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Returning to our definition of the aether, we can now explain how inertial matter comes into existence. We can also explore the electron and proton in more detail.

Electron-positron pair production

Photons sometimes pop into an electron-positron pair. The more energetic a photon is, the more likely this is to happen. However, vacuum space will produce electron-positron pairs if under sufficient electrical stress, which means that even zero-point photons can be torn apart.

This indicates that photons are dielectric assemblies, with one part corresponding to an electron and the other part corresponding to a positron.

Sticking with our definition of energy as size, we can say that any increase in size from photon to resulting electron-positron pair is due to added energy. In cases where photons are highly energetic, the size difference is small. However, sparks and flashes of lightning are generally associated with electron-positron pair production. Energy is an important ingredient, so the resulting electron-positron pairs are almost always larger than the photons that produced them.

Beyond this, the transformation has some notable aspects:

  • There’s a dramatic slow down in speed
  • Non-inertial matter is turned into inertial matter that can move at variable speeds
  • There’s no known intermediary state
Electron-positron pair production from photon
Electron-positron pair production from photon

The only way something can move freely within the constraints of the aether is by letting the aether travel freely trough it. There’s no intermediate state in this, and hence no intermediate state in electron-positron pair production.

The process isn’t merely a matter of tearing photons apart, it involves a phase change as well. Photons, opaque to the aether, are turned into electron-positron pairs that are transparent to the aether.

It should be noted that photons remain opaque to the aether regardless of their size. Gamma-rays can be as large as the electron-positron pairs that they produce. However, they remain opaque to the aether as long as they remain in their photon state. Why this is so is not currently explained by our theory.

Lifecycle of protons

We now have a mechanism for the production of electron-positron pairs. However, if this was the end of our story, we wouldn’t end up with the universe we know. We would end up with an empty universe, filled only with radiation, because electron-positron pairs don’t form atoms. They annihilate into gamma-rays. For atoms to form, we need protons.

Electron-positron annihilation yields one gamma-ray photon
Electron-positron annihilation yields one gamma-ray photon

We don’t have an exact mechanism for how protons are formed, but we do have an explanation for how and why they exist. The proton is larger than the electron because positively charged particles interact constructively with each other while negatively charged particles don’t. It’s therefore possible to assemble large positively charged particles that are stable. This was explained in the chapter on four stable particles.

Proton creation must necessarily happen immediately after electron-positron pair creation. Otherwise, all positrons will be lost to subsequent annihilation. It’s therefore reasonable to suggest that protons are created in the same environment that electron-positron pairs are created. Intense electric stress doesn’t only create electron-positron pairs, it creates protons as well.

Paul Leader, who came up with this idea, points to the centre of galaxies as places where protons are created. The reason for this is that the centre of galaxies tend to emit large quantities of gamma-rays. Positrons that fail to form into protons recombine with electrons to produce gamma-ray radiation. Gamma-rays are therefore a sign of proton creation.

Paul Leader further suggests that protons gain mass over time, as suggested by Halton Arp in his work. This gives an alternative explanation for red-shift of quasars. It also helps explain why galaxies rotate the way they do.

Protons become larger over time through mass condensation. However, this process cannot continue indefinitely. This is especially true if the universe is eternal. Protons must ultimately be destroyed and returned to the aether from where they came.

Paul Leader suggests that protons start off small at the centre of galaxies, that they become larger as they progress out to the outer reaches of galaxies, and that they evaporate back into photons, electrons and positrons at the cold and dark extremes of these structures.

Assuming that charge separation keeps some electrons and positrons from recombining, electrical currents will form. These will eventually grow sufficiently large to start anew the process of galaxy formation and associated proton production.

This is not as speculative as it may seem. Protons are constantly being smashed to bits in our atmosphere. Protons that are destroyed in this way split into proton fragments called pions.

Pions invariably decay into photons, electrons, positrons and various flavours of neutrinos. This sometimes happens through an intermediate particle called a muon. However, the end result is always the same. A smashed proton evaporates into various types of radiation in less than a second.

Minimum sizes and uncertainties

Before we go on to explain the phenomenon of inertia, let us first relate our theoretical framework concerning distances and time to the real world.

The first thing to note is that we, and everything we directly interact with, are made up of inertial matter. This has consequences when it comes to how we measure things, not because of any technological shortcomings, but because of real world limits.

Suppose we want to measure distance. To do this, we’ll need a ruler. Such a ruler must naturally be made of inertial matter. Otherwise, it would fly about at the speed of light. The smallest possible bit of stable inertial matter that we can use as a ruler, at least in theory, is therefore the electron.

To measure time as precisely as theoretically possible, we take the electron, and define a tick of our super-precise clock as the time it takes a photon to traverse its circumference. The reason we cannot arbitrarily choose a shorter distance is that our clock must necessarily register the tick. Something physical has to happen to the electron. It has to go from one state to another. For this to happen, energy has to be moved into or out of the electron. Either way, the process involves the entire electron.

We now have our real world unit length and unit time, corresponding to the theoretical unit length and unit time described at the start of this book. No distance shorter than 1 unit length can ever be measured with certainty. Similarly, no time shorter than 1 unit time can ever be pinned down. Our unit distance and unit time are:

  • 1 unit distance = the circumference of an electron
  • 1 unit time = 1 unit distance / speed of light
Photon traversing the circumference of an electron
Photon traversing the circumference of an electron

In our physical existence, there’s a limit to how precise we can be. There is therefore an inescapable uncertainty related to everything. Since we have no way to pin down exactly where and when things happen, we cannot make any predictions with absolute certainty.

Furthermore, things that happen faster than 1 unit time, cannot be registered in any way as being anything but instantaneous. No matter how we try to measure such super-fast events, we end up with missing information about the state of things between each tick of our clock.

This doesn’t mean that nothing takes place in the intermediate time. It only means that whatever takes place cannot in any way be properly measured or registered. While it’s possible to spot an intermediate state, quite by chance, such states cannot be reliably interpreted. They will be indistinguishable from random noise.

On a final note, we must at all times keep in mind that the unit length and unit time described here are real physical entities, with real physical implications. All forces and energies are implicated by this. When we later in this book investigate phenomena related to time and space, it’s important to remember that there’s no difference between measured time and physical time.

If our unit time speeds up or slows down relative to other clocks in other locations, we’re dealing with different reference frames. The laws of physics remain unchanged by this. Local measurement will discover no change to our environment, even if time seems to be grinding to a halt as seen from some external reference frame.

< Optics ———— | ———— Kinetics >

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