Double Slit Experiment Explained

Discussion in 'Pseudoscience Archive' started by mpc755, Nov 2, 2008.

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  1. AlphaNumeric Fully ionized Registered Senior Member

    QED explains ALL of electromagnetism. There is not a phenomena which is purely electromagnetic which it does not describe. How much further along does QED need to be? It's been unified with the weak quantum force too. Now physicists look at how the electroweak and the strong forces interplay. QED is done and dusted.
    This is precisely the kind of crap Farsight comes out with. He cannot model a single phenomena but claims he's explained charge, mass, gravity, time, space, money, the reason I get tired around 2pm in the afternoon and just where exactly I left my keys. Challenge him to describe even one phenomena and he'll say "This isn't about equations, it's about explainations!" or something to that effect. Nonsense. Physics is about knowing when and where a thrown ball will come down not just the statement "it comes down".
    There's plenty of qualitative explainations in physics. The fact you've avoided them because you're either too scared or too stupid to open a textbook on quantum mechanics doesn't mean they aren't there.

    You have buried your head in the sand, hoping that if you ignore the fact mainstream physics has a qualitative explaination as well as a staggeringly exact quantitative explaination of electromagnetic phenomena then your pathetic claims will somehow carry some weight. They don't. They just prove you're willing to shoot your mouth off without having bothered to actually investigate what you're denouncing.
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  3. mpc755 Banned Banned

    I am visualizing a burst of space traveling through space.

    What is a quantum field and how does a photon excite it?

    As a burst of space traveling through space, a photon always has a well defined position and momentum.

    No need for "probability" for a burst of space traveling through the medium of space.

    But what about measuring it when it is traveling towards the slits, why does it have "properties" of a "particle" simply by measuring it?

    Why is it able to leave a mark on the screen in the DSE. Why is it able to behave like a particle?

    If you review your answer, I think you will notice that you have not really answered the basic question of how a photon behaves like a particle.

    Why? I understand that this is what you have been taught and it "works" for you, but think about what you are saying.

    Somehow, if you see a photon traveling through one slit, that means it is not going through the other, which means interference will not occur.

    But if you do not observe the photon, that means it goes through both slits.

    WHY and HOW???

    What is it about the act of observing the photon that causes this to occur?

    As a burst of space traveling through space, its wave goes through both slits and the act of observing turns the wave into chop so interference cannot occur.

    I understand it has been throughly tested and is exactly what we observe, but it has yet to be explained.

    What is physically happening in space that allows a photon to go through both slits and why does observing the photon stop this from occurring.

    Talk of probabilities is not enough.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2008
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  5. mpc755 Banned Banned

    You are correct in that I do need to read more and get a better understanding of QED.

    But you choose to believe in things like "virtual pairs" and "gravitons" and other such nonsense. Things that cannot, and do not, exist in reality. Your ability to understand calculations has lead you to believe in things that cannot exist.
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  7. prometheus viva voce! Registered Senior Member

    Most of your post makes claims that have no background in experiments and you can't prove with mathematics so I will ignore them, however I would like to draw your attention to these gems:

    This statement makes no sense.

    I will now conclude that you can't read. A photon is an excitation of the field. In a sense the photon particles are made of the photon field.

    It is true that I have been taught QED, what with it being a 90 year old theory, but I don't believe it to be true because that's what I've been told - I believe it to be true because it has been extensively tested in experiments in a way that it is impossible to do for your ideas. They are less than wrong scientifically.
  8. mpc755 Banned Banned

    Consider an air gun with no pellet. If I fire the air gun, air will hit your eye. It is a burst of air traveling through the air. It has both particle and wave characteristics.
    If an air gun without a pellet is fired towards the slits in the DSE, the wave the air burst is creating in the air will travel through both slits, create interference, and the course the burst of air is traveling will be affected by this interference.

    An effort to observe the burst of air will cause the wave it is generating to be turned into chop and interference will not take place.

    Now, how does QED explain what is physically happening in space that allows the photon to go through both slits when not observed but only one when observed?

    As Mel Gibson said in Payback, ''What's the matter, cat got your crotch?"
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2008
  9. prometheus viva voce! Registered Senior Member

    Well then Mr. Smartass, Your analogy of the air gun with no pellet brings up a few important questions.

    1) What physically plays the role of the air gun?
    2) How come photon detectors can only see highly localised photons? In quantum field theory the particles fall out naturally, here they seem to be extremely ad hoc.
    3) Why am I asking all these questions, since your analogy can be completely explained in terms of waves - there is no particle interpretation whatsoever. Your wave will spread out in three dimensions and eventually just disappear. We have observed many many photons rigorously and find this not to be the case.

    Your theory is wrong. Your credibility would be greatly improved if you acknowledged that.
  10. mpc755 Banned Banned

    You already know this, but from wikipedea:

    "Photons are emitted in many natural processes, e.g., when a charge is accelerated, during a molecular, atomic or nuclear transition to a lower energy level"

    Whatever emits a photon is playing the role of the air gun.

    How do they fall out naturally? What is physically occurring that causes this?

    The burst of space is always localized. It has momentum and is traveling in a direction.

    If it were a generic wave, like an ocean wave, there will never be a mark left on the screen in the DSE. It is a burst of space traveling through space. It does not spread out in three dimensions and eventually just disappear because whatever resistance it encounters in the direction it is traveling, if there is any resistance, is offset by the push it is getting as space backfills behind the burst. The burst is able to maintain it cohesion as it travels through space.

    Why can't you explain how a photon is able to go through both slits when not observed and only one when observed?

    If your QED theory is so great and has been around for 90 years, someone must have been able to figure out what is physically occurring in space that causes this to occur.

    Why don't you answer this basic question?
  11. AlphaNumeric Fully ionized Registered Senior Member

    And yet, despite knowing nothing about QED or any other field theory, you deny it all. The statement you made "It's overly complicated" I imagine you reached because, if you have tried to learn it, you've found it's too complicated for you. I actually find it more straight forward then non-relativistic quantum mechanics.
    Firstly, QED doesn't talk about gravitons. Secondly, your inability to understand has lead you to believe that if you don't understand it it doesn't exist. Never mind how successful it has been at explaining things. Quantitatively and qualitatively.

    For instance, loops (ie virtual pairs) lead to the implication that quantum field theory predicts that the couplings of forces (ie the strength of the EM, weak and strong forces) varies with energy, that two electrons slowly moving relative to one another will interact more than two with a high relative velocity. And what do we find? Precisely that. Infact, it was that which was the 2004 Nobel Prize for Physics, the asymptotic freedom of the strong force due to loop calculations.

    I can run you through a few such calculations if you want, I've done some of them in my time.
  12. mpc755 Banned Banned

    Why can't you explain how a photon is able to go through both slits when not observed and only one when observed?

    If your QED theory is so great and has been around for 90 years, someone must have been able to figure out what is physically occurring in space that causes this to occur.

    Why don't you answer this basic question?
  13. AlphaNumeric Fully ionized Registered Senior Member

    It is explained in quantum mechanics. You compute the wave function for the photon or electron or Na atom or Bucky ball during the time it is moving through the system. It will be described by a superposition of eigenstates.

    If you then take a measurement, ie work out the expectation value of a particular operator's application to the wave function (ie put a detector around the slits) you project out a single eigenstate. This eigenstate is the description of the particle being somewhere precisely. The time evolution of the wave function will then be nothing more than this eigenstate with a varying phase, it is a 'pure state', not a superposition and thus cannot produce superposition results. If you don't apply the operator to the wave function the superposition of states means the outcome, when done many many times, will be an interference pattern.

    The act of measuring removes superpositional properties from the wave function. Not measuring doesn't.

    If you knew quantum mechanics (not QED, just plain old non-relativistic quantum mechanics) and how operators and states are described and behave, you would be able to answer your own question.

    When I'm unsure about something or can't see how something is working the first thing I do is reach for a relevant textbook and get reading. If that doesn't help I ask friends. If they don't know, I ask my supervisor. If they don't know then it's unlikely to be physics I'm asking them about. You, and many cranks like you, don't do this. Rather than saying "Perhaps it's because I don't know the first thing about this topic that I don't understand it. Perhaps I should do some learning" you proclaim entire sections of extremely successful physics to be nonsense. The fact you're either too lazy, too stupid or both to understand this stuff or to even look to see if anyone else does doesn't mean you're right. It means you aren't interested in scientific methodology or even expanding your horizons.
    But why have you made no attempt to find out on your own, via books or a library, to see what anyone has produced in terms of quantitative descriptions of this system. The fact the answer can be given in terms of concepts taught during introductory courses in quantum mechanics makes your ignorance all the more cringeworthy.

    You make no effort to find the answers but claim they don't exist. I've never learnt the Japanese word for 'telephone', doesn't mean I proclaim the Japanese don't have a word for it.
  14. mpc755 Banned Banned

    "superposition of eigenstates"

    Stuff like this reminds me of the mental gymnastics scientists put themselves through to try and figure out ways to calculate the orbits of the planets with the Earth being the center of the universe.

    A photon is a burst of space traveling through space.
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2008
  15. AlphaNumeric Fully ionized Registered Senior Member

    Superposition means "Add together" and 'eigenstates' means 'a pure state' (for the non-mathematicians). Anyone who has ever done signal analysis in electrical engineering knows that you can write any noise/sound/signal as a sum of 'pure signals', where the pure signals have a fixed amplitude and frequency. That's called Fourier analysis and it's the foundation of all analogue data transmission for the last 150 years.

    Anyone who has done any kind of vector calculus, ie the descriptions of multi-dimensional systems, will have used matrices and know how to compute the 'nice' directions for a system.

    Eigenstates, eigenfunctions, eigenvectors. These are all concepts which anyone whose done a 1st year course in mathematics or physics will know about. They are everywhere in physics, not just quantum mechanics. They are in electromagnetism, the stuff which predates relativity and quantum mechanics. They are in Newtonian classical mechanics, the stuff which is 350 years old.

    It might seem 'mental gymnastics' to you, someone who hasn't learnt even 1st year physics or maths, but to some of us this stuff is second nature. I sometimes forget people I'm talking to don't know this stuff. More than once someone has asked me to explain something and if I'm not thinking too much I'll dive into an explaination involving differential forms and tensors only to have them say "What's a derivative?".

    Tell me, do you know what a derivative is?
  16. mpc755 Banned Banned

    It's been more than a few years...

    I know you know what you know, but how about giving any thought to the possibility that you are not seeing the complete picture, like those who insisted the Earth was the center of the universe.

    Is there anyway possible you could be wrong.

    What if a photon is a burst of space traveling through the medium of space. What in the DSE does this theory not answer correctly?
  17. prometheus viva voce! Registered Senior Member

    It doesn't answer any questions in the DSE because you can't calculate anything. The problem is that what you propose goes against what we observe as well, because your explanation never has a particle interpretation. What you call a burst of space is what I would call a classical gravitational wave which is something I've told you before on physorg. It always is described in terms of waves and never has a particle interpretation.

    The only way to get a particle interpretation from a classical wave is to apply the rules of quantum mechanics. When you do that you get a very nice particle interpretation, but that is simply what I've been calling quantum field theory all along.
  18. AlphaNumeric Fully ionized Registered Senior Member

    Given your complete lack of understanding when it comes to why physics is more than vacuous wordy explanations, along with your inability to recognise the term 'eigenstate' and that you also shy away from maths I do not believe you ever did physics or maths beyond high school (ie took some mathematical degree).

    I suppose that does make your statement true, it has been more than a few years. "Never" would imply you haven't done maths or physics in the last decade. Or lifetime.
    Of course I don't deny it's possible I, and mainstream physics, am wrong on this. Anyone who says otherwise would be unscientific. However, given the success of the models in question, it would be perfectly legitimate to say that even if there's some underlying model, so that QED or QCD are nothing but effective theories (which is a view many physicists happen to hold anyway) the view that when particles interact they do so via the exchange of coherent states which we view as particles.

    If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and tastes like a duck, it's probably valid to say "For all intents and purposes, it's a duck". Maybe in 100 years (or perhaps tomorrow) someone will come along with a model which explains all quantum phenomena AND accurately predicts all experiment outcomes but without the need for virtual particle loops. But the effective theory of that will still be QED, just as the good approximation to relativity is Newtonian physics. Having a better, more encompassing model won't change the fact that doing the calculations and descriptions as if they are particle loops.

    If I give you an closed box which weighs 1kg, does it matter what is inside? It'll have the same inertial properties if it's a box of water or a box of plastic. Until you are able to open the box, it is fine to say "It's a box full of water" (provided the box has a volume of 1 litre obviously). Someone else saying "Wrong, it's a box of air! It's easier to describe!" isn't more correct just because it might be something other than water. It is immaterial.
    It doesn't address anything other than make you think you've explained it in a way you think you can understand. Does it explain why the interference pattern goes when you measure which slit the photon goes through? Does it give the relationship between energy and frequency and momentum for the photon?

    Whenever someone does what you're doing and say "I've explained [phenomena]" in a way which is obviously vacuous but none-the-less 'an answer' I am reminded of the religious answer for why the universe exists or how it came about, "God did it". That doesn't answer the question because you learn nothing from that 'theory'. Nothing to help you understand the universe, it's behaviour and it's completely unscientific. If I gave the answer "Because the sky is blue" you'd say "But that doesn't answer the question", yet "God did it" does? It's a dodge, it's something people tell themselves is "acceptable" because they cannot or will not accept that the answer is too complicated or unknown. You don't understand quantum mechanics, you don't understand the concept of a wave function and so you try to 'explain' the phenomena in terms you think you understand. The internet is littered with people who try to push their 'understanding' despite their understanding explains nothing. They are known as 'cranks'.

    If a photon is a blob of space moving through space, what about the electron? The Sodium atom? A Bucky ball? They all do the same diffraction behaviour. Are they all ripples in space? What makes them different? How might we test your idea?

    Can you admit you might be wrong, as you asked me to admit? Do you think it's a little silly to dismiss mainstream models which have stood the test of experiments by so many people in so many ways over such a long time without even learning something of the details? I only had to reach for my copy of 'Quantum Mechanics' by Eugen Merzbacjer to find an indepth discussion on how QM can model such things (you don't even need to go to QED, a field theory). It suggests also looking at Chapter 3 of Vol III of the Feynman lectures. I happen to have that textbook too and it spends many many pages talking about, explaining and modelling the double slit experiment.

    If you learnt a bit of vector calculus and linear algebra, little more than the stuff taught to 1st year physicists, you could see just how elegant the QM description is.

    And as for the graviton, why do you think all other forces and all the matter in the universe looks like being made up of tiny quanta but gravity shouldn't be? If moving objects alter a gravitational field what do you call the ripple of space as this alteration moves through space? Would you call it a particle, just as you call other ripples in space particles like the photon? If you would call it a particle, what is wrong with the name 'graviton'?
  19. mpc755 Banned Banned

    Yes. The wave that the burst of space the photon is creating in space is turned into chop by the attempt to "observe" the photon and interference does not occur.
    Space is the fundamental building block of all other forms of matter and as such, an electron is a denser form of space.
    Yes. Everything creates displacement waves as it moves through space. However, there is a point where the mass of the object is such that the direction it is traveling is not affected by the interference its displacement wave creates as it exits the slits.

    If you executed the DSE with a small boat that was creating a large wake, the direction the boat is traveling would be affected by the interference created as it wakes exists the slits.

    The direction a supertanker is traveling will not be affected by the interference created by its wake.

    If I fire an air gun without a pellet, is the air that hits your eye the same air that first exits the gun?

    When a photon is emitted, since it is massless, my guess is the space the winds up hitting your eye is not the same space that was originally emitted.

    My guess is an electron is the same object as it travels through space.

    So for the analogies to work, the emitted photon would be similar to the air that hits your eye not being the same air that first exits the air gun.

    But the electron is like the small boat that is its own object but still able to be affected by the interference of its displacement wave.

    And the more massive particles that do not create an interference pattern in the DSE are the supertankers.

    No, because the whole idea of a photon, electron, atom, or even a small molecule, being able to go through both slits in the DSE because you do not attempt to observe it is ridiculous. The concept is fundamentally flawed. It's the same as thinking the Earth is flat or that the Earth is the center of the universe.
    Gravity is caused by the space that is displaced by the objects that exist in it. The Sun is displacing space. This space is pushing back towards the Sun. It is similar to how buoyancy works. The Earth is also displacing space. The Sun's displaced space and the Earth's displaced space interact and this is what causes the Earth to stay in orbit around the Sun.
  20. Myles Registered Senior Member

    Bullshit is a burst of bull travelling through itself. Wave if you see the point !
  21. mpc755 Banned Banned

    Here is another example of a "main stream" model that has a completely false hypothesis.

    From Wikipedia:

    'The Michelson–Morley experiment, one of the most important and famous experiments in the history of physics, was performed in 1887 by Albert Michelson and Edward Morley at what is now Case Western Reserve University. It is generally considered to be the first strong evidence against the theory of a luminiferous aether. The experiment has also been referred to as "the kicking-off point for the theoretical aspects of the Second Scientific Revolution."[1] Primarily for this work, Albert Michelson was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1907.'

    Here is an analogy for how ridiculous the hypothesis and the conclusions are for this experiment.

    Let's say we want to determine if air exists, by looking for wind, so we take a flag into the basement of a building with a stone foundation and when the flag doesn't wave, we conclude that air does not exist.

    Just because someone is awarded a Nobel Prize for determining that air doesn't exist doesn't make them right.
  22. Vkothii Banned Banned

    Maybe you should read up some predicate calculus, find out what "denying the precedent" means.
    There's the other side: "affirming the consequent" too.

    In an experiment. you don't assume anything except that you have accounted for all 'known' variables. Then see if you can measure something and explain it. It really is that straightforward, but as the LHC dudes will tell you, preparing an experiment and accounting for all 'knowns' can take a while.
  23. mpc755 Banned Banned

    Not sure if you are replying to the MM experiment in particular or this thread in general, but if I executed a DSE experiment with a toy boat with paint on the bow and the paint on the bow makes an interference pattern on a screen, does that prove anything?

    How about using an air gun in the DSE. If the screen can sense where the burst hits and the bursts make an interference pattern on the screen, does that prove anything?

    My concern with going through and creating such an experiment is that it will just be dismissed out-of-hand just like the idea of space as a medium is.

    If you're replying to my MM experiment comment, the experiment was looking for the aether wind. First of all, the hypothesis that an aether wind exists is, I think, ridiculous and when your experiment doesn't find it, that's all your experiment has done. Not found it. It doesn't mean anything in terms of the existence of an aether.

    I find it ridiculous "mainstream" science allows such extrapolations to take place.
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2008
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