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RAGORDON2010

Influence of the Universe on Physical Laws

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The article that has had the greatest effect on my thinking about physics over the years is “Extended Mach Principle” by Professor Joe Rosen, then at Tel-Aviv University, Israel (AJP, Volume 49, March 1981, pp. 258-264).

Of all the fundamental principles Professor Rosen addresses, these three stand out for me -

  1. The origin of all laws of physics lies with the universe as a whole.
  2. Every single physical property and behavior aspect of isolated systems is determined by the whole universe.
  3. If the rest of the universe is taken away leaving only an isolated system, all laws of physics will cease to hold for it, and even space and time will lose their meaning for it.

What I would like to do here is pursue these principles with regard to the following two questions:

  1. What role does the surrounding universe play in the decay of a single unstable particle at rest in an inertial frame of reference?
  2. What role does the surrounding universe play in the retarded rate of decay of these unstable particles as they move rapidly within this inertial frame of reference?

I’ve always thought that the decay of an unstable particle is the strongest illustration of Eddington’s “Arrow of Time” - There is a BEFORE, there is an instant of NOW, and there is an AFTER.

With respect to my Question 1, it is not hard to point to numerous examples of interactions where particle decay is in some way connected to the surrounding environment - an atomic pile comes to mind, so do particles struck by random photons, neutrinos, or miscellaneous other particles, real or virtual, that “exist” in the wilds of the universe.

I intend instead to focus on Question 2.

Retarded rate of decay as a function of pure motion is defined by Einstein’s time dilation formula appearing in his Theory of Special Relativity and also by an identical formula appearing in his Theory of General Relativity.  Interestingly enough, the time dilation formula applies to any type of unstable particle regardless of mass, charge, spin or any of the other parameters generally applied to unstable particles by particle physicists and depends only on a relative velocity v and light speed c.

If we exclude the class of retarded decay rates associated with General Relativity on the basis that the Universe is interacting with these unstable particle through gravity, we are left with the class of retarded decays associated with Special Relativity.

I’ve made the  point in earlier posts that I believe that Special Relativity Theory belongs firmly in the house of Electromagnetic Theory, including phenomena related to light such as the constancy of light speed in any inertial frame and the Relativistic Doppler Effect.

Given this, I would think that retarded decay of speeding unstable particles, a hallmark of SR time dilation, would be in some way connected to the charge and/or magnetic moment, i.e., spin, of the unstable particle.

The theoretical physics community has a large storehouse of weaponry with which to attack this phenomenon - QED, QFT, the Standard Model with its quark/gluon interactions, interactions with the universal background radiation, interactions with fields of passing neutrinos, interactions with the Higgs Boson, the influence of Dark Matter and/or Dark Energy.

Just for starters, there are the unstable particles detected down here on the Earth’s surface that are created in collisions between atoms in the upper atmosphere and high-energy particles and gamma rays coming in from outer space.  They should decay long before reaching the Earth’s surface.

If we approach this problem from the point of view of interactions with external electromagnetic fields, then we might look at interactions with the Earth's magnetic field as well as with miscellaneous electric and magnetic fields in the upper atmosphere.

Another aspect of the problem is that particle decay is a stochastic process.  Any single unstable particle can exist over a range of time intervals - all that can be determined in the laboratory is the mean time to decay from observations of many instances.  Accordingly, the application of the SR time dilation factor has to be applied to the mean time observation, which becomes even more tenuous when we account for the fact that there will be some statistical distribution in the velocities of the observed particles relative to the laboratory frame.

Be that as it may, as I’ve pointed out in earlier posts, I am still hoping for an explanation for retarded particle decay times that goes beyond simply stating that Special Relativity requires it.

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2 hours ago, RAGORDON2010 said:

Be that as it may, as I’ve pointed out in earlier posts, I am still hoping for an explanation for retarded particle decay times that goes beyond simply stating that Special Relativity requires it.

Before the quote you have written a lot of stuff about beliefs and things which I don't see as relevent.

So taking this as your actual question, I would just like to point out that you appear to have fallen in the old trap of attempting to use some sort of absolute measurement.

"retarded particle delay times"

Retarded from whose point of view?

The particle observer thinks everything is normal (ie not retarded)

An observer in relative motion does not.

 

Exactly the conditions for SR.

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14 hours ago, RAGORDON2010 said:

 

With respect to my Question 1, it is not hard to point to numerous examples of interactions where particle decay is in some way connected to the surrounding environment - an atomic pile comes to mind, so do particles struck by random photons, neutrinos, or miscellaneous other particles, real or virtual, that “exist” in the wilds of the universe.

Particles interacting with other (real) particles are not examples of decay. Those are induced reactions.

 

14 hours ago, RAGORDON2010 said:

 I’ve made the  point in earlier posts that I believe that Special Relativity Theory belongs firmly in the house of Electromagnetic Theory, including phenomena related to light such as the constancy of light speed in any inertial frame and the Relativistic Doppler Effect.

Given this, I would think that retarded decay of speeding unstable particles, a hallmark of SR time dilation, would be in some way connected to the charge and/or magnetic moment, i.e., spin, of the unstable particle.

...

Be that as it may, as I’ve pointed out in earlier posts, I am still hoping for an explanation for retarded particle decay times that goes beyond simply stating that Special Relativity requires it.

"SR requires it" is basically a statement saying "the best science we have says that this is what happens"

!

Moderator Note

Basically is seems you are asking for an alternative explanation, where time dilation is an electromagnetic interaction. Mainstream physics says it's not, so you are not going to get anywhere asking for such an explanation. You are free to construct your own model of how this might happen, and let everyone else try and tear it to shreds. Given how well relativity works, and that such a mechanistic approach would be contrary to relativity (I think you run afoul of local position invariance), I think such an effort is doomed to fail, but...have at it.

 

As would require a model from you, this is not consistent with discussion as it is framed, even if it were placed in speculations. You are free post your model there, or to re-frame this in such a way that it is asking questions about mainstream physics, rather than requiring non-mainstream answers.

 

 

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