The Universe‎ > ‎

Quantum universe

Einstein said that, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler” (following the logic of Ockham’s Razor), and this drove his lifelong but failed quest for a unifying theory of the universe.  I agree, and think the current "standard model" of the universe's fundamental forces, along with all the various sub-atomic "particles" that are believed to exist, and the existing separate & inconsistent theories of quantum mechanics and gravity (including General Relativity and as yet undiscovered "dark matter" & "dark energy"), are all too complicated to explain a plausible, simple origin of the universe (and I suspect Richard Dawkins would concur, given his objection in The God Delusion to an implausibly complex explanation like God for the universe's creation).
So, as Einstein also said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge", below (or in the attached pdf version of this pageI've expanded on my thoughts about Gravity & my Theory of Everything to form a complete but simple hypothesis of the universe.

(NB. A lot of this is speculative, but I recently came across a Quantum Field Theory with some similarities to what I've independently concluded here, although it may not be consistent with more widely accepted Quantum Field Theory.  If you want to know more about the frontier of established and accepted quantum physics, I recommend you watch an excellent lecture by Professor Andrea Morello at UNSW's Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology, which is led by 2018 Australian of the year, Professor Michelle Simmons.)

It’s all one big complex electric field:

  • There are no actual “particles” in the universe (& hence no wave-particle duality conundrum); rather there is just a single continuous electric field throughout the universe, with positive and negative oscillations or complex waves within it that form all light and matter in the universe.

    • Peaks/crests in these fields (or bunched-up “wavepackets”) are what we interpret as particles (just as a single big wave on the ocean seems like a moving 'thing', when it's actually a cascading disturbance).

    • The position and speed of a quantum "particle" can be described by a wavefunction because that's exactly what it is - a peak in a complex wave pattern that is never quite zero and thus extends (mathematically & in reality) to infinity - hence also interconnecting with every other "particle".

    • So in the beginning there was nothing, and then suddenly at the start of the Big Bang (in what was possibly the universe's one act of randomness - see below) there was a positive & negative charge or field, which caused waves to ripple out (& there was light!) - becoming more & more complex - but still adding to nothing! (consistent with the universe being "flat" and having zero net total energy)

    • I suggest the universe's continuing quantum fluctuations (such as the weird quantum phenomenon of particles supposedly suddenly appearing from nothing in space, then vanishing again) are simply micro oscillations in the universe's electric field, increasing from a finite but undetectable level to a single wavecrest appearing & then collapsing (perhaps due to two isolated waves hitting each other from opposite directions, forcing the wavefronts up like two opposing water waves crashing into each other).

  • Light photons are bunched-up “wavepackets” of an alternating positive and negative electric field (with zero net charge), which form linearly propagating "electromagnetic" waves.

  • Atoms are formed from circular (or more complex) orbiting charges (electric field wavecrests).  By analogy, atoms are like a perpetual (lossless) rotary motor whereas photons are like a linear motor.
    If electrons are negative wave crests in the universe's electric field, we can similarly speculate that the atom's nucleus comprises a mixture of positive and negative wave patterns (with a net positive for protons):

    • Rotating charges that form the nucleus have a much smaller radius than electrons, and therefore (like inner planets) move faster, which results in a higher energy and higher effective mass than electrons.

    • The proton rotates slightly off-centre due to its attraction to the rotating electron (similarly to how the moon pulls the Earth around), and this creates an alternating magnetic wave, which creates an attractive force between it and other protons within the nuclei (similar to how I explain gravity, so two protons with opposite spin - corresponding to their respective opposed-spin electrons - would effectively form two parallel, bar-magnets joined together with N-S at each end). This forms the "strong nuclear force" of the "standard model" (see also here).

    • Neutrons are effectively a highly-compressed Hydrogen atom, but will have a slight net negative charge immediately outside of the outer electron, so the neutron is attracted to adjacent protons.  Neutrons are arranged between protons in a pattern that ensures there is still attraction and not repulsion between all protons (for example, in Helium-3, the two protons probably rotate around a central neutron).  But occasionally (appearing to be at random times) the position of rotating charges within the nucleus will line up such that there is a net repulsive force that forces out one or more charged "particles", thus constituting the "weak nuclear force" of radioactive decay.  This is obviously more likely to occur with more protons and neutrons bundled together, which is why heavy atoms are more unstable and radioactive.

    • Speculating further, supposedly indivisible "fundamental particles" like quarks may actually be created by observing the nucleus' oscillating fields (that form protons) with high energy techniques (like the LHC), which disrupt these fields to form new wave patterns that appear to be new sub-atomic particles.  By analogy, if you hit a wine glass in a very specific way such that it broke into 3 pieces (which at high temperature would fuse together again), you wouldn't say all glasses are made of these three (individually unstable) pieces would you?

      • Gravity is a very high frequency alternating magnetic field/wave, which is caused by rotating charges within atoms (electrons & the rotating positive & negative charges that I assume form protons & neutrons).  This synchronizes the charge rotation in adjacent atoms, which in turn creates weak magnetic attraction between them (see illustration of rotating bar magnets in my gravity paper).

        • The physical interpretation of relativity is wrong (but the equations remain no less valid). A more plausible explanation than the concept of "space-time" is that in high gravity fields (or when moving at high speed against the resistance of a gravity field), the speed of light and everything else reduces (including biological processes), and hence time appears to slow.  In principle, light may travel at infinite speed in zero gravity.

        • This new interpretation of gravity explains why the outer edges of galaxies rotate faster than predicted by Newton's equations, and why the universe's expansion is accelerating, without having to resort to dark matter & dark energy (which don't exist).

        • The alternating magnetic field/wave that forms gravity is distinct from the much lower frequency "gravitational waves" proposed by Einstein and recently detected (which I say are modulated magnetic gravity waves).

        • In general, magnetic fields (including gravity & the magnetic component of "electromagnetic" waves) may simply be a mathematical description of the effects of a moving electric charge/field (or wave crest) on other moving charges (presumably given by the imaginary component of the complex number describing the electric field in a light wave), rather than a separate physical phenomena, and thus in isolation (being only maths, & yes, it's plural!) they do not propagate energy and may "travel" instantaneously (at infinite speed - "moving with their source"), although there may be a delay in any movement of matter (e.g. in a detector) caused by distant changes in gravity.

      This interpretation of the universe’s structure can help explain a number of things:

      The Big Bang & Inflation

      In the very beginning of the universe there was no matter (no atoms) and hence no gravity.  Consequently, and by my theory of gravity, radiation/photons, or wave crests in an electric field formed in the Big Bang initially travelled outwards at near infinite speed. They were slowed only slightly by the interaction of their alternating fields and hence the universe expanded faster than "the speed of light" (c = 3 x 108 m/s) during this initial brief "inflation" period.

      • However, the intense combination of transverse & longitudinal waves in all directions formed spherical waves, i.e. atoms, and as more photons & atoms collided & condensed, the resulting gravity substantially slowed the speed of light and hence also the rate of the universe's subsequent expansion (post "inflation"). It therefore seems that the Higgs field, which became non-zero at this time, is simply gravity.

      • Now, as the universe continues to expand, gravity becomes weaker (because of the increased separation of galaxies) and so the speed of light and everything increases again, which is why the rate of universe expansion is accelerating (not because of a supposed "dark energy"). Also, since everything further out than us from the centre of the universe (where the Big Bang occurred) will experience lower gravity and hence be moving out faster than us, whilst we will similarly be moving outwards faster than matter nearer the centre, it appears that everything is accelerating away from us and therefore that we on Earth are at the centre of the universe.

      • But what happened to all the anti-matter, which one would expect the Big Bang to have created an equal amount of (creating a universe that should have rapidly annihilated itself again into nothing but energy)? Well logically, anti-atoms (with positrons instead of electrons rotating around a nucleus containing negatively charged anti-protons) would create a (magnetic) gravity force of opposite sign to what we experience, which would attract other anti-atoms whilst repelling our ordinary matter atoms (but note this repulsion would only occur with atoms & anti-atoms, not sub-atomic particles). Hence in the immediate aftermath of the universe's "inflation" period, both matter and anti-matter would coalesce into separate clumps, with the two repelling each other so you would expect to get a sphere of one inside a bigger sphere or shell of the other (& possibly there could be further alternating polarity shells). And since our observable matter universe is expanding, this suggests the anti-matter sphere was (by sheer luck of the draw) on the inside, where it would be compressed (initially) by the repulsive force of the outer shell of matter (whilst in turn pushing our matter shell of the universe outwards even faster) and also pulled in on itself by its own anti-gravity to form a massive anti-matter black-hole at the origin of the Big Bang in the centre of the universe - which is why we see no sign of it.

      Electron orbits and quantized energy

      • When more electrons are added they repel each other and form more complex orbits that maximise the space between all electrons, each time allowing a pair of opposing spin within each orbit. This is why fermions (protons, neutrons & electrons), which form matter, cannot occupy the same point in space, whereas photons (which are bosons) have an oscillating, net zero charge and can be superposed in the same space (simply forming a stronger field or higher amplitude wave, corresponding to brighter, more intense light).
      • It’s these discrete successive electron orbits that lead to discrete, quantized steps in energy within an atom.
        • Given an electron's orbital radius and speed are quantized, having a continuous range of possible electron energies would require electrons to have a continuous range of possible charge, but this is not possible because there is only one electron wavefunction in the whole universe!

        • Light also usually comes in discrete energy quanta because it is formed by the change in energy of electrons moving from one shell to a lower energy shell within an atom (with this energy difference released via a change in wave oscillation from rotary within atoms to linear in photons).  However the initial radiation formed by the Big Bang (before atoms were formed, not vice-versa) probably formed a continuous spectrum.

        • Gravity would also be quantized by the addition of discrete quantized charges to form bigger atoms (which is what creates the magnetic field that is gravity).

      Fate or randomness?

      Quantum theory has generated much debate about the nature of reality, including its supposed probabilistic/random nature (leading to the conundrum of Schrödinger's Cat) and "spooky action at a distance" apparently demonstrated in recent experiments. Like Einstein, I remain unpersuaded by these concepts. According to Bells' Theorem, the correlation measured in the state of separated, entangled particles means we must reject at least one of the principles of locality, realism (i.e. there is an inherent underlying, well-defined reality to the world, rather than it being based on observation), or freedom-of-choice, and rejecting the latter implies the universe is deterministic (& hence not random). The locality principle, i.e. the possibility of local hidden variables affecting results, has been rejected on the assumption that they cannot transmit information between distant, entangled particles at speeds "faster than light", which is an assumption I don't accept given my theory that light (or other information carrier) could potentially travel at infinite speed (at least in zero gravity). However, I think the more likely explanation is that it's probably not that the separated, entangled particles retain some kind of super-fast/instantaneously influencing, non-local connection, but rather that they both follow the same deterministic path from the same starting point, so when you apply the same measurement they both give consistent (or statistically correlated) results.

      Just because quantum behaviour appears random, doesn't mean it really is (same as Pi's digits look random but aren't).  The interference patterns caused by supposedly separate photons show they are somehow connected and not random as they appear, or at least their 'randomness' is governed by a fixed probability distribution/wavefunction - or EM-field distribution - such that the observed pattern of many "separate particles" (which I think are actually interconnected wavecrests) is essentially fixed. Even if some truly random quantum fluctuations do occur, any impact on our real world may be averaged away and/or overwhelmed by the universe's pre-existing wave-function (which thankfully suppresses any quantum fluctuation from escalating into another Big Bang!).

      So rather than being fundamentally random in nature, as many people have assumed of quantum physics (at least partly because of Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle), I think quantum 'particles' probably do actually behave deterministically as per "classical physics", and as also implied by "quantum chaos" theory in the picture below (from Prof. Andrea Morello's lecture), where as time progresses (moving down), what looks like random/chaotic development of features at large scales on the left, no longer does at a quantum level on the right.  Similarly, what were previously considered random, quantum energy transitions can now actually be predicted and even controlled over a short timeframe.

      Then if we accept that everything in the universe is interconnected as a giant complex field or wavefunction, then naturally all movements of wavecrests/particles will impact others to a greater or lesser extent, no matter how distant (& potentially faster than what is currently considered to be the "speed of light"), governed by cause-&-effect physical laws, rather than randomness.  The future is therefore intimately connected to the past, and hence I'm inclined to believe in "superdeterminism" and something like the De-Broglie-Bohm theory (& perhaps this more recent theory of "retrocausality"), where the future is largely or totally fixed and free-will is an illusion - probably! However, if free-will does exist, then as I discuss in my "ToE", it must rely on a totally new kind of physics or "Force" (which some may call ‘God’) that we don't yet know about, but which is likely to be based on the brain exploiting some kind of quantum physics phenomena - perhaps based on our emotions (especially love) emitted as magnetic waves - to instantly affect the future of the universe in a way that defies the normal sequential cause-&-effect process we're used to.

      Thus I conclude that Einstein was probably right to say, “God does not play dice with the universe, and moreover, the above theory of the quantum universe seems simple enough to not even need a God to further explain it.

      But then - in a final act of quantum randomness - possibly reappears as an Almighty Force of Love.

      David Thorp,
      27 May 2021, 04:02