# SciContest! Why can't matter be made of photons?

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by BenTheMan, Aug 11, 2008.

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1. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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Thanks Reiku; I'll hang on to that.

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Fear.

5. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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Not Fear; opportunity for some budding physicist to fullfill John Wheelers dream, "Some principal, uniquely right and uniquely simple, must, when one knows it, be also so obvious that it is clear that the universe is built and must be built, in just such and such a way and that it cannot possibly be otherwise."

Last edited: Aug 11, 2008

7. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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When the photon's path is bent, it produces electric charge. The charge is positive or negative depending upon the direction of bend relative to the photon's fields. Bend it into a complete circle and the charge is equal to that of an electron when seen at any distance greater than an electrons electromagnetic radius.

8. ### VkothiiBannedBanned

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Photons are perturbations in the EM field and don't couple to the putative Higgs field.
Like waves on the surface of a liquid are perturbations of the surface, and don't displace (carry) any liquid, except as part of the momentum-wave's [vertical] time-displacement. Ocean waves don't have mass either.

Particles like electrons, can 'surf' a wave, like a bit of wood or a surfer can surf an ocean wave. That's an interaction with the wavefront - a charged electron is affected by the electric wave component of a coherent group of photons.

Fundamental particles with 'rest' mass [can] couple to both fields.
A photon doesn't generally interact with another photon, except at the extreme of the frequency range, where two 'extreme' photons with sufficient momentum have a greater probability (the uncertainty principle) of massive (gamma-gamma) interaction when they encounter each other, and interact as massive particle-antiparticle pairs, but not as photons.

Something like that.

Last edited: Aug 12, 2008
9. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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No probs. What get's me is the amount of scientists ignorant of the facts. And the simplicity behind them.

10. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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Well, that's a clash of theories. The Higgs is one of those things necessary to prop up the otherwise failed concept that the forces are mediated by particle exchange.

11. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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About 32 years after expansion, photons emerged. This is a very big amount of time, as we know that spacetime must have begun at around the billionth part of the billionth part of the billionth part of the billionth part of the billionth part of a single second. So the universe grew quite old before the first light appeared. But even at that, photons would have flooded the universe, and could have had massive collisions. These collisions, coupled with the evidence i gave above of [[matter being created from photons]], gave rise to the greater part of the rest mass we see around us.

12. ### SciencelovahRegistered Senior Member

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Keywords: conversion of energy (NOT photon) into matter. Photon here
is only functioned as catalyst, one of many common uses of photon.

If one can create matter from photon without any external energy, or without
losing any energy involved in the process, then only we can conclude that
matter can be made out of photon.

p.s.: in case anyone remember or wondering why am I posting today instead
of traveling as I planned, it's because I couldn't find my passport in the last
minute. Apparently I left it in a photocopy machine. T_T Nevermind.

13. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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One of the reviewers of Professor Thompson's article explained it when he said that the article was too dangerous to publish. I never could figure out what the danger was. Anyway I suspect they hide these facts from students so that they won't consider anything except QM as reality.

14. ### VkothiiBannedBanned

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I thought the CMB was the remnant of that 'emergence', and it was ~300,000 years after the 'creation event' or the big bang (or the wavefunction collapsed, as in the cosmic one).

The CMB is the afterglow of that event, when the quark-gluon plasma cooled sufficiently for hadrons to form and form atoms. Lots of massive interactions became photons, not the other way around...?

15. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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Inzomnia - hi

It is known that if you add enough energy into the vacuum, such as photons, electrons can pop into the vacuum, apparently from nothing. It doesn't impede the theory, nor does it impede the article, afterall, it clearly states that photons where used to create matter. The very subject Ben is talking about.

16. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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Yes, i've heard this date of 300,000 years. Dr Fred A. Wolf would (for some reason), disagree with that time schedual. I never asked him why though.

17. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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What is good news, is that more scientists are becoming aware of it though. I guess it was too ad hoc to place everything down to photon energy. Now it seems to be a very tasteful theory.

18. ### SciencelovahRegistered Senior Member

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Reiku - hi, too. That's an interesting article, actually, thanks for sharing.

There you say it yourself: if you add enough energy. From the popular
Einstein formula we already know that E = mc^2, and as far as I concern,
energy can take form in a mass, and vice versa.

Photon, on the other hand, is massless. Do photon have energy?

According to the equation, if it is massless, then simply m = o, and hence E = 0.

But that comes from me, a layman. I have no adequate physic basis

19. ### VernRegistered Senior Member

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I think so; James Clerk Maxwell failed to convince everyone because he didn't know about the Quantum nature of photons. If he had known that he would probably have produced a photon theory of matter instead of just a hypothesis.

20. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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>>> ah, sorry, it was more of a question.

Yes, photons can be created from nothing. Quarks certainly came into existence, creating the abundant elements, but photons flooded the spacetime arena... (by a great amount). In fact, the background temperatures are so homogeneous, they seem to be all spacetime filling.

I'd like to state, that the math describing nucleosynthesis works well, only because of the elements we seem to be observing, but again, most of the elements we observe, actually came from stars themselves. The greater vast universe may be made of stuff that we are not made of, and nucleosynthesis could fail as a complete theory if we found elements that did not coincide with the first few minutes of the cosmos.

It seems that it is by no coincidence that matter chose particle-antiparticle pairs, and that their communion releases gamma energy, more photons. And it seems by no coincidence that when the particle-antiparticles are reduced to photon energy, they would almost certainly remain as photons, unless by chance they scattered among other photons, producing new matter again.

(BUT), this really shouldn't be about the theories we have but rather, the evidence we already know. If someone denies that matter can't make photon energy (with the evidence showing the contrary, but lets hols this out for now), or that somehow photons are not matter, most scientists would revert to questions like; well how can a photon being a spin 1 particle, create a 1/2 particle? Or perhaps, how can a massless entity make up a massful entity?

Maybe the answers are simple, like it's not only an electron that is created, but in fact a positron is created too? Or perhaps that mass does contain energy like photons, but of the different kind or flux?

Bottom line is, matter is matter, and photons are photons. But if photons can be used to create matter, then maybe matter isn't so... materialistic.

21. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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How did you loose your passport

Anyhow, yes, i just posted something highlighting this problem. We tend to see photons as being distinctively differential to that of matter in general. We have so much math, that even math described the photon as something obeying different laws to that of -- let's say an electron. I've heard the $E=Mc^{2}$ arguement many time by non-scientists as being some kind of proof it has a mass, but this certainly isn't true, as i will quickly show.

Some people like to say that the photon has mass because the photon has energy $E=hf$, where (h) is 'Planck’s constant' and (f) is the frequency of the photon. Thus, they tend to assume that because it has energy (E) it must have mass (M) because of Einstien’s mass-energy equivalence equation $E=Mc^{2}$...

They also say that the photon has momentum, and momentum is related to mass $p = Mv$ where (v) is velocity and (p) is for momentum. Yet, you cannot justify it having mass using this argument. This is actually 'relativistic mass' - which is nothing but the measure of energy which will change with velocity. It isn't actually mass, even though mass and energy are related. In physics jargon, the mass of an object is called its 'invariant mass,' and the photon has no invariant mass. Now, a massless particle can have energy and it can have momentum, simply because mass is related to these through the equation $E^{2} = M^{2}c^{4} + p^{2}c^{2}$, which is subsequently zero-mass for a photon because $E = pc$ for massless radiation (remember, c means the speed of light). So yes, the photon has momenta and energy, and can deliver a punch out of it when it hits a surface, but it doesn't have mass.

Now... a strange situation can arise if light is trapped inside a container. If light is trapped inside of a box with mirrors inside of it, so that it cannot escape, (now the mirrors would need to be cold enough so that the mirrors do not absorb the light-energy), the total momentum is said to be zero, but the energy is not - thus, the light can contribute a very small amount of mass to the box! Now, one can say that the light in the box must have mass to even add any mass to begin with - but actually, it is more accurate to say it contributes to the mass - but do not use this as some kind of justification that light indeed has mass. That is simply not true. A photon can decrease the invariant mass value of $E/c^{2}$ each time a system emits a photon... likewise, a system can increase its invariant mass by a value of $E/c^2$, if it absorbs a photon particle.

Now from this schematic, (the latter part), we can see that something with rest mass can actually have (a photon inside of it). The contending Theory of Luxons says that the picture is very similar. Electrons with rest mass can have photon energy inside of it. Photons with momentum.

22. ### ReikuBannedBanned

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Did you know Newton also postulated the idea?

23. ### SciencelovahRegistered Senior Member

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How did I lose my passport? I apparently leave it in a photocopy machine. I tried
to copy it yesterday. Because of this, I had to postpone my trip.

Well, if photon has energy (E=hf, as you said), then the fact that it is massless
perhaps because its mass is converted into energy. But, do photon really have
energy?

How to measure its energy? To measure energy is not as simple as
to measure mass.