What does an atom look like?
The Rope Hypothesis - An alternative to waves, particles and wave-packets
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The planetary model of the hydrogen atom of contemporary Quantum Mechanics is an unimaginable mathematical concoction that is divorced from Physics and from the real world. In contrast, the EM Thread version is a rational alternative that explains atomic behavior.
A brief history of the atom
The first ones on record to ponder the structure matter in the Western World were Leuccipus and his student Democritus. They proposed an indivisible, particle-like entity that comprises everything that exists. This resilient notion has stubbornly remained in Mathematics for centuries primarily because 'point particles' are 'useful' to explain any phenomenon... much like God. The indivisible particle of Mathematical Physics is not a physical reality, but rather the physical version of the mathematical 'point mass'. The point particle allows the mathematician to model the 'location of the center of mass' of a hypothetical particle and introduce this magnitude as a variable in an equation.
Dalton tackled the nature of matter several centuries later, but did not improve much on Democritus. He merely proposed that atoms of different elements differ by their atomic weight. It wouldn’t be until the second half of the 19th century that researchers invented the tools that would allow them to peer deeper into the world of the small. Perrin would convince himself that cathode 'rays' consist of 'negatively charged' particles, and Thomson concluded that these ‘electrons’ were part of the atom. Ergo, the 'plum pudding' model of the atom came into view: Dalton’s cake, but now with chocolate chips sprinkled throughout.
Two decades later, Rutherford and Bohr demolished Thomson's plum pudding model and replaced it with the planetary model still in use today. The members of the Quantum establishment vehemently deny that Bohr’s orbiting bead is the real McCoy, but they’re the wrong people to ask, partly because they are a small minority, but more significantly because all they can tell you after 80 years of Quantum is what the atom is not.
In the early 1920s, De Broglie suggested that the electron is not a discrete particle that orbits the nucleus, but rather a ribbon that stretches around the nucleus like a lasso circles a cow's neck. Schrodinger and Born synthesized Bohr’s electron planet and De Broglie’s electron ribbon into the cloud model, where the electron is perceived to be everywhere around the nucleus like an eggshell protecting the yolk. The mathematicians decided by consensus that the hydrogen atom, which has a single electron according to theory, is really a dust cloud asphyxiating a small bird trapped inside it. The electron is everywhere at once, a balloon that houses a tiny bowling ball at its center.
However, De Broglie’s ribbon and Born’s cloud are mere footnotes in textbooks. Professors invoke them for the novelty, to entertain their students, and then continue as if nothing to explain every phenomenon, from ionization to electricity, with the orbiting bead. Ask any layperson who completed high school to draw the H atom and you will verify independently what the great majority of the planet perceives. This is not the result of people not having learned properly. It is the result of how they were taught to imagine the atom: as a bead orbiting the nucleus. It is a deliberate deception. No one is keenly made aware that the nonsense you read about in high school textbooks is supposed to be an analogy, not the real thing. But an analogy of what? Is the proton a particle? Yes or no? Is the electron a particle? Yes or no? The H atom of Quantum Mythology is formally described as consisting of a proton particle and an electron particle. In this picture that the mathematicians are painting for us we have two particles: a small one standing next to a larger one. It is also what the Standard Model of Particles Chart prescribes: 1 discrete electron bead + 3 quarks that make up 1 discrete proton bowling ball. What is it that all of these billions of people misunderstood?
Fatal problems with the atomic model proposed by Quantum Mythology
The problem is that Bohr’s planetary model is beyond imagination. It is unfathomable not because we cannot conceptualize a tiny bead next to a bowling ball. It is irrational because we cannot visualize what entity could compel the electron to remain faithful to and orbit the proton. The Quantum model does not justify this most fundamental of behaviors of the atom (…in the absence of a magic wand).
The official version is that an abstract concept known in mathematical circles as a ‘field’ is responsible for binding the electron to the proton. The electron has ‘negative’ ‘charge’ and the proton has ‘positive’ ‘charge’ and somehow the ‘field’ magically creates attraction between ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ ‘charges’. This is like explaining that love or a marriage certificate is the physical entity that glues a man to a woman (although I would not even attempt to venture, for fear of alienating half the world, which of the two is the ‘negative’ pole in this analogy).
The word field was invented by Faraday and means ‘region’. ‘A’ field is a region where something happens. The mathematicians have converted this ‘something-happens-here’ concept into a physical object that now acquires life of its own and keeps the electron faithful to the proton. We could just as well have said that ‘a’ spirit keeps the two particles together and learned just as much.
And charge is yet another abstract concept. So we are two or three orders removed from Physics at this point. The snake oil peddlers of Mathematics are attempting to convince you that they perform experiments in the lab with concepts.
We gobble all this ‘field-charge-positive-negative’ poppycock by rote in high school and no one even dares ask the piercing questions that would make the professor cough. WHAT IS ‘a’ field? WHAT IS ‘a’ charge? What does ‘negative’ or ‘positive’ mean in physical terms? How does the negative pole physically attract the positive? Negative and positive are just convenient descriptions of a phenomenon the mathematicians have yet to understand. And they never will because NO ONE is investigating such issues! There are no funds allocated to the research of basic questions. Consensus is that the search for meaning ended in 1926 at the 5th Solvay Conference. Meaning is for high school students and historians, not for physics scholars.
But more astonishing is that after having shown the mathematician that the Quantum atom amounts to nonsense, he calmly tells the skeptic that the atom is not a physical entity after all. The Standard Model of Quantum Mechanics is not supposed to be taken literally. The mathematicians treat particles as having no size, diameter, or dimensions:
"In operating particle physics' Standard Model, elementary particles are usually represented for predictive utility as point particles, which, as zero-dimensional, lack spatial extension."
The contemporary theoretician does not want to be distracted by architecture. Yet he claims that Mathematics is the language of Physics. He has long ago lost touch with reality and today works exclusively with locations. The 0D ‘particle’ of Mathematics is a euphemism for ‘the center of mass.’ The mathematician doesn’t move what everyone understands for the word ‘particle’: a body. The mathematician moves the concept ‘mass’ (i.e., the ‘weight’ of the particle). The word ‘particle’ has been redefined behind the backs of the ‘masses’ and shows up only in the private jargon of those who belong to the guild. It is when the layman asks the question that he finally realizes that the scholar is saying that there is no real particle performing the action of going around the nucleus. It is also at that point when the layman realizes that he has not been talking to the psychiatrist at the asylum, but to the patient.
The certified ‘physicist’ defends his ignorance by claiming that it is unscientific for the skeptic to request an illustration. “We cannot ‘see’ an atom or parts thereof. We have no way to test the hypothesis.” What the skeptic is proposing, the mathematician argues, is beyond experimental capability and, thus, strictly a philosophical issue.
The first problem with this excuse is that the mathematicians are still operating under the obsolete ‘induction’ version of the Scientific Method bequeathed to them by the 17th Century ‘scholars’, authorities the likes of Descartes, Newton, and Leibniz, which they still look up to. It is tradition and democracy which drives Science today: the show of hands of mathematicians all around the world who have been ‘conditioned’ in the same manner. The worldly wisdom is that anything which cannot be verified through experiment is extra-scientific.
The alibis of the mathematicians fall apart
The architecture of the atom is NOT an issue of verification! We don’t prove through an experiment whether a basketball is spherical or an angel has wings. Whatever an atom looks like in reality is independent of what we believe. Science is not about running experiments or making ‘predictions’, especially in regard to architecture of invisible entities. In Science, the shape of an invisible entity is a matter of assumptions.
Science is about explaining a phenomenon of nature. If the theorist begins his presentation by describing the electron ‘particle’ as a tiny bead that orbits the proton ‘particle’ and then proceeds to explain ionization, he cannot later disavow everything retroactively and say that he was only kidding. He cannot amend his hypothesis as an afterthought and claim that he was referring to a ‘0D location’ which was orbiting the ‘center of mass’. By default, he implied throughout his talk that some shape of sorts, something with surface, something that had length, width, and height was the actor in HIS movie. This is not about what an atom or an electron is in reality. This is about explaining a theory rationally. The theory must be consistent with the objects proposed as actors at the beginning of the show. Otherwise, the explanation is bunk!
But it only gets worse. The mathematicians who usurped the title of physicist boast that they have pictures of atoms sitting in arrays and of gold atoms colliding inside accelerator chambers. The Brookhaven National Lab (BNL) has published a very popular image of such a phenomenon showing the radial dispersal of particles from the collision of two gold ions (Fig. 1).
Fig. 1 The collision of two gold atoms
So? Are we staring at gazillions of 0D particles exploding from ground zero? Does each line in this image depict a trace made by an abstract concept?
The mathematicians have an answer for everything. Otherwise, their amusing religion would collapse in a picosecond. The image is not actually a photograph, but a computer ‘reconstruction’. The folks at the BNL ASSUMED in advance that they were going to deal with particles and programmed the computer accordingly. They did not observe nature. They interpreted the upcoming experiment a priori in terms of particles. It is in like manner that the mathematicians ‘proved’ warped space, virtual particles, dark matter, black holes, the unfathomable wave-packet configuration of the photon, and now the ‘particle’ explosion you are urged to see in the picture. (The word ‘proved’ is also in the mouth of every mathematician and denied at every turn: “We never prove theories, but QM has already been 100 % proved.” The reason the mathematicians insert this crucial term in their writings is to ensure that the theory cannot be collaterally attacked!)
One problem with this collision ‘reconstruction’ is that, admittedly, the smallest detectable entity is a quark. Three quarks make a proton or a neutron. Two gold atoms have a total of 79 protons and electrons and approximately 120 neutrons. When we add all the possible particles we can detect from two gold atoms we end up with:
79 protons x 3 quarks per proton = 237 particles
79 electrons = 79 particles
120 neutrons x 3 quarks per neutron = 360 particles
total = 676 particles
x 2 gold atoms = 1352 particles!
We should see no more than 1400 particles between two gold atoms! In this two-dimensional picture alone we see thousands of particles, not to mention what the number would be if we factor the three-dimensional perspective.
The mathematicians haven’t said so, but they probably have an answer for this question as well. This is a ‘quark-gluon’ soup, and gluons should be included in the count. Since the mathematician doesn’t have to justify anything, for instance how many gluon arrows a quark sheath contains or how it is that a gluon is detected by a photon in order to ricochet and produce the image, he can continue creating as many ad hoc spirits and phantoms as necessary to plug holes in his theory. When General Relativity ran into trouble with the galaxy rotational problem, the mathematicians quickly came up with dark matter to fill in the holes. When they couldn’t figure out why the photon is massless, the mathematicians invented the Higgs. These ad hoc hypotheses rescued Mathematical Physics from total collapse and ensured that the funds in ‘science’ continued flowing to ‘worthy’ causes such as looking for dark matter or discovering the Higgs. LIGO looks for waves and Hubble for black holes. Gravity Probe B went way overboard on its budget, but fortunately it already confirmed General Relativity yet one more time. The gyroscopes ‘proved’ that space is warped like a hammock.
The icing on the cake is that the researchers at BNL can’t tell you what an atom looks like despite that they boast that they can illustrate much smaller gluon and quark particles swimming in a plasma lake. Quarks comprise the proton which is an infinitesimal part of an atom. If you add that the mathematicians also boast to have ‘constructed’ images of individual atoms and accelerated individual electrons during the slit experiment, the inability to illustrate an atom is beyond anybody’s guess! It’s like saying that you have ‘proven’ that the head of the nail that you hammered into the board on the side of your house exists and that you ‘know’ what it looks like, but that you can’t tell me what your house looks like despite that you claim to have taken pictures of your house from a block away!
Of course, if the electron is 0D and ‘a’ field is an abstract concept that not one mathematician can illustrate as a standalone object, it is not surprising that after 80 years of Quantum Magic the mathematicians cannot draw a simple atom consisting of a proton and an electron for you. [Let me do it for them (Fig. 2)]. The official stance is that the theory of Quantum is already proven so there is no need to illustrate anything. Science, they say, is not about illustrating or explaining. Science is about describing everything with 0D particles and passing it down from generation to generation. That largely explains why the Quantum particle is ‘correct’ and confirmed by experiment and ‘proven’… and still under investigation.
Fig. 2 The Quantum H-Atom
The Rope Hypothesis (See Video # 7 for an introduction)
Unlike the elusive 0D particle of Quantum Mythology, the electromagnetic (EM) rope is a real entity and does not amend itself retroactively to self-serve the presenter. The EM thread version of the atom suggests that the atom is weaved by the same threads that comprise the EM rope along which light propagates (Video # 7). The electric and magnetic threads fork out at the perimeter of the electron shell. The electric thread continues straight to the center of the atom and out the other end. The magnetic thread curves around and together with gazillions of other threads arriving from every atom in the Universe, weaves a wavy electron shell (Fig. 3).
The 'quantum jump' that Bohr theorized about implies that the electron shell expands and contracts. By doing so, it constantly torques the EM rope. The torsion signal (light) propagates along the rope to the atom at the other end. When the electron shell expands, the atom 'absorbs’ a link of rope and when it contracts, the atom releases a link of rope. This is the ‘quantum of energy’ that the mathematicians have talked about for a hundred years. The ‘wave’ parameters of Classical Physics – frequency, wavelength, amplitude – are all applicable to the rope model. Therefore nothing dramatic needs to change other than replacing the abstract ‘wave’-length with the physical ‘link’-length. The aggregate of signals leaving and arriving at the perimeter of the atom is what the mathematicians call 'charge'. The following video synthesizes this proposal and illustrates the atom in motion. Specifically, the video shows how the electron quantum jumps and, as a result, produces the torsion signal we know as ‘light’.
In regards to the BNL image, the thread version of the atom certainly does a much better job than 0D particles (Fig. 4).
Below is a cross-section of a hydrogen atom according to the Rope Model. The Prezi illustration allows you to see this atom in more detail.
The wounded mathematician, his pride trampled, his God agonizing on the heavenly deathbed, his religion about to collapse, now viciously counterattacks. “What evidence do you have that light is the result of the torsion along a rope? What experiments have you run, what proof can you provide that an atom is weaved by EM threads? Where are the equations that ‘predict’ architecture of the atom or the speed of light? What is the length or width of this rope? What does your theory predict is the tension on the rope or the number of atoms in the Universe? How does the rope go through another one when atoms move around? Don’t they get tangled?”
Most of the questions merely reveal what is wrong with the 17th Century version of Science that graduates come out of college with today. The mathematicians have been drilled to exhaustion generation after generation that the reason we made progress in Science is because we ‘tested the hypotheses’ and made ‘predictions’. They repeat these arguments like zombies without ever analyzing what they mean.
Actually, we made progress in Technology and none at all in Science (i.e., understanding). The mathematicians can build an electric circuit and make a television work, yet they cannot tell you how one magnet physically attracts another. They can ‘predict’ the exact orbit of Mercury (i.e., of the ‘point mass’), but they cannot tell you rationally what prevents Mercury from escaping the Solar System. And they can ‘predict’ how fast the pen will fall from the table to the floor, but not explain WHY the pen did not fall to the ceiling. The mathematical realm is a world of descriptions. (The infamous ‘predictions’ of Mathematics are nothing more than descriptions.) The mathematicians have equated Science with descriptions and that is all they have today.
However, Science is not about describing without understanding anything, but rather about explaining a phenomenon of nature rationally. By rational I mean that you can make a movie of your theory so that every juror visualizes the same thing. The language of Physics is not Math. The language of Physics is illustration. If you cannot put your theory on the Big Screen, you are not doing Physics!
In order for a theory of Physics to be rational, the movie of your physical theory must invoke the objects introduced at the start of your presentation. The explanation must be objective; no testimony is allowed. Witnesses are barred from testifying in a scientific courtroom. An explanation answers a WHY type of question, addresses cause, and is of the form ‘the X caused the Y to…’.
Science differs from Law in that evidence is inadmissible. The only purpose of evidence is to sway the jury to your side. If in addition, the mathematician decrees that the matter must be submitted to a vote where the voters are HIS peers, we have what is called a Kangaroo Court.
The mathematician is chasing a scarecrow because Science doesn’t care what the majority believes. Science is not democratic. Science cares that the explanation be objective and rational. Theories must be consistent with the objects and definitions that the proponent introduced at the start of his presentation.
And Science doesn’t care whether the explanation was the result of an experiment or a bad dream. 0D particles can have no possible experimental support because we cannot even imagine such monsters, let alone ‘handle’ them in the lab. The 0D particle of Quantum Mythology was not proven through an experiment. It was INFERRED retroactively after observing and conjecturing, no differently for that matter than how the rope hypothesis was inferred. The purpose of the rope is to model observations we already have on the books. The rope configuration of light and the thread version of the atom enable us to explain some of the most fundamental behaviors of light and the atom. The criterion is that if it walks and quacks like a duck…
Now, what each person believes or concludes after the show based on his or her biases and predispositions is his or her personal business and doesn’t concern Science.
More by this Author
EPR has been a thorn in the side of Quantum Mechanics since Einstein formulated the thought experiment in 1935. The Rope Model of Light and Gravity offers a rational physical interpretation to EPR.
Quantum Mechanics provides no sizes or diameters for the particles of the Standard Model. The particle mathematicians accelerate 0D 'point' particles. This may explain why they can't draw an atom.
The Mathemagicians do their juggling with 0D 'particles' at the Quantum Circus. It's a bundle of laughs. They go through the motions of throwing and colliding inexistent balls and pins.