I've suggested (& published in 21 journal papers) a new theory called quantised inertia (or MiHsC) that assumes that inertia is caused by horizons damping quantum fields. It predicts galaxy rotation & lab thrusts without any dark stuff or adjustment. My University webpage is here, I've written a book called Physics from the Edge and I'm on twitter as @memcculloch. Most of my content is at patreon now: here

Friday 15 September 2017

Evidence and Applications

I'm back! Sorry for the gap in blogs, but it was a natural time to pause. In my opinion I have now provided enough evidence that physicists should be excited about quantised inertia. Also I've reached the stage where I need to develop more collaborations with galaxy modellers and lab experimenters (some are already in place). So, here is an attempt to convince others to join in:


We're all familiar with the idea of inertia, that objects in deep space once pushed keep going, but no-one has ever explained why it happens. Quantised inertia explains it for the first time by saying that if an object accelerates one way, then relativity makes a horizon appear in the other direction since information finds it harder to get to the object from that direction. This horizon damps the quantum vacuum (Unruh radiation) on that side of the object, causing a net push by radiation from the other side. This predicts inertia very well (see the 1st reference). Note that this is an elegant collaboration between relativity and quantum mechanics, and is amusing because for over 100 years people have assumed that relativity doesn't talk to quantum mechanics, and here they are cheekily in cahoots behind the scenes.


So where's the proof? Over the last ten years I have published 20 peer-reviewed papers on the theory including various bits of evidence. The most important piece of evidence is that quantised inertia predicts the rotation of galaxies without dark matter and without any adjustment (See the 2nd reference). It even predicts the behaviour of galaxies in the early universe, a part of the cosmos that no other theory can reach. It also predicts myriad interesting anomalies including the flyby anomaly, the cosmic acceleration, the low-l CMB anomaly, the Tajmar effect and the emdrive.


So how can we utilise quantised inertia? The most dramatic possibility is in the horizon drive (of which the emdrive is a weak example). The idea is simple. We can use the same trick that nature uses to produce inertia. Instead of relying on relativity to make horizons when objects accelerate away, instead make an object which makes its own horizon. Then we will have a fuel-less propulsion system. Where is the energy coming from? It is coming from Heisenberg's uncertainty principle dp.dx~hbar. Make an artificial horizon and you reduce the uncertainty in position, dx, so dp, new momentum and energy, appear (see the 3rd reference below). There is already evidence for the horizon drive since quantised inertia predicts the emdrive.


As you can see the evidence and applications for quantised inertia are coming together nicely now. The evidence for quantised inertia makes the horizon drive, which would open the galaxy to us, more than a speculation, and this application surely makes it worthwhile to look into the theory (which is admittedly still incomplete, please help!). The references below represent my most up to date summaries of the theory and the evidence.


McCulloch, M.E., 2013. Inertia from an asymmetric Casimir effect. EPL, 101, 59001. Link
McCulloch, M.E., 2017. Galaxy rotation from quantised inertia and visible matter only. Astrophys. & Space Sci., 362,149. Link
McCulloch, M.E., 2016. Quantised inertia from relativity & the uncertainty principle, EPL, 115, 69001. Link


Jimmy Johnson said...


As a very long time follower of basic physics and physical theories two alternative theories have emerged in my view that have great potential to remove the muddled explanations that exist in the current understanding of physical phenomena. One is your explanation of the source of inertia with Quantized Inertia (MiHsC). The other is the re-emerging Pilot Wave alternative view of Quantum Mechanics. I have never bought the argument that mortals cannot really understand quantum mechanics you just have to learn the rules and apply it. The Schroedinger's cat and many worlds theories and other nonsense explanations remind me too much of the ,"The Emperor's New Clothes" parable. Looking at the Dancing Droplets experiments gives a very clear view of a logical alternative to the existing muddled explanations currently in vogue.

The question related to this forum is ,"How does MiHsC fit into the Pilot Wave concept". Both formulations have some common ground in the concept of a background field, which when perturbed, interacts with matter to give rise to understandable observed physical phenomena. Quite interestingly, both De Broglie, and Bohm received the same treatment and pressures as you are encountering from the "orthodox physicists" when they presented their "Pilot Wave" theory.

As a private mental exercise it may be useful to explore the concept of MiHsC in a Pilot Wave quantum environment. There is often much to be gained by those unafraid of considering new ideas. I do not dare suggest that you address your analysis in a public forum for fear that, if the theories neatly meshed, there would be a rash of apoplectic seizures in the vaulted halls of academia.

Jimmy Johnson

joesixpack said...

QI is an idea whose time has come.

1. An elegant model combining QM & GR.
2. A preponderance of empirical evidence.
3. The lack of "fudge factors".
4. Applications to varied areas of applied physics, from exotic propulsion, matter manipulation and cosmological modeling.
5. Considerable publication in quality journals.
6. Explanation of several anomalies and other "problems" in physics.

QI can no longer be ignored. Keep on banging the drum.

Well done sir. I am considering going back to school to study physics because of this wonderful blog.

Mike McCulloch said...

Joesixpack: Many thanks for your support. I think it is true that I have followed the right path of empirical science with QI, and in the end that has ensured quality.

Mike McCulloch said...

Jimmy: I have some sympathies for the Pilot Wave concept philosophically, but I do not like the way it is being vaguely dragged into discussion of the emdrive with the QVP (Quantum Vacuum Plasma) model. My reasons are that QVP relies on complex arbitrary assumptions and models, for example about quantum plasmas and hydrodynamics, and I have never seen a comparison of its predictions with the data. Someone who has met Dr White told me recently it was factor of 1000 out when predicting the emdrive thrusts (I have no way to know if that is true because no theory-data comparisons have been published. That should be a first step!). This is similar to modern speculations such as dark matter, strings ..etc: huge assumptions with no evidence at all. To do fundamental science of the highest quality it is necessary to propose theories that don't rely on arbitrary elements and predict the data well. You could say it is a principle of the most predictions from the least assumptions. Pilot Wave theory seems not to agree with the data, predicts nothing specific that can be looked for, and relies on complex models and assumptions, so I give it a very low score (as it has been applied by Dr White so far, though I also want to say that I admire his bold experimental work immensely). In contrast QI has no arbitrary assumptions, it has no fudge-ability and predicts the data well (not perfectly).

Unknown said...

Have the conclusions of this study been correctly extracted?

Mike McCulloch said...

Dear Damian: I am pleased you have written about it in such a detailed way and good luck with your experiment. After a quick read through I have a few comments:

- In equations 2 and 3 the 100 should not be there. That changes the results.
- The paper referenced should be McCulloch, M.E., 2015. Testing quantised inertia on the emdrive, EPL, 111, 60005. arxiv:1604.03449 [physics.gen-ph]
- The forces are microN so maybe should not be described as being 'huge'.
- MiHsC implies there are ways to enhance the thrust. You could talk about that.

Also, what are the assumptions behind equation 1? What new aspect will your experiment have? Can you have a look at the effect of dielectrics on thrust?

qraal said...

Hi Mike
Was nice to see your new preprint in "Astrophysics" and "General Physics" on the arXiv, for a change.


Galaxy rotations from quantised inertia and visible matter only

M.E. McCulloch

(Submitted on 14 Sep 2017)

It is shown here that a model for inertial mass, called quantised inertia, or MiHsC (Modified inertia by a Hubble-scale Casimir effect) predicts the rotational acceleration of the 153 good quality galaxies in the SPARC dataset (2016 AJ 152 157), with a large range of scales and mass, from just their visible baryonic matter, the speed of light and the co-moving diameter of the observable universe. No dark matter is needed. The performance of quantised inertia is comparable to that of MoND, yet it needs no adjustable parameter. As a further critical test, quantised inertia uniquely predicts a specific increase in the galaxy rotation anomaly at higher redshifts. This test is now becoming possible and new data shows that galaxy rotational accelerations do increase with redshift in the predicted manner, at least up to Z=2.2.

All you need to do is model those annoying little galaxies that Marshall Eubanks mentioned on Facebook.

Czeko said...


One more pebble in the pond.

Mike McCulloch said...

Czeko: Thanks. Very useful analogy: makes Unruh radiation visualisable.

Unknown said...

Plans to build an emdrive based on your model. And I would like to avoid errors in reasoning.

Mike McCulloch said...

Damian: Well done, and good luck. I'm happy to discuss it by email..

AdamW said...

One thing that makes me nervous about engines with no reaction mass: how efficient can they be? Beyond some point they must allow a 'free energy' device. Do you have some calculation to hand which prohibits this?

Mike McCulloch said...

AdamW: Good question that goes to the heart of the matter. I wrote a blog entry to start a discussion on this: