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Markus Hanke

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Everything posted by Markus Hanke

  1. ! Moderator Note Moved to Speculations section.
  2. Good question. This depends on the metric - in Schwarzschild spacetime there should be no net drift for this type of motion, but in other spacetimes that don’t admit time-like Killing fields (eg Kerr), there will still be a non-zero net drift, because the two sections are of different arc lengths in spacetime (!). Actually proving this won’t be very easy, since this path isn’t everywhere smooth. No, perihelion precession is different, because only the orientation of the orbit changes, which follows directly from the geodesic equation; deSitter and Lense-Thirring on the other hand affect the orientation of the spin axis of the body (these two precessions are in different directions). There’s also a fourth kind called Pugh-Schiff precession, which is essentially spin-spin coupling. Yes, rotating bodies in orbit within a gravity well experience this. I don’t know if it has been measured for Mercury, but there’s data on this for the moon: https://www.academia.edu/49380218/Measurement_of_the_de_Sitter_precession_of_the_Moon_A_relativistic_three_body_effect But again, this isn’t the same as perihelion precession, they are distinct effects.
  3. Ok, so basically the question is whether or not an existing entanglement relationship is effected by changes in gravity (eg through moving one of the entangled subsystems into a different gravitational environment)? That’s a truly excellent question, and I will admit that I don’t know the answer for sure. Based on basic principles, I would have to say yes - an entangled system such as the one described here is mathematically a sum of tensor products, and in curved spacetime such products would explicitly depend on the metric, which should change the correlations as compared to Minkowski spacetime. A quick online search seems to confirm this, and experiments have been proposed to test this effect: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1367-2630/16/5/053041 Whether or not there is path-dependence will probably depend on the background metric.
  4. Yes, that’s correct. Whether or not there is gyroscopic drift will depend on the background metric, and, depending on absence or presence of relevant symmetries, also on the path taken by the gyroscope. The total precession will be a combination of two separate effects, called deSitter precession and Lense-Thirring precession. At least the deSitter precession part is never zero in a curved spacetime, so there will always be some gyroscopic drift.
  5. I’m afraid I don’t think I understand your question. Spin as a property is relevant only on subatomic or at most atomic scales - on those scales spacetime will, for all practical purposes, be flat, unless you are in an extreme gravitational environment. Were you referring to such exceptional scenarios? If not, then you are only comparing two small patches of spacetime that are locally flat, so there should be no difficulty. It should also be remembered that the components of the spin vector do not commute, so you can only ever know for definite one of the components at a time, plus the squared magnitude of the vector (these do commute). So when we speak of the ‘orientation’ here, we really are talking about eigenvalues of the respective spin operator, rather than a classical, well defined vector with known components. So the only difference can be a sign, since the squared magnitude is immutable. The spectrum of these operators shouldn’t depend on the metric of the background spacetime.
  6. What is correlated in this entanglement relationship is the relative orientation of the spin vectors, so it doesn’t matter how one locally defines the direction of spin measurement. The crucial point is that whatever direction you measure it in, the correlated particle will come out as opposite in terms of relative orientation. In some sense it’s only the “sign” that’s important.
  7. When the new EHT image appears on screen for the first time, astrophysicists be like...
  8. Yes - this is in fact a fundamental symmetry of nature, called unitarity. Colloquially speaking, information should be conserved when a system evolves, at least in principle. There is of course a precise mathematical definition for this, but for now you get the idea. For example, if you burn a book, the information contained therein becomes inaccessible for all practical purposes; however, if you somehow knew everything there is to know about the final state of the burning, ie all details of every single ash particle left behind etc, then in principle it would be possible to reconstruct the original book, so the information has been preserved, albeit in different form. Unitarity is very important particularly in quantum mechanics. Crucially, the black hole information paradox would be an example where unitarity is violated - this is why it is so problematic, and requires resolution. No, ordinary physical processes should be unitary, ie information only changes its “form” and “location”, so to speak. In the BHIP, information enters the event horizon. Quantum field theory combined with GR tells us that the event horizon carries entropy and radiates; this Hawking radiation is perfect black body radiation and thus carries no usable information. At the same time, the BH shrinks and eventually evaporates completely, leaving no remnant other than its Hawking radiation. The final state of BH evolution is thus simply a black body radiation field that contains no relevant physical information - meaning it is impossible to reconstruct whatever information entered the event horizon previously, based on what’s left of the original BH. The information is lost, not just for practical purposes, but also in principle - a violation of unitarity. As a side note - in practice (as opposed to in principle) determinism does not imply predictability. For example, a GR 3-body problem is fully deterministic, but in general only predictable for limited amounts of time (Lyapunov time), due to chaotic dynamics.
  9. In a way, yes. To be more precise - if you know all relevant details of the radiation field, you can reconstruct the masses of the two black holes prior to their merger. This is how gravitational wave observatories know the approximate masses of objects undergoing a merger. So the information is preserved in this sense.
  10. To understand this, you have to remember how the “M” parameter enters into the black hole metric in the first place. What happens is that, because the Einstein equations are differential equations, you need to provide boundary conditions in order to obtain any particular solution; for the case of Schwarzschild spacetime (I presume this is what your question is referring to), one of these boundary conditions is asymptotic flatness - meaning that, sufficiently far away from the black hole, gravity behaves like a Newtonian inverse square law. Matching up the proportionality constants thus introduces the parameter “M”, which, accordingly, is interpreted as total mass. It’s important to realise though that this is a property of the entire spacetime, not just of any particular subregion. Now, if you reduce the event horizon area of the black hole and in its stead add a gravitational radiation field in just the right way, this will still be true - the “overall curvature” of the entire spacetime is in some sense a conserved quantity. It will only be distributed differently, and the new metric will be something more complicated than Schwarzschild. But nothing will be lost as such. The information loss paradox arises only once we consider quantum effects at the event horizon, but not in the purely classical realm of GR.
  11. The in-fall time is a function of the black hole’s mass, and if that is very large, then it takes a longer time to reach the singularity. For example, for a 15 billion solar mass supermassive Schwarzschild black hole, the proper in-fall time from horizon to singularity would be 71.2 hours, so nearly three days.
  12. It seems you are just ignoring all the points I have raised earlier. ‘Gravitational potential’ is not a generally applicable concept in GR, and it is not the same as gravitational self-energy. It came out that way because that is the only possible form the equations can take, given the necessary mathematical consistency conditions. He initially tried to equate the Ricci tensor with the source term, but that didn’t work because the Ricci tensor is not, in general, divergence-free, so there was an inconsistency. There is also a deeper reason why they are of this form, which has to do with topology, but I won’t get into this here, and Einstein himself wouldn’t have known about it.
  13. It’s not that simple, I’m afraid. The source of gravity isn’t just mass, but energy-momentum; things like massless particles, electromagnetic fields, stress, pressure etc etc all have a gravitational effect too. What’s more, gravity also couples to itself, making it non-linear. Well, in principle there’s no guarantee that there is such a thing as quantum gravity - at present there is no experimental evidence for its existence. The issue however is that if gravity is always classical, then we run into all manner of inconsistencies that are difficult to resolve - for example the formation of different kinds of singularities, or violations of unitarity at event horizons. It’s not dissimilar to the kind of problems that historically lead to the development of quantum mechanics. Thus, most physicists assume that gravity can be quantised somehow. One important point though - quantisation of gravity does not necessarily imply the existence of gravitons. Gravitons arise if we attempt to quantise GR in the same way as the other fundamental interactions, namely by using the framework of quantum field theory. We pretty much know by now that this approach doesn’t really work out very well, so current research is looking at other options. Depending on how things turn out in the end, the graviton may or may not be a part of the solution.
  14. I never mentioned anything about ‘accuracy’ in my posts...? I don’t known what you mean by ‘perfect’, by I very much doubt that any knowledgeable physicist, Ohanian included, would make such a claim. For one thing, GR only works in the classical realm, so its domain of applicability is naturally limited. We’ve known this for nearly a century. But quantum gravity isn’t the topic of this thread. In the quote you then give, Ohanian is referring to linearised gravity, which is a simplified approximation to full GR. It is sometimes useful because its mathematics are much simpler than full GR. Singularities arise if one applies the model to cases that are beyond its domain of applicability - in this case, there are quantum effects that classical GR cannot account for. That’s not quite true. GR handles the strong field regime very well (unlike Newtonian gravity), up to a certain point. Where it breaks down is when quantum effects become non-negligible. Standard GR does already account for gravitational self-interaction. That’s kind of what I was trying to explain.
  15. Not relativity in general - but it is definitely an integral part of relativistic gravity, ie GR. Yes, absolutely. Self-coupling (meaning that the gravitational field is its own source, in some sense) is reflected in the Einstein equations being non-linear - which clearly distinguishes Einstein gravity from Newtonian gravity.
  16. The self-coupling of the field is encoded in the non-linear structure of the field equations themselves - thus, since the Friedmann equations are obtained from the field equations, the self-coupling of gravity is already accounted for in their structure. You cannot easily separate this out in a simple way. As mentioned above, the correct Friedmann equation follows from the Einstein equation, given a suitable energy-momentum tensor; hence the correct one is the standard one which you find (with derivation) in any GR textbook. My advice would be to consider carefully why it is that the self-interaction of the field does not explicitly appear as a source-term in the field equations; you’ll find only ordinary energy-momentum there. That’s because the self-interaction energy cannot be localised, or written down in a way that all observers agree upon. Attempting to explicitly include them in a particular solution (as an analytic term) thus cannot work, because this is inconsistent with the tensorial character of the metric. It is instead encoded in the non-linear structure of the equations themselves, so it influences the relationships between the different components of the metric, rather than directly appear within those components. Conversely, because the cosmological constant appears as a local term in the Einstein equation, it cannot be interpreted as gravitational self-energy (but it certainly contributes to that energy). It is best to look at it as a kind of background curvature that is there independently of ordinary energy-momentum. For certain spacetimes such as FLRW, it thus ends up having an effect on how the metric components depend on the time coordinate (‘rate of expansion’). This is all rather subtle, and easily misinterpreted. Perhaps do some research on the Landau-Lifschitz pseudotensor - though unfortunately this involves some not so basic maths.
  17. I haven’t read Ohanian yet, but of course he’s right - the self-coupling has a gravitational effect, and that effect is qualitatively the same like that of ordinary energy-momentum. This is what I said. It can’t be any different, as otherwise you couldn’t have any stable vacuum solutions. I still don’t get you I’m afraid. First of all, gravitational potential energy can only be meaningfully defined for specific spacetimes with very specific symmetries - it is not a generally applicable concept in GR. For example, it can be defined for Schwarzschild, but not for the FLRW metric in cosmology. Secondly, even in cases when grav potential energy can be defined, it is not the same as the non-linear self-coupling of the gravitational field in GR. These are very different concepts. Because you are mixing it all together in your posts, it is really difficult to give a meaningful reply over and above what I have said already. You are right of course in that accelerated expansion requires a repulsive effect of some sort - but that can’t come from self-coupling. The cosmological constant acts as a sort of ‘background curvature’ that modifies the vacuum equation...we don’t yet know what it is, physically, but we do have pretty good idea about what it can’t be.
  18. I’m having trouble figuring out what it actually is you are trying to say, since parts of your posts contradict each other (one example above). I’ll just offer a few words from a GR perspective, since the issue of gravitational self-interaction is subtle and often misunderstood. The starting point is the law of energy-momentum conservation. This is well understood in Newtonian physics, and easily translatable to SR, so long as spacetime is flat. However, if we try to find such a law for curved spacetime, we run into trouble - replacing ordinary with covariant derivatives in the conservation law leaves us with extra curvature-related terms that do not, in general, vanish. Worse still, these terms aren’t themselves covariant, so they depend on the observer. Not good. One way to try and recover a meaningful conservation law is by taking into account not just the energy-momentum of matter and radiation, but also the energy inherent in their gravitational interactions, as well as that of gravity’s own self-coupling. However, there’s a problem - gravitational self-energy cannot be localised. The mathematical consequence of this is that there is no covariant (observer-independent) object that captures this quantity. The best we can do is use what’s called a pseudotensor, which isn’t quite the same as a full tensor, and thus not usually a ‘permissible’ object in GR. Even then, there is no unique choice of object - the one most commonly used is called the Landau-Lifschitz pseudotensor. So what we do is form a certain combination of the pseudotensor (representing the energy in the gravitational field) with the normal energy-momentum tensor (representing energy and momentum in matter and radiation) - and notice to our pleasant surprise that the divergence of the resulting object is covariant, and vanishes. So we aren’t looking at the field itself, but rather at the density of sources in a combination of gravity and matter/radiation. What does this mean? Suppose you have a small 4-volume that contains matter/radiation, as well as its gravitational field (in the form of spacetime curvature); the above means that the overall source density (divergence) of the combination of energy-momentum in matter/radiation and in the gravitational field within that volume comes out as zero, so that there is no net flow of energy-momentum through the boundary of the volume. Note the highlighted terms - we are talking about overall density of sources of a combination of the two contributions, resulting in no net flow through the boundary (Stokes theorem). The combination itself is a sum of tensors, one of which is a complicated function of the metric; nowhere are we implying that there are any exotic sources involved - we are just saying that one must account for both matter and gravity in order to write down a conservation law. We also aren’t saying at this point that ‘total energy is zero’ - only that the combination of the two is conserved in a certain precise sense. This is a subtle and somewhat counterintuitive matter, and easily misunderstood. That’s what is meant when we say that ‘the energy of the gravitational field is negative’. It’s essentially an accounting device that leads to a covariant conservation law in curved spacetime, and not an ontological statement about its nature. It’s a bit like debits and credits in accounting, which make the balance sheet balance; but the nature of money for each individual entry is of course not affected. The same with gravity - we are balancing the books, but the gravitational effect of the field’s non-linear self-coupling remains gravitationally attractive, as of course it must. You can see this in the fact that we get stable vacuum solutions to the field equations - scenarios where there is only gravitational self-energy, and no ordinary sources (T=0 everywhere). Geodesics still converge in these spacetimes, and there’s no inflation or expansion, unless you permit a non-zero gravitational constant (the above reasoning about conservation still holds even then). A trivial example is the ordinary Schwarzschild metric; a less trivial but far more striking example is the gravitational geon. Plus all other vacuum solutions without ordinary sources. These solutions wouldn’t exist if the self-coupling had repulsive gravitational effects.
  19. I’m sorry, but nothing I see here (or on the other thread) is even remotely convincing enough to justify spending any more time on this. You’re both really just guessing - there are a lot of ‘could’, ‘should’, and ‘might’, but no real substance I can see. Feel free to tag me should you ever come up with an actual working model, and I’ll be happy to look at it - for now, though, I’ll leave you to it.
  20. I disagree, they are not at all inverses of one another, because they rely on completely different mechanisms and different physical principles. Expanding space is a consequence of GR, but shrinking matter is not. There is no model within known physics that predicts or facilitates anything even remotely like shrinking matter. On the contrary, there is direct evidence that at least some of the fundamental dimensionless constants have not changed in any way over the past few billion years. Without such changes, relative to its own state in the past, you’ll find it hard to get matter to shrink while maintaining all physics. Also, saying that these are observationally identical (irrespective of mechanisms) is a claim that requires proof. It is meaningless to keep claiming this verbally - you need to show that this is in fact true. Right - pretty much every single claim about the inner workings of the shrinking matter concept is far removed from known physics. Even if you could get it to work somehow, it would require you to postulate large amounts of new mechanisms and principles. So coming back to the central claim of this concept - can you (or anyone else) actually show us mathematically how this matter shrinkage occurs, exactly? I’m happy to start with the non-relativistic simplest case, ie Schrödingers equation and its solutions, the wave function for a hydrogen atom. If we cannot nail this down, all further claims based on it remain entirely moot. The wave function of the hydrogen atom (to stay with above example) manifestly does not transform in this way. Neither do any of the quantum fields in the Standard Model. And if they did, it wouldn’t be a shrinkage of the atom. That’s a lot of well established physics to abandon. Far too high a price to pay, so far as I am concerned, especially since standard cosmology requires no such unphysical assumptions. So it’s pretty obvious now that this idea does not work within the framework of known physics. There is literally not a single example of a real-world field, classical or quantum, I can think of right now that transforms like this. What does this even mean? Is X’=X(r/L,t/L)? If so, for a simple inverse square law distribution X=a/r^2 (a=const), you’d get X’/X=L^2, and thus according to the above X->L^2 X(r/L) = L^4 X(r). How is this meaningful?
  21. So what mechanism stops space from expanding, and keeps it exactly static (which is not an equilibrium state)? Like I said in my last post, you need to first of all show that this in fact possible within the framework of known physics - until then, all further speculations based on this are moot. A more realistic model must: 1. Accord with already known physics 2. Reproduce the same observational predictions as the old one 3. Make new predictions that the old one couldn’t It’s for you to show that this is in fact true. Again, it’s down to you to show that this is in fact true
  22. It’s just that metric expansion is accumulative - the more space you need to traverse, the more expansion you get. What do you mean by this? ‘Expansion’ is actually a bit of a misnomer (originating in differential geometry) - really all it is is that measurements of distance depend on when they are taken; there’s not really any substance somehow expanding like dough in an oven. See my comment over on the other thread. We could go back-and-forth on this until the cows come home, but ultimately the only way to be sure whether this idea actually works or not is to demonstrate it mathematically. Can you scale down the wave function of a real world atom such as hydrogen without violating or changing any physics, such that the exact observations of cosmology are reproduced? Can you then extend the same procedure to all other elements (unfortunately this could only be demonstrated numerically)? Can you scale down the Standard Model so that all particles and interactions remain what they are? I maintain this isn’t possible, not even remotely, for all and any of the reasons already mentioned (and I say this because I’ve been learning the maths of all this stuff for some time). But if someone can put forward a formalism, I’ll be more than happy to look at it - if only just for intellectual curiosity. But you know me by now, I’m by and large a mainstream guy, so it would require some pretty extraordinary and persuasive mathematical arguments for me to even begin taking this seriously. And that’s not an unreasonable stance either.
  23. You see, my issue is that you have no way to actually know this. What do you base this assumption on? What do you base any of the assumptions mentioned on this thread on? Unfortunately to date no one has been able to actually put forward a working model (ie a mathematical formalism) for shrinking matter, so there isn’t any way to extract predictions of any kind from the concept. Everything that has been proposed here is speculation and guesswork. There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with that (we are in ‘Speculations’ after all), but it does make it difficult to discuss the concept in any meaningful way. One could start on a basic level, and eg look at the wave function for a hydrogen atom, which can be written down analytically (see any QM text of your choice). Can someone demonstrate how to scale this mathematically in a way that supports the assumptions given here, without violating any other physics? This would be a good first step.
  24. So energy is not locally conserved? How does this fit in with Noether’s theorem? And how does simply transforming the Lagrangian like this yield a spatial shrinkage of the system? Remember also that, in order to get equations of motion for your system, you insert this Lagrangian in the Euler-Lagrange equations (or make it stationary via variational calculus). But this equation depends on the Lagrangian itself, as well as derivatives with respect to its own time and space derivatives. Hence, if you transform the entire Lagrangian as you suggest, the solution of the Euler-Lagrange equation will not be the same - which means different physics. So how does this work - you keep L the same, but then get no shrinkage. You transform the Lagrangian, but then get different physics. So how does this work?
  25. This will eventually be true in the distant future, assuming an accelerated rate. Right now, even for free space the expansion only becomes apparent on scales of ~MPc, so it isn’t detectable within galaxies (I assume you mean empty space between stars). What mechanism keeps metric expansion at exactly zero? This would imply that redshift is the same for all distant objects, since it depends only on our local rate of shrinkage. But this is not what we see at all.
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