Friday, December 26, 2008

Electric Cosmos: Predictions

Hope everyone had a good holiday.

I'll make a few general comments here about the Electric Universe issue before getting back to my regular creationism topics. I apologize for the 'shotgun' scatter of the topics. I do reserve the right to return to this topic in the future, should something pique my interest or if something interesting happens with my “To Do” topics listed at the end of this post.

Of late, I have examined some of the posts and blogs on Thunderbolts forum. There are loads of flashy claims, but nothing of sufficient rigor that could really be called a 'prediction' in the scientific sense. The EU community seems to think that every astronomical image is something you make up a story to explain. For the EU community, 'you'll get a bright flash' seems to qualify as a 'prediction'. Their research does not consist of collecting data from the huge numbers of public archives and actually analyzing it, but of 'spinning' the latest astronomy press releases to their liking. They naturally hype the small scale stuff since the large scale predictions implied by their models fail so miserably.

Astronomy has long past the stage of taking pictures for aesthetic reasons. Modern CCD imagers record photon counts in specific spectral bands and coordinates that tie back to fluxes emitted by distant objects. Modern theories actually compute those fluxes to match to these observations. In modern astronomy, a rigorous prediction would be: expect a flux between x and y photons/cm^2/s between wavelengths of 300-400 nanometers when the object is at a distance of 2 kiloparsecs. Where are the equivalent predictions from the EU community, with the analysis of how they got the numbers?

The Thunderbolts forum allegedly hosts the 'brains' of the EU community - yet few of them seem be able to handle anything beyond the simplest analyses, most of which are below the level of high-school physics, and even then they are woefully incomplete. Many of the problems in the EU model could be examined at a level of high-school math and physics, yet these Ph.D. electrical engineers can't seem to figure it out!

Consider this video from the EU crowd on YouTube.

Most of their 'predictions' seem to come from misrepresenting well-established science, much like the creationists. Here's a summary of the predictions (bold) mentioned in this video, followed by some of my observations:
  1. Electric flash precedes explosion and more energetic than anticipated. I suspect this event has not been confirmed as an 'electric' event.
  2. No increase in water production in coma. Comets in the inner solar system (short-period comets), because they are more regularly heated by the Sun, may have lost much more of their water than long-period comets which receive much less solar heating.
  3. Surface with craters not expected for 'dirty snowball' model. Where is this claimed in standard model for comets?,
  4. Both of Saturn's poles are 'hot'. Not one hot, the other cold. Hot spot created by flow of electric current along magnetic field lines. A similar process happens on the Earth, just apparently not as persistent as on Saturn.
  5. Io volcanic plumes are actually electric arcs and would be hotter than lava. Claims the flows are too hot to be measured by Galileo's instruments? Moving volcanic plumes? Volcanic plumes move on the Earth but much slower. This is how the island chain of Hawaii was built. Volcanism on Io was predicted before discovery based on the tidal flexing by Jupiter. The temperatures and colors of the lava are consistent with the various forms of sulfur, spectroscopically confirmed on Io.
  6. Martian dust storms from dust devils? Frankly, this prediction makes no sense to me and I suspect it is probably a 'problem' manufactured by the EU community.
There is also a 'predictions' list on the Thunderbolts forum website: Some of these claims overlap the list above, but the one I am already the most familiar with is in regards to supernova SN 1987A.

Here's two predictions from the standard supernova model that are unexplainable in the electric star model:

- Spectral lines of Cobalt & Nickel in ejecta as predicted by SN nucleosynthesis models. Here's some links to the references and original papers.
- neutrino burst from SN 1987A, as predicted in core-collapse nucleosynthesis models
How do 'electric stars' produce cobalt and neutrinos?

Next, I'll summarize the failures of EU model predictions covered in the previous entries in this series:

An "Electric Sky" Response?

Solar Resistor Model:
Electric Cosmos: The Solar Resistor Model
  • predicts magnetic fields 1000-1,000,000 times larger than measured.
  • ignores that current streams of ions and electrons are subject to numerous instabilities which make them break up in short timescales.
Solar Capacitor Model:
Electric Cosmos: The Solar Capacitor Model. I.
Electric Cosmos: The Solar Capacitor Model. II.
  • predicts a solar proton wind 200 times faster than observed.
  • predicts energetic particle fluxes far in excess of what we observe. (protons a billion times larger). They are also far higher than the most deadly regions of the Earth radiation belts, meaning that interplanetary travel would be sure death for astronauts.
  • in situ measurements do not show a high-energy stream of electrons heading towards the Sun.
  • Without an external EMF maintaining the potential between the photosphere and heliopause, the Electric Sun will shut down due to charge neutralization in a very tiny fraction of a second.
So the big problem for the EU advocates is where is the 'battery' or AC generator that drives the Sun and other stars? Their response seems to be “Pay no attention to the EMF behind the curtain!”

Some final comments on the original Thunderbolts thread.

M5k says: “he raises a number of interesting points, especially in the “General Complaints“ section.” M5k is referring to my original document: “The Electric Sky: Short-Circuited”. I can find no followup to any of the issues I raise in this section, such as:
- Where are the robust numerical predictions from the EU community that others can test?
- Can the Electric Sun model reproduce the far-side imagery from helioseismology data that the Standard Solar model has achieved? I have seen no demonstration of this from them. These models are utilized to monitor solar activity for the protection of astronauts and satellites.
- and many others...

Heftruck says: “I never liked deducing “facts” from theory ..”
This statement ignores the fact that these facts are then tested against observations. This process works very well in areas where the science is well understood and even in many cases where the science is not well understood. It is this prediction capability that makes engineering possible. It was this process that helped discover the neutrino before it was detected experimentally, and was even contributed to the development of the atomic bomb - consider that the major players in the U.S. nuclear program, such as Hans Bethe and Edward Teller, were applying nuclear physics to understand the power source of the stars before they participated in the development of nuclear weapons.

So what was actually accomplished by the EU community in discussing my analysis?
  • They have failed to demonstrate any real errors in my analysis.
  • They have failed to demonstrate rigorously that the any revisions they suggest in my analysis will in any way solve the problems I point out in their model.
Finally, here's my current (sic) Electric Universe “To Do List”, subject to change:
  • Complete the Solar Capacitor problem, integrating the Maxwell field equations for the spherically symmetric steady-state case and the spherically-symmetric time-dependent case. Consider asymmetric models if time permits.
  • Read some of the papers by C.E.R. Bruce & H. Zanstra, referenced in the EU page on supernovae. Many of these papers are available freely online through the ADS.
We now return you to our regularly scheduled creationism topics...

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