The speed of light is variable - news to know, from the 1800s. Chapter 2 & 3 / Bonus link: "skepsis" via Hopeful Grump/Substack.
A skeptical attitude can help us remain open-minded and clear-headed - more peaceful is acceptance that we don't know everything, and can't possibly know everything as some things are unknowable.
“Skepsis helps immunize us to the disinformation viruses currently infecting the world’s population. It’s like a mask for your brain only it works.” - Hopeful Grump
What Exactly Is Skepticism? - by Hopeful Grump (substack.com) …something that can lead us to having a peaceful state of unperturbedness as our baseline attitude.
*This post is the second in a series - Part 1: The Dynamic Ether of Cosmic Space, a book summary (series), Part 1. / Regreening of Israel by Cloud Buster & Iranian clouds? (substack.com) Regarding the book: The Dynamic Ether of Cosmic Space: Correcting a Major Error in Modern Science Paperback – September 18, 2019, by James DeMeo, (Amazon.com)
Reviewing history is fun as people have similar human foibles across time. Read more:
A take home point:
“3. the four logical alternatives mentioned in Timon's account (i.e. is, is not, both is and is not, neither is nor is not) are identical with that of Sanjaya, the Buddhists, and perhaps also of the three schools of Sceptics” - Hopeful Grump (substack.com)
We cannot know for sure about anything and the scientific method tries to test for variables and test often enough to achieve replicability.
What is happening? Is it happening consistently? How is it effected when external variables are changed? Does anything seem to make it stop happening?
Something Is - it exists.
Something Is not - it does not exist.
Something Both Is and Is not - it exists at times and not other times or both exists and doesn’t exist simultaneously (quantum particle or wave?).
Something Neither Is nor Is not - it does not exist or it does exist and we don’t know.
Related webpage of mine, G7. Fear & Inner Child, see G7.6.3: Cognitive Dissonance and the definition of "is." (effectivecare.info)
Book summary, Chapters Two and Three and a little fore-shadowing from Chapter Four. The Dynamic Ether of Cosmic Space: Correcting a Major Error in Modern Science Paperback – September 18, 2019, by James DeMeo, (Amazon.com)
The question of aether/ether/orgone/chi/Life Force/Living Water has been stranded in the fourth category - is aether something that exists or something that does not exist? Does anyone know? Yes.
Theoretically, many scientists believed that aether must exist because light waves exist and therefore something must be present for the light waves to flow through or to be slowed down by if going across or against the flow of the surrounding mystery substance. Chapters Two, Three, and Four take us through the mechanical proofs provided by Michelson and Morley and their and other’s later work. The early trial was repeated numerous times with the improved setting for measuring aether flow - up on a mountainside and the device was not covered with a wooden cover - a glass cover was used instead for the delicately balanced machine.
Chapter Four gets into more detail about Dayton Miller’s work. He further refined the experimental technique and confirmed the presence of an energy flow that could affect the speed of light and discovered the direction of aether flow. Newspapers at the time brought up the issue of Einstein’s theories of relativity and how the presence of aether would conflict with his mathematically based ideas.
Is a math theory something that exists in the real world? or may it only exist in a mathematician’s mind? Science seeks to prove things with real-world tests, that can be repeated by a variety of people and demonstrated in a variety of ways (later in the book other fields of science have also shown evidence for aether to exist).
Chapter Two: The Positive Results of the Michelson-Morley Experiment, (pp 45-56)
Chapter Three: The Fitzgerald-Lorentz Theory and Morley-Miller Experiments, (pp 57-78)
Chapter Four: Dayton Miller’s Positive Ether Drift Experiments, (pp 79-114)
In rereading the book, I found that I had conflated some of numbers I mentioned in a previous post and Michelson and Morley may not even have used the word “null” in their paper. They had expected a “drag effect” of aether on the speed of light to be around the speed of the Earth’s orbital velocity ~ 30 km/sec. Other expectations for a stagnant ether expected closer to 200 km/sec. They measured ~5 to 7.5 km/sec drag effect of ‘something’ on a beam of light.
Their 1887 paper was their very first use of a new device for the purpose of trying to measure whether ether was non-moving or if there was a drag effect of ether on light beams. Within the Discussion/Conclusion they mentioned a need to retry the experiment at a higher altitude, on a mountainside, instead of within a concrete basement, and to remove the wooden cover that they had used or make a glass one to see if it had reduced the drag effect of aether by physically interfering with it. In modern terms James DeMeo makes the point that their initial experiment only gathered six hours of data, over a few days, with only 36 turns of the rotating machine. It was very preliminary work in a new field of study - yet somehow it was used to block the entire field of study.
News media and other science articles were reporting the paper’s findings as “zero” or “null” and it was not true. An interference effect of 5 to 7.5 km/sec was what was found. In 1933 Dayton Miller reworked the data from the Michelson-Morley 1887 experiment and found it to be 8.4 km/sec. Dayton Miller repeated the measurements with a similar instrument but placed halfway up Mount Wilson and with data collected during four seasonal epochs and in a small hut with open windows and a glass cover over the delicately balanced instrument. (pp 54-56)
The machine was invented by Albert Michelson in 1873 and was called the “interferential refractometer” - shortened to “interferometer.” The machine was shaped like a plus sign + that could be rotated at the center point and the four arms of the + all needed to be in perfect balance. Little mirrors at the ends of each arm of the plus sign would either split the light beam to send it two directions or reflect the light beam back down the arm in a returning path. If there was no interference from an ether energy flow, then the split light beam should overlap perfectly when the light beams return, and reform and no fringe interference pattern would be observed in the viewing area. If ether flow had been present than the perpendicular arms of the plus sign would be affected at different rates by the ether.
Swimmers in a current is the visual metaphor - swimmers going with the river flow can swim faster than typical. Swimmer’s swimming across the current will drift sideways as they swim and they ultimately have to swim farther to go “straight” across the river. Swimmer’s having to go up-stream against the current would really be slowed down as the force would be pushing them backward. Within the interferometer one beam of light is split and sent two directions with a half silvered mirror - half the light goes straight through and half the light is reflected down the side arm of the plus sign. When the split beams reach the half silvered mirror again, they rejoin and show a light pattern in an observing area.
Mirrors at the ends of the + arms send the beams back from the two perpendicular directions and then rejoin at one viewing area. Was there a fringe pattern of striped light? Yes - there was interference rather than no interference - there was a drag effect on the speed of light rather than being a zero result.
Figure 7. Thomas Young's (1773-1829) Double Slit Experiment, showing “interference fringes” which proved that light behaves as a wave. (P 38, Ch. 1)
Figure 9. has a drawing of the Michelson 1881 Interferometer, (p. 47, Ch 2.), and one of the fringe pattern images the machine might display. The 1881 machine had instrumental errors - the machine itself wasn’t accurate enough with too short of a light path.
Figure 11 shows the path the light would take in the interferometer and Figure 12 has a photo of the larger interferometer that was built for the 1887 experiment. It was built on a base of mercury to be completely level. That was the large immoveable machine built in a basement and used with a wooden cover. Dayton Miller’s later replication of the work did show that ether flow is stronger at different seasons and altitudes. And that the wooden cover would block some of the flow.
Another visual metaphor in the book - the 1887 experiment was as if scientists interested in measuring wind speed used a sailboat on a swimming pool located in a basement - that sailboat would not be going very fast, if at all.
A very clear pattern described is also of the interference with science by media or other science articles at the time. It seems a very familiar pattern - described by Fauci in an email regarding his demand for his team to do something about discrediting lab origin as a theory for the origin of SARS-CoV-2, …and bat soup was born. Why would a very preliminary study with the first use of a new machine for the attempt, be used to end an entire and centuries old field of study? And based on the Wave and Ripple book of Christmas lectures from the early 1920s - it took a while. Aether theory did not end overnight in 1887 but over a few decades it was made to seem that way.
Researchers who replicated the work finding ether drift by Michelson & Morley, included Morley & Miller, Dayton Miller (1866-1941) independently, Michelson independently, Galaev, Munera, and others.
Chapter Three; following the Michelson-Morley findings a new theory of matter contraction” was developed by George FitzGerald (1851-1901) and Heinrick Lorentz, (1853-1928) to try to explain away the Michelson & Morley team’s findings and the idea of cosmic ether altogether - and then be able to reject the wave theory of light. A quote by FitzGerald suggests that since ether isn’t supposed to be able to move, based on other’s work, then Michelson & Morley’s findings must represent “the lengths of material bodies changing as they are moving through ether or across it, by an amount depending on the square of the ratio of their velocities to that of light.” (FitzGerald, Science, 1889) (p 59)
Oliver Lodge (1851-1940) also lectured on the “matter contraction” or “ether-matter compression” theory but neither he nor FitzGerald proposed any way to test their theory. Both dismissed the smaller than expected but positive result of the Michelson-Morley experiment.
Lord Rayleigh (John W. Strutt, 3rd Baron Rayleigh) (1842-1919) had reservations about the Michelson-Morley experiment but argued for more experimentation with the interferometer in different seasons to assess for any effects by the solar system on ether at Earth’s surface. (quote, p 60)
The idea that ether is stagnant and non-moving was still being clung to by researchers such as Lorentz. He eventually sided with an entrained, slowly moving ether, that collects or is entrained around the Earth. He would not accept or mention that the Michelson-Morley result of ~5-7.5 km/sec was positive and viewed it as “null” and supported the untested ether-matter contraction theory of FitzGerald.
Michelson and Morley were disappointed by their own results - they had expected a larger effect and therefore may have written about their own work somewhat pessimistically. Neither wrote about ether-drift again until the 1900s. This delay in their own support for their work may have helped the stagnant ether crowd to remain strong and for the more wrong idea that ether had been disproven to take hold with people like young Albert Einstein (He published four of his papers (*and likely his wife’s work was involved too) in 1905). (p 61)
“Ether-matter-contraction” was attempted to be tested by Lord Rayleigh in 1902 and by D.B. Brace in 1904 - neither were successful. Trouton and A.O. Rankine looked for electrical resistance of moving matter in 1908 and were unsuccessful. Their experiment would only have shown that ether has some dielectric properties, electrical or magnetic but not that it may or may not “contract”. Their machine was enclosed in a metallic or wood container so would not have had strong ether flow to measure. (p 63) No experimenters were ever able to show a “matter-contraction effect”. Likely because of skepsis point 2 - it never existed (except in theory).
In 1900-1906 Morley and Miller built a bigger interferometer and reproduced the 1887 experiment with positive results. The light path of the new machine covered 64 meters - longer which increases accuracy. Images 15 and 16 show the light path and the new larger machine in a photo. However, the new machine was still in a basement and still had a wooden cover. The ether drift they measured was positive but slightly smaller than that measured by Michelson & Morley in 1887. This disproved the FitzGerald-Lorentz matter-contraction theory which was based on a zero result, truly null, not just a null hypothesis regarding a larger drag effect of aether.
Small but POSITIVE results, not zero - Morley & Miller measured light speed variations of approximately 3.5 km/sec. The speed of light is NOT a constant. NEWS TO KNOW.
*Einstein’s theories are based on the assumption that the speed of light is constant, and that space is empty. Two very big assumptions by a 26-year-old patent clerk. Why are we still going along with a 26-year-old’s theoretical assumptions? Or were they his wife’s ideas? **He had deserted her and their two kids and awarded her the Nobel Prize money upon her request at their divorce - suggesting she had helped significantly. (Series on earth-ocean.info blog).
This story is about politics of some sort - politics of what type of science is allowed to exist - not about whether the theories exist in real life - only if the theories are allowed to exist politically/academically. Academics and science are supposed to be about evidence, not egos or theoretical flights of fancy. (pausing, p 68)
*A modern-day machine based on similar concepts exists that is a lot longer, across country size longer - later in the book, I will watch for it. *Also meaning these experiments could be replicated with today technology - yet it hasn’t been. Hmmmm.
Morley and Miller moved their machine to a higher altitude, 285 meters higher, but still in Cleveland, Ohio, and they switched to a glass cover. With 230 turns of the interferometer in 1905, they achieved a measurement of 8.7 km/sec. Between 1902-1905 the machine was turned 995 turns and a compilation of all the data was published by Miller in 1933 reported an average of ~9.2 km/sec. This again refuted the FitzGerald-Lorentz theory of matter-contraction which had been fully based on a zero result being observed with the interferometer in 1887 - which was not what had happened.
The Morley-Miller data was taken very strictly twice a day based on a theoretical expectation for maximal ether flow at those times (11:30 am and 9:00 pm)- which turned out to have a consistent pattern but which reversed itself and the average often cancelled out any effect. (p 69-71) The 1905 paper was focused more on a failure to identify the “matter contraction” theory of FitzGerald-Lorentz. They also wrote a rebuttal of critique about the machine by W.M. Hicks (1902) who did retract his earlier work in response. He pointed out in his retraction that vertical effects of ether flow would not be measurable on a horizontal interferometer - which is true and a good point.
The experimental design of Michelson and Morley, and then Morley and Miller, was based on testing the going theory that ether is stationary - non-moving. Their result was a negative hypothesis - stagnant non-moving ether is wrong. Each team got a positive measurement - something was flowing which affected the speed of light.
Part of a long quote by Dayton Miller, (p 71):
“The experiment was applied to test the Lorentz-FitzGerald hypothesis that the dimensions of bodies are changed by their motions through the ether; it was applied to test the effects of magnetostriction, of radiant heath and of gravitational deformation of the frame of the interferometer. Throughout all these observations extending over a period of years, while the answers to the various questions have been “no,” there has persisted a constant and consistent small effect which has not been explained.” (Miller, 1933a, p222) (DeMeo, 2019, p 71)
The recomputed rate of 9.2 km/sec as the velocity of ether is “more than 33,120 km per hour (20,580 mph). That is even closer to the general escape velocity of space rocket to achieve Earth orbit (~11 km/sec), and about a third of the Earth’s orbital velocity around the Sun.” (DeMeo, 2019, 76)
Miller decided to abandon all preconceptions in his later work testing for ether-drift (after 1920). He ran the interferometer experiment every hour for a full 24 hours for several days in a row and repeating that several times throughout the year. The 1905 work proved that the speed of light is variable and disproved the “matter-contraction” theory of Lorentz and FitzGerald, but the computational errors created with the twice daily measurements having been averaged together left the work vulnerable to criticism.
Lorentz persisted with the theory and writing about the “null” result of the 1887 study in a 1904 paper. (p 74) His 1904 paper created further theoretical ideas - ether and light were separated into different “frames of reference” - which is only possible in theory and he created “time dilation” and other ideas with no basis in real world experiments. “Lorentz also split apart the once unified optical, gravitational and temporal functions as they occurred within the real world in ordinary Galilean-Cartesian space and time.” (DeMeo, 2019, p 74) Lorentz no longer included the Stokes-Fresnel discussion of a fully or partially dragged ether.
Interestingly, the 1905 paper by Albert Einstein about the special theory of relativity also included the various unsubstantiated fanciful theories of Lorentz’s 1904 paper. Both of the original interferometer researchers, Michelson and Morley, seem to have drifted towards the overwhelming buzz about a ‘null’ result in their 1887 paper and which increased with a sudden embrace by European scientists of the 1905 Einstein papers. The articles by Morley-Miller and Miller remained with the traditional cautious and physical based scientific method and cautious language, while the European speculative theories based on theory alone were embraced and published in major journals of the time. The math was always balanced and beautiful and lack of experimental proof didn’t seem to matter. (pp 76-77)
Chapter Four focuses on Miller’s independent work that took place on Mount Wilson. After 1905 money was short for him and he worked on musical tone with his collection of flutes and invented the phonodeik - the first machine capable of converting sound waves into a visual image (Think of the movie Fantasia’s opening symphony instruments). He also created a harmonic analyzer that could extract oscillating signals from what might seem like chaotic noise. He contributed to work on creation of the microphone and loudspeakers and worked with the military on the question of shellshock. He didn’t resume work on ether drift until 1921.
Chapter Four goes into detail about Miller’s later work with the interferometer used at higher altitudes without a wooden cover.
Zipping ahead - 1925 news headlines:
Clevelander Bombs Einstein’s Theory, Cleveland Plain Dealer, 29 April 1925.
Scientists Debate Recent Tests Made of Einstein’s Theory; One indicates Light’s Speed is Influence by Earth’s Motion, Other Experiments Support Relativity. Speed of World Estimated at 125 Miles per Second. Washington Post, 29 April 1925.
Local Man Proves Ether Drifts, Refuting Einstein, Cleveland Times, 3 May 1925.
(DeMeo, 2019, p 99)
Near email length, I will save Chapter Four for the next post. Pick up your copy at a variety of book outlets. The Dynamic Ether of Cosmic Space: Correcting a Major Error in Modern Science Paperback – September 18, 2019, by James DeMeo, (Amazon.com)
Wikipedia really has some nice things to say about Heinrick/Hendrick Antoon Lorentz. Note that Wikipedia rarely has nice things to say about anything considered ‘alternative’ in current science belief. So, a glowing Wikipedia page is an indicator that controlled science/media likes this guy. (my opinion)
“Hendrik Antoon Lorentz was a Dutch physicist who shared the 1902 Nobel Prize in Physics with Pieter Zeeman for the discovery and theoretical explanation of the Zeeman effect. He derived the Lorentz transformation which Albert Einstein subsequently used to make claims to special theory of relativity, as well as the Lorentz force, which describes the combined electric and magnetic forces acting on a charged particle in an electromagnetic field. Lorentz was also responsible for the Lorentz oscillator model, a classical model used to describe the anomalous dispersion observed in dielectric materials when the driving frequency of the electric field was near the resonant frequency, resulting in abnormal refractive indices.
According to the biography published by the Nobel Foundation, "It may well be said that Lorentz was regarded by all theoretical physicists as the world's leading spirit, who completed what was left unfinished by his predecessors and prepared the ground for the fruitful reception of the new ideas based on the quantum theory." He received many other honours and distinctions, including a term as chairman of the International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation, the forerunner of UNESCO, between 1925 and 1928.”
“In 1905, Einstein would use many of the concepts, mathematical tools and results Lorentz discussed to write his paper entitled "On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies", known today as the special theory of relativity. Because Lorentz laid the fundamentals for the work by Einstein, this theory was originally called the Lorentz–Einstein theory.[B 4]” (CC-BY-SA, Wikipedia/Hendrick Lorentz)
Interesting, not just the first Mrs. Einstein was involved in the ‘ground-breaking’ work by the young patent clerk Albert Einstein.
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