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How to Detect a Fourth Dimension of Space?


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#1    Visceral

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Posted 28 May 2006 - 01:44 PM

Scientists Predict How to Detect a Fourth Dimension of Space

Scientists at Duke and Rutgers universities have developed a mathematical framework they say will enable astronomers to test a new five-dimensional theory of gravity that competes with Einstein's General Theory of Relativity.

Charles R. Keeton of Rutgers and Arlie O. Petters of Duke base their work on a recent theory called the type II Randall-Sundrum braneworld gravity model. The theory holds that the visible universe is a membrane (hence "braneworld") embedded within a larger universe, much like a strand of filmy seaweed floating in the ocean. The "braneworld universe" has five dimensions -- four spatial dimensions plus time -- compared with the four dimensions -- three spatial, plus time -- laid out in the General Theory of Relativity.

The framework Keeton and Petters developed predicts certain cosmological effects that, if observed, should help scientists validate the braneworld theory. The observations, they said, should be possible with satellites scheduled to launch in the next few years.

If the braneworld theory proves to be true, "this would upset the applecart," Petters said. "It would confirm that there is a fourth dimension to space, which would create a philosophical shift in our understanding of the natural world."

The scientists' findings appeared May 24, 2006, in the online edition of the journal Physical Review D. Keeton is an astronomy and physics professor at Rutgers, and Petters is a mathematics and physics professor at Duke. Their research is funded by the National Science Foundation.

The Randall-Sundrum braneworld model -- named for its originators, physicists Lisa Randall of Harvard University and Raman Sundrum of Johns Hopkins University -- provides a mathematical description of how gravity shapes the universe that differs from the description offered by the General Theory of Relativity.

Keeton and Petters focused on one particular gravitational consequence of the braneworld theory that distinguishes it from Einstein's theory.

The braneworld theory predicts that relatively small "black holes" created in the early universe have survived to the present. The black holes, with mass similar to a tiny asteroid, would be part of the "dark matter" in the universe. As the name suggests, dark matter does not emit or reflect light, but does exert a gravitational force.

The General Theory of Relativity, on the other hand, predicts that such primordial black holes no longer exist, as they would have evaporated by now.

"When we estimated how far braneworld black holes might be from Earth, we were surprised to find that the nearest ones would lie well inside Pluto's orbit," Keeton said.

Petters added, "If braneworld black holes form even 1 percent of the dark matter in our part of the galaxy -- a cautious assumption -- there should be several thousand braneworld black holes in our solar system."

But do braneworld black holes really exist -- and therefore stand as evidence for the 5-D braneworld theory?

The scientists showed that it should be possible to answer this question by observing the effects that braneworld black holes would exert on electromagnetic radiation traveling to Earth from other galaxies. Any such radiation passing near a black hole will be acted upon by the object's tremendous gravitational forces -- an effect called "gravitational lensing."

"A good place to look for gravitational lensing by braneworld black holes is in bursts of gamma rays coming to Earth," Keeton said. These gamma-ray bursts are thought to be produced by enormous explosions throughout the universe. Such bursts from outer space were discovered inadvertently by the U.S. Air Force in the 1960s.

Keeton and Petters calculated that braneworld black holes would impede the gamma rays in the same way a rock in a pond obstructs passing ripples. The rock produces an "interference pattern" in its wake in which some ripple peaks are higher, some troughs are deeper, and some peaks and troughs cancel each other out. The interference pattern bears the signature of the characteristics of both the rock and the water.

Similarly, a braneworld black hole would produce an interference pattern in a passing burst of gamma rays as they travel to Earth, said Keeton and Petters. The scientists predicted the resulting bright and dark "fringes" in the interference pattern, which they said provides a means of inferring characteristics of braneworld black holes and, in turn, of space and time.

"We discovered that the signature of a fourth dimension of space appears in the interference patterns," Petters said. "This extra spatial dimension creates a contraction between the fringes compared to what you'd get in General Relativity."

Petters and Keeton said it should be possible to measure the predicted gamma-ray fringe patterns using the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope, which is scheduled to be launched on a spacecraft in August 2007. The telescope is a joint effort between NASA, the U.S. Department of Energy, and institutions in France, Germany, Japan, Italy and Sweden.

The scientists said their prediction would apply to all braneworld black holes, whether in our solar system or beyond.

"If the braneworld theory is correct," they said, "there should be many, many more braneworld black holes throughout the universe, each carrying the signature of a fourth dimension of space."

Source: Duke University

http://www.physorg.com/news67773542.html


#2    Master Sage

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Posted 28 May 2006 - 06:12 PM

Wow. thts interesting.

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#3    ROGER

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Posted 28 May 2006 - 11:02 PM

Most of the gravitational effects of inter-solar bodies has been studied and the movements of the larger masses accounted for. True there are many small bodies not yet seen or identified ,  but even comets with orbits from far beyond Pluto's orbit have had their orbits plotted. Would not an even small Black Holes gravitational effect have been observed in the last 30 years if thousands are part of our system?

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#4    HurtingSpirit

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Posted 29 May 2006 - 03:43 AM

Quote


Most of the gravitational effects of inter-solar bodies has been studied and the movements of the larger masses accounted for. True there are many small bodies not yet seen or identified ,  but even comets with orbits from far beyond Pluto's orbit have had their orbits plotted. Would not an even small Black Holes gravitational effect have been observed in the last 30 years if thousands are part of our system?



I'm taking a shot in the dark here however.

Wouldn't the effects that a black hole would have on these objects, make it seem as if it was part of the objects normal trajectory?

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#5    Reincarnated

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Posted 29 May 2006 - 04:54 AM

beat me to posting this original.gif roger thinks he's a walking encyclopedia.


#6    ROGER

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Posted 30 May 2006 - 06:12 AM

tongue.gif Sorry, my point is that body's in our space neighborhood are all fairly circular . If some thing shifts a planet , comet or moon the cause of the shift would have been seen before now.

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#7    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 12:42 PM

Quote


I'm taking a shot in the dark here however.

Wouldn't the effects that a black hole would have on these objects, make it seem as if it was part of the objects normal trajectory?


No they wouldn't. The gravitational effect of an unknown body can not be taken into account. It would alternately seem to push or pull the known object from it's expected orbital path. This was how Neptune was discovered.

In answer to Rogers question: as the original post says, these black holes have only the mass of a tiny asteroid. They would, therefore, only exert the same gravitaional effect as a tiny asteroid, which is too small for us to detect. This is why they need the microlensing method to find them (if they are there).

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#8    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 31 May 2006 - 12:43 PM

Quote


beat me to posting this original.gif roger thinks he's a walking encyclopedia.


There is no need to make personal comments, particularly to a valid point or question.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#9    D.vandyke

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Posted 10 June 2006 - 05:05 PM


Quote


No they wouldn't. The gravitational effect of an unknown body can not be taken into account. It would alternately seem to push or pull the known object from it's expected orbital path. This was how Neptune was discovered.

In answer to Rogers question: as the original post says, these black holes have only the mass of a tiny asteroid. They would, therefore, only exert the same gravitaional effect as a tiny asteroid, which is too small for us to detect. This is why they need the microlensing method to find them (if they are there).


WRONG!!!!!


There are three other points of tension between quantum mechanics and general relativity. First, general relativity predicts its own breakdown at singularities, and quantum mechanics becomes inconsistent with general relativity in a neighborhood of singularities. Second, it is not clear how to determine the gravitational field of a particle, if under the Heisenberg uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics its location and velocity cannot be known with certainty. Finally, there is a tension, but no logical contradiction, between violations of Bell's inequality in quantum mechanics, which imply superluminal influence, and the speed of light as a speed limit in relativity. The resolution of the first two points may come from a better understanding of general relativity!!!




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#10    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 10 June 2006 - 10:18 PM

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WRONG!!!!!


There is no need to shout, This is considered by some to be rude.

Quote


There are three other points of tension between quantum mechanics and general relativity. First, general relativity predicts its own breakdown at singularities, and quantum mechanics becomes inconsistent with general relativity in a neighborhood of singularities.


True but that would be inside the event hoizon. As I understand it, outside of the event horizon singularities act like any other bodyin the way that they distort space time.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#11    shun

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Posted 11 June 2006 - 12:22 AM

"I was right behind you buddy, and you were doing 65 in a 55. Let's see your license."

"No I wasn't. I was impelled by a passing primordial non-Hawking 1 kilogram black hole!"

"Oh, sorry. Well, have a nice day."

or

"You were doing 75 in a 55. Let's see your license."

"No I wasn't. I was impelled by a passing primordial non-Hawking 1 kilogram black hole!"

"That's even worse. I clocked you on radar, so given the attolensing effect, you were actually going faster, because of the delayed return. Subtracting the effects of a braneworld dark matter singularity, your initial speed was still ten miles an hour over the speed limit. Here you go, sir. Have a nice day."





#12    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 June 2006 - 12:28 AM

This conversation has gone way over my head. I think I'll stand back and wait until an explanation I can understand comes along.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#13    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 June 2006 - 01:05 AM

I have just noticed that this is a duplicate thread (my fault, I suspect, as I started the first one but placed it in the Science & Technology instead of this one). To prevent continued duplication I am going to close this thread (I suspect that merging the two would lead to confusion (I don't need that, I'm confused enough already).

If you wish to contribute to this subject please follow this link: How to Detect a Fourth Dimension of Space

Thank you,
Waspie_Dwarf

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf, 11 June 2006 - 01:06 AM.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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