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

Thursday 14 March 2024

The Hubble "Tension"

If you say boo to a goose and it flies away, rather than attacking you as they used to at York University, then the sounds you hear coming from it will shift to a lower frequency as the waves from your point of view are spread out. This is the Doppler effect and applies to light waves as well. As we know, Edwin Hubble noticed that the light from distant galaxies was red shifted, that is, the wavelength of the light we received from them was longer, implying that the galaxies were moving away from us and that the further ones were moving away faster than the closer ones. This was taken to mean that all the galaxies were moving away from a common centre as if there had been a Big Bang (or a Big Boo) 13.6 billion years in the past.

Looking at local galaxies, the Hubble expansion rate has been measured to be 73 km/s/Mpc. That is, galaxies one megaparsec (Mpc) away from us are apparently moving away from us at 73 km/s.

Recently, a new method was devised to calculate the Hubble constant from observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background, that represents the cosmos long ago at a redshift of Z=1000, and then extrapolating forward using standard models assuming dark matter and dark energy. Perhaps not surprisingly they got a different answer: 67.7 km/s/Mpc.

This discrepancy is now much bigger than the uncertainties in these two numbers, so it is significant (Reiss et al., 2019). As is usual in physics now, to avoid offending anyone, this is called "The Hubble Tension", but in fact it is a falsification of the present model (as stated, the difference is larger than the error bars).

What does QI have to say about this? Well, there is an interesting link up. If you look at the difference in these speeds you get 73 - 67.7 = 5.3 km/s/MPc. Scaling this up to the speed at the edge of the cosmos you get 155,000 km/s and if you calculate an acceleration from this by dividing by the age of the universe you get

Acceleration = 3.8x10^-10 m/s^2

This is the mutual acceleration of both sides of the cosmos and we just want that of one, so when we divide by two we get about 2x10^-10 m/s^2. Those who know about quantised inertia, QI (surely most of you reading by now) will see immediately that this is the minimum cosmic acceleration predicted by QI as 2c^2/CosmicScale = 2x10^-10 m/s^2. So maybe the Hubble "Tension" is just the fact that they left QI out of their model!

Note that there is probably more to this, as I'm not sure I believe in the physical acceleration model either, but you must admit this does all fit rather well!


Riess, A. et al., 2019. Large Magellanic Cloud Cepheid Standards Provide a 1% Foundation for the Determination of the Hubble Constant and Stronger Evidence for Physics beyond ΛCDM. The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 876, Issue 1, article id. 85, 13 pp.

Tuesday 6 February 2024

The 18th Birthday of Quantised Inertia

Recently, last Thursday, it was the 18th Birthday of Quantised Inertia. Back then, in 2006 I was a humble ocean and wave modeller at the UK Met Office in Exeter, with a hobby of thinking about physics in the evenings. It was on the 1st February, 2006 that I first realised that Newton’s First Law was slightly wrong (ie: QI) and that this was a big step

I gave my first talk on QI (then I called it MiHsC) later that year at the Alternative Gravities Conference at the Royal Observatory in Edinburgh where I had the last talk, and I nearly did not get to speak as they all wanted to go to the pub! In 2007 I published the first paper on QI. One of my colleagues at the Met Office told me I shouldn’t have such grandiose dreams, weathermen should stay below Karman Line. I submitted anyway and my first paper on QI was accepted by MNRAS (a prestigious astronomical journal). The reviewer was delightfully amused that I’d used the term ‘forecast’ instead of ‘predict’ and did not quite believe QI, he said, but he also said it was better than the alternatives he'd seen already published, so why not publish?

By 2008, I’d published enough papers to leave the Met Office and get into academia at Plymouth University, lecturing in geomatics (the maths of positioning in space) which was a subject vague enough to fit. I enjoyed the teaching, and my courses on GPS Positioning stimulated me to develop a better way to formulate QI, using uncertainty in position and information. I finally managed to show that QI predicts galaxy rotation without dark matter which is a massive result, and very clear in that even the onset of the anomaly is predicted well, and I was invited by World Scientific to publish a monograph.

In some papers I mentioned producing thrust from QI, and a few years later DARPA got in touch (2016), said they'd been "following my work for some time", and invited me to apply for funds. I applied and won $1.3M to test for what I’d predicted: thrust from highly accelerated objects in cavities. We first tried photon cavities. I used labs in Germany and Spain, which I was soon unable to visit due to covid, but the photons were too light (pun intended) to work. Fortunately along came engineers Becker and Bhatt who'd read my papers and they suggested electron cavities instead (capacitors). That seemed to work in their lab and IVO Ltd (Richard Mansell) confirmed and improved on it. I managed to get DARPA funds to Plymouth to replicate it with engineer Richard Arundal (a paper is in review) and now IVO have launched a test into space via SpaceX and Rogue Space Systems! Another recent development is that Lynch et al. (2021) have finally confirmed Unruh radiation using CERN data. Morgan Lynch emailed me excitedly to tell me. This is good for QI, which has been assuming its existence for 18 years!

Now I am temporarily between jobs, busy with new QI books (one sci-fi and one text book) and papers, but given the crazy acceleration of the past few years, there is some relief in pausing to decide how best to progress. QI (my hobby) is so big now: a radical change to physics, thrust, clean energy, interstellar travel... It needs development for the sake of getting humanity to the next level, yes, but to avoid burn out I do need to get back to the feeling that this is a deep scientific exploration & not just the race of all time.

Keep Calm and Quantise Inertia!