I have not been keeping these blog posts up to date, as you can see. Now with COVID 19 dominating the news and being in an indefinite lockdown, I felt that some sort of update was appropriate. I have rarely dwelt on my age but I am now 79 years old and so fall into an at-risk group. This raises a couple of points:
- I might die. Since I seem to have no avid followers to date, it is most unlikely that anyone would promote these ideas when I depart. I should have worked harder to get things published but it is never worthwhile reliving what has past.
- In theory, I will have more time to work on the theory but my fundamental sloth gets in the way. I think I now have the answer to almost all of the problems but cannot back the answers up with mathematics or observation as yet. There is one remaining problem which eludes me entirely, and so far I am not short of ideas, so hope to get back to you soon.
The big news today is that it is rumoured that gravitational waves have been detected. For me, more disturbing is the claim that these show merging black holes. I make an argument that I did not believe this could happen so it could be I am wrong. Of course, these are only rumours, and I never proved my assertion so there is some leeway but I will be keeping watch on this. I have to be prepared to accept that I am wrong if this proves to be the case.
Now I have heard the official news release, and it looks as though the evidence is pretty compelling. It matches the numerical simulation remarkably well which confirms that the field equations of general relativity hold firm at least up to the event horizon. And yes, serious doubts about some of the things I have claimed. That really is science though. I will add more after some further thought.
21 September 2019
Still musing on this. Two thoughts have occurred to me. One is that the simulations consider the inside of a black hole with a central singularity and not an impenetrable shell. I cannot anticipate what effect this will have on the result. The other point is that with many black hole candidate pairs (currently 22), they nearly all fall outside the range of black holes detected by other means.
A different point is that my reluctance to abandon all that I believe in merely echoes the reluctance of others to consider my views fairly. All I can say in my defence is that it is important for people to critically argue against prevailing views just to fully test the conclusions.
Today I have had something of an epiphany; I have been trying to prove that the central singularity of current black hole theory is false. I now realise that this ambition is futile. If you start off with the basic assumption that you can sail through the event horizon in free fall, according to the equivalence principle, then the centre is inevitably the final destination unless new physics intervenes. If there is an error in this thinking, it has to be the assumption that the equivalence principle applies, and not in the conclusion that follows.
There are two alternatives to this:
- the equivalence principle does not apply when there is a change of state
- time stands still at the event horizon
Take these in turn: we do not apply the equivalence principle when a falling workman hits the ground as there is a change of state. We can argue against this by saying that in this case, the ground imposes fresh (em) forces and this is what breaks the equivalence principle. In the case of a black hole, the only forces involved are gravitational.
In the second case, time stands still in Schwarzschild coordinates. In trying to argue that this must be true in all coordinate systems, I am guilty of applying the rules of general relativity to a point at infinity and this is not a part of the set of real numbers and so is excluded from consideration. They then try to argue that the infinity in Schwarzschild coordinates is not physical and so can be safely ignored.
Once again the arguments are circular and thus self-fulfilling.
A month has past and no major questioning of the detection of gravitational waves, and still, I do not pack up my bags and desert this endeavour. Does this put me into the same category of cranks who have the germ of a good idea and subsequently are blind to anything that contradicts it; maybe. But at least I am trying to be open about it. I do have questions/doubts about these results, but no doubt the coming months, when fresh results are detected, will resolve them, one way or the other.
Meanwhile, elsewhere, the anthropomorphising of black holes continues unabated, what with pairs of black holes now being likened to twins in a pregnant woman's stomach! I thought talk of such descriptions of black holes as being messy eaters as going a bit too far for credibility.
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