Posts Tagged ‘Graviton’

Black Hole Paradox

September 1, 2015

Photons are the carriers of the electromagnetic field. Each single photon is endowed with a given energy, hf, where f is the frequency of said photon. In some circumstances, the energy a photon possesses is less than the one it needs to get out of a gravitational well. So it cannot get out: a black hole forms.

Essentially, this comes from the fact a photon’s energy is finite, whereas the energy of a gravitational field can grow infinitely… Or so I, and others, used to think, until I became skeptical.

No Doubt There Are Black Holes. Question: How Come?

No Doubt There Are Black Holes. Question: How Come?

Simulated view of a black hole in front of the Large Magellanic Cloud, one of many small galaxies satellite to the giant Milky Way. This Black Hole is assumed to be alone, without accretion disk (accretion would make the Black Hole very luminous!). The ratio between the black hole Schwarzschild radius and the observer distance to it is 1:9. Of note is the gravitational lensing effect known as an Einstein ring, which produces a set of two fairly bright and large but highly distorted images of the Cloud as compared to its actual angular size.

The two arcs of circle top and bottom are actually the Large Magellanic Cloud, appearing in two places, as light goes above and below the Black Hole. The Milky Way appears above, strongly distorted by gravitational lensing. [2006 image by French physicist Alain R.]

Gravitons are the (alleged) carriers of the gravitational field. Each of them has some energy. At some point the energy gravitons individually posses ought to be less than the potential energy needed to get out of a gravitational well. (The reasoning is the same as for photons.)

But then what?

In the case of photons, what is blocked is light the electromagnetic field: light, in another word.

What is blocked when gravitons get blocked? The gravitational field itself! Thus a black hole would not just then show up as a black, “frozen star”. A Black Hole should outright violate (apparent) matter conservation. It should disconnect gravitationally.

Following this simple logic, at some point a mass collapsing gravitationally should disappear, not just visually, but gravitationally.

Yet, astronomical observations reveal hyper massive black holes at the center of galaxies. This tends to indicate that physics may happen inside a black hole that we can neither observe, nor predict.

I presented these simple ideas a very long time ago in Stanford, a private university in California, personally or in seminars, to some of the household names in the field. The reaction of my iconoclasm was close to indignant anger. It’s easy to see why. We human beings live lives which are endowed with sense only by forgetting that we make little sense individually, absent others.

A way to make sense is by giving love and care. Another, mostly the obverse, by the will to power. A scientific, or, more generally, an intellectual career (philosopher, poet, writer, etc.)marries both love and power. Science, in particular, unites a potent hierarchy akin to priesthood, with the pretense of great magic vis-à-vis the public and being a gift to humanity. Or so it is perceived by its participants. Break the spell, and scientists feel as insects instead of semi-gods, and the absurdity of their position, that of thieves in full sight, exposed to the pillory, is too much to bear.

Yet, a quick glance at the history of science shows that great errors and lack of understanding, spectacularly erroneous theories could have been detected easily, with simple observations.

I am not saying that science is always simple. Far from it. For example, the heliocentric theory could be only demonstrated to be sure with 100% certainty, only after a careful study of the phases of Venus, through increasingly powerful telescopes, during the middle of the seventeenth century. Before that, geocentrism failed the smell test (it was too contrived, and the sun was so much bigger). True. The smell test is philosophical in nature. Before that, one could only say that it was un-scientific to rule out the most likely theory (heliocentrism), just because one could not prove it, and because it enraged so many people in high places.

It cannot be any different today: the very idea of the priesthood, scientific or not, is making some humans into quasi-gods. Out of this divine hierarchy comes the certainty that metaphysics has been solved.

Thus, when I suggested that, on the face of it, ultimately, Black Holes ought to disconnect gravitationally with the rest of the universe, I undermined the principle that the greatest scientists (I will not write their names as not to enrage them further), covered as they are with great medals, after all, do not understand much more about gravitation, than we did, say, three centuries ago.

I caused these people existential pain: no, you are not the greatest of the great, having achieved greater understanding than anyone did before you, colossally dominating history and humanity, and deservedly so. What you call greatest of the greatness, seems, after all, to be just errors of the smugly ignorant.

Einstein was not that way. He said:

All these fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me no nearer to the answer to the question, ‘What are light quanta?’ Nowadays every Tom, Dick and Harry thinks he knows it, but he is mistaken. (Albert Einstein, 1954)

Most importantly, Albert Einstein also suspected that Matter could not be described by field theory:

I consider it quite possible that physics cannot be based on the field concept, i.e., on continuous structures. In that case, nothing remains of my entire castle in the air, gravitation theory included, [and of] the rest of modern physics. (Albert Einstein, 1954)

In my theory, elementary particles are not only non-local (Einstein’s Error was to suppose that they were), but they break (giving rise to Dark Matter). But I will not go as far as to say that “nothing remains”. Far from it, my dear Uncle Albert. Quantum Field Theory remains, as an approximation. Just as the epicycle theory remains, as a sort of Fourier Analysis of a periodic motion.

Some physicists will laugh at the simplicity of the preceding reasoning, and just exasperatedly utter: “that’s ridiculous” as some of the most prestigious specialists of the field did to me, decades ago. Maybe it is. Just tell me why. I am humbly waiting.

Patrice Ayme’  

Photon, Graviton, Contradiction

May 8, 2013

 Abstract: No need to dig very deep to find glaring contradictions in today’s physics. A discreet warning to those who act as if everything important is already understood.  I exhibit a few elementary reasonings where basic physics ominously implodes like an overstuffed star. Among other implosions, the “Planck Length” is derived, not from dimensional analysis, but through an outrageously simple analysis.



 May 8, 1945, the 68th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany. A big deal in France. Starting in 1934, the French republic armed itself to the teeth to crush fascism. It took a while, but it worked. At this point, fascism is only history in Europe (and don’t forget the collapse of the USSR).

 Keeping May 8 as a mandatory vacation day helps to remind the young generations that for the Republic to fight racial fascism cost, over 31 years, more than four million dead, in the French empire alone. (More than 100 million, 5% of the world’s population, died, all together. More if one counts the (“Spanish“) flu epidemics that hitched a hike on the military situation)

 Fascism was an erroneous system of thoughts and emotions. All the more striking as it struck mostly the country with the most intellectual hubris, namely the “German Reich“. The basic mental deviations inciting such errors are best studied in pure science, or aeronautics; as the  situations are clearer.

 When looking at history on the largest scale, what counts are optimal results. If one gets optimally to a disastrous result, it’s still disastrous. The Greeks had tremendous physics. At least, they built excellent ships. Roman cements were astounding; they made siphons on such a scale, aqueducts could cross valleys this way.  

 Yet, both Greek optics and Greek were full of correct, intricate considerations. Yet, both were not just false, but inside out, the exact opposite of the truth in the most fundamental message.

 How did it happen? The Greeks had overlooked the obvious. It should have been obvious that the Sun, being so much more enormous than the Earth, did not turn around it: that contradicted intuitive notion about centrifugal forces (say when launching a stone from a sling), and the fact the much smaller moon rotated around the Earth.

 In optics, simplistic experiments would have shown light came from the observed objects, not conversely.

 The Greeks had overlooked the obvious in physics. I will talk about something that maybe similar. Now. Keeping in mind that the Greeks overlooked the obvious so much that their democracy lost three wars to plutocracy in 250 years. Thereafter democracy, or even a republic was not to be seen in Greece again for nearly 2150 years. I claim that’s related. The lack of necessary criticism. It may show up in politics, but it trains best in physics.



 Let’s assume light had a mass, m. (OK, modern physics assumes that light has no mass… otherwise modern physics would not be coherent. But that does not prove that light has, indeed, no mass!)

 If the mass of light were small enough, it would not be experimental detectable.

 Now let’s equate the energy of said mass to 1/2 mvv, the traditional kinetic energy. (Purists who know the Special Theory of Relativity will scream, as this is only the leading term in E = mcc.)

If the star is massive enough, it will bring light to a standstill, by pulling on it hard enough (forget about the geodesics of General relativity!)

 Now the potential gravitational energy of a mass m located at radius R in the gravitational field of a star of mass M is: GmM/R .

 Equating the kinetic energy with the gravitational potential energy:

 1/2 mvv = GmM/R. Putting v=c, the speed of light, eliminating the m’s, we get:

 R = 2 GM/cc

 This is the so-called Schwarschild Radius. When a star of mass is smaller than R, light can’t get out. That reasoning was made by the super mathematician and physicist Pierre Simon de Laplace in the Eighteenth Century. That is, during the Enlightenment. Laplace concluded that “les objets les plus massifs de l’univers ne peuvent etre vus (the most massive objects in the universe may not be seen). [To be entirely fair, an obscure Brit seems to have had the same idea too, at the time.]



 Laplace above made the hypothesis of what some physicists in 1929 came to call the “photon”, the particle of light. Meanwhile De Broglie rolled out his hypothesis that to each body a wave is associated. Although that does not prove the converse, namely that, to each wave a particle is associated, physicists take this for granted. 

 That there are gravitational waves, there is no doubt. Why? Because if one wiggles around a source of gravitation (say, a star), the direction of the incoming pull will vary, so a distant observer will be tugged back and forth. As the distance from the source augments, this will organize itself in nice waves.

 Backtracking conceptually, one gets particles of gravitation similar to particles of light, the gravitons. 

 Why not to play the game above?

 I made this smart remark one day to a Field Medalist specialist of General Relativity. He literally got enraged, fuming, repeating the offending sentence to himself, but unable to find a smart repartee. Indeed. There is none.

 If one plays the game above, the game Laplace first played, no graviton will be able to exit a sufficiently massive star, so the star, not only will not be seen, but not be felt. No wonder my friend got enraged.

 Could that really happen? Why not? Where would the energy go? if one insisted to keep the conservation of energy law? Well, what about coming out somewhere else as Dark Energy? 

 (Remember, we do not know, at all, about the dimensional structure of the universe; so energy could leak, through another dimension; a similar argument is central to some ultra modern theories of gravitation.)



 Another avenue of meditation is to observe that the Schwarschild Radius also exist for a graviton of mass m. It’s 2Gm/cc.

 The graviton’s own mass pulls the graviton itself towards itself. At high enough energy, the graviton becomes a contradiction onto itself.

 2G (hv/cc)/cc = 2G hv/cccc.  … Lv =c, v = c/L

Thus: L = square root (2G h/ccc)

 This “L” is the Planck Length. If the graviton’s matter wave  is confined within “L”, nothing will come out…

 It goes without saying that all of this ought to be taken with a grain of salt. First of all, the real structure of elementary particles is completely unknown. 

 String theory and M theory are attempts to guess said structure. However they assumed topological properties (such as compacity, locality, separability) that basic Quantum Theory violates enthusiastically. So they miss the essence conceptually, right from the start.

 Nevertheless, the reasonings above form the core of Quantum Gravity, the first order approximation. If that has no bearing on reality, neither will the rest.

 One of the main interests of the advancement of science is that it forces us to advance and refine what we mean by reason. In a world where the survival of the many will be increasingly in question, and depends essentially upon ever mightier reason, this is of the essence.


Patrice Ayme