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

Saturday 20 January 2018

Cold Fusion and Hot Soup?

Since I have just submitted a short paper on this, I'd like to explain how I think cold fusion might be happening. The following makes a nice story, but still could be wrong. We'll see. It is also dangerous ground, but it is necessary to keep pushing into such territory, because that is where the new physics is (partly because very few people have dared to go there yet).

I've been thinking about LENR (ie: cold fusion) since before Christmas, ever since Bob McIntyre on twitter noted that my earlier paper on quantised inertia and the proton radius anomaly [ref 1 below] might apply to it. It is also pretty clear that QI predicts that an earlier, much smaller, universe would have been hotter [ref 2] and you can see this without QI, simply from the uncertainty principle: dp.dx>hbar, where hbar is the reduced Planck's constant. If you shrink the 'known space' of an object (dx), then its uncertainty in momentum must increase, and therefore its temperature.

I've been reading a lot of Ed Storms' papers and the comment he made that impressed me was that the common factor in all the successful LENR experiments are nanoscale cracks or gaps in the palladium or other metals. In my space- and horizon-obsessed mind these are just mini-universes. See the schematic below of a crack (the white area) inside an area of red-hot palladium metal.

Coming back to the uncertainty principle: in cracks, the uncertainty in position (dx) is small, so dp and hence the temperature of the walls must be high (the red area). For the nanoscale cracks in palladium, the predicted temperature is still not hot enough for fusion, which needs temperatures of 100 MK, but recently I was cooking soup and noticed that the walls of the pan were hot and the soup was moving towards the centre. This is a different convective process, but it gave me the idea that the crack walls might be radiatively pushing the deuterons together (see the red arrows in the schematic). I've scribbled through the maths and it turns out that if the cracks are smaller than 86 nm, then the crack's walls are hot enough, and the radiation pressure, is strong enough to push the positively-charged deuterons together over their mutual repulsion and cause fusion. It might also account for sonoluminescence: light emission from small bubbles. So what do you think? Physics from the kitchen?

(Note: Argh! I have found an error in my derivation :( Thank goodness for dimensional analysis, so I will leave this blog entry here to record my blunder, and get back to the drawing board. Apologies. Correction No.2: I've decided now it was right all along, so have resubmitted it.).


McCulloch, M.E., 2017. The proton radius anomaly from the sheltering of Unruh radiation. Progress in Physics, 13, 2, 100-101. Link

McCulloch, M.E., 2014. A toy cosmology using a Hubble-scale Casimir effect. Galaxies, 2, 81-88. Link

If you wish to support my work a little, you can do so here:


PeterVermont said...

Aren't you therefore saying that any nanoscale cavity should be extremely hot? This has not been observed that I know of.

What is special about the LENR experiments that might cause the horizon effects to come into play?

Mike McCulloch said...

It may be difficult to tell that internal nanocracks are hot, since emitted radiation may not escape, although Storms and others have observed 'beams' of x-rays emitted by LENR-active materials.

Simon Derricutt said...

The walls of the crack are also made of atoms, and we know that the Deuterium will happily diffuse through the Palladium. Though I can see that if two D atoms travel down a narrowing crack they could be pushed together more slowly, in that case I'd really expect the branching-ratio to be that of hot fusion and thus we'd get T, He3 and neutrons, with the energy emitted as one big gamma. Instead, we get almost completely He4 produced, with the other stuff around 6 orders of magnitude or more down from the expected quantity given the heat produced. It thus seems unlikely that we have a simple D+D=>He4 + energy reaction, but that there's a somewhat more-complex route.

Producing linear cracks of those dimensions is pretty simple - just flex the cathode around a mandrel of the right diameter and flatten it again. We'd probably have seen someone succeed with a stressed cathode, and I'd expect that may have been done accidentally and produce a lot of reaction since those things are pretty fragile. Still, I can't guarantee it hasn't been tried, so maybe everyone managed to avoid the normal butterfingers bits.

Still, it's not unreasonable that as some atom moves down a tapered crack that the confinement gives the same effect as getting hotter. Maybe not so reasonable that the reaction we're seeing is simple elision of the D atoms. If it was simply the cracks, we'd see some effect at any level of gas concentration in the Pd, rather than needing the supercharging that the electrolysis does when it is continued for a long-enough time.

Mike McCulloch said...

According to Storms, the nanoscale cracks occur as the Pd is loaded and de-loaded with deuterium. In the paper I argue that the reaction products may be confined by the inwards radiation from the sides.

Zephir said...

/* the common factor in all the successful LENR experiments are nanoscale cracks or gaps in the palladium or other metals */

This is just one of many possible factors and the most reliable cold fusion arrangement (Lipinski & all) don't use any palladium at all. You should read a bit more LENR publications before posting a new one..

Unknown said...

I think that cooking soup is the long awaited experimental proof of Mike's theory because cooking pot wall is a horizon that radiates.

Zephir said...

/* I was cooking soup .. it gave me the idea that the crack walls might be radiatively pushing the deuterons together */

I see, soup in pot and cracks...;-) You're getting dangerously close to crackpotism with this one...

Unknown said...

Energy produced by Lenr is Unruh radiation.

Unknown said...

The truth is that nobody knows what may be hiding in small Nano-cracks. Maybe free energy from parallel Universe?

Zephir said...

Randell Mills (who is opponent of LENR and explains it with his hydrino model) says, that the "sparse" vacuum near surfaces and inside the metal cavities favors subquantum, i.e. hydrino states. My stance is, this effect cannot be so strong and the cracks promote the low-dimensional collisions of hydride anions absorbed there, which are primary mechanism of cold fusion. The secret of Piantelli's (and possibly E-Cat) catalyst in preparation of nanowhiskers of nickel. Such a whiskers contain single large dislocation in their axis each. The palladium is merely inert to cold fusion, it just serves as a spillover catalyst concentrating hydrogen. Once Fleishmann and Pons did start to use very pure palladium, they weren't able to replicate their former experiments anymore (they even claimed that Russians started to separate crucial isotope from worldwide palladium sources) - which indicates, it's the palladium impurities (and vacancies) - not palladium itself what runs the cold fusion there.

William E Smith said...

I hope Mike has the confidence and expertise to accept these criticisms without being too discouraged. #LENR needs such new visions. I hope other older scientists can offer their critiques but with respect and encouragement.

Mike McCulloch said...

All, William: Thank you for all the comments. One of the main reasons I write my blog is to get valuable feedback from others. Being isolated physically from the physics community I have learned to seek advice online, and I'm grateful for every comment here. I know the risks and uncertainties in what I am trying to do and I accept them.

Ziggy said...

Peter Andrews said...
Aren't you therefore saying that any nanoscale cavity should be extremely hot? This has not been observed that I know of. What is special about the LENR experiments that might cause the horizon effects to come into play?

Peter Andrews,
speaking from my experience on this blog (see the previous post's discussion),
your questions will remain conveniently ignored, because on this blog
there is no sufficient interest in any arguments that could falsify
Unruh radiation and the Qi.

From: http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Unruh_effect

" The Unruh effect is a surprising prediction of quantum field theory: From the point of view of an accelerating observer, the observer sees that empty space contains a gas of particles at a temperature proportional to the acceleration."

As we know, appearances can be deceiving.

So, if it is not just a deceptive appearance, or a mere mathematical artifact ("surprising prediction", like a naked singularity of Big-bang), we should be able to measure this temperature difference.

However, any direct experimental confirmation will be next to impossible, because the linear acceleration needed to reach a temperature difference of 1'K would be far out off the charts, at approx. 10,000 Trillion kilo-meters per second square. It seems to me that this accelerating object would be travelling at super-luminal velocities, before we could even start measuring anything.

But, " it is believed that an analog under centripetal acceleration is observed in the spin polarization of electrons in circular accelerators."

And, " Smolyanov created an experiment which relied on the extremely high angular momentum of electrons traveling around a gold plated curve (nanotip). The temperature rise only needs to be detectable and separable from any artifact based thermal effects."

Hey! We are almost there!

Unfortunately, " some authors deny that uniformly accelerated detectors show a universal thermal response. They attribute the calculated results to improperly imposed boundary conditions at the horizon. The response from the conventional viewpoint is that mathematical subtleties at the horizon do not affect physical observations inside a causally complete region inside Rindler space. Others question the conclusion that the accelerated detector is radiating as seen from an inertial frame. The question appears to be mired in some definitional disagreements, for example on how to draw the line between radiation and vacuum fluctuation, what initial state to consider, and whether and how to go beyond first order in perturbative calculations.

If we still cling to the hope that Unruh radiation might actually exist, we must accept the sad fact that in the best case scenario its magnitude is on the order of quantum vacuum fluctuations NOISE.

So, yes, Unruh radiation physically exists! :-))
But, it is never stronger than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise... :-((

The problem is: Would such Unruh radiation be able to realistically account for inertia of a galaxy?

Ziggy said...

In other words, and to also make the above long story short, the reason that it is experimentally impossible to measure Unruh radiation is that Unruh radiation simply does not exist physically, being merely a "surprising", but ultimately INVALID mathematical prediction.

Mathematics is not physics,
and mathematical physics is not experimental physics.

Our observations of physical reality and their results,
i.e. what the observer might have happened to "see",
are not the physical reality itself,
because these are two radically different things.

“What we observe is not nature itself,
but nature exposed to our method of questioning.”

― Werner Heisenberg

" A spacetime singularity is a breakdown in the geometrical structure of space and time. It is a topic of ongoing physical and philosophical research to clarify both the nature and significance of such pathologies. Because it is the fundamental geometry that is breaking down, spacetime singularities are often viewed as an end, or “edge,” of spacetime itself. However, numerous difficulties arise when one tries to make this notion more precise. Our current theory of spacetime, general relativity, not only allows for singularities, but tells us that they are unavoidable in some real-life circumstances. Thus we apparently need to understand the ontology of singularities if we are to grasp the nature of space and time in the actual universe. The possibility of singularities also carries potentially important implications for the issues of physical determinism and the scope of physical laws."

" I am still inclined to the view that physicists will not in the long run content themselves with that sort of indirect description of the real, even if the theory can eventually be adapted to the postulate of general relativity in a satisfactory manner. We shall then, I feel sure, have to return to the attempt to carry out the program which may be described properly as the Maxwellian — namely: The description of physical reality in terms of fields, which satisfy partial differential equations without singularities."
— Albert Einstein, MAXWELL’S INFLUENCE ON THE EVOLUTION OF THE IDEA OF PHYSICAL REALITY, published on the 100th anniversary of Maxwell’s birth in: James Clerk Maxwell: A Commemoration Volume, Cambridge University Press 1931

Zephir said...

@Ziggy IMO Mike is just conceptually confused, as he uses Unruh radiation in different context and meaning than this concept was originally defined and proposed. In classical relativity the Unruh radiation is essentially form of light and it spreads with speed of light - which is impossible for to have McCulloch's models to work at cosmic scales. So that even if Unruh radiation would be physically impossible, then the MiHSc theory could still work - simply because it doesn't actually use Unruh radiation, but a sort of scalar waves.

Mike McCulloch said...

Zephir: There is no confusion. I can use Unruh radiation in a different context than the original paper. Why not? No-one can put a hold notice on physics. Why not, if it works? The direct clue that it is Unruh radiation is that the radius at which galaxies start misbehaving is the radius that the Unruh waves, nothing else, just Unruh waves, become as long as the cosmic scale. This is very clear.

In certain recent comments a lot of evidence-less pronouncements have been made, as well as a lot of quotes from famous big wigs. These are not important. The data, and nothing else, shows the way.

Zephir said...

/* The data, and nothing else, shows the way. */

This is like to say, that gravitational law results from shielding of luminal waves (Unruh radiation) instead of superluminal ones. If it couldn't work in this way because the gravity and inertia would be too slow - who cares? Newton laws still works anyway and it shows us, this theory is correct.

Such kind of reductionist positivism is just what are you're usually criticizing on mainstream science: it uses an inertia concept widely, but it doesn't explain it. OK, so you provided an explanation. But once someone shows you, that this explanation is illogical, then you suddenly switch to formal attitude of mainstream physics: the equations is what matter, the way in which they were derived is not important.

And we are at it again...

Ziggy said...

Zephir said...
@Ziggy, Mike is just conceptually confused, as he uses Unruh radiation in different context and meaning than this concept was originally defined and proposed. In classical relativity the Unruh radiation is essentially form of light and it spreads with speed of light - which is impossible for to have McCulloch's models to work at cosmic scales. So that even if Unruh radiation would be physically impossible, then the MiHSc theory could still work - simply because it doesn't actually use Unruh radiation, but a sort of scalar waves.


If I wrote that "Mike is conceptually confused" then he would take it as argumentum ad hominem, and delete my post.

I totally agree with you, Zephir. :))

Mike's "Unruh radiation" is like "String theory".
The label "String theory" does not change, only the number of space dimensions grow every so often, only to find out later that we need few more dimensions...

There is no actual, physical Unruh radiation. At least not one that is stronger than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise ;

but, there is this "surprising mathematical prediction" of some effect that, allegedly, such that from some point of view observer would see surprising hallucination that no other observer could see, or be able to experimentally detect as anything distinct from quantum vacuum fluctuations noise ;

because experimental verification conditions are impossible, i.e. acceleration of 10,000 Trillion kilo-meters per second square, nobody can be certain how this purported Unruh radiation would act in reality, so this create an opportunity to conceptually modify it to fit the beloved pet-hypothesis, and this way "Unruh radiation" becomes a label for a near-omnipotent cause able to explain everything. I feel it would be better called: "modified MiHSc radiation".

But, rose is a rose, by any other name, too,
so another, historically earlier name,
that had been used for this, was: "God Almighty".

You would be surprised, Zephir, but the physical existence
of God Almighty had been experimentally verified.

However, small technical doubts still remain how to draw the line
between God Almighty and quantum vacuum fluctuations noise...

Yes, Mike is conceptually confused. So what? He is not alone, because conceptual confusion is a new "normal" in mainstream theoretical (metaphysical) mathematical Physics.

Zephir, I wonder if MiHSc is falsifiable ?!

Ziggy said...

Zephir said...
mainstream science uses inertia concept widely, but doesn't explain it. OK, so you provided an explanation. But once someone shows you that this explanation is illogical, then you suddenly switch to formal attitude of mainstream physics: the equations is what matter, the way in which they were derived is not important. And we are at it again...


If you keep showing Mike that his explanations are illogical,
then he will keep ignoring it, because evidently he has no interest
in any arguments that could falsify Unruh radiation and MiHSc.
And, yes, we are at it again, since Mike's first post on this blog on Thursday,
the 18th of September 2008, i.e. already for 10 years, and counting! :-))
Evidence of absence of evidence is enough empirical evidence for Mike to keep this blog going forever, or until he is granted an honorary democratic substitute of Nobel Prize in Physics.

Mike McCulloch said...
The direct clue that this is Unruh radiation is that the radius at which galaxies start misbehaving is the radius that the Unruh waves, nothing else, just Unruh waves, become as long as the cosmic scale. This is very clear.

What is very clear, is that this "surprising mathematical prediction" (Unruh radiation) in reality is NOT stronger than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise. So, if any radiation affects galactic rotation, it clearly must be nothing else than "modified MiHSc radiation".

Mike McCulloch said...
In certain recent comments a lot of evidence-less pronouncements have been made, as well as a lot of quotes from famous big wigs. These are not important. The data, and nothing else, shows the way.

Mike, you do not create the data. You create merely your interpretation of this data. Your interpretation has been shown to be illogical, and at best, based on nothing more than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise. Evidently, you believe that your evidence-less pronouncements have more empirical evidence in them than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise. Maybe quotes from famous big wigs are not important to you, because quotes from unknown small no-wigs are more important?

Ziggy said...


If the modified MiHSc radiation acts exactly as Mike describes it,
then the modified MiHSc radiation, nothing else,
just the modified MiHSc radiation, could explain inertia!

Ziggy said...

Mike McCulloch said...

" I can use Unruh radiation in a different context
than the original paper. Why not, if it works? "

Zephir said...

" Even if Unruh radiation would be physically impossible,
the MiHSc theory could still work! "

WOW !!!

MiHSc theory works!

It doesn't matter how!
And it doesn't have to make any sense (like quantum physics).

It really works!

Ziggy said...

Zephir said...
Mike is just conceptually confused, as he uses Unruh radiation in different context and meaning than this concept was originally defined and proposed.

Yes, Mike is conceptually confused, and that is why he goes in circles.

Runs in circles.

Yes, he can run (already's been for 10 years, and counting).

But he cannot hide from us, Zephir!

Mike runs in circles, and in the process
creates a perpetual motion Catch-22. :-))

Zephir said...

MiHSc theory has strong part and weak part. Unfortunately its strong part - the formal one - is nearly equal to Milgrom's MOND (it differs from it only by multiplication factor) - and its weak part is confused and logically detached from formal part. Nevertheless the science is developing along spiral and these moving in circles are still helping to expand it toward progress with compare to those, who don't move at all.

So I still appreciate Mike's attitude, but he shouldn't do the things which he himself criticizes on his opponents. He should give more credit and continuity to ideas of his predecessors and he should make his explanations more logically consistent.

Zephir said...

/* based on nothing more than quantum vacuum fluctuations noise */

Well, this is just what the MiHSc is about. The contribution of quantum noise is difficult to quantify, but the seeming Universe expansion depends on it too. So both Millgrom and McCulloch did use it as a main factor of their theories.

Recently Mike has said, that diameter of observable Universe isn't really necessary to consider and he proposed a Quantum Inertia theory, which has its factor based of uncertainty principle. My question therefore is, where we could find the derivation of it?

Simon Derricutt said...

Mike said "One of the main reasons I write my blog is to get valuable feedback from others." Einstein did this in a coffee-shop, but these days the net makes the coffee-shop far larger.

Where Mike's theory excels is that it only uses data we can actually measure in order to produce answers, without any adjustable parameters. It's true that the velocity of Unruh waves being c is a difficulty, but the horizons (and the effective disappearance from our universe of anything beyond them) seem to be real demarcation-lines. From quantum theory, we also get the interconnectedness of everything in the universe, but logically we can't connect to something that isn't there - things beyond those horizons can never affect us. The horizons thus define the limits of the universe that can affect us.

The success of the predictions implies that the mathematics is describing something real. The explanation of Unruh waves as such may not be exactly correct, but *something* is giving us the same results as the Unruh waves would give. On a practical level, until we can either detect those waves (and confirm that they are Unruh waves or that they aren't) or show that something else that we can measure is causing the effects, I'm quite happy to continue using the identification of them as the cause and see what else can be predicted and measured.

It is non-intuitive to propose that those horizons at somewhere around 13.8 billion light-years away in space can affect what happens here and now for every atom we can measure. Then again, it's also non-intuitive to say that an electron in a box may sometimes not be there when we measure it. There's a lot in basic physics that doesn't match what we think we see in daily life. Still, if we apply the rules we get the predicted results and so we need to adjust our logic to the same as the universe seems to operate on, and maybe at some point we'll get better explanations.

If the maths works, then that is an indication that there is a truth in the picture. It may not be the whole truth. Go with it until it predicts something that obviously is not true, and then change it.

For Smolyaninov, it's worth noting that moving a mirror fast enough will produce photons. Electrons on the surface of a metal form plasmons that are in effect a mirror. It's thus possible that the very fast movement of the plasmons in Smolyaninov's experiment actually produced photons and not Unruh waves, and given the fact that they were detectable I'd propose this as what actually happened.

Jimmy pointed out that as scientists we try to produce a story as to "why" rather than just get formulae that work (severe condensation of his point). He's of course correct. However, we should always remember that that explanation (the story) may not be correct, and be prepared to change it if it leads in the wrong direction. As regards quantum theory, Dirac himself said that no-one understands it. It's a collection of rules that work, and maybe we're getting closer to a reason why those rules work (the story) but it's still counter-intuitive. Still, it works, and we design chips and computers that wouldn't work if those rules were wrong. When it comes to Qbits and quantum computers, I can't make sense of it, but they appear to actually work so I have to accept that that's how things work.

Simon Derricutt said...

Rather than argue the reality of Unruh waves, therefore, it's maybe better to go along with the idea and the projected properties because it gives the right answers. It doesn't have to be absolute truth, just closer to the truth than Dark Matter or MoND. I'll note in passing that my idea of replacing Unruh waves with the Schrödinger probability function is replacing one unmeasurable thing with another, so isn't really structurally different except that the probability wave has a lot more backing and history. The only real difference is the the probability wave is already supposed to be instantaneous over all space, whereas the Unruh wave is light-speed limited, at least in the way it is presented.

Mike's idea is of the same order of simplification that Einstein's Special Relativity was, as I see it. Plus, of course, it works for its predictions and all we need to know is how big the universe was at the time we're looking at. Another coffee, anyone?

Mike McCulloch said...

Zephir: I do not agree with your comments and I will just quickly repeat what I have said to you many times. I was inspired by MoND, and Haisch and Puthoff's SE, but QI is not MoND or stochastic electrodynamics. QI is better than these because it has a specific mechanism (combining relativity & quantum mechs) and most important: no adjustable parameters. That makes the difference between superficiality and depth. As for my formulation of QI based on only the U.P and s.relativity you can find it here (it still uses Theta):


I am working on a paper that produces QI exactly from the U.P. with Dr Jaume Gine.

PeterVermont said...

[Note: I hesitate about this comment because I deal with some complicated physics that I am not expert in. I hope that I have represented ideas correctly but please be kind in correcting mistakes.]

Regarding Simon's variant idea of using Schrödinger probability function, I wish to remind people that Schrödinger's wave equation was formulated in response to de Broglie's matter wave hypothesis and referred to tangible entities such as the position of electrons. In de Broglie Pilot-wave theory waves are thought to be 'real' and therefore could support Simon's variant idea.

While many people think that the waves cannot be 'real' because that would essentially require a hidden variable which has been proven wrong, I do not think this is correct. Bell's inequality implies that either hidden variables or locality must be incorrect. While many jumped to the conclusion that this ruled out hidden variables, apparently instantaneous communication in entangled particle experiments implies that it is locality that does not hold. If locality is incorrect, this leaves room for hidden variables and the possibility that de Broglie pilot waves are real.

Simon Derricutt said...

Peter - nice quotes, and though I was taught only the Copenhagen interpretation a very long time ago, the Bohm theory is as far as I can tell exactly equivalent in what it predicts but has that problem of needing non-local interactions (which are covered in the standard theory by positing entanglement). The theory needs to have that non-local interaction because it is experimentally found to be true. Information does travel at superluminal speeds (probably infinite speed), but this does not break causality since that does not imply going backwards in time. The Quanta magazine link shows the oil-drop experiments that show how barriers can be tunnelled and how the probability-wave is demonstrated by plotting the actual location of the oil-drops over time. Neat....

My argument, however, doesn't depend on which interpretation you use. For Copenhagen the wave-function is a pure probability wave and since the particle cannot be outside the horizons then the wave-function must hit zero at the horizons, too. Given that those wave functions are built from superposition of continuous waves where the nodes must now be on the horizons, then moving the horizons will make a difference to what happens at the centre. Those continuous waves are both instantaneous (velocity is infinite) and not actually in our dimensions, since it is logically impossible to have a wave with an infinite velocity. Still, seeing the way those probability waves (Schrödinger function) are created by the time-lapse photography of the oil-droplets in the Bohm demonstration, the probability wave is an emergent property of the conditions and doesn't actually exist except in the maths. It's not a wave in some medium.

Of course, for the Bohm theory, the pilot-wave must stop at the horizon, too.

Though it's hard to envisage any signal travelling instantaneously across the whole width of the universe, that does seem to be what happens. Einstein didn't like it, either.

Since Unruh waves seem to travel at c but also to have that instantaneous signalling as well, they are a little difficult to envision. The probability wave, on the other hand, already propagates instantaneously so we've already swallowed that bit of explanation, indigestible though it seems.

Danish with that coffee, anyone?

Ziggy said...

" One of the things I'd most like to convince physicists of is that MiHsC is fantastically compelling compared to theories like dark matter, dark energy and, say, string theory."

Yes, MiHsC is fantastically compelling, but only as compared to nonsense.

However, MiHsC is nonsense in its own right, because it assumes physical existence of non-existent mathematical prediction - Unruh radiation.

So, yes, to Mike, his nonsense appears fantastically more compelling than other people's nonsense. :-))

joesixpack said...

Dr Mike,

Opinion, please? From 2014. Sorry if you have commented before. I think this went into Physical Review Letters but I extracted it from arXiv.

An unidentified line in X-ray spectra of the Andromeda galaxy and Perseus galaxy cluster
A. Boyarsky, O. Ruchayskiy, D. Iakubovskyi & J. Franse

"We identify a weak line at E ∼ 3.5 keV in X-ray spectra of the Andromeda galaxy and the Perseus galaxy cluster – two dark matter-dominated objects, for which there exist deep exposures with the XMM-Newton X-ray observatory. Such a line was not previously known to be present in the spectra of galaxies or galaxy clusters. Although the line is weak, it has a clear tendency to become stronger towards the centers of the objects; it is stronger for the Perseus cluster than for the Andromeda galaxy and is absent in the spectrum of a very deep “blank sky” dataset. Although for individual objects it is hard to exclude the possibility that the feature is due to an instrumental effect or an atomic line of anomalous brightness, it is consistent with the behavior of a line originating from the
decay of dark matter particles. Future detections or non-detections of this line in multiple astrophysical targets may help to reveal its nature."

I'm not sure how they know it is consistent with dark matter decay other than an a priori model...it could be dark matter which is probably a lot less common than they believe, it could be an error it could be something else.

Ziggy said...

It is generally accepted that a system undergoing uniform acceleration with respect to zero-temperature vacuum will thermalize at a finite temperature (the so-called Unruh temperature) that is proportional to the acceleration. However, the question of whether or not the system actually radiates is highly controversial. Thus, we are motivated to present an exact calculation using a generalized quantum Langevin equation to describe an oscillator (the detector) moving under a constant force and coupled to a one-dimensional scalar field (scalar electrodynamics). Moreover, our analysis is simplified by using the oscillator as a detector. We show that this system does not radiate despite the fact that it does in fact thermalize at the Unruh temperature. We remark upon a differing opinion expressed regarding a system coupled to the electromagnetic field.

More realistically one could assume that at some distant but finite time in the past the oscillator is impulsively accelerated into hyperbolic motion and the constant force is switched on. At that time there must be an exchange of energy with the field, but it would not be what one would call Unruh radiation.

Our conclusion is that a system in hyperbolic motion through a zero-temperature vacuum does not radiate, despite the fact that it is in a state corresponding to the elevated Unruh temperature.

We should point out that it has been argued by some authors that this is an artifact of the model we have used. In particular, the interaction of a charged oscillator with the electromagnetic field was discussed, and the authors conclude that there is radiation.

However, we are skeptical since, as we have remarked above, the argument is essentially one of detailed balance: for a system
in equilibrium the rate of emission of radiation is exactly balanced by a corresponding absorption, there is no net radiation.

What we have done here is to demonstrate in detail that detailed balance holds for a system in hyperbolic motion exactly as it does for a system at rest at a finite temperature. It is difficult to believe that this principle is model-dependent.


joesixpack said...

Being a beginning physics student, in my opinion, Mike's explanation about the hydrogen radius is basically the hydrino model.

I think some of the criticism here is conceptually valid. What Peter said seems analogous to the ultraviolet catastrophe. Then again if a material is internally "exchanging" X rays and never emits them (normally), how would you know?

I have an open mind. There could be multiple causes of LENR. It seems funny to me that we have wave-particle duality but multiple complementary hypotheses seem out of mind, out of sight, in a lot of controversies today. The likely least useful explanation is if it is a stochastic process of particle-wave duality where large nuclei become unstable after neutron or proton capture. Probabilistically it is extremely (almost exclusively) skewed to protons and neutrons being captured by larger nuclei. Then it becomes a question of engineering and economic feasibility.

Unfortunately now I want to buy Krivit's and Mills' books on top of my new textbooks.

Ziggy said...

Mike McCulloch said...
QI is better because it has a specific mechanism (combining relativity & quantum mechanics)

It is impossible to combine relativity & quantum mechanics, because the two are fundamentally incompatible.

In Relativity, there is no such thing as a virtual pair.
In Relativity, a SINGLE photon is either behind YOUR horizon (invisible),
or visible to you. There is no such possibility that half of the photon is invisible behind YOUR horizon, and its other half is visible, and as a result of you not seeing the other half, the two halves become separated, resulting in "Half-photons" radiation!

On the other hand, in quantum mechanics, in case of a virtual pair made of TWO particles, in principle, it is possible that one of them could be invisible behind YOUR horizon, and the other one visible.

Now, you say, that from your relativistic point of view it is true that, effectively, the invisible particle does not exist (for you). True.

However, at the same time, from the relativistic point of view of your visible particle of the pair, the other particle, even though invisible to you, is still visible to it, because YOUR horizon is relative to you, and the visible particle's horizon is relative to it.

Therefore your invisible particle of the pair is still visible to the other particle, and that is the reason that your visible particle is not free to go alone, because the connection between the pair does not become broken merely because you do not see one of them. Therefore the pair will annihilate, and there will never be any radiation.

If your observation of a single particle of the pair would somehow made it physically free of the other one in the pair, then and only then it could be free to go alone (radiate), because other than you merely observing (or not observing) a particle, no other physical cause exists, like for instance a black hole, that would be physically able to separate the pair.

What I am saying is that, for the above reasons, Unruh radiation is physically impossible, and never happens in physical reality.


I sit on the beach, OBSERVING a motor-ship connected by a chain, or a rope, to a container-ship behind it (with no real motor, but with a tiny propeller powered by a AAA electric battery trying to pull in opposite direction towards the beach), both going towards the horizon.

As long as I can OBSERVE both ships, I can see the reason for the container-ship being pulled (moving).

Now, the leading motor-ship disappears behind (my) horizon (from my point of view the "far" particle does not exist anymore).

Then, according to your reasoning, I would expect container-ship (with a tiny propeller) to stop, because I can observe no reason for it to be pulled over the horizon any longer.

Me observing container-ship alone, with motor-ship non-existent (over the horizon) gives me hope that container-ship, by using tiny propeller, could come back to shore (as Unruh radiation).

This is never going to happen.

Why? Because, even though from my point of view motor-ship does not exist for me anymore (is behind MY horizon ), the motor-ship still does exist for the container-ship, because it is not beyond its horizon, so naturally, it will be pulled over the horizon too, and there is no chance of it ever coming back to the shore (as Unruh radiation).

Ziggy said...

Zephir said...

/* The data, and nothing else, shows the way. */

This is like to say, that gravitational law results from shielding of luminal waves (Unruh radiation) instead of superluminal ones. If it couldn't work in this way because the gravity and inertia would be too slow - who cares?

Who cares?

Only these dumb guys, who do peer-review! :-))

Analytic D said...

Unruh radiation potentially has multiple dynamics at work, and this is not necessary something Dr. McCulloch has embraced, though we've discussed it.

Big question #1: Is it possible to see an already existing wave/photon in your current universe if it no longer fits?

Big question #2: Do Rindler horizons generate real photons?

#1: If a Rindler horizon acts as an event horizon (which it seems like it should given general relativity's observation that acceleration and gravity are indistinguishable), then the answer is basically by definition, "no".

#2: By the same logic, then "yes", via the Hawking mechanism.

If #2 is true, then all accelerating particles have been generating "old" Unruh radiation for eternity. This aligns neatly with the existence of the what amounts to isotropic standing waves in space, which conveniently sounds like the quantum ground state. Local acceleration makes the waves anisotropic via #1, pushing back (inertia).

An additional consequence of this is that very high orbital acceleration would have horizons close enough that the "distant" #2 waves would be close enough to affect, or even cause the orbital behavior (napkin math using r=v^2/a and x=c^2/a suggests self-reinforcing modes might exist). This provides a convenient mechanism for particle mechanics.

Supporting this interpretation of Rindler horizons are fun things like the primary line on hydrogen spectrum conveniently matching the wavelength corresponding to the Unruh from the average acceleration of a hydrogen electron.

This interpretation also avoids immediate faster than light issues because of #1. Any observer in your universe can't see the Unruh waves you generate because they are closer to it than you are. Your wave doesn't fit in their universe, therefore it does not exist and no information transfer is possible. If they were to accelerate toward you by an appropriate factor to fit it into their universe, it would be indistinguishable from all other "old" Unruh, since your old wave is my standing wave.

Ziggy said...

Analytic D said...
Big question #2: Do Rindler horizons generate real photons?

This clearly depends on what, if anything, a Rindler horizon ultimately is.

If a Rindler horizon isn't made of anything physical, as it has been widely accepted among the contributors on this blog, then it logically follows that such a physically non-existent "horizon" could not possibly generate anything physical, like real photons.

If any real photons seem to be observed to be generated, possibly by Rindler horizon, it would be good to clearly answer the question: What is the exact physical mechanism, or process, that they are generated by?

Are they being generated by:

a mere fact of acceleration?

a mere fact of observation?

If so, then, again there is a question of experimentally measuring this radiation, and so far it was not found to be stronger than quantum vacuum fluctuations NOISE.

Analytic D said...
#2: By the same logic, then "yes", via the Hawking mechanism.

Experimental observation of Hawking radiation:
" Under experimentally achievable conditions for gravitational systems Hawking radiation is too weak to be observed directly. However, in September 2010 an experimental set-up created "white hole event horizon" in a laboratory that the experimenters claimed was shown to radiate an optical analog of Hawking radiation, although its status as a genuine confirmation remains in doubt, because the black hole in the Universe is not the white hole in a lab, and in a lab, we would need at least a mini black hole."

Analytic D said...


> If a Rindler horizon isn't made of anything physical ... it logically follows that such a physically non-existent "horizon" could not possibly generate anything physical, like real photons.

That does not logically follow.

Black hole event horizons aren't made of anything physical either.

Given that we have measured gravitational waves in accordance with the nominal expectation of GR of two coorbiting black holes (multiple times now), it is dubious to reject the reality of the event horizon, either from gravitation or from equivalent acceleration.

Unruh-Hawking radiation is not fully confirmed, but for the love of Occam, how many more hints do we need beyond the math from QM and GR, the prediction of inertia from SR and QM, the galaxy rotation anomaly (also scaling as predicted with redshift), a convenient particle mechanism via self-Unruh, convenient LENR model math, convenient EMDrive model math, etc?

There is no tuning in horizon mechanics. This means that spitting out numbers in the correct orders of magnitude is not a property of the model, but a property of the constants themselves.

Czeko said...

If one has access to heavy water and some cm^3 of electrically conductive carbon mesoporous foam, he could test Mike's theory by replicating LENR experiment.

If the geometry surrounding heavy water is the key to produce LENR effect, such experiment would show a large (very?) heat excess.

And as usual, experimentation is always the best way to assess a theory.

If there is some heat excess -> there is something to dig...

Laurence Cox said...

Peter, Simon,

In a comment on Mike's posting "How QI gets rid of dark matter" (19 January 2018 at 08:57), I did draw attention to another interpretation of quantum mechanics, the Transactional Interpretation. While this has never received the widespead support of the Copenhagen or Many-Worlds interpretations, it does have some interesting features.

I tend to have problems with any argument that needs information travelling at an infinite speed; TIQM, in contrast, has both retarded waves (travelling forward in time) and advanced waves (travelling backward in time), but there is only a transfer of energy, momentum and angular momentum when there is a 'handshake' between the retarded wave of the earlier object and the advanced wave of the later object, the transaction of the transactional interpretation. This would have the advantage of naturally expressing Mach's principle as the distant objects we see are earlier in time than we are. Also the distance to the horizon under this interpretation becomes just the distance we see, so we do not have to make any assumption about the expansion of the universe in the time since then.

Now this does cause us problems with causality, but causality is fundamentally a classical concept and we may have to drop it when treating quantum effects like MiHsC rigorously.

PeterVermont said...

Laurence Cox, thank you for your comment. I was unaware of Transactional interpretation of Quantum Mechanics (TIQM) and also did not know of the Afshar Experiment.

I am still attached to causality so have reservations about traveling backwards in time. My future self tells me I will get over that eventually ;-)

PeterVermont said...

Analytica D: I appreciated your interesting comments

joesixpack: I don't see the connection between any of my comments and the ultraviolet catastrophe. I did not know about it and learned something so thanks.

Simon: While it is true the probability wave of oil-drop position was an emergent phenomenon, you seemed to take away a different lesson than I did. While probability waves are not real, the oil droplet experiments show by analogy they may derive from actual waves. I was trying to advance the next step of your idea of using probability waves by saying QI could be from actual pilot waves.

Ziggy said...
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Ziggy said...
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joesixpack said...


I am saying it is as an analogy as to the (possible) (possibly catastrophic) effects predicted in both concepts (if I have understood your inference correctly). I think you may have outlined a succinct and robust explanation as to why Mike might be wrong in this case. Let's say Mike is right: things get more interesting.

It might be difficult engineering a useful technology (such as energy production) from Mike's concept (if it is valid) but I'm a technological optimist. I usually interpret articles about the limitations of exotic propulsion as exercises in hand waving to cling to an old paradigm.

I'd be interested to know how the schematic could be directly tested, or if anything similar has been attempted before.

Mike McCulloch said...

Ziggy: This blog is for scientific debate, not for insults. Please be professional.

joesixpack said...

Are there any problems with the Alcubierre metric in the TIQM model? Or is it just a different conceptualisation?

It would be interesting to see how TIQM differs to QI regarding the EM drive and fly by anomaly.

Sorry, I don't have the mathematical skills and tools yet to make the judgments or conclusions myself.

joesixpack said...

I found this article on conformal gravity that concludes that if conformal gravity is correct, then the Alcubierre Warp Drive (AWD) is feasible (also no need for exotic matter, as the MEGA Drive potentially creates...).

ISRN Astronomy and Astrophysics
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 482734, 13 pages
Research Article
Conformal Gravity and the Alcubierre Warp Drive Metric
Gabriele U. Varieschi and Zily Burstein

What are the implications for the AWD under the QI paradigm?

Zephir said...

/* As for my formulation of QI based on only the U.P and s.relativity you can find it here (it still uses Theta): https://arxiv.org/abs/1610.06787 I am working on a paper that produces QI exactly from the U.P. with Dr Jaume Gine. */

It would be great, because combination of quantum mechanics (UP) and special relativity suffers by inconsistency (see above Ziggy's comments). If you could derive Theta (universe size) / speed of metric "expansion" just from uncertainty principle, it would be way more interesting result.

Simon Derricutt said...

Laurence - I also hadn't come across the Transactional interpretation, so thanks. I have problems with any idea that requires a signal going backwards in time, though, since that implies that the future must be already fixed and cannot be changed. Because Relativity mixes time and space and thus treats spacetime as 4-dimensional with each dimension equivalent to the others, and thus going backwards in time is mathematically valid, I think time is in reality a one-way street. Time is not equivalent to space, in other words, and though each particle has its own rate of passing of time that can range from slow/stopped to a maximum rate around what we normally experience in our rest frame (it would go a little faster with no gravity), we can't reverse it.

The mixing of time and space is a result of our using light to measure things, since it is the maximum signalling speed we know of and can use at the moment. Thus quantum theory tells us what is actually happening, and Relativity tells us what we will see/measure to happen. Given the various theories of How Things Work that may contain up to 11 dimensions, I don't see a problem with swallowing the idea that there may be instantaneous signalling across the universe (plus of course it does seem to be an experimental fact for fairly short distances), since if those other dimensions exist then the Universe could be a different size or even a point in another dimension, making instantaneous signalling easier to envisage. I thus leave instantaneous signalling on the table as reasonable, whereas going backwards in time seems unreasonable.

The useful thing about having a diversity of opinion about what is possible/reasonable is that we can never be certain we've got the right answer. "What is true" has a half-life, and through my life I've found that I've needed to discard old ideas as new truths are found out. I thus retain a degree of uncertainty about what I know to be true (Heisenberg Syndrome) since new data may emerge that proves it wrong. I don't believe I'm right about why things happen, but only accept what does happen experimentally.

Simon Derricutt said...

Peter - though probability waves haven't got any medium to wave in, the pilot waves would seem to need something. That *something* would maybe correspond to Aether or spacetime, and again that would end at the horizons as far as we could be affected by by it. The pilot waves must thus also have nodes at the horizons. Same result, therefore, but the implication of the Bohm interpretation is that there is an Aether of some sort and that it interacts with the "real" particles we see. The oil-drop experiments do give us a visible analogy for the various results from the quantum weirdnesses, so is a bit more satisfying (to me at least) than the Copenhagen interpretation that needs a measurement to collapse the wavefunction. Things happen whether we measure them or not. On the other hand, we can also define a measurement as any collision or interaction of particles, which gets over that logical difficulty. It also introduces a new one if we posit that the whole universe is entangled (which does seem to be true) so that everything affects everything else.

The Transactional interpretation, Copehagen interpretation and the Bohm interpretation however all give the same answers, and thus until there is a difference between what they predict (that can be experimentally tested) we can choose whichever one is more-easily calculable. They just propose a different back-story as to why. We don't need to believe that the stories are true or false until that experimental evidence turns up that shows which story can't be true. With Unruh waves, again we can't currently say whether they are there or not, but there is a reason why they should be produced and there is an effect (QI) as if they are there. Good enough for now, so they stay on the table as a possible answer since the predictions match what we see to happen.

Simon Derricutt said...

Joesixpack - reference Conformal Gravity and the Alcubierre Warp Drive Metric (available at https://arxiv.org/pdf/1208.3706.pdf ) the mass/energy required to produce the warp seems to be pretty comparable to the total mass of the visible universe. That would seem to make sense, in that it would also reduce space to Big Bang conditions (no space) so that velocity would not be a measurable quantity. Relative to what?

Though I can't follow the maths and rely on the description of what the calculations result in, I suspect the results are not physically realisable, and that the effects of using it (if it was even possible) would be catastrophic for any matter that was in the universe. Somewhat like being too close to a Black Hole, that wave would swallow everything.

Though accelerating something increases its mass, and that increased mass could be a reason that its local clock goes slower, we haven't yet managed to put two observers into relativistic spacecraft so that they can find out the truth of relativity - all we've done is to accelerate subatomic particles to those sorts of velocities and watched them from our (relatively at rest) frame. There's no doubt that their clocks slow relative to ours, but we don't know what happens from their viewpoint and what they see of other similar-speed particles in different directions. It's possible that there is a universal rest-frame that we all move relative to. Going through the logic, so far we couldn't tell the difference with the experiments we've done. Accelerating some object to light speed may thus always remain practically impossible, and going beyond c even more so. That does not however preclude moving from *here* to *there* instantaneously without passing through the space in between, since according to the probability function there is a probability that we are *there* already. I've however no idea as to how we can tweak the probabilities to effect that transfer. As with the Alcubierre drive, it would affect the energy levels of the whole universe (Pauli exclusion principle) and may thus either require an inordinate amount of energy to make it work or the start and end points of the "trip" to be carefully chosen to reduce the energy required - maybe a few light-years from the nearest star, for example.

Some food for thought....

Laurence Cox said...


There are a surprisingly large number of interpretations of Quantum Mechanics; I haven't paid too much attention to them because essentially they are philosophical arguments about what quantum mechanics means, that is there are no experimental differences between their predictions unlike Feynman-Wheeler absorber theory (their attempt to recast the formalism of Quantum Mechanics in a time-symmetrical form). Sometimes one interpretation looks better than another because it avoids the need for something that is not in the Schrodinger wave equation. So the big difficulty with the Copenhagen interpretation is that it requires a collapse of the wavefunction when a measurement is made; the Many Worlds interpretation avoids the need for collapse at the cost of multiple parallel universes; the pilot-wave interpretation avoids this at the cost of having both real particles and real waves; and so on.

Let me suggest a thought experiment. Suppose that Mike's theory about MiHsC is correct and imagine that we can go into intergalactic space and fire off some test probes with very low accelerations. Because Mike's theory does not have any adjustable parameters, a measurement of acceleration as a function of force applied (a/F = 1/m) should give us a measure of the size of the universe because for very low forces the inertial mass will tend to zero and the rate at which it does so is dictated by the distance to the cosmic boundary. Now, if this boundary is calculated to be at a distance of 13.8 billion light-years today, this would be consistent with the Unruh waves travelling at the speed of light. If these waves are travelling at an infinite speed then the boundary would be farther away (about 46 billion light years today) as this Phys Org article explains.

So, in principle, accurate measurements of low accelerations could give information on the speed of propagation of Unruh waves.

Analytic D said...

While we are talking about alternative interpretations of existing data, I think the blog readers might appreciate Espen Haug's work. http://espenhaug.com/

Haug started in high speed trading, which led him to special relativity, which led him to an interesting application of SR and Planck maths, as well as the deepest investigation into the one-way speed of light I've read.

He predicts a maximum speed for complex particles. This is a previously unpredicted falsifiable proposition (though far beyond current capability).

joesixpack said...


Estimations of a small, viable warp bubble have gone down from an energy mass requirement of Jupiter to that of 700-1200 kg, as Harold White reported back in 2012-14.

I am not aware of any modifications to the general relativity metrics from modified gravity or inertia that White may or may not have used in his revision of energy-mass requirements.

White has said more recently that experimentally by means of an interferometer, he has observed warp bubbles with no exotic matter input. Conformal gravity as an assumption doesn't require it and the MEGA Drive may be a source of exotic matter/energy anyway.

Conceptually I don't get the Hawking radiation argument about the warp drive. I have read this paper but I don't understand it, at a conceptual level. To me, it is like they have assumed the effect must happen and proved it with maths. I don't get why it "must" happen. Nor does it use any modified theory of gravity or inertia (MOND, TIQM, QI or conformal etc).

Semiclassical instability of dynamical warp drives
Stefano Finazzi, Stefano Liberati, Carlos Barceló

On the other hand - can anyone else access Haug's website right now? I cannot.

Simon Derricutt said...

Laurence - thanks for the links. A lot more interpretations than I'd realised, but I haven't actually been that involved with QM research.

For the thought experiment, I think that though the Unruh waves propagate at the speed of light they must also have an instantaneous effect, so this gets a little difficult. Mike has used different values of the Hubble radius since he started, so since he's getting good agreement on the effects with the latest values he uses that should give us enough clue as to which velocity would be correct. I'll find what he used and convert it to light years a bit later.

Analytic D - The espenhaug link works for me. Looks interesting. It'll take a while before I can comment on it, though.

Joesixpack - I haven't really been following the warp drive ideas, so thanks. As far as I'd envisage it, though, it's creating the equivalent of a Black Hole, so we'd get all the hallmarks such as Hawking radiation and extreme gravity experienced outside it. The question arises as to what mechanism you'd employ in order to apply the vast amount of energy needed, though, and AFAIK nobody has even proposed a way of doing that. Until we can think up some way of getting that energy applied, I think the warp drives will remain a theoretical possibility. Personally, mathematical proofs depend on whether the real physics is properly modelled in the maths, and a wrong assumption somewhere could mean that the maths is valid but it won't actually work in real life. In the same way, of course, my idea of "teleportation" requires a way to actually tweak those probabilities, and I currently have no idea where to start on that.

At the moment, it looks like some variant of EMDrive or some other way of shovelling the momentum-change into the EM field is a valid way of getting a space drive running, and there's experimental evidence that it works. It's a start on getting off this rock and into space.

Simon Derricutt said...

Using Mike's value for Theta as 2.7*10^26 m and a light-year as 9.4607*10^15 m gives a value of 2.854*10^10 light years for the Hubble diameter. Hubble radius is half this so around 14.3*10^10 ly. Mike's value at http://physicsfromtheedge.blogspot.com/2014/01/mihsc-101.html?showComment=1424449878326#c9023884208616192189 .

Somewhat different from either 13.8 billion or 46 billion, assuming billion is 10^12. Wiki gives Hubble radius as 13.7*10^12 light years (and see http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/oi/authority.20110803095948562 ). Or I've messed up the calculation, of course.... 3 orders of magnitude out, which is suspicious but I've rechecked the data. Substituting m for km?

Recheck: using 28.4e+12 light years (Hubble diameter) into the converter on Google gives 2.68684745421295e+29 metres. Looks like that 3 OOM error is in 2.7×10 26 m, from Freedman,
2001. As quoted page 2 of https://arxiv.org/abs/1207.7007 . For radius of 13.7ly, that gives 2.59e+29 metres as being the radius we should be using.

Laurence Cox said...


Everyone uses billion in the American sense for astronomy, mainly because of their dominance of the subject during the 20th century. So 13.8 billion is 13.8 thousand million, not 13.8 million million. Because that is the radius of the universe, its diameter would be twice that, so pretty close to Mike's figures. It is not obvious to me that there is a significant difference between Mike's figures for the radius of the universe (14.3) and the generally accepted value (13.8) which are less than 4% apart.

Analytic D said...


> I think that though the Unruh waves propagate at the speed of light they must also have an instantaneous effect, so this gets a little difficult

This is why I suggested that inertia is caused by "old" Unruh. If all horizons emit real radiation, then this has been going on forever, and so space would be isotropically filled with waves, which would be noisy at the floor but essentially cancel. When you accelerate, making the waves no longer cancel due to your universe geometry, you get a net push back.

An "old" Unruh model conveniently supports a "self-Unruh" model for high acceleration, bounded observers.

This hypothesis is potentially falsifiable with an electron gun loop on a tabletop (easy in principle) and a ULF antenna (this part is a little harder). Just add maths.

qraal said...

Sonny White's figures depend on Hyperspace (i.e. a 5th dimension) and thus involve a specific gravity theory. The deeper you 'go' into hyperspace, the easier the warp is to create.

Simon Derricutt said...

Laurence - thanks, and I should have noticed that myself. That puts Mike's figure only a little different, as you say. Still, the Hubble constant is only estimated using standard candles anyway, so any agreement to 4% is pretty good.

Analytic D - I see the point, but the idea is that the Unruh waves are generated by (and can only affect) the emitting particle. That's a reason for the Smolyaninov waves maybe being other than Unruh waves. Still, as you say, space would be full of those waves, so maybe they can only affect a particle when there's a node coincident with the particle (or maybe an antinode?). I can't quite see it, but it looks like there may be a solution there with more discussion and thinking. In other words, the effect is like that of crossing tracks, and exchanging one set of Unruh waves for a set that is longer or shorter, and there is a jump in acceleration as you change the wave-set you're riding. This is starting to look a bit like the pilot waves of De Broglie/Bohm. Since there is not an infinity of waves, then that also would mean that there is some quantisation on the direction, too, though it may be too small to actually measure. If we're riding waves that already exist, then that removes the problem of the wave being emitted here and now and yet "knowing" where the horizon is so that the wavelength is adjusted. (Note that I leave the start of the idea in the text rather than erasing it, so you can see how the idea develops.) Seems like the start of an explanation?

Testing this in an Earth-bound environment could be tricky, since there's that gravitational acceleration which is much larger, and seeing the jumps in acceleration of anything would be difficult. Free fall (in the ISS) would be not much better. We really need to be light-years away from any significant mass.

TeckaCZ said...

I just wanted to note, that there were attempts to use sonoluminiscence effect to induce fusion (which would be actually not so cold, in this case) even before cold fusion controversy (and "bubble fusion" is of course controversial)


Additionaly, if cavities are what is getting hot and what radiate, we may try to use deuterium-soaked duct tape to get the same effect (also, duct-tape glows X-rays when peeled in vacuum... so strong X-rays, that you can actually use it to do X-ray imaging, as was recently demonstrated)


My first duct-tape/QI theory was acceleration based, but no chemicist really wants to discuss acceleration of broken bonds. On the other hand, nanoscale cavities may actually appear in process of peeling the glue.. and they may become rather hot for very short periods of time.

Laurence Cox said...


You need an electric field gradient of about 3 kV/mm to ionise air at STP. For medical X-rays you need photon energies above about 5-10 keV (in other words you need a potential difference of at least 5-10 kV). The reason why you don't see X-rays when you separate sticky tape in air is that I think the mean free path of the electrons is too short. In a vacuum the mean free path will be the separation between the two surfaces holding the tape. As long as there is enough charge (of opposite sign) on the two surfaces it should be possible to accelerate electrons across the gap to any required energy (note that the Nature paper said that they didn't produce X-rays every time "Of the total electron discharges, only one in ten thousand makes X-rays," says Escobar). Also when you pull soft materials like glue apart, you tend to get narrow filaments that break in the middle. These are good shapes for emitting elections because the shorter the tip radius the higher the local electric field.

Look at some old static electricity generating machines like the Wimshurst machine or the Van de Graff generator and you can see the use of narrow filaments as electron emitters. See: https://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/43068/why-is-electric-field-strong-at-sharp-edges

TeckaCZ said...

Reply to Laurence Cox:

I am quite aware about the theory of charge reunification, and I must admit, that while I am no expert on triboluminiscence, there is still claim, that "The phenomenon is not fully understood" according to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triboluminescence"

First of all, you mentioned acceleration - electrons accelerate in electric field. And where there is acceleration, QI effects may be taken in accounts. Maybe it is as simple, as the accelerating particles being electrons - and the pointed ends of filaments are what makes charge so strong, that they accelerate so much, that unruh horizons starts to glow in visiable. (I sholuld be able do some math and estimate the electron acceleration - electron is much more lightweight particle then atom nucleus, which would explain why my earlier estimation that atoms at the ends of filaments accelerate was way out range)

But also the nano-cavity theory would make some sense, if the nano-cavity size in separated glue is simillar to minimum bubble size in sonoluminsence or cavity size in palladium.

What seems interesting is that all these are dynamical processes - the change of _something_ changes in the time, but during the process, it passes through size required for visible light (or for the fusion event). It like the cavity is being "tuned" to certain size, which is exactly required.

In the case of palladium, it may be process of deuterium absorbtion, which changes the size of cracks - and in one moment, the size of the cavity becomes "tuned". (Which is close to QI prediction related to emDrive, that the cavity size would also have to be "tuned" very precisely)

(Can be compared to wine glasses resonating with audio waves, which can explosively breake when tuned to exact frequency.. processes with "tuned" cavities alow for something like "resonance of unruh waves"... or how to call it.. for each two _moving_ horizons, there may be some frequency, which causes energy to dissipate... somehow... it's like reverse emDrive, we are not feeding energy to system of fixed horizons, but we have moving horizons ...and err... "something happens" :-))

LENR advocates also used metaphore of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogue_wave (freak waves) on sea. To be true, it is different approach from QI: it just says, that although phasing waves so that many, many amplitudes sum toghether is improbable, statistically it can happen, time to time (like it happens in the ocean, not only according to sailor mytology, but also according to satelite observation)

Nanocavities may still play role of added "rocks in the ocean", increasing probability of event to occur.

I am also afraid that "duct tape fusion" won't be the case, unfortunately (although it would be really, really cool type of fusion :-). But there still may be
_something_ related to acceleration/deccelertion of electrons. Bremsstrahlung is mentioned in lot of searches for "duct tape luminiscence" and also "sonoluminiscence".

Maybe my comment is dead-end of the discussion, but if there is QI-compatible explanation for bremsstrahlung (rapidly decelerationg electrons), which already has several explanations (quite incomprehensible for amateur physicst :-), it can be anyway important for broader QI acceptance...

TeckaCZ said...

I am rather amused, that so many people here are wondering about the same QI/Unruh radiation related questions :-) One of my first questions was "but this would mean, that this matter in rotating galaxies communicates instantly with cosmic horizon!".

But space horizon isn't anything, that exists; it is kind of quasi-horizon (see: quasiparticles), while there of course can be real artificial horizons. I believe the trick is that the particle doesn't know, if the horizon is real or not: it is just information horizon and on of it properties is, that we don't know about it is nature: if it is end (beginning) of Universe, tin wall of emDrive cavity or black hole horizon. That is the trick with horizons, and it is philosophy/cognitive science/information science, not clasical phsysics: if you see horizon, you cannot falsify any theories about who put it there and what it is made from.

The only way to transfer information "instantly" would be if we can instantly setup "on demand horizon" for object observing it, but as distances would increase, the requirements for such horizon would grow to even more astronomical sizes than those of photon rocket, and I am just quietly thinking, that one just don't setup or destroy horizon capable to affect observer let's say 1 light year apart: it may simply become clear, that "toggling" push of such huge horizon would simply take more time, than one year, meaning that the effective bitrate of such "instant" communication on 1 lightyear distance being less than 1 bit per year - which means there would be "instant" communication channel with bandwidth exactly ... 0 bps (bad luck).

For example, we see the singularity in the centre of Milky Way, relative which we have one of highest absolute local accelerations. But this "instant" interaction cannot be used for any information transfer, because the horizon cannot be removed faster, than in the time light/information from that point would reach us. And this fact is pretty obvious: anything less than interaction with other singularity wouldn't do it, but such event would mean we are already interacting with this other singularity too, and accelerations are already different.

But the fact the horizon is here itself doesn't carry any information, which is the trick. The horizon is not any object to communicate with: simply where there is acceleration, the Unruh radiation is here, and that is it. No real information transfer - the observer gets just the information about its own acceleration, which would be otherwise unknown/lost.

The fact that we are seeing cosmic horizon every night doesn't mean, that we are getting any instant information from that distance: all we have is information, that it is there, and this is suprisingly local information. Now this is really Douglas Adams "Restaurant at the end of Universe"-like situation...

I am still not getting the situation, when object sees multiple relative accelerations, and its inertia is result of kind of "average" acceleration. Anyway I find it likely, that even this setup cannot be used for FTL communication... any smaller-than-astronomical scale acceleration change in relativistic distances would simply get lost in background noise.

Jimmy Johnson said...

Some general comments about ways of evaluating the formulation of scientific theories in general and QI in particular:

There are many instances in both science and in mathematics where different theories or tools lead to the same answer. When it comes to evaluating them one of the main concerns is how well they allow for the computation of their consequences.

The scientific method in its simplest algorithm consists of four steps.
1. Make a guess about how a process occurs - Hypothesis
2. Calculate the consequences of the hypothesis - Prediction
3. Test the prediction against experimental measurement.
4. Accept as possible, or reject the hypothesis based upon its agreement with experiment.

In this and earlier threads statements have been made that some theories, like quantum mechanics, do not make sense. You just turn the crank based on some rules, and the answer pops out. This explanation in no way reduces the validity of the theory. It does however wreak havoc when it comes to applying the theory to the natural world. Without some conceptual underpinning about why the formula works, it is hard to extrapolate it into new areas.

If science is viewed as the study of knowledge, then theories that allow computation without elucidating the nature of the world provide little advancement in knowledge, even if they provide a significant gain in technique and method.

The great attractiveness of QI is that it starts with a very understandable set of basic postulates from which can be derived many things. A number of its predictions appear to be correct. Some of its predictions appear to be correct where the application of accepted theories fail. In the history of science, the death knoll for accepted theories has come when elaborate patches, or the suspension of logic are mandated. We seem to be in such a situation at the present time when it comes to the explanation of cosmic phenomena and the application of "dark matter", "dark energy", and whatever else is required to get the right answer with the currently accepted theories.

If QI proves to be correct its simplicity should allow it to be extended into many areas. It therefore has the potential to significantly increase actual knowledge, and therefore advance science. The potential of QI is significant enough that its evaluation should be strongly encouraged. The fact that it might gore some of the traditional oxes on the landscape should be viewed as irrelevant.

Personally I believe that the explanation of theories in a form that, "makes no sense", occurs because no one has been clever enough to come up with the underlying concept. Expecting someone to agree to perform calculations to a problem based on a formulation that makes no sense and then ask them to evaluate their consequences logically seems to be a contradiction. This a prime reasons why different formulations (the explanation of the underlying concepts) arise.

One potential formulation of quantum mechanics is the deBroglie - Bohm Pilot Wave formulation. It makes great sense and requires no dead and live cats or for particles to go through both slits at the same time. Because it "makes sense" it is much easier to extend into unchartered territory. (The fact that is eminently understandable does not relieve it for passing the four steps listed above.) I only cite Pilot Wave theory as an appropriate example.

What makes no sense in one formulation can make perfect sense in another. If the advancement of science rather than method is the goal, the the formulation that provides understanding and knowledge in its traditional understanding is favored. QI has the potential to fall into that rare category of simple but powerful explanations with relatively easy calculation of consequences.

Jimmy Johnson

Simon Derricutt said...

Jimmy - great comment! For QM, I was originally taught only the Copenhagen interpretation. This is what happens, and there's no reason why. The DeBroglie-Bohm interpretation was something I found only a few years ago, and though there's still a problem of what the pilot-waves wave in, there seems more chance of actually finding that out and the story is more satisfying. QI has the same problem of what the waves wave in, as I see it, but again there does seem more chance of finding out (and it may well be the same "stuff" as DeBroglie-Bohm, and thus could fit into a larger explanation). If the stories make sense, and we can find analogies from our macroscopic life, then we can produce predictions that can be tested. I also feel that Mike's theory is closer to the truth than the mainstream theories, and the lack of fudge-factors we can't explain makes it clean and elegant.

Laurence Cox said...

Jimmy Johnson,
Well said. My own instinct would be to concentrate on QI in situations where we can measure accelerations (or at least velocities) and we can ignore everything apart from gravity. That is a much 'cleaner' environment for making predictions.

For example, take the Local Group of galaxies, where we have three large spiral galaxies, in order of mass (greatest to least) M31, the Milky Way, and M33, and some fragments. There is a general presumption in astronomy that M31 and the Milky Way will collide in about 4.5 x 10^9 years time and form a giant elliptical galaxy.


If we do the maths, Andromeda is at 2.5 x 10^6 lightyears now (or actually 2.5 million years ago) and collision in 4.5 x 10^9 years will require an average velocity towards us of 167 km/s, compared with its current velocity towards us of 110 km/s. That will require an uniform acceleration of 0.8 x 10^-12 m/s^2. We don't need to go as far as using the inverse square law for this first approximation, because if the acceleration is higher just before collision, it will be lower now. It is clear that the acceleration of M31 puts it well in the QI regime (acceleration << 2 * 10^-10 m/s^2).

So, ignoring the fragments, we have a simple 3-body system in which we can predict future trajectories assuming that the inertia of the three bodies reduces at low accelerations. A wet-finger estimate suggests that this might reduce the time between encounters from ~ 10^10 years to ~ 10^9 years. This would have a major impact both on galactic cluster dynamics and also star formation in spiral galaxies. There has been a good deal of work done on spiral structure in galaxies as a result of interactions with other nearby galaxies, but QI might conceivably explain the existence of all spiral galaxies if interactions are much more frequent than generally assumed.

Jimmy Johnson said...

Here are links to some visual analogues of the pilot wave theory via a mechanical system. I believe that you will find the short videos intriguing. I do not know if pilot wave theory is correct, but if proven correct it definitely would be easier to explain to students than saying, "just take my word for it because it works".


Jimmy Johnson

Michael Sansom said...

If random cracks in the palladium are creating the information horizons that create the necessary forces to cause fusion to occur, would it not be possible using existing photo-lithography techniques used in semiconductor fabrication to engineer a material optimized for creating these closed off information spaces rather than depend on the random nature of a particular palladium sample to produce them?