kmMango

New Theory of Dark Matter And Dark Energy Utilizing Negative Masses

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Dr. Jamie Farnes, a physicist at Oxford, has released a paper attempting to explain both Dark Matter and Dark Energy with a single substance producing negative gravitational attraction. Simulations of his model successfully accounted for the galaxy rotation problem that Dark Matter was introduced to account for, as well as the accelerating expansion of the Universe attributed to Dark Energy.

Are there any major flaws with this model at present, either from observations or mathematics alone? How could such a model be verified or disproved? What would the implications be for the Standard Model? And, on the far edge of possibility: could this make an Alcubierre-style FTL drive workable?

Article by the author: http://theconversation.com/bizarre-dark-fluid-with-negative-mass-could-dominate-the-universe-what-my-research-suggests-107922

Download for the paper itself: https://arxiv.org/abs/1712.07962

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IF he is right (and on the face of it, that seems like a decent, though unproven assertion) 

AND IF we can manipulate this matter somehow

AND IF there is a halfway decent source near the Earth that we could use

Then maybe, just maybe, we might get warp drive

But as I'm a geologist, I'll leave an actual physicist to answer properly! 

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Hmmm... Interesting concept, but unless someone can come up with a way of detecting it, I'd wager this will likely remain the domain of theoretical physicists.

And just because it bears out in a computer model doesn't mean it is actually real.

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17 minutes ago, MaverickSawyer said:

And just because it bears out in a computer model doesn't mean it is actually real.

I am aware, but it is always fun to imagine the possibilities. The same could also be said about our current theories of Dark Energy. The idea of an unknown counter-gravitational force that changes strength for unknown reasons over time IMO approaches "How do we make this model function so the last 50 years of work we've done isn't invalid?"

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Trying to think of testable predictions...

Unless I'm misinterpreting, it should be just about impossible to exit a galaxy. As you get closer to the edge of the positive-mass "bubble" region from which all negfluid has been repelled, the repulsive gravitational force would increase, but if you physically impacted some of the negfluid, both the exiting positive-mass object and the negfluid it encountered should experience inward acceleration; according to F=m*a, the acceleration of the negfluid would be opposite the impact force direction. Unlike billiard balls, the two colliding masses would not separate, possibly colliding again and again. I picture an ameoba-like negfluid pseudopod reaching out to smack such objects back where they came from. That seems like the kind of effect astronomers should have noted already.

Presumably this will be peer reviewed at some point. Has it been submitted yet?

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It's interesting work, and the results are notable. However, the paper is far from extensive and a simulation of 50,000 particles is not much to shout about, so I'd stop well short of jumping to any conclusions without further, more detailed, corroborating work.

The biggest hangup for me is that his model is for a "continuously-created negative mass substance". There's something about requiring a substance that has to be constantly created in order for it's effects not to be diluted by spacetime expansion that just doesn't feel right to me - completely non-scientific, I know.

Edited by Steel

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45 minutes ago, HebaruSan said:

Trying to think of testable predictions...

Unless I'm misinterpreting, it should be just about impossible to exit a galaxy. As you get closer to the edge of the positive-mass "bubble" region from which all negfluid has been repelled, the repulsive gravitational force would increase, but if you physically impacted some of the negfluid, both the exiting positive-mass object and the negfluid it encountered should experience inward acceleration; according to F=m*a, the acceleration of the negfluid would be opposite the impact force direction. Unlike billiard balls, the two colliding masses would not separate, possibly colliding again and again. I picture an ameoba-like negfluid pseudopod reaching out to smack such objects back where they came from. That seems like the kind of effect astronomers should have noted already.

Presumably this will be peer reviewed at some point. Has it been submitted yet?

But what about intergalactic stars? They were most likely ejected from galaxies. Also, wouldn't such bubbles prevent galactic collisions? Or at least make them very, very weird looking :D

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24 minutes ago, Scotius said:

But what about intergalactic stars? They were most likely ejected from galaxies.

Right, that's a problem for this theory if my interpretation above is correct. (A gigantic if.)

It also seems like such a fluid would in effect establish a preferred rest frame for the universe, which should be apparent in observations of such stars.

24 minutes ago, Scotius said:

Also, wouldn't such bubbles prevent galactic collisions? Or at least make them very, very weird looking :D

No idea. This is probably stretching the analogy way beyond any justification, but air bubbles under water can merge, so maybe these could too.

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Guys, guys... GUYS! Check this fragment of Wikipedia article on Star Trek TOS:

"

The Federation starship USS Enterprise responds to a distress call from an uncharted planet. A landing party beams down to locate the source, and finds a humanoid male and female, Rojan and Kelinda of the Kelvan Empire, who paralyze Kirk and the landing party, and order Kirk to surrender the Enterprise. Rojan tells Kirk that the Kelvans originate from the Andromeda Galaxy, and have come to find planets suitable for conquest in the Milky Way Galaxy.

As their own ship was destroyed by the negative-energy barrier at the galactic rim, they need the Enterprise to make the 300-year return journey. Three other Kelvans transport aboard the Enterprise, and quickly gain control of the ship."

I don't know about you, but i'm rather spooked right now. :o

Link to the article here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/By_Any_Other_Name

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What about the Bullet Cluster? As I understand it, gravitation lensing shows that the colliding galaxies' dark matter halos have flown off ahead of their gas clouds, which are slowed down due to friction.

1e0657_scale.jpg

Seems like that would be pretty difficult to explain in terms of negfluid. The emptied out "bubbles" would have to have some kind of independent momentum similar to a collection of positive mass, such that they keep moving even after their positive mass companions fall behind.

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1 hour ago, Steel said:

It's interesting work, and the results are notable. However, the paper is far from extensive and a simulation of 50,000 particles is not much to shout about, so I'd stop well short of jumping to any conclusions without further, more detailed, corroborating work.

The biggest hangup for me is that his model is for a "continuously-created negative mass substance". There's something about requiring a substance that has to be constantly created in order for it's effects not to be diluted by spacetime expansion that just doesn't feel right to me - completely non-scientific, I know.

Dark Energy requires the same thing, or a force with similarly variable properties. I feel the same way, it goes against everything else we observe in regard to conservation of mass and what is actually "constant."

As for the whole acceleration issue, I believe he states in the paper that it is possible mathematically for the fluid to have normal behavior inertially but still display repulsive gravitational properties. Otherwise you get a perpetual motion machine from particle collisions as many have pointed out.

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I wonder, wouldn't such change in the way how gravity works make for some form of "refraction" on light from distant galaxies ? I mean, it'll be like seeing through water, with air on both sides ?

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I recall reading a different theory that explains negative matter in a way that is mutually rebelled by positive matter, but is attracted to other negative matter. Janus cosmological model, or something.

Basically, if positive mass is a bunch of beach balls on a rubber sheet, negative mass is a bunch of helium balloons UNDER the rubber sheet. the beach balls clump up in depressions, the baloons clump up in reliefs, and the depressions and reliefs try to stay as far apart as possible.

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1 hour ago, Rakaydos said:

Basically, if positive mass is a bunch of beach balls on a rubber sheet, negative mass is a bunch of helium balloons UNDER the rubber sheet.

But photons are all positive energy (and mass-energy), so what would happen if I pass photons through it ?

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1 minute ago, YNM said:

But photons are all positive energy (and mass-energy), so what would happen if I pass photons through it ?

Someone who knows the math of the theory would be a better answer, but if the analogy of "the opposite side of the spacetime sheet" works, there is nothing for the positive-mass photon to interact with on the positive side of the sheet, only the sheet itself gravitationally.

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31 minutes ago, Rakaydos said:

there is nothing for the positive-mass photon to interact with on the positive side of the sheet, only the sheet itself gravitationally.

But they still interact through the 'sheet'... so will we see a different blueshift/redshift pattern ? Also, would it be possible for an 'reverse-lensing' effect to occur ?

Edited by YNM

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12 minutes ago, YNM said:

But they still interact through the 'sheet'... so will we see a different blueshift/redshift pattern ? Also, would it be possible for an 'reverse-lensing' effect to occur ?

I mean, it's still negative mass, with negative gravity (at least for us positive mass observers), so I would assume so.

The actual math is beyond me, but the information was posted here: https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=43501.0

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10 hours ago, MinimumSky5 said:

Then maybe, just maybe, we might get warp drive

I'm not saying that you're wrong, because you're not, but it's a little bit like saying that because there are negative electric charges, we have Teslas. Also true, and it's hard to complain about that fact, but we've been making great many uses of electricity long before we got to capability to build practical electric cars, and we've found an enormous number of uses for it in the process. Electricity is everywhere, and is at the core of nearly all of our technology.

Negative masses have applications in General Relativity, yes. Among them are warp drives, stable wormholes, and time travel. Nothing to sneeze at, but comes with enormous challenges even if you have negative mass on hand.

In the mean time, consider a 1kg box. It uses electromagnets to levitate a -1kg anti-mass inside of it. You give the external box a light push. What happens? If we learn this little trick, we'll have absolute freedom to explore this star system. Which ought to last us until we do figure out that warp drive thing.

 

In terms of the paper, the idea isn't exactly new. Although, I have not seen quite this thorough of analysis before. The problem is rather that we expect to see indications that this sort of matter exists in the lab. It's obvious why significant quantities of this matter wouldn't be found around. (Though smaller quantities might still orbit as part of star halos.) But we ought to see indications of something like this in particle physics experiments. And we don't. It's very difficult for me to even imagine a possibility of a lighter than vacuum particle (and that's all a 'negative' mass really has to be) that we would not have observed. Moreover, if such a thing existed, it's hard to imagine why vacuum itself wouldn't decay to that state.

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"substance producing negative gravitational attraction"

There are no negative values in real world :-)

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3 hours ago, Cassel said:

There are no negative values in real world :-)

There are no negative absolute values.
But nothing forbids negative relative ones. See: speeed.

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5 hours ago, K^2 said:

I'm not saying that you're wrong, because you're not, but it's a little bit like saying that because there are negative electric charges, we have Teslas. Also true, and it's hard to complain about that fact, but we've been making great many uses of electricity long before we got to capability to build practical electric cars, and we've found an enormous number of uses for it in the process. Electricity is everywhere, and is at the core of nearly all of our technology.

Negative masses have applications in General Relativity, yes. Among them are warp drives, stable wormholes, and time travel. Nothing to sneeze at, but comes with enormous challenges even if you have negative mass on hand.

In the mean time, consider a 1kg box. It uses electromagnets to levitate a -1kg anti-mass inside of it. You give the external box a light push. What happens? If we learn this little trick, we'll have absolute freedom to explore this star system. Which ought to last us until we do figure out that warp drive thing.

 

In terms of the paper, the idea isn't exactly new. Although, I have not seen quite this thorough of analysis before. The problem is rather that we expect to see indications that this sort of matter exists in the lab. It's obvious why significant quantities of this matter wouldn't be found around. (Though smaller quantities might still orbit as part of star halos.) But we ought to see indications of something like this in particle physics experiments. And we don't. It's very difficult for me to even imagine a possibility of a lighter than vacuum particle (and that's all a 'negative' mass really has to be) that we would not have observed. Moreover, if such a thing existed, it's hard to imagine why vacuum itself wouldn't decay to that state.

Off topic, but every time I read one of your comments I do it in Brain's voice and it's hilarious.

Also, why would you assume we would easily find this sort of substance in particle physics? We have yet to find gravitons despite decades of work, neutrinos took 30+ years to find, and these are particles predicted by our current model whose predicted properties we can design tests around. If this negative fluid exists, it is something not currently in the Standard Model by my understanding, and nobody has been explicitly looking for it either. Add in the fact that it would likely have little or no electromagnetic interaction, and is likely only present in very small amounts in our neck of the woods, and it seems to me that finding this stuff would be similar to finding someone else's contact lens in a dark room by pure chance.

Edited by kmMango

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14 hours ago, Steel said:

 

The biggest hangup for me is that his model is for a "continuously-created negative mass substance". There's something about requiring a substance that has to be constantly created in order for it's effects not to be diluted by spacetime expansion that just doesn't feel right to me - completely non-scientific, I know.

Continuously created mass was part of the "static universe theory" wasn't it?  This new theory would be similar to that? 

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5 hours ago, K^2 said:

In the mean time, consider a 1kg box. It uses electromagnets to levitate a -1kg anti-mass inside of it. You give the external box a light push. What happens? If we learn this little trick, we'll have absolute freedom to explore this star system.

That depends on the assumption that negative matter is attracted to positive matter. I linked to work being done on a way to have negative matter in physics that DOESNT give us a perpetural motion machine.

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6 hours ago, Cassel said:

"substance producing negative gravitational attraction"

There are no negative values in real world :-)

There is negative pressure.

16 hours ago, Steel said:

The biggest hangup for me is that his model is for a "continuously-created negative mass substance". There's something about requiring a substance that has to be constantly created in order for it's effects not to be diluted by spacetime expansion that just doesn't feel right to me - completely non-scientific, I know.

Well, yes, it's counter-intuitive, but dark energy already fits the description of "continuously-created stuff" because energy is mass. So nothing new here.

15 hours ago, HebaruSan said:

What about the Bullet Cluster? As I understand it, gravitation lensing shows that the colliding galaxies' dark matter halos have flown off ahead of their gas clouds, which are slowed down due to friction.

1e0657_scale.jpg

Seems like that would be pretty difficult to explain in terms of negfluid. The emptied out "bubbles" would have to have some kind of independent momentum similar to a collection of positive mass, such that they keep moving even after their positive mass companions fall behind.

Yes, this is the part that makes me the most concerned. Dark matter distribution is impressively well-understood and well-documented. I am not yet certain whether this theory adequately explains observations of dark matter distribution. 

I mean, it's a hell of a lot better than MOND, but that's not a high bar.

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