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 9 February 2019

Wide Binaries 3.0

The best way to do incisive science is to find an empirical case that can discriminate between hypotheses, in this case dark matter, MoND and QI.

Galaxy rotation is not ideal in that respect. To recap: galaxies spin far too fast at their edges to be stable. They should fly apart, but they appear to be gravitationally bound. So astro-physicists have proposed that there is invisible dark matter in them to hold them together. One of the properties of this dark matter has to be that it stays spread out, otherwise it would collapse to the centre of the galaxy and not predict the rotation correctly. The problem is that although QI can predict galaxy rotation, dark matter can be 'fudged' to predict it too, and even MoND is tweakable (a0).

Something un-fudge-able is needed and wide binaries are brilliant examples of unfudgeability. I have discussed them before. They are binary stars so far apart that their accelerations are as low as they are at the edges of galaxies. Hernandez et al. (2018) have shown in some brilliant papers, that wide binaries orbit each other far too fast, just as galaxies do. The data I have used here is from his latest paper which uses brand-new GAIA data. The data is shown by the crosses in the Figure below (prepared by my new post-doc Jesus Lucio). The x axis shows the separation of the stars in parsecs and the y axis shows their mutual speed in km/s. The grey area shows the uncertainty in the data, so it means that the orbital speed at each separation is somewhere in the grey area.
The dotted line shows the prediction of Newton or of general relativity (the same in this case). Just as in galaxies, although Newton/GR says the orbital speed should decrease with radius/separation (dotted line), the observed speeds stay much higher. Beyond a distance of 0.2 parsecs both Newton and general relativity are falsified. These theories disagree with the data and dark matter cannot be added to these wide binaries to save them, because to fit the larger galaxy it must stay diffuse. Unless they now come up with quantum dark matter that can be simultaneously spread out and clumpy!

The prediction of MoND is shown by the dashed line here with its fitting parameter set to a0 = 1.3x10^-10 m/s^2. It under-predicts the data at 1 parsec but if we set a0 = 2x10^-10 m/s^2 then it just about fits. However, the MoND prediction should probably be closer to the Newtonian/GR curve because it is subject to the External Field Effect (still under debate) which means that external accelerations bring it back towards Newtonian behaviour. These wide binaries are close to the Sun, and so accelerations due to the galaxy are still on the order of 8x10^-10 m/s^2. So, MoND is possibly also falsified by this data.

The prediction of quantised inertia is shown by the solid line, with the error shown by the two lighter solid lines above and below it. QI agrees with all the data (just). I submitted a paper on this to MNRAS a few weeks ago including a plot similar to this one, but in which QI did not quite agree. Well, a sincere thanks to my post-doc who recently spotted a factor of two error in my calculations which was making QI seem worse than it is, and he corrected it. So we will now resubmit with the new result.

In summary, QI predicts the orbits of these 83 pairs of wide binary stars better than other theories. Furthermore, QI does it without the need for any arbitrary fitting parameters (MoND needs one). QI needs just the observed mass, the observed speed of light and the observed cosmic scale. QI can only predict one outcome, and that turns out to agree with the data.


Hernandez, X., R.A.M. Cortes, C. Allen and R. Scarpa, 2018. Challenging a Newtonian prediction through Gaia wide binaries. https://arxiv.org/abs/1810.08696

McCulloch, M.E. and J.H. Lucio, 2019. Testing quantised inertia on wide binaries. Submitted to MNRAS.


Gaaark said...

Very interesting!

This is getting exciting. :)

Kieran Latty said...

I am sad to report that Facebook is classifying this post as 'against community standards' and blocking it.

Alain_Co said...

It happened recently to a friend who publish agains wind turbines

I advised him to follow the procedure told ther

No idea what he did, but it worked.
maybe you can find on the facebook page, or else ask JeanPierre

Kieran Latty said...

It isn't a bug, the page is on a blocklist. The page you listed gives the following error when this blog is entered into the debugger:

'We can't review this website because the content doesn't meet our Community Standards. If you think this is a mistake, please let us know.'

I did the 'let us know' step though it has not helped yet.

Rocket Scientist said...

Being in the Milky Way, the only way to get rid of the Galactic Acceleration in the neighborhood of Earth is to find a wide binary where the acceleration of one of the stars is equal and opposite to the Galactic Acceleration. One star at near zero acceleration, the other at 2 * Galactic Acceleration. Maybe look for wide binaries that are 1/4 of a "Milky Way" Revolution in front of or behind Earth would give the best geometry. At near zero acceleration is where your QI model would get interesting.

Marco Parigi said...

Hi Rocket Scientist,

I agree with you there. The point being that both MoND and QI need to correctly factor in the EFE. I agree with you that it should be the vector sum of accelerations. I am led to believe that Mike has been factoring the scalar sum of the accelerations, which makes no sense to me at all. This changes everything when we think about the physics within the cores of these stellar bodies as well. I am sure that the big jump in measured relative velocities is that some of the acceleration is cancelling out with the galactic acceleration, collapsing inertia. It is somewhat related to selection bias, because such an aberrant velocity makes the connectedness as a binary most obvious. Of the widest binaries, high velocities counter to prevailing rotation around galactic centre outs them as binaries.

Chahe Adourian said...

Glad to see no-parameter theories to explain orbits.

Chahe Adourian said...

Glad to see no-parameter theories that match the data. This is encouraging news.

QuizWhiz said...

QI is the best theory for a sub-zero (a0) acceleration regime. This needs verification. There is far too much uncertainty in the Hubble Width. Once that is refined then QI is basically verifiable right?

QI might be a simpler model and a tremendous improvement in our understanding. Why isn't this being done? Someone should adjust some funding somewhere. I can't see how a refinement of this importance is not prioritized. Surely someone is willing to test these ideas experimentally. Plausible tests can be done.

Unknown said...

Hello Dr. McCulloch!

Thank you for the very interesting and thought-provoking work!

I'd be grateful if you find time to answer the questions below, as I believe the answers may be interesting to many layman readers of the blog.

1) Two years ago you wrote a comment:

"I'm getting ahead of myself here, but I would like to get rid of waves and particles and express everything as informational 'agents' which see horizons. I can show that horizon dynamics can be derived just from 'agents' interpreting the uncertainty principle in 3d. This is much cleaner than using Unruh radiation (but is just a different interpretation of quantised inertia - same outcome). I haven't published all this yet, but I made a start in my recent paper 'Quantised inertia from relativity and the uncertainty principle'.. "

I was wondering whether you had any progress in the development of this "informational" interpretation of QI?

2) Will you consider accepting patronage via means other than Paypal (before opening the account they ask all possible private information that I'm not eager to disclose to yet another corporation)? For example, Patreon or Stripe? Or maybe even cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin?

Best regards,

Gaaark said...

Could use some knowledgeable help HERE:


Analytic D said...


I have advised Mike before to look into Frederick Kantor's work in information mechanics to help inform the formulation of a more general, more rigorous model.

Kantor actually starts his major book out with a trivial example of a single photon in a Universe, with a wavelength of that maximum size, and says that this must inherently represent one bit of information. All you can know about that photon is that it exists, since its position naturally couldn't be defined any more than being in the Universe.

So, I suspect the informational treatment of QI must do something very similar, using the horizon as the cutoff. This could have a clean result of linearizing and discretizing the squared scalar that is *energy* into a more robust concept of relative informational content.

Mike McCulloch said...

Analytic_D: I have just ordered Kantor's book from Amazon. Thanks.

Analytic D said...

@Mike: A copy is on its way to me as, well. We can book club it.

Derk_73-11 said...

Mike, nice work.

May be future should not agree, and new alegations to your work arise.

But by the moment, 83 binary systems, agree, and, as you sayd, without need of 'special constants matched to the data'.

Congratulations, just from me.

(I am a 58 years old engineer that has seen to much).

Derk_73-11 said...

"This could have a clean result of linearizing and discretizing the squared scalar that is *energy* into a more robust concept of relative informational content."...

Something is eluding us since Wheler told it, 'it from bit'.

Really, are many questions that relate universe and information.

¿What made a true diference between an electron, and other?


Mike, please, a question: ¿How big is a photon?.

For years, every body, sayd E = h·v, and say no more.

Thanks Mike.