lördag 26 oktober 2019

The Source of the Paradoxes/Contradictions of Special Relativity

In recent posts I have been searching the source of the (infinitely) many paradoxes/contradictions of Einstein's special  theory of relativity SR, which must somehow be hidden either in the Postulates of SR, or in theoretical derivations from the Postulates, since real physics cannot be paradoxical or contradictory.

Since SR is a pillar of modern physics, the fact that SR is loaded with paradoxes/contradictions makes modern physics build on shaky ground, which is today coming to expression in a scientific crisis witnessed by many.

I have found the source to be the Second Postulate of SR speaking about the speed of light as expressed by Einstein in Collected Papers, Vol. 2, 1989, p.143:
  • Each ray of light moves in the coordinate system “at rest” with the definite velocity V (or c) independent of whether this ray of light is emitted by a body at rest or in motion. 
Let us now subject this statement to a critical analysis starting by listing its ingredients:
  1. There are rays of light.
  2. Each ray of light moves in a certain coordinate system, which is assumed to be "at rest".
  3. The speed of propagation of the ray of light is always the same = c.
  4. The speed of propagation of the ray is independent of the motion of the body emitting the ray. 
Implicit (from the First Postulate of SR as the Postulate of Relativity) is that the coordinate system viewed to be "at rest" is chosen from a family of coordinate systems moving with constant velocity with respect to each other, so called inertial systems. 

The Postulates of SR thus can be expressed as 1- 4, which are compatible with describing propagation of light by (the same) Maxwell's equations in each coordinate system chosen to be "at rest".

What its then SR based on these Postulates?

The essence of SR is to coordinate Observations made by Observers in different inertial systems according to the Lorentz transformation. 

But the Postulates contain no Observer nor any Observation using some Measuring Apparatus, and so they require some further assumptions or postulates to have a meaning, and this is where we now proceed to seek the Source of the Paradoxes of SR focussing on the following key question:
  • Is the Observation of the speed of propagation of light in a chosen inertial system (viewed to be "at rest") made by an Observer with Measuring Apparatus assumed to be at rest in the system or allowed to be moving in the system?
Since Einstein's Second Postulate explicitly speaks about the possibility of a moving light source, but does not say anything about a possibly moving Observer, a logical conclusion is that the Observer with Measuring Apparatus is not allowed to move. We are then led to the conclusion that the Postulates of SR implicitly state that  
  • An Observer can only make an Observation (of the speed of light) in an inertial system in which the Observer with Measuring Apparatus is at rest. The Observer with Measuring Apparatus and the inertial system are thus tied together, while the source can move. 
If this is correct, then Einstein's SR collapses to nothing, since it speaks about coordination, according to the Lorentz transformation, of Observations by Observers moving with respect to inertial systems in which the speed of light is observed, something then not allowed/envisioned in the Postulates of SR.

More precisely, in Einstein's SR a distinction is being made between Observer and Measuring Apparatus giving the Observer the possibility to observe the propagation of light in systems with respect to which the Observer is moving (according to the Lorentz transformation), while a Measuring Apparatus is assumed to at rest in its system. By separating Observer from Measuring Apparatus Einstein thus steps outside the realm of the Second Postulate with Measuring Apparatus at rest, which leads to confusion, paradox and contradiction.

We now consider the alternative that the Postulates of SR implicitly state, as expressed in many texts (then apparently not reading Einstein carefully):
  • Observation (of the constant speed of light) is independent of the motion of both source and Observer.    
If this is correct, then one inertial system could be chosen as the common system for all Observers all agreeing on the same speed of light. But this would mean that there was a common "aether"
as a common inertial system which can be used by all Observers, and SR would have no role to play.

This would be like the speed of propagation of sound in still air, which is independent of motion of both source and observer, and without any relativity.

The idea that the speed of light is independent of the motion of the Observer is often presented as the essence of SR as in Experimental Basis for Special Relativity in the Photon Sector Daniel Y. Gezari:
  • Surprisingly, none of the five new optical effects assumed or predicted by special relativity have ever been observed to occur in nature or demonstrated in the laboratory. Principal among the unobserved effects is the invariance of c to motion of the observer, the tacit assumption underlying all of the predictions of special relativity in the matter and photon sectors.
We read that this paper exhibits the weak experimental support of SR, which goes against the common propaganda that the support is massive. 

We conclude that the Postulates of SR do not admit Einstein's SR to serve any role. This was understood by the Nobel Physics Prize committee, which never awarded SR.

The paradoxes/contradictions thus result from breaking of logic, by giving SR the mission to answer the following question, which cannot be posed:
  • What is the Observation in an inertial system by a moving Observer?
The source of the paradoxes/contradictions of SR is thus that SR seeks to give an answer to a question, resulting from disconnecting Observer from Measuring Apparatus, a question which according to the Postulates of SR cannot be posed, because it violates the logic of Observer and Measuring Appears being connected. No wonder that paradoxes/contradictions follow.

Think of that! Science is about posing the right question, and in particular not focussing on answering the wrong question.

Of course, physicists will argue that, despite the fact that SR with its infinitely many paradoxes/contradictions has no role to fill, SR serves as a foundation of modern physics and has shown to be immensely useful to humanity.  Thus even if SR does not make any sense, it is kept beyond criticism and discussion by modern physicists pretending that SR is true physics so deep that it cannot be understood at all. But SR is understandable and as such seen to be meaningless.

More precisely, a physicist defending SR as a foundation modern physics, may argue that in case that the Second Postulate says nothing about the Observer, the objective of SR is to uncover the effects of a moving Observer as an exploration into something beyond the scope of the Postulates of SR, and as such an open game, which however has shown to lead to paradoxes and contradictions putting the game into question. Better then to play a safe game from clear premises.

But there is an alternative to SR based on the Second Postulate of SR with Observers at rest, in the form of Many-Minds Relativity, where the questions are different, meaningful and possible to answer. Take a look!

Summary1: The Second Postulate of SR states that observations of the speed of light is independent of either (i) source and observer,  or (ii) source.  Which is the correct formulation?

If (i) then SR has no mission. If (ii) then SR asks an illegal question. Conclusion?

Summary2: The separation of Observer and Measuring Apparatus made by Einstein is apparent in the familiar Train-Embankment situation, where an Observer with Measuring Apparatus at rest on the Embankment is supposed to observe a light signal in the system of the moving Train.  And conversely, an Observer with Measuring Apparatus inside the moving Train is supposed to observe a light signal in the stationary system of the Embankment. But separating Observer from Measuring Apparatus lacks logic and so does SR.

PS Recall that Einstein describes in Relativity, the special and general theory, SR as follows connecting a childs view with deepest intellectual endeavour:
  • In short, let us assume that the simple law of the constancy of the velocity of light c (in vacuum) is justifiably believed by the child at school. Who would imagine that this simple law has plunged the conscientiously thoughtful physicist into the greatest intellectual difficulties?
This connects to the proverb:
  • A child can ask more than hundred wise men can answer.

4 kommentarer:

  1. The main ingredients in SR are an observer, a light source and a light signal. These three concepts, three physical phenomena are independent of each other.
    The speed of the light signal has absolutely nothing to do with the observer being at rest (towards what?) or in motion (towards what?).
    The speed of the light signal has absolutely nothing to do with its source being at rest (towards what?) or in motion (towards what?).

    Imagine two electric cars driving on the highway at constant speed, one at 90 km/h and the other at 100 km/h. As they approach each other, one of them whistles.
    The sound signal will move at approximately 330 m/s. The speed of sound has absolutely nothing to do with the speed of the cars.

    These two thought experiments are identical. And it's all about classical physics!

    The speed of light is independent of the speed of the observer.
    The speed of light is independent of the speed of the source.

    The problem is the Lorentz transformations. No matter how you derive them and use the correct mathematics and physics you come to contradiction!
    The Lorentz transformations are mathematically inconsistent.

    Check out the evidence in the book Special Relativity is Nonsense.

  2. I agree. But the question is how best exhibit the nonsense of SR so that it becomes understandable. I now try to expose the misleading/incorrect logic of SR. OK?

  3. How to best expose the nonsense? Everyone can understand the M-M experiment and that SR is an illogical attempt to explain it away.

    1. See evidence in the book Special Relativity is Nonsense, chapter Michelson-Morley experiment 1887