This article has been revised on 04/05/2011
The main problem with conventional gravity-based cosmology that recently persuaded me towards plasma- cosmology theory was the issue of the sun - and firstly, it was the existence of the corona and it's high temperature. While the temperature of the photosphere is only a few thousand degrees, the corona (which lies above it) is several millions of degrees in temperature. Mainstream theory seems unable to elegantly explain this coronal heating. The Electric Sun model, however, seems able to explain it without having to invent exotic mathematical hypotheticals that go against established laws of thermodynamics. William Of Occam would indeed, be satisfied.
Dr.Donald Scott, an expert in electrical engineering writes this with respect to the existence of the solar corona:-
"The Sun's corona is visible only during solar eclipses (or via sophisticated instruments developed for that specific purpose). It is a vast luminous plasma glow that changes shape with time - always remaining fairly smooth and distributed in its inner regions, and showing filamentary spikes and points in its outer fringes. It is a "normal glow" mode plasma discharge. If the Sun were not electrical in nature this corona would not exist. If the Sun is simply a (non-electrical) nuclear furnace, the corona has no business being there at all. So one of the most basic questions that ought to arise in any discussion of the Sun is: Why does our Sun have a corona? Why is it there?"
Delving further into plasma cosmology, one notes that the flow of electrical currents into the sun - more elegantly explains the existence of the corona. After all, how and why would a turbulent nuclear furnace under the forces of gravity be producing such a phenonema? How would the heat radiate outwards, cool and then massively heat up exponentially without resorting to exotic physics that violate known physical laws?
A recent attempt to explain coronal heating was produced by a team using NASA's SDO telescope. They found that small-scale jets (from the solar surface) called "spicules" seemed to inject high-temperature plasma at very high-speed into the lower corona and this approached millions of degrees. However, this does not solve the issue of coronal heating, as NASA's James Klimchuck stated thus:-
“It is very nice work, but it is absolutely not the final story on the origin of hot coronal plasma..."
“Based on some simple calculations I have done, spicules account for only a small fraction of the hot plasma.”
Klimchuck favours a theoretical coronal heating mechanism that depends on a concept known as "magnetic re-connection". This concept is highly misleading, as I will highlight later in this article.
The sun produces a variety of interesting phenonema - such as sun spots, sun-spot migrations and cycles, differential solar rotations, equatorial plasma torus, accelerating solar winds and various other dynamics that are hard to explain when one relies on a nuclear-fusion model. Indeed, what if another model can explain these features (in a more cogent way) without the need for nuclear fusion at the solar core?
(Thornhill W. & Talbott D. "The Electric Universe" 2007, p.71)
The above images from the NASA SOHO spacecraft show the concentration of electromagnetic energy in the equatorial regions of the sun as the sun-spot cycle approaches its peak.
The Norwegian scientist Kristian Birkeland's "terella" experiments directed electrons towards a magnetized sphere (with varying amount of current input), with this interesting image showing bright electro-magnetic spots of energy considerably north and south of the equatorial region:-
However, the bright spots of electromagnetic energy starts to concentrate towards the equatorial region (similar to the phenomena present on our sun), as shown in the images below:-
(Further information on Birkeland can be found here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kristian_Birkeland)
If you observe the image of the sun's corona (top of this article) you can see crowning filamentary spikes above the north and south poles of the sun. The same features can be seen developing in Birkeland's terella experiment on the above image (the left photo), as well as here:-
Mainstream cosmology depends on nuclear-fusion at the solar core in order to explain such visual phenomena, and one of those is the intriguing problem of sunspot formation and dynamics as shown below:-
Notice the filamentary twist of the plasma along the periphery of the black centre (or "umbra")? The magnetic plasma characteristics of the glowing gas here (as well as in other regions of the sun) strongly indicate the existence of electric currents - because only electric currents produce magnetic fields. The dark nature of the sunspot is also problematic for a fusion-based theory of the sun, especially since you'd expect radiant energy to be escaping from a turbulent and extremely hot core. Yet here, we can peer further into the heart of the sun and see that it is dark and comparatively cool. Mainstream theory states that apparent "convection columns" below the dark regions of sunspots have their heat suppressed or diverted by strong magnetic fields that originate from "the solar dynamo" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_dynamo). However, the mechanism of this apparent "solar dynamo" is not fully understood or explained. The picture above shows no evidence of diverted heat from rising convection of hot gases under the dark sunspot umbra. Obviously, there is still energy in the dark regions (it appears dark because of the relative temperature contrast with the surrounding photosphere) but if sunspot umbrae constitute holes or depressions in the photosphere; then they should really be hotter than the outer layers of the photosphere (rather than cooler). Dr Donald E. Scott mentions this fact in his book "The Electric Sky"; as well as stating that mainstream theory posits "strange magnetic waves" and "tangled" magnetic fields below the surface somehow preventing convective transfer below the sunspots. Instead, Dr. Scott describes sunspots as being present within a region of lower incoming electron current-density (from space) and thus increasing the outflow of positive ions from the anode surface (underneath the photospheric tufts/granules) and resulting in a strong local electro-magnetic field. The steep voltage gradient between the dark sunspot umbra and the bright anode tufts/granules also contributes to the intense electro-magnetic field of the twisting penumbrae filaments (http://www.electric-cosmos.org/sun.htm). Wal Thornhill is a physicist who has also explained that incoming electrical currents (from space) manifest themselves in the cyclic sunspot phenonema (http://www.holoscience.com/news.php?article=s9ke93mf).
“Exactly what happens and why these kind of structures are formed, we don't know“
Dan Kiselman, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm.
The twisting penumbrae filaments observed in the above picture resemble a high-current density form of Birkeland Currents (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birkeland_current). Birkeland Currents were predicted and studied back at the start of the 20th century by physicist Kristian Birkeland in his study of the auroras on planet earth. In the above picture; the twisting currents crossing the umbra of the black hole suggest that these are solar tornado features. A dark-mode plasma form of these electro-magnetic tornadic features also seem to be present above the ionosphere of planet Earth and produce the beautiful auroras (and associated Birkeland currents). Indeed, a space probe discovered more about this phenonema a few years ago (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/04/090424-space-tornadoes-auroras.html). These space tornado's are intermittant in their presence, forming roughly every three hours. Could it be that incoming electric currents and charged particles from the surrounding galaxy are powering similar intermittant (but much more energetic) electro-magnetic phenomena in certain regions of the sun? Do we really need an internal "solar dynamo" if such phenonema can possibly be explained by incoming (and varying) currents manifesting plasma instabilities and occasional large voltage differences on the surface of the sun?
in the Northern Lights.
"Convection remains the outstanding unsolved problem in photospheric physics" - (L.S. Anderson & E.H. Avrett "The Photosphere as a Radiative Boundary", Solar Interior and Atmosphere, ed. Cox, Livingston & Matthews, p.671).
The image above shows the granules appearing on the sun's photosphere - a phenomenon that makes-up the majority of discernible visible structure on the sun's surface. Mainstream theory regards the cause of such granulation to originate from convection columns emanating from the solar interior. However, the quote just beneath the above picture - demonstrates that such granules are a problematic thing to explain if one is relying on convectional models of heat-transfer to explain the dynamics of these structures. Indeed, one can notice glowing bright discharge structures that appear to be arcing their way through the granules. These structures are known as faculae and form interesting groove-like features in the "canyons" between solar granules. They are clear signs of electromagnetic activity (and hence, electric currents) which mainstream theory simply refers to as "concentrations of magnetic field lines" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facula). Faculae also appear to be associated with depressions in the photosphere (often seen as very small "sunspots") where the groove-like features are more pronounced and from which glowing discharge currents could be spreading out across the voltage gradients. The photospheric granules (which the faculae form adjacent to) could also likely be explained by electro-magnetic plasma. One explanation was offered in 1979, by the electrical engineer Ralph Juergens who stated that:-
"a [photospheric] granule may be viewed as a relatively dense, highly luminous, secondary plasma that springs into being in the embrace of a thinner, less luminous, primary plasma...we are led directly to ask whether the granules might not be akin to certain highly luminous tufts of discharge plasma variously described in the literature as anode glows, anode tufts, and anode arcs"
Maybe these granules (i.e. "anode tufts") are really just a manifestation of high-voltage, highly current-dense electric-arc discharges from energy produced at the solar surface (rather than deep inside the core):-
"When the current density is too high for the anode surface to accommodate, a bright secondary plasma forms within the primary plasma. It is termed “anode tufting.” On the Sun, the tufts are packed together tightly so that their tops give the appearance of “granulation.” "
While the dominant visible phenonema on the solar surface is manifested by the interesting movements of anode-tufts (or "granules") - there are occasional highly energetic and violent phenonema that appear in the form of "solar flares" and "prominences" which happen to be strongly correllated with sunspots (http://solar-center.stanford.edu/magnetism/magnetismsun.html). The mainstream theory regards the cause of this to be associated with a phenomena known as "magnetic re-connection". The notion that some mysterious solar dynamo produces "tangled magnetic fields" which open up and then "re-connect" - is a concept which is tantamount to reinventing the wheel.
In a paper published in an August 2007 issue of the IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science, Dr. Donald Scott summarises the problems surrounding the theory of "magnetic reconnection":-
"A majority of baryons in the cosmos are in the plasma state. However, fundamental disagreements about the properties and behavior of electromagnetic ﬁelds in these plasmas exist between the science of modern astronomy/astrophysics and the experimentally veriﬁed laws of electrical engineering and plasma physics. Many helioastronomers claim that magnetic ﬁelds can be open ended. Astrophysicists have claimed that galactic magnetic ﬁelds begin and end on molecular clouds. Most electrical engineers, physicists, and pioneers in the electromagnetic ﬁeld theory disagree, i.e., magnetic ﬁelds have no beginning or end. Many astrophysicists still claim that magnetic ﬁelds are “frozen into” electric plasma. The “magnetic merging” (reconnection) mechanism is also falsiﬁed by both theoretical and experimental investigations."
In his paper, Dr.Scott also states that the notion that magnetic field-lines can be "open" and hence at some point "re-connect"; fundamentally violates Maxwell's equations.
He also states:-
"Every magnetic ﬁeld is a continuum, i.e., a vector ﬁeld. Each of the inﬁnite and uncountable points in this continuum has a magnitude and a direction that is associated with it. This continuum is not composed of (does not contain) a set of discrete lines."
During his NASA Goddard presentation, Dr.Scott also states that "A magnetic field is a vector-field, it's a continuum, it's a fog, it's an uncountable number of points in a set; each point has a direction and a magnitude":-
In a paper published by the IEEE; Hannes Alfven (the Nobel-prize winner and father of plasma cosmology) - stated that the concept of magnetic "merging" or "reconnection" was a pseudo-science which was infecting cosmology and even plasma science at the time:-
Clearly, times have not changed.
One of the statements from the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory websites argues that "reconnecting" magnetic "field lines" occur in plasmas that have a perfect conductivity.
However, Dr. Scott counters this by stating that magnetic fields are not frozen into plasmas and that plasmas are NOT perfect conductors (as implied by those who argue for the concept of "re-connection"). Referring back to Dr.Scott's 2007 IEEE paper, he states that the existence of weak longitudinal electric fields within plasmas falsifies the notion of "frozen-in" fields that are broken and at some point "re-connect". Indeed, nature is not known to make perfect conductors - nevermind violate the fundamental laws of Maxwell's equations.
There is a lot of dismissive rhetoric targeted at people who critique the concept of "magnetic-reconnection", and this is particularly notable in the case of a Wikipedia article that was written on the subject. An advocate of plasma cosmology wrote a "Criticism" section which challenged the mainstream acceptance of "magnetic reconnection", only for this section to be removed by editors who hold the mainstream position. The editor in question stated:-
"Wikipedia policy states: "If a viewpoint is held by an extremely small (or vastly limited) minority, it does not belong in Wikipedia regardless of whether it is true or not and regardless of whether you can prove it or not, except perhaps in some ancillary article." I am a researcher in the field of plasma physics and astronomy. I have studied magnetic reconnection in detail for the last seven years. I can attest that the viewpoint in the section I am trying to delete is held by an extremely small minority."
However, is this really a fair policy to have? Why not accept dissenting views - however small? Should we really conduct our scientific investigations via consensus or majority? Isn't that simply pandering to pressures of conformity? It really is dissapointing to see this mentality pervade the institutions of science, as there is some evidence that the pressure to conform to the group pervades other areas of society (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TrNIuFrso8I). We cannot allow such scientific criticism to be censored, especially given that these allegedly "fringe" views are backed-up by peer-reviewed science in respective journals such as the IEEE. This indeed may well be a different scientific field to that of mainstream cosmology, but it is still credible and contains contributors who have a lot to offer. Could it be that mainstream cosmology is attempting to sideline or marginalise these criticisms in attempt to keep their jobs or maintain their cosmological models which are threatened with redundancy from a competing view? Are they scared that they would have to accustom themselves with principles in electrical engineering or electro-dynamics at places such as the IEEE? The editor who opposes such criticism has cited many papers that apparently "prove" the existence of "magnetic re-connection"; yet even as these papers often refer to Alfven's theories - they go against his words which explicitly criticised the notion of "re-connection". Indeed, as Dr.Scott stated in his 2007 paper, "When, in his acceptance speech of the 1970 Nobel Prize in physics, Alfvén pointed out that this frozen-in idea, which he had earlier endorsed, was false, many astrophysicists chose not to listen."
The original criticism section on the Wikipedia page has been archived here:-
In his book "The Electric Sky", Donald Scott describes the divergence between electrical engineers and mainstream astrophysicists with regard to the issue of magnetic field behaviour, and how the concept of "open field-lines" cannot be utilised to explain the energetic behaviour of phenomena such as those observed on our sun. Dr.Scott writes:-
"When challenged that open-ended magnetic fields are a violation of Maxwell's equation (that states the net inward and outward magnetic fluxes are equal for any closed surface) they quibble that Maxwell is not actually violated because a magnetic field line, being an imaginary construct, does not have any magnetic flux associated with it. But if there is no flux, there can be no energy transfer. They want things both ways - they claim lines are either real or they are imaginary, depending on the need of the moment to 'save the theory'" (Scott D. "The Electric Sky", p.119).
Donald Scott is not some lone crank. After all, he was given a voice to speak at a NASA institute and he cites criticisms from people such as Hannes Alfven and uses cogent arguments (based on established principles such as Maxwell's equations) that deserve the ears of more people. However, he is not a lone contemporary voice when it comes to airing criticisms of the "magnetic re-connection" concept.
In a 2007 paper produced by Carl-Gunne Fälthammar (of the Alfvén Laboratory in Stockholm, Sweden) and Forrest S. Mozer (of the Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley) the pitfalls of describing "frozen-in" or open magnetic-field lines that move and "re-connect" were summarised thus:-
"At a fixed time, one may trace a field line from any given point in space. But that field line has no identity, and
in a time-dependent magnetic field it cannot be identified with any field line at a different time, except by one convention or another. As we have seen, such conventions are fraught with pitfalls and should only be used
with utmost care lest they lead to erroneous conclusions. To paraphrase Ralph Nader, moving magnetic field lines are “unsafe at any speed."
The above video of a powerful solar flare resembles an electrical arc discharge not too dissimilar
from the video below:-
"This video clip shows you an extreme electrical arc. It was captured by Neil Brady, the maintenance foreman of the 500 kV Eldorado Substation near Boulder City, Nevada in the US. Due to a faulty switcher which failed to interrupt when the isolation switched open, it created the huge arc. The arc stretches upward, driven by rising hot gases and writhing from small air currents, until it easily exceeds 100 feet in length. The arc continues to elongate until the voltage was not sufficient to support the resulting arc impedance due to the arc length." (from http://www.arcflashprotection.co.uk/arc1.html)
Mainstream astronomy also makes certain claims about how our sun (along with all other stars) evolves as part of a transition within the proposed nuclear fusion process. However, human beings have not been around for long enough to observe these processes at any significant level that can prove such a hypothesis. Interestingly, there have been a few examples that disprove the current stellar evolution hypothesis. Dr Donald Scott lists four examples on his website (as well as mentioning them in his book "The Electric Sky"):-
It is not just the behaviour of solar phenomena which mainstream theory has trouble explaining; it also seems to have problems with the behaviour of galaxies - particularly with regard to their rotational structure and profile. Mainstream cosmology has recently resorted to mysterious electromagnetic forces in order to try and explain galaxies without so much reliance on dark energy and dark matter:-
But how is the structural and rotational profile of galaxies organised? One fairly elegant explanation was produced by Anthony L. Peratt, a plasma physicist at Los Alamos Laboratory. He used the principles of interacting field-aligned electric currents (called "Birkeland Currents" after the scientist Kristian Birkeland) to simulate the formation of galaxies without the need for "dark matter", "dark energy" or "gravity" as the dominating force:-
"In the early 1980s Anthony L. Peratt, a student of Alfvén's, used supercomputer facilities at Maxwell Laboratories and later at Los Alamos National Laboratory to simulate Alfvén and Fälthammar's concept of galaxies being formed by primordial clouds of plasma spinning in a magnetic filament."
Anthony L. Peratt's spiral galaxies
"The results of these simulations fit perfectly with the observed values of the velocity contours in galaxies. No missing matter is needed - and Newton can rest easy in his grave." (Donald E. Scott - http://www.electric-cosmos.org/darkmatter.htm)
The structural profile of galaxies produced by electro-magnetic plasma (and simulated by Anthony Peratt) was produced in the laboratory back in the 1950's by American physicist Winston H. Bostick:-
Birkeland currents may also be directly involved in star formation, as ESA’s Herschel space observatory recently discovered:-
However, plasma and electric cosmologists have had another view of stellar formation for some time now. An example of which was explained by Wal Thornhill on his Holoscience website:-
"An electric star is formed by the equivalent of a lightning bolt in a molecular (plasma) cloud. Just like earthly lightning, cosmic lightning scavenges, squeezes and heats matter along the discharge channel. Where the squeeze is most intense, the current may ‘pinch off’ to give the effect of ‘bead lightning.’ In high-energy plasma lab discharges researchers have found that hot plasma ‘beads’ (known as plasmoids) form along the discharge axis before “scattering like buckshot” when the discharge quenches."
"In a high-energy plasma discharge, a powerful electromagnetic “pinch” effect can constrain the discharge channel to a constant width over vast distances."
Indeed, such discoveries (as highlighted in the above ESA picture) are not a "very big surprise" for plasma cosmologists. No "dark matter", "black holes", "strange magnetic fields" or "gravitational collapse" mechanisms are required.
The mainstream model of galaxies posits the existence of "black holes" existing at their centre, dominated by seemingly infinite mass and gravity. However, recent observations of an area adjacent to an alleged black hole (Cygnus X-1) outside the centre of a galaxy suggests that electro-magnetism may well dominate. An article in ScienceDaily states that "this chaotic region is threaded by magnetic fields" and "This is the first time that magnetic fields have been identified so close to a black hole. Most importantly, Integral shows they are highly structured magnetic fields that are forming an escape tunnel for some of the doomed particles" (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110324153753.htm).
It is important to remember that electromagnetic forces both attract and repel (whereas gravity simply attracts). This may account for the both the ejection and "sucking-in" of matter in different parts of galaxies.
As for black holes at the centre of galaxies, a particular problem with mainstream theory has been the ejection of jets of matter from "black holes". This is famously known as Hawking Radiation - but it is tied within a paradigm dominated by gravity and strange, exotic matter. Physicist Wallace Thornhill describes this phenomena as being connected to a "plasmoid", which "is well known in the plasma laboratory as a high-density energy storage phenomenon that produces well-collimated jets after a time that depends upon particle collisions within the plasmoid":-
To sum it up, there is no proof that black holes actually exist (or even need to).
Given that plasma cosmology regards the phenomena of Birkeland Currents as important manifestations of electricity in space, perhaps this can describe the rather filamentary nature of the universe, as in images such as this?
This image of the Orion Nebula shows a twisting filament with stars possibly forming along its spiraling structure, and a phenomenon which can more easily be explained by electro-dynamics (than gravity or "dark matter/energy"):-
Credit: ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA & R. Gendler. Acknowledgment: Cambridge Astronomical Survey Unit.
In conclusion, if Electro-Magnetism explains the behaviour of our sun; and if the gravity of the sun is causing the rotation of planetary bodies around it - then this raises questions concerning the origin and nature of gravity. It's really a question of trying to understand where domains of validity begin and end. It may well be that gravity is a symptom of EM. It could be that electrons and associated charged particles are the fundamental force that drive all other things in the universe - that cause nuclear fission/fusion and the creation of new matter in areas of hot accelerated plasma-fields (and hence influences the 'strong'-'weak' nuclear forces), etc. We don't really have the answer, but there is a compelling argument against the overly mathematical and unwiedly character of the current mainstream gravity-dominated theory.
The Plasma Universe (or Electric Universe) model has implications at all scales. For example, when we see that gaseous plasma exhibits certain life-like qualities (which Irving Langmuir observed); then one really starts to think about the microcosmic/macro-cosmic unity that exists between the organic and inorganic:-
"# Bio-physical analogy: A model of plasma double layers has been used to investigate their applicability to understanding ion transport across biological cell membranes. Brazilian researchers have note that "Concepts like charge neutrality, Debye length, and double layer are very useful to explain the electrical properties of a cellular membrane.". Plasma physicist Hannes Alfvén also noted that association of double layers with cellular structure, as had Irving Langmuir before him, who coined the named "plasma" after its resemblance to blood cells. "
Maybe we are all connected and wired-up into one grand circuit. Maybe all of the universe results from the attraction of pairs of charged particles, which produce electric currents. Yet, the existence of particles of separate charge, implies that these are being constantly created in order to maintain these inter-galactic electric currents (as opposed to instant neutralization of separated charged particles in a gas). However, the nature of space plasmas cannot be explained by electrostatic analysis alone or the simple positioning of positive charges on one side, or negative charges on the other. The plasma is a mixture of free electrons, positive ions and neutral atoms that are considerably diffuse. Importantly, space plasmas are not perfect conductors and there are weak electric fields within them as well as very powerful electric fields concentrated in certain regions and with unique internal characteristics separated by "double layers" (http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Double_layer). Plasma can be a very dynamic electrical phenonema and sometimes, seemingly life-like. The question remains however, where do the electric currents and associated charged particles ultimately come from to sustain our plasma universe?