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Liquid Space
New Scientist ^ | 03 November 2001 | Paul Davies

Posted on 10/19/2002 11:40:54 AM PDT by pistola

Edited on 03/24/2008 8:25:19 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

IS SPACE just space? Or is it filled with some sort of mysterious, intangible substance? The ancient Greeks believed so, and so did scientists in the 19th century. Yet by the early part of the 20th century, the idea had been discredited and seemed to have gone for good.


(Excerpt) Read more at newscientist.com ...


TOPICS: Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: space
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1 posted on 10/19/2002 11:40:54 AM PDT by pistola
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To: pistola
Bump
To read later
2 posted on 10/19/2002 11:47:50 AM PDT by Fiddlstix
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To: pistola
now we gotta worry about Species 8472.
3 posted on 10/19/2002 11:48:35 AM PDT by widgysoft
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To: pistola
later bump
4 posted on 10/19/2002 11:49:20 AM PDT by billbears
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To: billbears
bump
5 posted on 10/19/2002 11:51:07 AM PDT by Puddleglum
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To: pistola; *Space
OFFICIAL BUMP(TOPIC)LIST
6 posted on 10/19/2002 11:55:44 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach
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To: pistola
... In effect, the stretching of space jiggles up some of the virtual particles and turns them into real particles ...
Yes. I've seen this happen in my seltzer water.

Akasha. Astral light. Ether. Nearly every esoteric tradition believes in some sort of proto-matter or not-quite-matter that suffuses the whole universe, every once in a while plunging itself into the grosser densities--that is to say, our world. In the Egyptian book of the dead the ether or the astral light has a distinctly dual character, with the Gods dwelling above in the rarified ethers; empty shells and ghost-forms and lost souls and abortions-of-darkness descending of their own weight to the grosser levels, i.e. our level, to taunt and torment us etc.

At last, physics is catching up with our Chaldean and Egyptian and Indus river valley forebears.
7 posted on 10/19/2002 11:58:21 AM PDT by Asclepius
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To: pistola
It's true. The more we know, the more we know we don't know.
8 posted on 10/19/2002 12:10:08 PM PDT by Freedom_Is_Not_Free
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To: pistola
So in theory, an atom dropped down the exact centre of a vertical metal pipe should reach a terminal velocity as it ploughs through the viscous quantum vacuum, just like a ball bearing dropped into oil.

Perhaps this is where the constant c (the speed of light) arises. I don't have the spare time to do the ciphering (as Jethro Bodine would say) at the moment... :-)

9 posted on 10/19/2002 12:13:17 PM PDT by glorgau
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To: Asclepius
Interesting post. What is the Kaballist view? Do you know?
10 posted on 10/19/2002 12:17:38 PM PDT by Kevin Curry
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To: pistola
REALLY interesting post.
Thanks, Buck.
11 posted on 10/19/2002 12:22:45 PM PDT by elbucko
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To: pistola
Perhaps another case of a scientific fact becoming known to be true long after stated by a religious leader.

One of those was by Muhammad who referred to the sun being the center of the solar system, even though Muslims denounced this until it was scientifically proven about a thousand years later.

The existence of ether in "space" was stated by Abdul Baha (of the Bahai's) about 100 years ago.

If folks used religion to open their eyes instead of close them, life on earth would be a whole lot sweeter.

12 posted on 10/19/2002 12:25:12 PM PDT by kulot
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To: glorgau
Perhaps this is where the constant c (the speed of light) arises.

Perhaps. It is certainly provocative toward this kind of (theoretical) conclusion.

13 posted on 10/19/2002 12:27:09 PM PDT by elbucko
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To: pistola
My calculations show that there is mistake here.

Time machines and endless energy

COULD we tap the quantum ether as a power source? The first consideration is how much energy it contains. Calculating it using quantum field theory, you get an enormous energy density-about 10110 joules per cubic centimetre ...

The figure should be 10E110 Joules, or 10^110.

14 posted on 10/19/2002 12:36:12 PM PDT by ConvictHitlery
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To: kulot
If folks used religion to open their eyes instead of close them,...

Why don't don't you go preach in the "RELIGION" section. This article is discussing theoretical physics and philosophical possibilities. Not scripture.

BTW, I don't see where Mohammed made life "a whole lot sweeter"!

15 posted on 10/19/2002 12:40:06 PM PDT by elbucko
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To: Kevin Curry
... Interesting post. What is the Kaballist view? Do you know? ...
Caballists are into the notion of the astral light too, corresponding to kether on the tree of life (right above and touching the crown of your head, activated by vibrating or intoning the supreme God-name Yod-Hey-Vau-Hey). A simple, practical means of connecting with the astral is the so-called "middle pillar exercise" of both the Caballists and Golden Dawn traditions (you can find many variations of same on the Web). Israel Regardie writes a lot about the middle pillar etc.
16 posted on 10/19/2002 1:08:12 PM PDT by Asclepius
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To: pistola
Some of the ideas that fell from favour are creeping back into modern thought, giving rise to the notion of a quantum ether.

Disingenuous. The quantum field is nothing like the "luminiferous ether". There's no implication of a preferred inertial reference frame, no notion of absolute velocity.

It's not clear, at least in this article, how Davies' ideas are any different from those of Feynman and Dirac. Leave it to The New Scientist to deliver the hype.

17 posted on 10/19/2002 1:11:51 PM PDT by Physicist
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To: elbucko
Just providing my point of view. The truth can be derived from both religion and science; further, religion can provide some advanced scientific insight. Regarding Muhammad making life sweeter, Arabia just before Muhammad was one of the lowest places on earth. The civilication progressed rapidly thereafter. It's all about historical context.

Good day.
Preaching off.

A scientist.


18 posted on 10/19/2002 2:19:57 PM PDT by kulot
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To: kulot
You might enjoy reading "The Dancing Wu Li Masters".

The joy and awe of religious discovery are akin to those of physics.

19 posted on 10/19/2002 2:35:02 PM PDT by lds23
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To: pistola
Just saw an interesting movie called "Donnie Darko".

Among other things, there's a theme around the multiple pathways through space/time and how they connect through wormholes.

Maybe not directly apropos to your post, but thought the folks on this thread might find it an interesting flick.

20 posted on 10/19/2002 2:47:56 PM PDT by lds23
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To: Asclepius
Would not the Aether be LVX?
21 posted on 10/19/2002 2:55:36 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: FormerLurker
... Would not the Aether be LVX? ...
LVX, as in, the sign of the mourning of Isis, the sign of Typhon and Apophis etc., etc., LVX, let the Divine light descend and all that?
22 posted on 10/19/2002 3:07:59 PM PDT by Asclepius
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To: Asclepius
Correct. From what I understand, Aether=Akasha="the Fifth Element"="Spirit" - derived from a word meaning "to shine" in ancient Sanskrit

LVX = The Latin word for Light, implying Light in Extension in esoteric teachings.

23 posted on 10/19/2002 3:18:07 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: FormerLurker
LVX = The Latin word for Light, implying Light in Extension in esoteric teachings.
'sounds right to me, comrade.
24 posted on 10/19/2002 3:25:23 PM PDT by Asclepius
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To: pistola
So the plenum cannot exert a frictional drag

Must consist of atoms of Teflonium. :^))

25 posted on 10/19/2002 3:31:55 PM PDT by scouse
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To: VadeRetro; RadioAstronomer; PatrickHenry; longshadow; jennyp; Gumlegs; Gordian Blade
Reactionary New Scientist hype bump.

(Is it just me, or is FR getting fuzzy, squishy and new-agey?)

26 posted on 10/19/2002 4:06:06 PM PDT by Physicist
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To: pistola
One of my favorite things to watch is a minivan driving around with a bunch of balloons inside. The van accelerates and the balloons swing forward.

Putting my knowledge of buoyancy and all aside it still looks like a cool "anti-pendulum".

27 posted on 10/19/2002 4:07:25 PM PDT by avg_freeper
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To: pistola
Muttly want Quantum Ether.

Muttly have empty jar ready.
28 posted on 10/19/2002 4:18:25 PM PDT by PoorMuttly
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To: elbucko
Why don't don't you go preach in the "RELIGION" section. This article is discussing theoretical physics and philosophical possibilities. Not scripture.

LOL!

Hard for me to tell.

29 posted on 10/19/2002 4:22:52 PM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: Asclepius
I find this stuff very interesting. But alas, my flashlight will still only run for x hours on 4 "D" cells. If these guys want to be heros, they should build a quantum-vacuum-matter-energy converter so my maglight would run for ever!
30 posted on 10/19/2002 4:25:48 PM PDT by M. T. Cicero II
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To: pistola
IS SPACE just space? Or is it filled with some sort of mysterious, intangible substance? The ancient Greeks believed so, and so did scientists in the 19th century. Yet by the early part of the 20th century, the idea had been discredited and seemed to have gone for good.

Can't read past this. Ever heard of luminiferous ether? When, according to Einstein, gravity bends space, what is it bending? Nothing? How do you bend nothing?

Very annoying. I know some have said there is no ether, but its existence is assumed in most electromagnetic theory, relativity, etc..., and it has never, ever been "discredited."

31 posted on 10/19/2002 4:30:32 PM PDT by Yeti
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To: Physicist
Side question:

"Leonard Parker discovered in the late 1960s that an expanding or contracting Universe would create particles out of a pure vacuum. In effect, the stretching of space jiggles up some of the virtual particles and turns them into real particles.

Would this be the same mechanism that causes the creation of matter during Inflation, or is this referring to a different mechanism? If I understand it correctly, the Inflationary matter creation mechanism requires the presence of a gravitational field in the "stretched" space, but there is no mention of any type of field in the above quote.

32 posted on 10/19/2002 4:35:36 PM PDT by longshadow
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To: Physicist
Like the ether of old, the quantum vacuum exerts no frictional drag on a particle with constant velocity. But it's a different story with acceleration. The quantum vacuum does affect accelerating particles. For example, an electron circling an atom is jostled by virtual photons from the vacuum, leading to a slight but measurable shift in its energy.

Is it me, or sloppy writing? An orbiting atom isn't accelerating, is it? He's got to be thinking of rotation.

33 posted on 10/19/2002 4:38:22 PM PDT by PatrickHenry
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To: Physicist
Reactionary New Scientist hype bump.

Do you think Einstein to be "New Agey"?

Aether and the Theory of Relativity - Albert Einstein (1920)

34 posted on 10/19/2002 4:58:21 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: PatrickHenry
An orbiting atom isn't accelerating, is it?

I believe the author was talking about an electron from an atom that is accelerating through this "quantum vacuum"..

35 posted on 10/19/2002 5:00:59 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: self
bump
36 posted on 10/19/2002 5:04:20 PM PDT by GallopingGhost
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To: longshadow; Physicist; PatrickHenry
An interesting link;

A Rotating Wave Theory of the Electron as a Basic Form of Matter

37 posted on 10/19/2002 5:04:54 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: FormerLurker
Do you think Einstein to be "New Agey"?

No, but then I haven't heard Einstein discussing "astral light" and "dancing Wu-Li masters" without blushing. (My "new age" comment referred to the posters on the thread, rather than the article.)

In any case, Einstein never accepted quantum mechanics, let alone quantum field theory, so his beliefs on the structure of the vacuum must be regarded as outmoded.

38 posted on 10/19/2002 5:10:04 PM PDT by Physicist
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To: PatrickHenry
An orbiting atom isn't accelerating, is it?

Think centrifugal/centripedal force.

Since the velocity (which is a vector quantity that describes BOTH direction was well as magnitude of speed) is constantly changing for anything that is in "orbit" (meaning that it's direction is constantly changing, even if the speed remains constant), if follows that some force MUST be acting on it to provide acceleration to change the direction of travel, as per Newton's Law.

39 posted on 10/19/2002 5:16:22 PM PDT by longshadow
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To: longshadow
I suppose you could say since its velocity is changing it has acceleration..
40 posted on 10/19/2002 5:25:41 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: pistola
It's a space-time matter-energy universe. Time is just the duration of movement and space doesn't exist. It's all matter and energy (plus thought and consciousness).
41 posted on 10/19/2002 5:34:59 PM PDT by Consort
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To: longshadow
Gotcha. Thanks. I was temporarily confused because an orbiting object, like the moon, is in free fall. But of course, a falling object is always in free fall, and it undergoes acceleration, so the one doesn't preclude the other. I'm often confused, it seems.
42 posted on 10/19/2002 5:38:20 PM PDT by PatrickHenry
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To: Physicist
No, but then I haven't heard Einstein discussing "astral light" and "dancing Wu-Li masters" without blushing.

I don't think anybody mentioned "dancing Wu-Li masters". What the other poster had mentioned was that ancient civilizations acknowledged the existance of an Aether. The Akasha mentioned IS another name for Aether, and the word Akasha is derived from ancient Sanskrit.

In any case, Einstein never accepted quantum mechanics, let alone quantum field theory, so his beliefs on the structure of the vacuum must be regarded as outmoded.

Although Einstein may never have fully accepted quantum mechanics, quantum theory is now heading back towards the concept of an Aether.

As Einstein pointed out, there can be no General Relativity without the Aether...

Recapitulating, we may say that according to the general theory of relativity space is endowed with physical qualities; in this sense, therefore, there exists an ether. According to the general theory of relativity space without ether is unthinkable; for in such space there not only would be no propagation of light, but also no possibility of existence for standards of space and time (measuring-rods and clocks), nor therefore any space-time intervals in the physical sense.

Albert Einstein - 1920

43 posted on 10/19/2002 5:48:35 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: pistola
Michael Faraday

The one who upset physicists of his day and sparked Maxwell to devise his vector model of Electromagnetic phenomena. A simple experiment, a demonstration in the front of the lecture hall, and the revolution was off and running.

Michelson and Morley, sponsored by A. Graham Bell similarly upset the physics of their day. A simple demonstration, not small and inexpensive that time, though, and not in a lecture hall.

Could happen again.

44 posted on 10/19/2002 5:49:26 PM PDT by RightWhale
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To: Yeti
Very annoying. I know some have said there is no ether, but its existence is assumed in most electromagnetic theory, relativity, etc..., and it has never, ever been "discredited."

SPACE, by very definition, is SOMETHING. It cannot be just NOTHING.

45 posted on 10/19/2002 6:29:50 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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To: FormerLurker
Behold the void, realize it as thine own intellect, blissful
and shining.
Tibetian Book of the Dead.
46 posted on 10/19/2002 6:36:15 PM PDT by tet68
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Comment #47 Removed by Moderator

To: PatrickHenry
I'm often confused, it seems.

The thing to remember is that, as per Newton, things in motion tend to stay in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. In particular, any CHANGE in EITHER speed or direction requires a force acting upon the object, as

dv(t)/dt = a(t)

and

f = ma

hence

f = mdv(t)/dt

Thus, for the velocity to change (either speed or direction), a force must act upon the object, producing an acceleration of the object. The acceleration is, by definition, the change in velocity with respect to time.

If the earth's gravitational attraction ("force") were to cease to act on the moon, the moon would go sailing off in a straight line; it would not continue to "orbit" the earth. Likewise the electrostatic attraction between an electron and the nucleus of the atom around which it wanders.

Absent a force, producing an acceleration that changes the direction the object travels, objects would only travel in straight lines.

(geek alert: this explanation is based on the simplified Newtonian view; in the GR version, the "force" of gravity is replaced by a curvature of space-time, but the results are the same.)

48 posted on 10/19/2002 6:49:03 PM PDT by longshadow
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To: longshadow
If the earth's gravitational attraction ("force") were to cease to act on the moon, the moon would go sailing off in a straight line; it would not continue to "orbit" the earth.

Historical footnote: In Galileo's time (before Newton), one of the arguments used to "prove" that the earth was the center of the universe was the motion of the moon. If the earth moved, they thought, the moon would be left behind. For this reason, the discovery that Jupiter had orbiting moons was particularly devastating (they had no doubts that Jupiter moved).

49 posted on 10/19/2002 6:55:44 PM PDT by PatrickHenry
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To: longshadow
You're correct, but simply a = dv/dt would have explained it...

Any change in velocity equates to acceleration.

50 posted on 10/19/2002 7:04:07 PM PDT by FormerLurker
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