An approach towards solving actual problems in Physics
Do electrons always repel?
In this article you will see ideas such as; “sum of factors”, a new approach towards everything, approach from the freshness of your mind, experience the brazen to reach at meaning, inclusive of all possibilities in seeking a solution, looking for a window of innovation, relative diversion from truth in an average world which are still fundamentally valid … and many more. This article is not completely a Physics article ..
Are the electrons always running away from the other electrons?
This write-up was motivated by my earlier article “What are photons?”. I think that was a very well written article. This one is also well written, but I can not think much fundamental than this. Perhaps I haven’t thought of electrons more. You see the photon is very special, so, much of the fundamental ideas are somewhat proximal to my thinking system. But for an electron I have only performed experiments, well as the joke goes in the experimental community, you just added the 4-vectors and then gave them a Lorentz boost, try saying this in a middle eastern accent, fun eh?
I was just thinking about this the other after noon and it strikes me that if we pose such a question, it promises us some very interesting ideas about what we know about fundamental mechanisms and how we should formulate an approach to study something in particular. A notion I always ascribe to; “the philosophy of quantum mechanics, what we actually ever learned from it”.
I also ascribe this to the Feynman’s way of looking freshly at things “If a volume of texts have been written about something as un-understood as what is being discussed, you better start afresh, you do not have to dwell on something that hasn’t been understood the way others have approached it”. Feynman was liable to be as misunderstood as I have been often, perhaps he was making provocative statements and perhaps I do so.
The traditional approach of some type of Physicists is to open up a text and just look for some sort of answers and from there such a tradition has germinated that we look towards voluminous texts despite of how un-understood the regime is. I have tried the opposite and it had worked in all cases, that way I have come up with something more exciting, interesting and practical than what was being proposed prior to such an approach.
The other thing I want to say is regarding what our approach should be, we should rather sit with a poorly understood phenomena and keep working laboriously towards what we can, keep on figuring out and we can cumulatively base our understanding by stacking one with the other till we see light at the end of the tunnel. That is quite contrary to what I described in my article “reductionism, anti-reductionism and reconstruction-ism“, regarding “adding truth with truth to form a ladder”. But if you think about what I am really saying here, it is “we take all approaches that occurs to us from the method and training we have, to the silly and crazy inspirations we have in reach”.
When I said that, I have in mind how simple examples of physical observations are to be studied freshly and for the first time. That is a very effective and powerful way to make progress on modern physics. It takes a classical problem and adds our intuition and ability to make sense to it, added by the tools at our disposal we make certain path breaking progress. It is not a popular method in the community of peers who often are engrossed at various different directions of understanding their process of interest. But I am talking of a big picture approach and one which cuts traditions into ribbons that you can just throw. Approach from the freshness of your mind.
Once a stride has been made, perhaps one more can be made on it, coming from another group. Science has always been sporadic, although we taste it’s success today as a very “taken for granted milieu” they came in sporadic proportions and they came to be useful, often in the way we threw off popular “standard models”. An ether was a “standard model” before it’s efficacy were rested for the final time, by MM experiment. (I did not shorten that so you read it as my initials, I just hate long names), Michelson Morley experiment, a precursor to Special Theory of Relativity, if ether were there it was going to make measurements absolute, in hindsight, MM was a great American experimentalist, your home-work is to find out if he was also a contemporary of Mark Twain, aha, that name is not awfully long !!
So in a traditional approach an electron is a negative charge and it is repelled by another. But in a scene of nature you do not see electrons being present in their isolation waiting for another electron to come and talk “buzz off, I do not need you, I need something new in my life”. In the average world everything is occurring together and for a moment you will think that the electron is being attracted by a negative charge (replace that will by a hypothetical might). What if there was something positive which missed our attention? What if there was a big negative charge that was present to the left of the electron pushing it to right where another negative charge is a “blessing in disguise”. You can say well the other negative charge (the other electron) is also there which will move to right and so on.
In the above context, is the “sum of factors” from an empirical observation, an equal of all the sum? Nobody has ever studied from a perspective whether the tiny repulsion in the electrons towards each other were also present when the big charges were playing big brother. But we believe that they are still present. (It must be so). Our theories are robust, a tiny fluctuation somewhere is going to create a mad rush somewhere else. But did we not say that they canceled each other in the bigger scheme of things? But if we were to test them for clarity? Perhaps no’one has ever tested. Another Feynman will work on this, when he will come is just a matter of shear spontaneity of nature, in the bigger picture of things. — And no I am not Feynman, I am an experimentalist and I can not possibly work on every tiny theoretical problems that Feynman worked out, perhaps I will make a splash of things by invoking my experimental factoids, but that’s all.
For analogy so much so.
But in a practical situation you can start playing with ideas if you can afford and come up with something interesting. Much of serious science actually depends on the ability to keep your interest to generate interest. Those who think they are serious are actually not doing it. If it is science it has got to be science. Play it. In the practical world Feynman played many such games and came up with many ideas, such as how the electron is playing with the photon. He discovered a new paradigm. It is only directed towards a pleasure and you will get it if you are seeking. Pleasure is gotten, if seeking pleasure is pushen. — Yesterday I remarked to some one that I have mastered Brukania, a special language, this is just one example, if it is understood, you can use it, you just need some reputation for it.
Play with interesting ideas to learn more how things really work at the small scale. I have one article where I described why particle reactions can be studied without directly invoking the uncertainty principle or Schrodinger’s equation, they are implicit, what is explicit is the branching rates and the kinematics and the topographic rules.
“… … .. One of the situations where Feynman’s ideas to take all possibilities and discard the inconsistent ones, are the Particle Physics processes … … … If we were to use up, famous equations, we may not even see a signal nevertheless these may be used up to invalidate something or as a constraint to reduce the background processes, the ones which hides true signal processes … … …”
In the context in which we are talking now, simple additions do not work, it is an inherently quantum mechanical system, hence particle numbers and amplitudes and every such parameters are added quantum mechanically. If you have a feel for all this, from your training and what you really understood, you may come up with some interesting discoveries, in the long run, while you have to explain to the peer community, why/how you obtained such a result, the pleasure is entirely for yours, you did and no one else did, for those few who make discoveries this is valid for them and I am not promoting here individualist credit, but it’s a reality that perhaps the community also wants you to feel the pleasure, because you worked so hard at it, in positive consequences this means you can only be inspired by such a principle, hence you will keep making interesting discoveries just to make yourself happy but it will be very useful for the community, as long as it is interesting.
*** slightly out from our Physics discussion
This reminds me some thing I had realized long long long time ago, perhaps 7/8 years ago, “morality is a consequence of a self reward” or rather these two are like the two sides of a coin, because you have a stake in being rewarded for your contribution or because you have a stake in a “predefined” goal, so you adhere to a set of morale. Hence the scope of your moral is as wide as your reward is. Is this a constraint for an honor? But human beings ultimately need honor, that is for sure, everyone has contributed towards some kind of goal and if he or she or the group is not rewarded they become drained out of their moral, hence a rightful moral-honor system is a must for every community. Problem starts to peek in when someone mistakes reward for self-aggrandizement. I have also seen a kind of people who are themselves not sure of a truer and justified honor-moral system but have disproportionately larger power in their share. Call it a social problem and make your peace.
Talking about such an approach (sans the philosophy of moral-honor system) I have had a similar idea regarding the Dark matter. Not that I must work seriously on this idea of mine, but the analogy of space-time warping is just too attractive for me to be able to resist following it. I will post the analogies in another article.
How do the analogies lead us in a path of physical understanding? We see clearly the value of the ideas, which, if, can be worked out are a fantastic case of the power of physical intuition the giants have instructed us about, over and over again. The cartoons of Einstein and Feynman and Hawking just demonstrate that. If an idea is good it is going to be represented in a picture/diagram/cartoon and once it is, it efficiently drives into the minds of it’s participant consumer. Feynman diagram is for the same reason such a nice thing to pursue. It has become very technical with time, but contrary to what my friend Sample (Got ya Mr Gene, no anonymity is permitted anymore) claims in a personal discussion, “if Feynman were alive he would have come up with some more ideas that would make it (Physics? QED and F-Diagrams) simpler again”. My idea is “But you can not punish Feynman twice for the same mistake of inventing it.”
Now back to seriousness –like I ever had in my tissue, why would I talk about analogies and not give enough details or follow up? perhaps because the goal is a long-term one and who knows what one runs into when thinking Physics.
Does an electron really get a repulsive buzz in it’s body for each of the other electrons in the infinite surrounding it has? –this is also quite well described in an article “The Entangled Universe“. In a bunch of electrons when all the millions are moving (let’s say just 1000 rather) do they all repel each other in the same fundamental way we know from our Maxwellian equations? I would think they do. The theory which has been advanced in terms of QED and then onto QCD essentially takes this (Maxwell Equations) into account.
How we implement such to understand the behavior of the electrons is another aspect.
In particle physics reactions the basics have been well carved out so there is only a few things to calculate, if needed, the Feynman diagrams, the vertices and what amplitude they predict and therefore the calculated cross-section (called theory or reference), which is a very important variable in the field of study (High Energy Physics or Particle Physics), to be checked with measured value (called measurement or experimental result). eg if you know the right cross section and luminosity you know the right amount of particles involved because you know their individual branching rates. By comparing what you get from experiment with what you predicted from previous results –which is often stored in the form of Monte-Carlo for the purpose of various studies and with what you predicted from theory etc you immediately know if you are doing something crazy inconsistent? or something interesting?
But nobody actually looks with all the details one knows from his training, except those hardworking few and those who are trying hard to keep the former on their toes (eg Boss, Control Freaks, Girl Friends), from various reasons though, ranging from anything to anything. So the suggestion for those who want to make a career in world class physics, one needs to take any modern problem where something can be thought of from the training and one can come up with calculations, measurements, Monte Carlo study to plain theoretical overview, and this can be sewn together in the long run.
eg one may study the problem of lightening or diffraction/scattering of elementary objects using a QED/QFT approach. The latter two are my favorite examples, and I hope I can someday study some on my own. I was actually trying to understand some diffraction — in another article “diffraction pattern of the sun” I have described a pattern uniquely seen and I want to understand using QFT, how such a pattern is possible from ab initio principles?
In this regard (with my partial understanding) I had remarked that “all diffraction are scattering”. Actually they are, if you are to calculate the cross-section or amplitude of various process and relate them quantitatively to what wavelength to expect, and if they match, you have made as much a step in Physics as CV Raman had made in studying the scattering of light known by his name-honor, perhaps a better step since what Sir Raman had done included a classical way of understanding. I need to know more about his research, but as far as I am sure, he did not use a quantum mechanical treatment, or did he?
Back to electrons, there is always a fundamental thing to know about anything, that we already did not know. This has a great deal of significance for and from the Standard Model — and its spokesperson the PDG book, the so called bible of particle physics, but you may as well call it the “encyclopedia of the particle world”, you can always think of something important regarding the physical process by seeing what is known and what is not known.
I believe modern physics research should be done on such an approach and later unified — so it can come from many different people and different groups. I also see that many of the progress we have seen today have been achieved because of such an approach — my alma mater of scientific research the Belle Group Experiments are one such example. The diversity in unity and unity in diversity of the scientific community should work towards a higher goal.
Tell me what you think of my article.