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The Fringe

This section provides a reading selection from the area near and beyond the borders of science, pseudoscience, and other forms of nonsense.   


Our old friend Randell Mills is still at it.   If you don't know, Mills is one of the greatest (at least most prolific) pseudoscientists at work in the modern age.    Of perhaps most interest to us is that he has essentially reinvented physics, with what he calls the Grand Unified Theory of Classical Quantum Mechanics (GUT-CQM, this being an acronym that is perhaps not optimal).   This landmark achievement is documented in a huge three-volume tome, available at cost from Amazon:

or, preferably, free of charge in compressed form here.    About a decade ago, this book arrived at Welch Hall in Austin, packaged in a very heavy container, and addressed to me.  A note from the great R.L. Mills himself was scrawled inside the front cover.    He encouraged me to read and send him thoughts and comments, the latter of which I never did.    My copy of the GUT-CQM treatise perished in the catastrophic house fire of summer 2009, but this is not one of the possessions that I have missed.   Inside GUT-CQM is some very impressive sounding nonsense involving conventional physics phrases like "Maxwell equations", the "Schwarzschild metric", "spacetime Fourier components", and the like, all of this convolved with fancy new concepts like the "electron orbitsphere", and - most significant - the "hydrino".   The GUT-CQM treatise touches on virtually all topics that constitute cutting-edge and frontier physics, from black holes (which Mills charmingly characterizes as blackholes), to dark matter (which is, of course, fully understood within the context of GUT-CQM, see below) to atomic structure, the Hubble constant, etc.    Mills characterizes standard quantum theory as "wrong", and has written tens and tens of thousands of words, interspersed with equations and diagrams to document this truly transformative theoretical advance.  For those with attention spans too limited to read the full work, there is (in the peer-reviewed literature) a nice overview that can be perused here.  Suffice it to say that this is very dubious stuff, but impressive dubious stuff in the sense that someone has done a tremendous amount of work to put it all together.

Mills' real fame is in a more public arena, and this has to do with the above-mentioned hydrinos.   What is a hydrino?   Well, one of the consequences of Mills' revolutionary overthrow of quantum mechanics is the prediction that the Rydberg formula for one-electron atoms is not really right.   Yes, it does get those line spectra of H, He+ and whatnot correctly, but the quantum numbers of these atoms are not limited to non-negative integer values.   Indeed, the hydrino theory allows for the existence of fractional quantum numbers (1/k), where k can take on the integer values [2,3 ... 137].  The uppermost allowed value of k is emblematic of Mills' work in general, as this is a rather sophisticated choice for a maximum value which suggests that the architect of this theory knows something of physics.    Thinking about this extension of the Balmer-Rydberg formula for a bit, one realizes that the nominal ground state of H would then be an excited state, with "hydrino states" accessible at vastly lower energies.    These hydrino states, which are expertly demonstrated to be associated with the pesky dark matter that has vexed physics for quite some time, can be accessed by special means in which tremendous energy (not nuclear-type energies, but somewhere between chemical and nuclear, ca. 105 eV) is liberated.    As a consequence, of course, the world's energy problems are solved: one needs only to coax the hydrogen atoms of water into hydrino states, and you can then develop a car that can drive cross-country on just a sip from a bottle of Evian.    This likely sounds to be a joke to you, since you are reading this on the website of an obscure but serious scientist, but you might be surprised to learn that Mills has a company with a corporate headquarters, claims to have raised tens to hundreds of millions of dollars from investors, and - demonstrably - has been given a research grant by a well-known and generally respected government organization: NASA!    

This has been going on for a long time - I first learned of this from my friend and collaborator Branko Ruscic in 2003 - but there seems to be new movement of late.   Mills' company, formerly known as Blacklight Power, has been renamed to Brilliant Light Power, and they have changed their technology (essentially catalytic processes to coax hydrogen atoms into those hydrino states) with eternal promises of changing our world in the coming months.   I encourage you to visit their website and poke around, as this is highly entertaining stuff and oddly fascinating stuff.   They even have a quantum chemistry program named Millsian, which claims to do essentially exact calculations on molecules.    I was once sent a request by the Journal of the American Chemical Society  to review this program.   Alas, my sincere efforts to do so were thwarted since I could neither build nor compile the program, and the 'please help me' emails that I sent to the corporate headquarters in New Jersey went unanswered.   Too bad, as I think I might have written a quite entertaining and revealing review.

For those seeking just a few moments of entertainment, here is the great Dr. Mills being interviewed recently on CNN.  

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