Re: Particle smasher may reveal extra dimensions (Feb. 1): The article on the Particle Smasher brought to mind some observations made by Dr. Edward Teller more than thirty years ago. Your article deals with the creation of new and exotic particles and introduces the subject of: “hidden unities among nature’s forces”, while also mentioning the mythical: Graviton. What becomes apparent is that after more than a quarter of a century, there has been little or no progress towards the understanding of the ‘nature’ of matter, nor its forces while the creation of mathematical castles in space continues.
Dr. Edward Teller made the following comments in regards to experimentations with sub-atomic particles, where the very fact of observation changes the particles. “What happened,” Dr. Teller explained, “was that indeed we started to change the things we were looking at. In the course of using these high-energy packages we managed to produce a profusion of new entities, of new particles... In other words, we open the world, but it is practically not interacting with the world in which we live... We create our own particles. Probably we will never understand nuclear forces until we have understood this new creation... ”
“This is the kind of situation I described when I said that high-energy physics is at a dead end. I believe that in the end, in the real end, the contradictions will be somehow clarified, and as a by product nuclear forces will be explained... But if you would ask whether it is more likely that we shall have the answer ten years from now, or one thousand years from now, I will tell you I will bet for the one thousand years”. It would appear that Dr. Teller may well have had the situation reversed where he suggest that first the new creation must be understood, which will then clarify Nuclear Forces.” Probably we will never understand nuclear forces until we have understood this new creation”. In his next comment, the situation is transposed once again: “the contradictions will be somehow clarified, and as a by-product nuclear forces will be explained”.
Would it not be more logical that the “new creation” and “contradictions” seem mysterious because of a lack of understanding of nuclear forces, instead of visa versa?
The point seems to be that it is the lack of understanding of the forces of nature, or nuclear forces, which makes the creation of new particles appear to be confusing. This is of course also the circumstance as communicated in your article, where if nuclear forces were understood there would likely not be a mystery. Perhaps it would be prudent to take an other very brief look at the origin of the concept of the forces to discover if something could have been misinterpreted to account for the continuing problems which Dr. Teller believed would not be resolved for a thousand years. At the beginning of it all is the explanation of the gravitational force. It is an insignificant force on the nuclear level, whose origin is as yet undefined. Still, it is accepted that the force is an inherent quality of all matter and that the measure of its strength is directly linked to the mass of bodies. So claims Newton in the Universal Law of Gravitation while the General Theory of Relativity concurs. What appears to be virtually unknown is that Newton had ‘second thoughts’ regarding the concept that the gravitational phenomenon is an essential property of bodies. Thirty years after the inception of the Universal Law, he writes in the: Advertisement to Second Edition of Optics, Book One: “And to shew that I do not take gravity for an essential property of bodies, I have added one question regarding its cause, choosing to propose it by way of a question, because I am not yet satisfied about it for want of experiments”
Due to the implication of these revelations, a great deal ought to be discussed in regards to this; however, this is clearly not the time, so only a few observations will be offered: Newton is not satisfied because of a lack of experiments. Certainly many experiments had been conducted with gravity in his days and long before that, which makes his apparent reevaluation all the more puzzling. His comments regarding gravity not being an essential property of bodies and the question regarding its cause must be taken seriously. What made Newton change his mind... What if: What if Newton considered the possibility that gravity is in fact not an essential property of bodies but is instead generated in some manner within the interior of large bodies of matter, such as planets or stars. What if this primary gravitational force is then inducted into all matter within its range of influence as the secondary gravitational force. If that is true, the source of gravity would then not be found within bodies on the surface of the earth, in spite of its conspicuous presence, very much like magnetic induction within the influence of a magnetic field. The difference between gravitational and magnetic induction is that control experiments can be conducted with magnetic induction, while it would be impossible to conduct those control experiments on the surface of the earth, or in orbit close to the earth.
The genius of Newton discovered the possibility of an alternative to universal gravitation and he was incredibly brave for showing us a path towards a new understanding of matter and its forces. The consequences of Newton’s alternative explanation of gravity are beyond the imagination. Where universal gravitation was arrived at by common consent as well as misinterpreted experimental evidence, variable, generated, inducted gravitational forces can be, and have been, verified. All of this can lead to a clear understanding the ‘nature’ and forces of matter, which can usher us from the darkness towards the renaissance of Natural Philosophy.