If you are aware of an interesting new academic paper (that has been published in a peer-reviewed journal or has appeared on the arXiv), a conference talk (at an official professional scientific meeting), an external blog post (by a professional scientist) or a news item (in the mainstream news media), which you think might make an interesting topic for an FQXi blog post, then please contact us at forums@fqxi.org with a link to the original source and a sentence about why you think that the work is worthy of discussion. Please note that we receive many such suggestions and while we endeavour to respond to them, we may not be able to reply to all suggestions.

Please also note that we do not accept unsolicited posts and we cannot review, or open new threads for, unsolicited articles or papers. Requests to review or post such materials will not be answered. If you have your own novel physics theory or model, which you would like to post for further discussion among then FQXi community, then please add them directly to the "Alternative Models of Reality" thread, or to the "Alternative Models of Cosmology" thread. Thank you.

Please also note that we do not accept unsolicited posts and we cannot review, or open new threads for, unsolicited articles or papers. Requests to review or post such materials will not be answered. If you have your own novel physics theory or model, which you would like to post for further discussion among then FQXi community, then please add them directly to the "Alternative Models of Reality" thread, or to the "Alternative Models of Cosmology" thread. Thank you.

Contests Home

Previous Contests

**What Is “Fundamental”**

*October 28, 2017 to January 22, 2018*

*Sponsored by the Fetzer Franklin Fund and The Peter & Patricia Gruber Foundation*

read/discuss • winners

**Wandering Towards a Goal**

How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intention?

*December 2, 2016 to March 3, 2017*

Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.

read/discuss • winners

**Trick or Truth: The Mysterious Connection Between Physics and Mathematics**

*Contest Partners: Nanotronics Imaging, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, and The John Templeton Foundation*

Media Partner: Scientific American

read/discuss • winners

**How Should Humanity Steer the Future?**

*January 9, 2014 - August 31, 2014*

*Contest Partners: Jaan Tallinn, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, The John Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American*

read/discuss • winners

**It From Bit or Bit From It**

*March 25 - June 28, 2013*

*Contest Partners: The Gruber Foundation, J. Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American*

read/discuss • winners

**Questioning the Foundations**

Which of Our Basic Physical Assumptions Are Wrong?

*May 24 - August 31, 2012*

*Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, SubMeta, and Scientific American*

read/discuss • winners

**Is Reality Digital or Analog?**

*November 2010 - February 2011*

*Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation and Scientific American*

read/discuss • winners

**What's Ultimately Possible in Physics?**

*May - October 2009*

*Contest Partners: Astrid and Bruce McWilliams*

read/discuss • winners

**The Nature of Time**

*August - December 2008*

read/discuss • winners

Previous Contests

read/discuss • winners

How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intention?

Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.

read/discuss • winners

Media Partner: Scientific American

read/discuss • winners

read/discuss • winners

read/discuss • winners

Which of Our Basic Physical Assumptions Are Wrong?

read/discuss • winners

read/discuss • winners

read/discuss • winners

read/discuss • winners

Forum Home

Introduction

Terms of Use

RSS feed | RSS help

Introduction

Terms of Use

*Posts by the author are highlighted in orange; posts by FQXi Members are highlighted in blue.*

RSS feed | RSS help

RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

**Marni D. Sheppeard**: *on* 1/7/09 at 3:28am UTC, wrote Thanks for the interesting comments, Michael. I will now take a look at...

**Michael Sherbon**: *on* 1/1/09 at 20:42pm UTC, wrote Hi Lawrence, Now that we're at the beginning of a new year, time for some...

**Lawrence B. Crowell**: *on* 12/31/08 at 22:16pm UTC, wrote If the fine structure constant does not vary by one part in 10^17} in a...

**Michael Sherbon**: *on* 12/31/08 at 18:41pm UTC, wrote Thanks again Lawrence, somehow you've been giving me clues to help with...

**Lawrence B. Crowell**: *on* 12/31/08 at 14:50pm UTC, wrote I cross posted the message above on my site. I will then continue sinly...

**Lawrence B. Crowell**: *on* 12/31/08 at 13:49pm UTC, wrote The A5 icosahdral symmetry is the permutathdral group for sporadic groups...

**Michael Sherbon**: *on* 12/30/08 at 21:25pm UTC, wrote Speaking again of icosahedral symmetry and time as a universal scaling...

**Michael Sherbon**: *on* 12/29/08 at 22:00pm UTC, wrote Speaking of alpha and powers of alpha, "...the electron and its coupling...

RECENT FORUM POSTS

**Georgina Woodward**: ""The motion of the solar system, and the orientation of the plane of the..."
*in* Why Time Might Not Be an...

**Jim Snowdon**: "On the permanently dark side of the Earth, the stars would appear to stay..."
*in* The Nature of Time

**Georgina Woodward**: "Hi Jorma, some thoughts; You mention mutual EM connection. I think you..."
*in* Why Time Might Not Be an...

**Joe Fisher**: "Dear Dr. Kuhn, Today’s Closer To Truth Facebook page contained this..."
*in* Can Time Be Saved From...

**Joe Fisher**: "Dear Dr. Kuhn, Today’s Closer To Truth Facebook page contained this..."
*in* Can Time Be Saved From...

**akash hasan**: "Some students have an interest in researching and space exploration. I..."
*in* Announcing Physics of the...

**Michael Jordan**: "Excellent site. Plenty of helpful information here. I am sending it to some..."
*in* Review of "Foundations of...

**Anonymous**: "Excellent site. Plenty of helpful information here. I am sending it to some..."
*in* Constructing a Theory of...

RECENT ARTICLES

*click titles to read articles*

**Can Time Be Saved From Physics?**

Philosophers, physicists and neuroscientists discuss how our sense of time’s flow might arise through our interactions with external stimuli—despite suggestions from Einstein's relativity that our perception of the passage of time is an illusion.

**Thermo-Demonics**

A devilish new framework of thermodynamics that focuses on how we observe information could help illuminate our understanding of probability and rewrite quantum theory.

**Gravity's Residue**

An unusual approach to unifying the laws of physics could solve Hawking's black-hole information paradox—and its predicted gravitational "memory effect" could be picked up by LIGO.

**Could Mind Forge the Universe?**

Objective reality, and the laws of physics themselves, emerge from our observations, according to a new framework that turns what we think of as fundamental on its head.

**Dissolving Quantum Paradoxes**

The impossibility of building a perfect clock could help explain away microscale weirdness.

RECENT FORUM POSTS

RECENT ARTICLES

Philosophers, physicists and neuroscientists discuss how our sense of time’s flow might arise through our interactions with external stimuli—despite suggestions from Einstein's relativity that our perception of the passage of time is an illusion.

A devilish new framework of thermodynamics that focuses on how we observe information could help illuminate our understanding of probability and rewrite quantum theory.

An unusual approach to unifying the laws of physics could solve Hawking's black-hole information paradox—and its predicted gravitational "memory effect" could be picked up by LIGO.

Objective reality, and the laws of physics themselves, emerge from our observations, according to a new framework that turns what we think of as fundamental on its head.

The impossibility of building a perfect clock could help explain away microscale weirdness.

FQXi FORUM

May 26, 2019

CATEGORY:
The Nature of Time Essay Contest (2008)
[back]

TOPIC: Constants of Nature, Dynamics of Time by Michael A. Sherbon [refresh]

TOPIC: Constants of Nature, Dynamics of Time by Michael A. Sherbon [refresh]

An archetypal model for the constants of nature is found from the ancient geometry of the the Cosmological Circle and is related to Plato's cosmology,with its dynamics and harmonics of time cycles. The inverse fine-structure constant and the proton-electron mass ratio are calculated, connecting fundamental mathematical constants of geometry with the latest theoretical and experimental values of these physical constants. Continuing in the tradition of George Gamow's suggestion, "Since the works of Sir Arthur Eddington, it has become customary to discuss from time to time the numerical relations between various fundamental constants of nature. Although until today such discussions have not led to any practical results - that is, to any valuable road signs toward further development of the theory of the still unclear fundamental facts in physics - it may be of some interest to survey the present status of this `clairvoyant' branch of science."

Michael A. Sherbon is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University interested in the history of science and philosophy.

You're welcome Doug! And hope you enjoy the references too, some of the best kept secrets of nature :-)

New experimental results for the fine-structure constant,

our calculation remains within these error bars:

Combination of Bloch Oscillations with a Ramsey-Bordé Interferometer: New Determination of the Fine Structure Constant

Malo Cadoret,1 Estefania de Mirandes,1 Pierre Cladé,1 Saïda Guellati-Khélifa,2 Catherine Schwob,1 François Nez,1 Lucile Julien,1 and François Biraben1

Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 230801 (2008)

(Received 19 June 2008; published 3 December 2008)

We report a new experimental scheme which combines atom interferometry with Bloch oscillations to provide a new measurement of the ratio h/mRb. By using Bloch oscillations, we impart to the atoms up to 1600 recoil momenta and thus we improve the accuracy on the recoil velocity measurement. The deduced value of h/mRb leads to a new determination of the fine structure constant alpha-1=137.035 999 45 (62) with a relative uncertainty of 4.6×10-9. The comparison of this result with the value deduced from the measurement of the electron anomaly provides the most stringent test of QED.

our calculation remains within these error bars:

Combination of Bloch Oscillations with a Ramsey-Bordé Interferometer: New Determination of the Fine Structure Constant

Malo Cadoret,1 Estefania de Mirandes,1 Pierre Cladé,1 Saïda Guellati-Khélifa,2 Catherine Schwob,1 François Nez,1 Lucile Julien,1 and François Biraben1

Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 230801 (2008)

(Received 19 June 2008; published 3 December 2008)

We report a new experimental scheme which combines atom interferometry with Bloch oscillations to provide a new measurement of the ratio h/mRb. By using Bloch oscillations, we impart to the atoms up to 1600 recoil momenta and thus we improve the accuracy on the recoil velocity measurement. The deduced value of h/mRb leads to a new determination of the fine structure constant alpha-1=137.035 999 45 (62) with a relative uncertainty of 4.6×10-9. The comparison of this result with the value deduced from the measurement of the electron anomaly provides the most stringent test of QED.

I found your paper to be curious. My paper #370 explores how time is a scaling principle or provides a renormalization group. The fine structure constant is of course the zero energy value, where as you probe smaller regions around a charged particle it renormalizes to smaller values than alpha =~ 1/137. I don't know how this links with how you are thinking, but maybe there are connections.

Lawrence B. Crowell

Lawrence B. Crowell

Amazing, you must be somewhat "clairvoyant" too Lawrence B. Crowell! Your response is appreciated, I've been studying Feigenbaum's first constant in connection with the fine-structure constant (n-dimensional hyperspheres and pi). Quoting your note from your essay page...

Time as a Universal Scaling Principle by Lawrence B. Crowell

"I also do think that scaling or renormalization group physics is crucial. To be honest I think that numbers such as the fine structure constant may be determined in the way that Feigenbaum's number is --- or for that matter pi. The alternative is an ambiguity in how the physical vacuum is reached..."

And a clue from some ancient correspondence:

In the Orphic tradition, from the wholeness of Time (the Cosmological Circle) emerge Ether and Chaos, which interact to form the Cosmic Egg of creation. This is usually shown with a great serpent (the Ether) spiraling around the Egg.

See Manly P. Hall, "Lectures on Ancient Philosophy."

How the fine-structure constant derivation here connects with your "how time is a scaling principle" remains as we shall say in a twist on Jens Koeplinger's phrase, "mathematics yet to be 'comprehended'" (ps. in regard to your question about sedenions in the notes to Jens essay, Charles Muses also worked with the Leech lattice). Another possibly important clue from ancient philosophy is simply "harmonic proportion" (from your essay, "The conformal structure means this renormalization group exhibits a fractal or self-similar structure.").

Quoting a portion of another note on your essay page:

"The bigger picture than this involves the Leech lattice /_{24}, which contains 3 E_8's in a Theta function construction... The crux here is that the hyperbolic space is tiled by polytopes with pentagonal symmetry." (The Ether, Quintessence, or "fifth element" was traditionally associated with the pentad)

Thanks, Michael Sherbon

Time as a Universal Scaling Principle by Lawrence B. Crowell

"I also do think that scaling or renormalization group physics is crucial. To be honest I think that numbers such as the fine structure constant may be determined in the way that Feigenbaum's number is --- or for that matter pi. The alternative is an ambiguity in how the physical vacuum is reached..."

And a clue from some ancient correspondence:

In the Orphic tradition, from the wholeness of Time (the Cosmological Circle) emerge Ether and Chaos, which interact to form the Cosmic Egg of creation. This is usually shown with a great serpent (the Ether) spiraling around the Egg.

See Manly P. Hall, "Lectures on Ancient Philosophy."

How the fine-structure constant derivation here connects with your "how time is a scaling principle" remains as we shall say in a twist on Jens Koeplinger's phrase, "mathematics yet to be 'comprehended'" (ps. in regard to your question about sedenions in the notes to Jens essay, Charles Muses also worked with the Leech lattice). Another possibly important clue from ancient philosophy is simply "harmonic proportion" (from your essay, "The conformal structure means this renormalization group exhibits a fractal or self-similar structure.").

Quoting a portion of another note on your essay page:

"The bigger picture than this involves the Leech lattice /_{24}, which contains 3 E_8's in a Theta function construction... The crux here is that the hyperbolic space is tiled by polytopes with pentagonal symmetry." (The Ether, Quintessence, or "fifth element" was traditionally associated with the pentad)

Thanks, Michael Sherbon

The development of associator dependent mathematics comes from a Finsler geometry. The a fibre pi:E ---> M is usually considered as a horizontal construction. Yet consider X = x + ct, or as X = gam(x - ct), where in special relativity gam = 1/sqrt{1 - (v/c)^2). This defines a vertical portion of the bundle on a vector space orthogonal to the horizonal space. The braid system for a quantum group (xy)---(yx) with a noncommutative geometry exist on the horizontal bundle. For s and y corresponding to different quaterionic sectors (triplets etc) the vertical bumdle determines products of the form xy + x(cgt) + y(cg't') + (cgt)(cg't'), (g = gamma) which mix quantum group basis elements by associators. The four product (gt)(g't') obeys the "rule of fives" or the Stasheff associator or pentagon. So two elements of the 24-cell plus its dual, which is a self duality, assigns pairs of elements of the 48 vertex system with the pentagon, or the 120 vertex system of the 600 cell, equivalently its dual the 120-cell.

Nonassociative QM is not unitary, but it preserve Q-bits. On a coarse grained level it leads to the Bogoliubov transformations of states, which appears to be the origin of thermodynamics. This is of course the connection between time and dS/dt >= 0, the second law of thermodynamics.

If there is any connection with what I am doing then your analysis involves the E --> 0 end of the renormalization group. The trajectories leaving the boundary with v =~ c and on the great hyperbolic curves reach it again at v = 0 as time ---> oo. Of course on the boundary the time rates increase enormously, opposite to the slowing down of a clock near a black hole, and so an observer in the AdS could see the particle reach infinity (oo) in a finite time. So this is how the scaling principle works. At E = 0 the coupling constants are at the physical zero energy limit, where alpha = e^2/hbar-c ~ 1/137.

Cheers,

Lawrence B. Crowell

Nonassociative QM is not unitary, but it preserve Q-bits. On a coarse grained level it leads to the Bogoliubov transformations of states, which appears to be the origin of thermodynamics. This is of course the connection between time and dS/dt >= 0, the second law of thermodynamics.

If there is any connection with what I am doing then your analysis involves the E --> 0 end of the renormalization group. The trajectories leaving the boundary with v =~ c and on the great hyperbolic curves reach it again at v = 0 as time ---> oo. Of course on the boundary the time rates increase enormously, opposite to the slowing down of a clock near a black hole, and so an observer in the AdS could see the particle reach infinity (oo) in a finite time. So this is how the scaling principle works. At E = 0 the coupling constants are at the physical zero energy limit, where alpha = e^2/hbar-c ~ 1/137.

Cheers,

Lawrence B. Crowell

Something more to consider, Lawrence, when thinking about a "universal scaling principle."

"The Fine-Structure Constant as a Universal Scaling Factor"

by Malcom H. Mac Gregor

Nuovo Cimento Letters 1, 759-764 (1971)

"This paper describes the universal manner in which the fine structure constant alpha = e^2/hslash*c = 1/137 occurs as a scaling factor in particle masses, particle lifetimes, and stellar densities. The periodicity of metastable elementary particle lifetimes in powers of alpha is displayed, and a phenomenological relationship is deduced between the mass of the muon and the gravitational constant G. This is the first paper by the present author in which the work of Y. Nambu was encountered and included as a reference." www.70mev.org (The Power of Alpha)

report post as inappropriate

"The Fine-Structure Constant as a Universal Scaling Factor"

by Malcom H. Mac Gregor

Nuovo Cimento Letters 1, 759-764 (1971)

"This paper describes the universal manner in which the fine structure constant alpha = e^2/hslash*c = 1/137 occurs as a scaling factor in particle masses, particle lifetimes, and stellar densities. The periodicity of metastable elementary particle lifetimes in powers of alpha is displayed, and a phenomenological relationship is deduced between the mass of the muon and the gravitational constant G. This is the first paper by the present author in which the work of Y. Nambu was encountered and included as a reference." www.70mev.org (The Power of Alpha)

report post as inappropriate

Speaking of alpha and powers of alpha,

"...the electron and its coupling constant alpha generate not only the photon, but also the spectrum of leptons and hadrons. Thus the domain of the fine structure constant alpha seems phenomenologically to be larger than currently believed." p.72 "The Power of Alpha" by M. H. Mac Gregor

(2/3)Muon-electron mass ratio ~ 1/alpha ...from Mac Gregor.

Classical electron radius r(e) = alpha^3 / 4pi(Rydberg constant).

We noted alpha^3, pi, and 1.8 in our essay. 1.8 = 9/5.

((9/5 + (alpha^3 x pi^1/3))^-1 - 3/9 = 0.2222220466 ~ 2/9 radians.

From Carl Brannnen's alternative formulation of density matrices...

"The symmetry breaking between the electron and muon families is by a rotation by the mysterious angle delta."

"To get an exact proportionality, to current measurement error, one replaces 2/9 with ..., 0.22222204717(29)."

From Marni Sheppeard, "the phase angle determining the charged lepton mass matrix, which is 0.22222204717 to within experimental precision: notably close to 2/9.... Since phases usually involve factors of pi...."

"...the electron and its coupling constant alpha generate not only the photon, but also the spectrum of leptons and hadrons. Thus the domain of the fine structure constant alpha seems phenomenologically to be larger than currently believed." p.72 "The Power of Alpha" by M. H. Mac Gregor

(2/3)Muon-electron mass ratio ~ 1/alpha ...from Mac Gregor.

Classical electron radius r(e) = alpha^3 / 4pi(Rydberg constant).

We noted alpha^3, pi, and 1.8 in our essay. 1.8 = 9/5.

((9/5 + (alpha^3 x pi^1/3))^-1 - 3/9 = 0.2222220466 ~ 2/9 radians.

From Carl Brannnen's alternative formulation of density matrices...

"The symmetry breaking between the electron and muon families is by a rotation by the mysterious angle delta."

"To get an exact proportionality, to current measurement error, one replaces 2/9 with ..., 0.22222204717(29)."

From Marni Sheppeard, "the phase angle determining the charged lepton mass matrix, which is 0.22222204717 to within experimental precision: notably close to 2/9.... Since phases usually involve factors of pi...."

Speaking again of icosahedral symmetry and time as a universal scaling principle, also the domain of alpha from Mac Gregor's "elementary particle lifetimes in powers of alpha."

We began with these papers:

Lisa L. Everett, Alexander J. Stuart

"Icosahedral (A5) Family Symmetry and the Golden Ratio Prediction for Solar Neutrino Mixing"(2008) arXiv:0812.1057v2 [hep-ph]

Yuji Kajiyama, Martti Raidal, Alessandro Strumia

"The golden ratio prediction for the solar neutrino mixing"

Phys. Rev. D76:117301,(2007) arXiv:0705.4559v2 [hep-ph]

Then we noticed the solar neutrino mixing angle, theta12.

tan^2 (theta12) = 0.45 = 1.8/4

and also relevant here, (2 x 1.62)^1/2 = 1.8

1.62 is the phi harmonic of the golden ratio.

Or from the exact phi value as the golden ratio,

sin (theta12) ~ 1/(2phi)^1/2

We began with these papers:

Lisa L. Everett, Alexander J. Stuart

"Icosahedral (A5) Family Symmetry and the Golden Ratio Prediction for Solar Neutrino Mixing"(2008) arXiv:0812.1057v2 [hep-ph]

Yuji Kajiyama, Martti Raidal, Alessandro Strumia

"The golden ratio prediction for the solar neutrino mixing"

Phys. Rev. D76:117301,(2007) arXiv:0705.4559v2 [hep-ph]

Then we noticed the solar neutrino mixing angle, theta12.

tan^2 (theta12) = 0.45 = 1.8/4

and also relevant here, (2 x 1.62)^1/2 = 1.8

1.62 is the phi harmonic of the golden ratio.

Or from the exact phi value as the golden ratio,

sin (theta12) ~ 1/(2phi)^1/2

The A5 icosahdral symmetry is the permutathdral group for sporadic groups and E_8. Also the underlying homotopy group describes a nonassociative algebra.

The 24-cell is the minimal sphere packing for four dimensions. The 24-cell (tetrahedachoron) has 24 vertices and 96 edgelinks, where the 24-cell is self dual. So consider the 48-cell given by this cell plus its dual. A reassignment of...

view entire post

The 24-cell is the minimal sphere packing for four dimensions. The 24-cell (tetrahedachoron) has 24 vertices and 96 edgelinks, where the 24-cell is self dual. So consider the 48-cell given by this cell plus its dual. A reassignment of...

view entire post

attachments: dte_ads.gif

I cross posted the message above on my site. I will then continue sinly here. As I see it the values of gauge coupling constants are determined by a renormalization group of running parameterizations. I do think this system is determined by tessellations of polytopes. The system of boosts from cell to cell "maps" fields to the conformal boundary. It would be interesting to know if the endpoints, say when energy E ---> 0 whether the conformal boundary of a space tessellated with 120-cells will have an icosahedral group system. The boundary of the 120-cell are octahedra, which should I think map these as the tessellation of the boundary. This would then potentially set the endpoint (zero energy) value of constants according to the tessellation of the conformal boundary.

With the fine structure constant alpha = e^2/hbar-c, we have that the charge is e = sqrt(4pi eps c^2), where eps is the dielectric constant. Clearly if we try to rescale the speed of light the fine structure constant does not change. After all the speed of light is a parameter which gives the projectivization of spacetime, or blow up of a point. This is of course the light cone. The Planck unit of action is a similar number which defines a projective structure in geometric quantization. In Planck units one can convince yourselves that any change in either hbar or c leaves everything invariant. So in the change in the fine structure constant at high energy, such as at the TeV domain alpha ~ 1/128 involves the dielectric constant of the vacuum, and not either hbar or c.

cheers,

L. C.

With the fine structure constant alpha = e^2/hbar-c, we have that the charge is e = sqrt(4pi eps c^2), where eps is the dielectric constant. Clearly if we try to rescale the speed of light the fine structure constant does not change. After all the speed of light is a parameter which gives the projectivization of spacetime, or blow up of a point. This is of course the light cone. The Planck unit of action is a similar number which defines a projective structure in geometric quantization. In Planck units one can convince yourselves that any change in either hbar or c leaves everything invariant. So in the change in the fine structure constant at high energy, such as at the TeV domain alpha ~ 1/128 involves the dielectric constant of the vacuum, and not either hbar or c.

cheers,

L. C.

Thanks again Lawrence, somehow you've been giving me clues

to help with what I have been studying. I was thinking about octahedra yesterday, and it stayed with me, even had a dream with the "big geometry screen", then you even provide pictures! So lots more to consider! :-)

Posted this to Marni Sheppeard's essay page yesterday:

Seems the idea of changing constants is more fashionable than the constants themselves. Anyway, about alpha, "New optical clock promises increased accuracy" - physicsworld.com

"...the improved accuracy of the optical clock has led the researchers at NIST to look at whether the fine-structure constant, which governs how light and electrons interact, has actually been changing over time. By measuring the ratio of clock frequencies for aluminium and mercury the researchers at NIST have concluded that the fine structure constant is not changing to within 1.6 x 10-17 per year. Indeed, they believe they have met the required precision to say that it is not changing at all. “This measurement of the ratio of aluminium and mercury clock frequencies is the most accurate known physical constant,” says Rosenband."

to help with what I have been studying. I was thinking about octahedra yesterday, and it stayed with me, even had a dream with the "big geometry screen", then you even provide pictures! So lots more to consider! :-)

Posted this to Marni Sheppeard's essay page yesterday:

Seems the idea of changing constants is more fashionable than the constants themselves. Anyway, about alpha, "New optical clock promises increased accuracy" - physicsworld.com

"...the improved accuracy of the optical clock has led the researchers at NIST to look at whether the fine-structure constant, which governs how light and electrons interact, has actually been changing over time. By measuring the ratio of clock frequencies for aluminium and mercury the researchers at NIST have concluded that the fine structure constant is not changing to within 1.6 x 10-17 per year. Indeed, they believe they have met the required precision to say that it is not changing at all. “This measurement of the ratio of aluminium and mercury clock frequencies is the most accurate known physical constant,” says Rosenband."

If the fine structure constant does not vary by one part in 10^17} in a year, this means that through the entire period of the universe since the CMB "end of opaqueness" that the constant has not changed by any more than on part in 10^7. This appears reflected in measurements of atomic spectra from distant galaxies. So I suspect that it is an absolute number at zero energy. Of course once you probe into short distances within the Compton wavelength of a charged particle, such as the electron, vacuum polarizations renormalize this value to larger numbers. At EW unification alpha ~ 1/128 or so.

Lawrence B. Crowell

Lawrence B. Crowell

Hi Lawrence, Now that we're at the beginning of a new year, time for some reflection. Actually, and briefly, it was the mystery of the running value of alpha that helped with the first formulation for alpha. I was studying an analog harmonic mapping of energy density which was determined in part by the Fibonacci sequence. The lower limit of one portion of a quadrispiral mapping, a Fibonacci number, and the golden ratio; were central to calculating the value for alpha.

Login or create account to post reply or comment.