SSE Talks – Physics in the Dark – James Beichler


Physics is completely in the dark when it comes to that part of the universe consisting of Dark Matter (DM) and Dark Energy (DE). The word ‘dark’ in these titles refers to the fact that whatever the physical substance or concept ‘filling’ these regions of otherwise empty space happens to be, it does not interact electromagnetically except for the fact that the curvature of space-time in these regions causes gravitational lensing of passing light waves. The best known dark region is the halo that surrounds spiral galaxies and it seems to be constituted of ‘something’ that goes by the designation Lambda-CDM. While the concept of Lambda-CDM seems to account for whatever either ‘appears’ or does not ‘appear’ in galactic halos, its origin and nature is otherwise unknown. The term DM also covers the group of physical phenomena associated with the HDM which persists everywhere throughout the universe as does DE. The verified existence of DM and DE has plunged the scientific world into a ‘crisis’ state that seems to indicate fundamental physics is expanding ever more rapidly toward a new scientific revolution. Their very existence presents problems which cannot be solved automatically by quantum theory, either in the form of quantum vacuum energy or newly invented particles, but rather problems that are related to gravity theory as expressed by the general theory of relativity. Numerous suggestions and hypotheses have been put forward to explain these dark ‘things’, but no particular hypothesis or resulting model has proven satisfactory and no model yet proposed in mainstream physics is able to explain both DM, in either let alone both of its forms of CDM or HDM, and DE even though most physicists agree that the two should have a single common explanation. Having said that, DM and DE can be easily explained by thinking outside the box of mainstream physics. A single field model that includes a fundamental change in Newtonian gravity theory, expanding three-dimensional space to four dimensions, forces the reality of an extrinsically curved four-dimensional space-time in general relativity. The extra term added to Newton’s gravity can then be equated to the Lambda-CDM or ‘quintessence’ that has been added to Einstein’s formula. Yet this new model is not without radical consequences for the rest of physics and science. Accepting this new model would mean accepting the existence of a macroscopically extended fourth space-like dimension that either directly or indirectly influences all of science, absolutely everything in the world. In other words, this new model will change every facet of physics and science to some extent and some of the changes will be quite startling. The dark part of physics is not just an add-on or ad hoc device for explaining esoteric new phenomena. The dark deals with the underlying substrate of physical reality itself and can thus be used to explain such diverse physical phenomena as consciousness, paranormal phenomena and survival, quantum entanglement and the very nature of the quantum itself. The dark is actually a realm of light that only ‘appears’ dark against the ‘brighter’ materiality of our normally sensed and normally experienced three-dimensional world.

Recorded at the 29th annual SSE Conference in 2010 in Boulder, Colorado, USA.

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Published on May 5, 2011