why this should be so. That a photon retains its energy and either gives up this energy intact or is absorbed , no explanation. That a photon moves at the speed of light , again no conjecture and no explanation. And so on , the explanations that do exist are complicated and abstruse and lie far from the actual observed properties. Can this tabling of properties really be taken as a view of reality based on observation ? Further far from going against quantum mechanics (or QED ) the proposed model of the photon actually reinforces QM , because quantum mechanics actually holds that there are no fields , QM categorically states that the electromagnetic field consists of photons and that photons are the electromagnetic field . The only difference is that QM has not explained how this might be so.
     
  7. Feb 5, 2004 #6
    Re: wave particle duality

    Hi. I submit the usual and customary apologies and explanations for inserting a few thoughts uninvited.

    You said "We are told that the photon is mass less , no explanation or conjecture is made as to why it is mass less. "

    I thought the rest mass of the photon was said to be zero. Of course, the photon is not and can never be at rest, so that doesn't mean too much. But the photon can and does carry energy, which is equivalent to mass. It is as if the photon were a swirl in a stream of water. You can see that the swirl itself has no mass of its own which is separable from the water which carries it. Yet the swirl in water can be powerful, as anyone knows who has watched a flood tide.

    In the same way as you would not speculate on the rest mass of a whirlpool, you would not speculate on the rest mass of a photon. Am I right?

    Thanks,

    Richard
     
  8. Feb 5, 2004 #7
    Re: Re: wave particle duality

    Hmm I'm having trouble with your analogy. Where a whirlpool is merely energy, a motion of water, a photon is both energy (a wave) and a particle in motion at the same time. How can it be a particle without mass? I believe that may be what McQueen was asking.

    I apologize in advance for my lack of experience in the subject, I’m young and although I find physics intriguing to say the least, I’ve done no formal studies outside high school. Bear with me because I'm in way over my head and I know I'll get reemed for this, but it's all in the interest of science. I'm just trying to provoke thought from a perspective that people within the field may not see.

    It seems to me that what McQueen may be alluding to, or perhaps what my mind may be deluding to, is that this problem produces a catch-22, a contradiction in terms. Energy affects mass and vice versa, so how can a photon be both? How can it be both the motion of energy and the matter in motion at the same time? The only solution I can see is that photons are being over-simplified and are in fact two entities, not just one. Meaning, that there is both a 'structure' as McQueen pointed out, similar to a capacitor or battery, and an energy contained within. Either that, or the structure is merely a particular state of the energy and doesn't exist any more than an atom exists without protons, neutrons, and electrons.

    Building on the atom analogy, I can't help feeling that there is a correlation here to matter and anti-matter. Think of the case of the mutual annihilation of matter and anti-matter when the two overlap. What could possibly induce such a reaction aside from two overlapping waves? I understand that there are byproducts, quarks and the like, but perhaps they can be related to such things as particle states and so forth, which are not always identical between two mutually annihilating particles. For example, if the spin of a hydrogen and anti-hydrogen particle are not the same when they mutually annihilate, a quark remains as the difference in spin between the previous two entities. In other words, quarks are the variation, the noise in the otherwise perfect wave of matter that would entirely cancel out upon intersection with an opposing wave. That being said, perhaps the 'virtual' EM field (OK, I'm on a roll here so I might as well say it, zero point energy) that constantly bubbles up mathmatically but is never observed is not so much an invisible field of ever-present electromagnetic energy as it is an undiscovered medium for energies we have already proven. I believe this may be where McQueen deduced the following statement:
    /me braces self for impact
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2004
  9. Feb 5, 2004 #8
    Wave-particel duality

    Quote:
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    In the same way as you would not speculate on the rest mass of a whirlpool, you would not speculate on the rest mass of a photon. Am I right?
    --------------------------------

    Hi Richard : ( I remember your many interesting posts at the string theory discussion forum ) Right , at least it seems to be a more constructive approach because where this is leading to is that the energy of the photon might attribute to , or even cause , its particle like qualities . This is a point that has never been reached before ! It was simply accepted that a photon had both the properties of a particle and of a wave , to suggest otherwise was and still is , not acceptable . As was suggested earlier in the post this might be because in QM , wave-particle duality is attributed ( Louis Broglie ) not only to the photon but to all matter and was given particular significance in the new atomic sub-microscopic world which was just then coming to light , hence the insistence that a photon as the most fundamental form of matter and hence the most fundamental aspect of wave-particle duality , is at once both a particle and a wave although as pointed out by Tom , these properties can never manifest themselves simultaneously. Your suggestion that a photon manifests its force through its energy , is in fact , ( forgive any rudeness ) almost an exact repetition of what I have been saying.
    Quote:
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    McQueen: If we take it further we would have to admit of the possibility that this force is the result of the emission and absorption of photons ( mediation ) . Since this is so , how is the photon supposed to convey this force since it has no mass ? If the photon conveys the force through it’s energy , what kind of energy is it ? If it is electromagnetic energy as is generally believed , in what form does it exist within the photon ?
    -----------------------------------------------
     
  10. Feb 5, 2004 #9
    Ok I just re-read my post and ignore everything I said about matter and anti-matter. It's thought-provoking but matter and anti-matter do not mutually annihilate as a result of wave propogation interference, as photons do. Oh well, it was worth a try.
     
  11. Feb 11, 2004 #10
    I have been following this thread and it appears the issues are getting clouded with "reality". Reality has nothing to do with science, it is an aspect of philosophy and religion, not science. Science places order to the chaos we are in. The idea that a photon is more real than a "virtual" photon is just rubbish. Photons are detected by instruments in the same way "virtual" photons are detected, through mathematical formulas. Photons hitting the back of our eyes stimulate an electo-chemical response in our nervous system, but it doesn't help science any to assume that the photons exist or do not exist.

    The actual question should be is there a single formula which would cover both the particle and wave properties of what we have isolated from other forms of energy to be a photon. I tend to hold to the reality that a complete explanation must be in binary form, for example [mater <=> energy] and [void <=> distance separating energies] . Condensing science into quantum particles, even immaginary particles which only exist in formulas is very convienient because it creates a standard refrence point. If one immaginary particle is used to explain one energy interaction and there is reason to believe that a similar interaction could be explained with the same immaginary particle than science is well served. In my opionion every time 2 formulas can be combined and still accuratly describe the behavior of energy and (void) we are one step closer to a unifying theory which can explain everything we experience.

    -Ramblings of a mad-man!
     
  12. Feb 15, 2004 #11
    wave particle duality

    Tanus5
    I have read your post and have been giving it considerable thought and have come to the conclusion that it is both penetrating and well thought out. The reason I say this is because the post offers an accurate and insightful representation of the facts as they really are. My own views are quite well encapsulated in the broader meaning of the post even if they have been given a reverse bias.
     
  13. Feb 15, 2004 #12

    chroot

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    Re: Re: Wave-particle duality

    I don't know why this is in Quantum Physics, but I'm moving it to Theory Development.

    - Warren
     
  14. Feb 17, 2004 #13
    Hi McQueen

    You wrote "Wave-particle duality ... in spite of the fact that for at least the past fifty years or so , quantum mechanics under first Paul Diriac and later Richard Feynman had successfully argued for the existence of a “virtual “ electromagnetic field being present at every point in the Universe. ..." [just a suggestion that you investigate the possible use of paragraphs :-) ]

    Yes, this seems to me the sensible way to look at everything although I didn't know that I was in such good company. However I do not see the need for "virtual". All that it requires is to follow the logic of Clifford, Schroedinger, de Broglie etc to the conclusion that matter must be some form of spherical standing wave and the understanding can be completed. No more mysteries in Young's double slit experiment, the Michelson-Morley experiment or any other quantum weirdness. No "photons in flight", just a smoothly developing electromagnetic field.

    You may be interested to know that there is a group for discussion of these ideas.
    To learn more about the Wave-Structure-Matter group, please visit
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Wave-Structure-Matter

    Although some in the group use a different basis than the electromagnetic field as a starting point (but I am not convinced of this), the essential idea is that all phenomena can be understood by a single wave equation incorporating electromagnetic waves and matter in a common principle. I would add the following points.

    1. For such a transformation of view to be complete it is essential to recognise that Maxwell's equations must be non-linear. If they were linear as formulated then there is absolutely no interaction between different waves because if A and B are solutions then so is A+B and therefore A+B evolves exactly as A and B seperately - that is without interaction. Yet we know that while light under most circumstances appears extremely linear, it does interact with itself at very high energy densities. Also light interacts strongly with matter. Clearly this is because the energy density near "particles" (really spherical standing waves) is very high as a result of the inverse square relationship.

    2. Photons refer to emission and absorption events and there is no such thing as a "photon in flight" only continuously developing e/m fields. This fundamental mistake in physics comes about through recognising that an emission event and an absorption event are causally related an so connecting the dots with "a thing". However what connects the events is only an expanding wave that spreads with the inverse square law. How then does an equal (or nearly equal) amount of energy appear at the destination? The answer is that the universe is filled with a background "noise" which is everywhere almost sufficient to cause absorption events. The little added extra from the expanding wave combines with this noise under fortuitous circumstances of frequency and phase to cause ocassional absorption events (on average one for every emission).

    3. The structure of particles of matter are spherical standing waves. This means that they have the same structure that you would get should you put an e/m transmitter at the centre of a spherical mirror and turned the source on until the wave had bounced of the mirror and returned to the source then turned the source off and removed it. With a perfect mirror such a stabnding wave will last forever. It consists of an inwards wave and an outwards wave which together form the standing wave. The outwards wave is of course the inwards wave after it passes through the centre of the sphere. In the universe there are of course no such mirrors. However it is also known that a large number of plane waves passing through a point are mathematically equivalent to the centre of the spherical wave. So every "particle" is constantly reconstructed from all other particles in the universe.

    4.Waves come in many sizes. The structures described above (such as matter being standing waves) would not be stable without a heirarchy of waves. This heirarchy explains the structure of the universe from the Hubble scale down to sub-atomic particles. Each has its own strong waves with characteristic wavelengths and frequencies that explain the behaviour and distance scales and all are linked by many in between and harmonically related waves. See my post to this forum https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?s=&postid=148419#post148419 and also my web site at http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~ray.tomes/story.htm for the detailed explanations.

    Regards

    Ray Tomes
     
  15. Feb 18, 2004 #14
    I have been thinking more on this particle-wave problem and it seems that photons must be particles traveling in waves. Here are my conclusions.

    If light is a high frequency bandwidth of magnetic-radiation in a neutral state then it should be a particle traveling in wave formations similar to its low frequency radio wave counterparts. What doesn't make sense is how it is neutral. If it is "Born" in an electron it should in theory carry a negative charge. From what I've read about electronics light is created when an atom is moving from an excited state to its normal state. Energy that moved electrons to "higher levels" is released as a photon as the electron drops down to its "normal levels" and the frequency is dependant on the "level" this transition occured on.

    The picture I get in my mind is that the atom is pulling the electrons back to their normal state requireing energy to be released. The energy being released appears to be the electrons inertia(or velocity?) which explains why it is neutral because inertia(?) is not affected by magnetic fields unless the mass containing the inertia(?) contains properties that are affected by magnetic fields.

    This could explain the particle nature of a photon, but not why it would travel in waves. I do not have the mathematical skills or formulas to try to prove this but there should be places within the electrons path where this photon creation would be more likely to happen and places where it would be less likely to happen. If such places exist this would give rise to the "highs" and "lows" which would create a wave. These highs and lows may or may not be intensity, there could be other properties such as spin which could be affected by where in the electrons path the photon was created.

    To ilustrate this take the following example: 1000 spinning motors each with an elastic band leading to a ball representing the electron. The motors move the balls on identical tracks which are circular but not perfectly centered around the motor. When these balls finaly break free most, but not all of them will break free at the farthest point away from the motor but the ones that break free before the farthest point away from the motor would carry a different velocity than those breaking away at the farthest point. The combination of the probability of where the "balls" break away and the velocity they have when they break away should create a wave.

    If enough of this theory holds to state that photons are particles made up of (condenced inertia -or- velocity) which travel in waves the resulting formula would depend on the source of the photons.
     
  16. Feb 18, 2004 #15
    Ray,

    I have a strong resistance to any "standing wave" theory mostly because it doesn't make sense. What forces could exist to keep such a wave "standing" without changing. If all matter were "standing waves" any collision should be enough to create changes in these waves which would break them down. You state that these waves are "reconstructed" from all other particles in the universe, so what happens when a particle is transmuted into energy? If all other particles play the role of "reconstruction" and a single particle breaks down to energy form that would mean a second particle wouldn't be able to be "reconstructed". Taking all particles into account the resulting particle that would no longer be "reconstructed" would be non-local. This would imply that a neuclear reaction in one part of the universe would automaticly cause a neuclear reaction somewhere else in the universe. The lack of symmetry of our universe seems to discount this possiblity along with the fact that we do not see spontanious neuclear reactions occuring for no apparent reason.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2004
  17. Feb 18, 2004 #16
    Hi Tanus

    Thanks for your clearly expressed objections which I appreciate. My replies are rather brief, so if they do not satisfy you please ask for more detail.

    Tanus: I have a strong resistance to any "standing wave" theory mostly because it doesn't make sense. What forces could exist to keep such a wave "standing" without changing.

    Ray Tomes: The description that I make must be seen as at a deeper level than forces. Forces are a description of the behaviour of these matter waves when they bump into each other. Forget almost everything that you know and consider the universe as an enourmous lump of aether, a tensile medium that is how Maxwell arrived at his equations.

    Then consider all the various vibratory modes of that lump of aether that is the universe. The eigenstates of the vibration modes are standing waves. Nothing has to keep them in place, they are where the waves converge. Forces are our means of understanding how they perturb each other when the centres come realtively near to each other.

    Tanus: If all matter were "standing waves" any collision should be enough to create changes in these waves which would break them down.

    Ray Tomes: If sufficient energy is involved in the collision then what you say does happen (either nuclear events or electrons knocked from orbitals) but for lesser events the waves are reasonably stable. That is because the wave equation is non-linear and the centres of the waves are very robust, resisting occupying the same place.

    Tanus: You state that these waves are "reconstructed" from all other particles in the universe, so what happens when a particle is transmuted into energy? If all other particles play the role of "reconstruction" and a single particle breaks down to energy form that would mean a second particle wouldn't be able to be "reconstructed".

    Ray Tomes: The waves that we know as stable particles are in a state that I would describe as full to overfull, because excess energy is available as incoming waves. The excess is dumped as photon emissions that we observe from time to time. For some types of particles such as mesons which are unstable, the conditions are more as you describe and any slight disturbance in the neighbourhood is enough to cause their dissolution.

    Tanus: The lack of symmetry of our universe seems to discount this possiblity along with the fact that we do not see spontanious neuclear reactions occuring for no apparent reason.

    Ray Tomes: Actually this is not quite correct. Their are fields of study that show catestrophic events are related over large scales. Quasars for instance are found at certain preferred redshifts which implies cyclicity in their major energy releases. Also, geological deposits show strong cycles with periods of 586, 293, 146, 73 and 37 million years. Again mass extinction events on earth happen at 26.65 million year ontervals. These events are part of the wider cosmos.

    Regards
    Ray Tomes
     
  18. Feb 18, 2004 #17
    Ray,

    Thank you for your response it cleared up my major questions which have not been covered by other refrences I've seen on the subject. I am aware of patters existing throughout the universe, but I was not aware of some of the data you mentioned. It does remind me of an article I read on the process of trying to find the true size of an electron by bombarding it with particles. In the article it stated that there didn't appear to be a solid core because they were able to keep getting deeper and deeper into it. This fully supports the "standing wave" theory.

    I do now believe the "standing wave" is possible but it does not discount the ability to use a "particle" perspective in defining the universe. Even if all matter is only made up of waves the waves do "create" particles which are easier to calculate for than having to know the state of the entire universe. On the other hand, "knowing" particles are made up of waves would make identifying and predicting their behaviour(s) easier.
     
  19. Feb 19, 2004 #18
    Hi Tanus

    Tanus: ... I do now believe the "standing wave" is possible but it does not discount the ability to use a "particle" perspective in defining the universe. Even if all matter is only made up of waves the waves do "create" particles which are easier to calculate for than having to know the state of the entire universe. On the other hand, "knowing" particles are made up of waves would make identifying and predicting their behaviour(s) easier.

    Ray: Agreed, as long as we do not forget that any "particle" calculations are approximations and therefore have limitations.

    Non-linear spherical standing waves do not have clean stable mathematical solutions that can be manipulated easily as far as I know. Therefore we are possibly reduced to computer simulations to establish the interactions between these "particles" and each other as well as with light. I expect that such simulations will show, in addition to the expected simple interactions, things like gravity, red shift, and known forces and particle properties such as spin, charge etc will come out.

    Regards
    Ray
     
  20. Feb 19, 2004 #19
  21. Feb 26, 2004 #20
    Ray,

    I have been doing some calculations and I was wondering if you, or anyone for that matter could clear up some issues with the possibility of a wave structure of matter.

    Known:


    Red shift formula:
    (Observed wavelength - Rest wavelength)/(Rest wavelength) = (v/c)

    Wavelength-frequency conversion formula:

    Wavelength = c / (wave frequency)

    Standing wave formula:
    sin(t * (pi/2t)) = 1
    therefore the incoming waves frequency must equal (pi/2)/t for it to stay standing.


    variables:
    f1 = observed frequency
    f2 = rest frequency
    c = speed of light
    v = velocity
    t = time interval

    Calculations:

    Calculateing observed frequency in terms of velocity and the speed of light due to red shift

    ( (c/f1) - (c/f2) ) / ( c/f2 ) = (v/c)
    c * ( ( (c/f1) - (c/f2) ) / ( c/f2 )) = v
    ((c^2/f1) - (c^2/f2)) / (c/f2) = v
    ((c^2/f1)/(c/f2)) - ((c^2/f2)/(c/f2)) = v
    ((c^2/f1) * (f2/c)) - ((c^2/f2) * (f2/c)) = v
    ((c^2 * f2) / (c * f1)) - ((c^2 * f2) / ( c * f2)) = v
    ((c * f2) / f1) - ((c * f2) / f2) = v
    ((c * f2) / f1) - c = v
    c * ((f2 / f1) - 1) = v
    (f2 / f1) - 1 = vc
    f2 * (1/f1) - 1 = vc
    f2 * (1/f1) = vc + 1
    1/f1 = (vc + 1)/f2

    f1 = f2/(vc + 1)

    The observed in-wave must consist of a frequency that changes as (pi/2t) for it to be a standing wave.

    pi/2t = f2/(vc + 1)

    pi/2t = f2/(vc + 1)

    If the universe is expanding equally the net velocity is 0. The frequency of all particles based on standing waves and a net velocity of 0 would be a factor of pi/2t. pi would therefore be the base of all harmonics. The complexity of the number pi itself could explain the complexity of the universe but without some limitation on t the frequency constituting all particles would approach 0. All matter would be re-constituted if t is limited to below infinity, and re-starts above zero. This would mean the universe takes low frequency waves and turns them into high frequency waves which I know no evidence of.

    Knowing the lowest possible frequency of electromagnetic radiation and the highest possible frequency of electromagnetic radiation would make it possible to not only prove the wave theory, but possibly create matter with electromagnetic waves.

    So, how would you explain why all waves have not hit nearly 0 frequency due to red-shift which happens to be the only physics concept I could find which can mathematicly explain the possibility of nature forming standing waves.

    Endnote: Using windows calculator I calculated the distance light travels in a year to be 157678841209680 meters/year and the wavelength of a frequency of pi to be 25095366999522.6215048520496763159 which would be the yearly harmonic of pi and the speed of light.

    Dividing this harmonic by 586 million years (from the geological data you suggested) yields 85649.716721920209914170818007884

    Dividing this harmonic by the 293 years yielded 42824.858360960104957085409003952

    I don't see any strong connection here accept for the potential existance of a 2 year cycle.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2004
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