Saturday, April 9, 2011

Geocentrism: Does NASA use Geocentrism?

Here's the rest of my response to James Phillips, from his comment:

“Is it true that N.A.S.A. uses the geocentric model rather than the heliocentric model and if so what is their rationale for doing so.“

This is a very poorly worded question.  The short answer is, “Of course they do - where appropriate.”  

They use longitude, latitude, and altitude when it is the convenient unit of measure - and they use these quantities on the Earth, Moon, Mars, etc.  Why would they not?  Why would you reference everything with heliocentric coordinates if you are in orbit around the Earth?  Or in orbit around Mars?  The heliocentric coordinates are just a coordinate transformation away from any other coordinate system you choose to use.

You use the model appropriate to the scale of the problem you are solving. A geocentric model can be sufficiently accurate near the Earth, but deviates as one moves further away from the Earth.  When traveling between planets, NASA routinely transitions between the frame of the Earth, to the heliocentric frame, and to the frame of the target planet when the spacecraft gets near. 

NASA also has datasets where the Earth is treated as FLAT.  I'm sure the Flat Earthers will regard that as vindication for their interpretation of Scripture (Wikipedia, Flat Earth Society).

Near Earth

For near Earth trajectories, the coordinate system of choice is GEI (Geocentric Earth Inertial) which is fixed with respect to the distant stars. This is the one you use to compute your trajectories as Newton's laws and gravity apply in their simplest form.

If you want to know where your satellite is visible from the surface of the Earth, you use GEO (Geocentric body-fixed) which rotates with respect to GEI.   It is simple to convert between these two systems (unless you want to include nutation), just a rotation around the z-axis that completes one rotation in a sidereal day.   This coordinate system is often used for transferring data to and from tracking stations.  Other coordinate systems I've used in my day job are described here: Coordinate systems and transformations, GEOPHYSICAL COORDINATE TRANSFORMATIONS.

There are similar planetocentric coordinate systems used for close flybys and orbits by spacecraft.

Since there are a number of spacecraft at Mars, which coordinate system do you think they use for tracking spacecraft?  See MSL Update to Mars Coordinate Frame Definitions (2006), pg 6:
“When a spacecraft is in the vicinity of Mars, it is convenient to utilize Mars-centered coordinate systems. These are systems that are centered at the center of the planet itself, as opposed to the system barycenter or on the planet surface. The systems described here are utilized regularly by the flight operations and mission planning teams for JPL Mars missions.”
Beyond the Earth

If you want to compute trajectories farther from the Earth, say to go to Venus, or Mars, or beyond, you compute the trajectories in a heliocentric system (or more accurately a heliocentric barycenter system), again because the laws of motion and gravity apply in their simplest form, which means you can compute future (or past) positions more accurately. There are two methods for doing this.
  1. Compute planetary positions as a full N-body simulation (Scholarpedia).
  2. There are algorithms which start with a reference elliptical orbit (heliocentric barycenter) and then compute how the gravitational forces from the other planets perturb that orbit. These perturbations show up as slow variations in the orbital parameters (called Secular variations of the planetary orbits, or VSOP). From that, you install your spacecraft position and velocity, subject to the same laws of motion and gravity. Once you know the position of your spacecraft in the heliocentric frame, you can compute where the object would appear from any other location by using a coordinate transformation, such as those described above. You would convert to the GEO system if you wanted to know where to point an Earth-based antenna to send commands to your spacecraft or receive data.
Check out JPL: Basics of Space Flight: Interplanetary Trajectories.  The web tool JPL: Solar System Dynamics: HORIZONS Web-Interface computes trajectories of many solar system objects and can transform the positions as they would appear at other locations in the solar system. The FAQ on the Horizons system also has info on computing planetary positions which I have utilized.

Orbital dynamics is so precise, we can compute trajectories decades before an actual launch. We can compute if existing boosters have the capability to send a spacecraft onto a given trajectory. If we need a new booster to handle more distance, higher speed, or more payload, we can compute those requirements before we cut a single piece of metal to build it. We don't build the biggest rocket we can, fuel it up, and hope it makes it to the destination. How is that done? (For those who want to bring up the Pioneer Anomaly (Wikipedia), it is looking more and more like this is not new physics, but a very tiny thrust created by emission of heat from the spacecraft).

Strange Way to Run a Cover-up...

This is not just a NASA thing.  ESA, Japan, India, China and other countries are sending spacecraft to other planets. Are they part of the coverup as well? All the data and mathematics for computing interplanetary trajectories are a matter of PUBLIC record. Many of these techniques were developed over 100 years before NASA even existed. Amateur astronomers who understand the math can do these computations on their desktop computers to far higher accuracy than those researchers from the 1700s to the 1950s who developed the techniques via hand calculation, slide-rule, and adding machine. Today, this is a project of college undergraduates (see Interplanetary Trajectory Development). I ran simple solar system models on an N-body code I wrote on an Apple II(Wikipedia) back in 1980 while an undergraduate.

With so many people who have the knowledge of how to do this, it's a strange way to run a 'conspiracy' against Geocentrism (Moving-World DECEPTION).

The Real Conspiracy?

Perhaps the more interesting question would be what computations are the supporters of Geocentrism Galileo was Wrong using when they do their graphics? How are they computing the position of, say Jupiter, in the sky on a given date and to what accuracy? Can they compute when the ISS will pass over my location? Are their graphics constructed using software where the computations are in a heliocentric system or are they doing the computations themselves in a geocentric system?

If they're doing the computations themselves, why don't they show their work so that others can use (and test) them as well?

Here's the NASA info on trajectory and navigation for spacecraft:
Here's some work by people OUTSIDE of NASA
Some months ago, Rick DeLano claimed that Geocentrism could explain the Lagrange points, five points of stability in the restricted 3-body problem (Wikipedia), and one of the predictions of Newtonian gravity and laws of motion. I challenged him to demonstrate it, considering that we make use of these locations in a number of operating space missions.
The Geocentrists have been strangely silent on this.

If you taught Geocentrism in a physics class, how would you use this knowledge to plan spacecraft missions?

Here's a syllabus of an astrodynamics class at Georgia Tech.  This is training for people to really do this work.  I wonder if any of the Geocentrists could do the homework problems posted here.  How would they answer the practical problems of interplanetary navigation in a Geocentric model?  As yet, Geocentrists have not demonstrated any competence in this field where they claim so much knowledge.  Unless you believe all spaceflight is a hoax (or you chicken out and just claim everything beyond Earth orbit is a hoax), your only other choice with Geocentrism is to terminate all space flight, leaving space travel to other countries less entrenched in dogma.

These are not idle questions of only philosophical interest.  Billions of dollars in space assets, the lives of astronauts, even national security, rely on doing this stuff right.  Would you trust these things to those who have not demonstrated any competence in the topic?


Anonymous said...

Dr. Bridgman,

Many thanks for taking a stab at answering my question. I'm sorry it was not better worded. I found your answer rather intriguing.

More than anything though, I am so happy that you generously provided the link to Dr. Sungenis' blogsite -- Perhaps not surprisingly, he also has another site for his 2 volume work on geocentrism: If the chapter samples on the site are any indication it would seem to cover every imaginable aspect of the controversy -- and in a seemingly even handed way. They even toss a free CD-ROM in if you get both volumes! I would think that would be helpful in trying to understand how exactly the geocentric model works in comparison to the heliocentric model. Would you recommend Dr. Sungenis' work to someone who wanted to take a serious look at both sides of the heliocentric/geocentric debate?

Many thanks for any feedback on this.


W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...

There is no 'debate' on geocentrism.

Sungenis' geocentrism claims are useless from a scientific and technical perspective. You can't use his claimed 'knowledge' to actually navigate in space. I've seen no evidence that his 'theory' can answer any of the questions that must be dealt with by satellite designers and astronauts.

Sungenis' 'evidence' consists of selective interpretation of the geometric fact that you can move your coordinate origin to any convenient location - including the Earth - and ignoring the fact that this trick applies everywhere. He completely ignores the dynamical aspects of the problem that make these coordinate systems different when actually moving from planet to planet. The really funny part is he is basically using a relativistic argument to make his case, then tries to prove relativity wrong.

johnmartin said...

Dr. Bridgman

You asked questions concerning lagrange points and space flight paths using geocentrism. It seems to me that if relativity is correct and the earth can be considered as moving, the calculations are then performed in the usual way and then a transform is completed to a stationary earth inertial reference frame. This would enable the flight path and lagrange points to be calculated.

Alternatively a mathematical model of a geocentric universe would have to be constructed and the forces caused by the rotating universe included within the calculations to directly calculate the lagrange points and flight paths. According to GWW such mathematical models have been constructed by physicists.

If relativity is correct at least according to inertial reference frames, then a rotating and moving shell of stars will produce the same forces on a body as a rotating and moving earth against the fixed stars.

Some questions for your consideration –

Q1 - according to Kepler’s first law, "The orbit of every planet is an ellipse with the Sun at one of the two foci.", yet the center of mass of the sun is always moving around the solar system barycenter. Therefore, as the foci of the planets ellipse moves, does this therefore invalidated the first law, or does the entire ellipse move with the moving foci at the center of the sun?

Q2- If the planet actually orbits the solar system barycenter, why then does Kepler’s first law say otherwise?

Q3 - Doesn't the solar system barycenter exclude the center of the sun as being a foci of the planets elliptical orbit?

Q4- If Kepler’s first law is used in planetary flight paths, this means the solar system barycenter must be ignored, which thereby seems to invalidate Newton’s laws of motion around a common barycenter. Please comment.

Q5- Why do Kepler’s laws assume all planets have an elliptical flight path, yet when we take into account the Earth-moon system, the earth moves around the Earth - moon barycenter every month whilst moving along its orbital path around the sun. If the trace out the flight path of the earth relative to the center of mass of the sun as the foci of the ellipse, the earth cannot possibly be traveling in an ellipse, but must move through "absolute space" in a flower pattern centered on the solar system barycenter. As the earths flight path does not fit into the elliptical orbit pattern required by Kepler’s laws, how are Kepler’s laws used to accurately determine the flights paths of other planets relative to the earth?

Q6 - If the earth is orbiting around the Earth-moon barycenter every month, why don’t we see the apparent motion of the sun around the earth vary in velocity as the earth gains and loses a velocity component due to its motion relative to the “fixed” sun? In other words – during the monthly cycle there is a time when the earth must orbit in a prograde manner relative to the sun, when orbiting the earth –moon system. Later during the month, the earth continues its earth-moon barycenter motion and must move in a retrograde motion relative to the fixed sun.

johnmartin said...

Q7- How are these relative prograde and retrograde motions of the earth on a monthly basis taken into account in the flight path calculations?

Q8- How are the calculations consistent with Kepler’s laws, when the earths flight path through space is not an ellipse, but a complex flower shape?

Q9 - According to Kelper’s laws, the earth orbits the sun every year in an ellipse. Accordingly the velocity of the earth varies from 30.287 to 29.291 km/s, yet the earths orbital velocity around the earth-moon system is approximately 0.012km/s. This means that if we take into account the monthly orbit velocity of the earth around the E-M barycenter, the earths velocity around the sun will vary from 30.287+-0.012 to 29.291+-0.012, which means the earths orbital velocity around the sun does not comply with Kepler’s laws. How is the flight path of the earth and planets relative to the earth calculated when the earths flight path around the sun does not comply with Kepler’s laws?

Q10 – If the earth moves around the E-M barycenter every month, why don’t we observe a monthly parallax of the sun?

Q11 – The sundial is constructed using the equation of time which excludes the motion of the sun around the solar system barycenter. As the sun moves quite a large amount over many years, as shown in this video, -
why is the suns motion ignored in the equation of time? Please provide the calculations to demonstrate the suns motion around the solar system barycenter can legitimately be ignored in the equation of time.

johnmartin said...

Dr. Bridgman said – “Sungenis' 'evidence' consists of selective interpretation of the geometric fact that you can move your coordinate origin to any convenient location - including the Earth - and ignoring the fact that this trick applies everywhere. He completely ignores the dynamical aspects of the problem that make these coordinate systems different when actually moving from planet to planet. The really funny part is he is basically using a relativistic argument to make his case, then tries to prove relativity wrong.”

JM- Sungenis’ evidence for geocentrism is all encompassing and shows the science experiments used to determine the motion of the earth through space are all consistent with a stationary earth surrounded by an aether flow. Furthermore, the large scale structure of the universe also points to the earth being at the center of the universe. Combining these evidences, a powerful case is made for a stationary earth at the center of the universe, just as it was made by the creator. I invite you to review your position on this matter as a matter of scientific truth.

Dr. Bridgman said – “I've seen no evidence that his 'theory' can answer any of the questions that must be dealt with by satellite designers and astronauts.”

JM- What are these problems and why is it not possible to address them with a stationary earth? Please present evidence for your claims.

Q1 - Why is it that Newtonian mechanics requires instantaneous action at a distance to account for gravity and this is taken seriously by science?

Q2- What is the mechanism proposed by science what is consistent with Newtonian physics to permit the force of gravity to be effective instantaneously over large distances?

Q3 - Relativity says gravity is caused by a completely different mechanism of a bending of the space time continuum. As this mechanism is very much unlike the Newtonian mechanism for gravity, why are the two mechanisms routinely acknowledged within modern science?

Q4- Why is it that the notion of the barycenter is fundamentally flawed and yet it is taken seriously by modern science and is routinely used in planetary flight path calculations when using Kepler’s laws? For example a planet is said to obey Kepler’s laws by taking an elliptical flight path around the sun as one of its foci, yet that same planets is also said to travel around the solar system barycenter as one of its foci, which is not at the center of the sun. This singular inconsistency seems to be routinely ignored by modern science, yet Kepler’s laws are routinely stated to be compatible with Newton’s laws and reflective of real planetary flight paths. Please comment.

Q5 – Modern sciences understanding of the physical cause of gravity is not well understood. Why then is Newtonian mechanics and relativity theory used against geocentrism when such theories merely make assumptions concerning the mechanism for gravity and then produce equations based upon those assumptions? After all if those assumptions are not well established by science experiment, then objections to geocentrism are at best only objections, based upon models founded upon assumptions about the nature of gravity. Please comment.
. . .

johnmartin said...

Q6 – The Foucault pendulum is routinely used as apparent evidence for the moving earth. The pendulum is said to swing in a plane parallel to the fixed stars, whilst the earth rotates underneath the pendulum. How does modern science explain the force produced by the fixed stars that causes the pendulum to swing in a fixed plane relative to the stars?

Q7 -Why does the pendulum apparently overcome the gravity fields of the sun and moon and not swing in a plane following those bodies and yet not overcome the gravity fields of the distant stars?

Q8 - Why doesn’t a Foucault pendulum that points towards the earth’s center of mass continue to do so throughout the day when the pendulum is travelling along with the rotating earth?

Q9 - Why doesn’t a Foucault pendulum merely follow the rotating earth and continue to swing in a plane with the moving earth and thereby have no variation of the plane direction with the earth’s daily rotation?

Hans-Georg Lundahl said...

Checking out links, trying to post a comment on one of the blog posts:

1) You have about some 10.000 heliocentric astronomers calculating things like the position of Jupiter on a given date. And presumably getting it right.

You have about one or two geocentrics or even 100 criticising this as an argument for heliocentrism. Like Sungenis who is into natural sciences, and me, who am not very much so (I am more of a Classics scholar, and defending what I can of Aristotle and Euclid and Boëthius is part of my fun, but does not give me professional access to recorded positions of Jupiter).

2) Ptolemy got planets correcter than Aristotle. He used an excentric, which Aristotle did not (I do not think Aristotle even attempted predictions or astronomical tables). Copernic got it correcter than Ptolemy (I think), basically identifying excentric with sun and inverting stillness and orbit between sun and earth, streamlining earth with planets like Jupiter and Mars. Then Tycho reverted the last operation, and, still identifying excentric with sun, got exacter than Copernicus. Kepler reverted again, to Copernicus, and corrected circular orbits to elliptical ones. A correction which modern geocentrics like Sungenis and me accept.

The point is: this history proves that a true prediction or a truer prediction than before can be reached irrespective of which of either helio- or geocentrism the predictor uses for his calculations, therefore this question of accurate astronomic prediction - at least within solar system - proves nothing about the issue.

3) Look here if you like to see some geocentric thought brought unto "betting ground": from Mars modern cosmology and one form of geocentrism really can (as far as we can figure out beforehand) be sorted out:

Speaking of technical perspective: how do you measure angles in "parallax"?

Direct measures seem very awkward. The proxima Centauri "parallax" is less than one arc second. Like some two poles sticking vertically from ground (meeting precisely in center of earth) at a distance of about 30 m. And that is a "distance" just beyond one parsec. I roughly did some trigonometric approximations, but I am not sure, would that be some 0."05 / two poles at 1.5 m metting in center of earth for the 20 parsec, or did I get the trig wrong?

Anyway, I do not think you measure such angles practically in any situation on earth.

What came to mind is: you do say that this distance between two stars is so many degrees, than you check what portion in that distance the star is in on the solstices or equinoxes. Right?

But if so, this cannot disprove geocentrism with angels moving stars: since in that case it could be the other stars that had slightly moved. Fix a bee in a swarm, it seems to move regarding the others, but did it move or did they? With angles like 0."76 down to 0."05, it is really hard to check.

W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...

John Martin's comments are so bizarre that my responses will be consolidated into a blog post for the near future.

johnmartin said...

Dr Bridgman

Thanks for your reply. I look forward to your new blog post when you have time. I hope you can respond in more or less layman’s terms (with some technical details for others if you wish) as I am not formally qualified in science. I do have a degree in engineering, meaning I have studied physics at university and I read some science as an ongoing hobby.

Some further questions for your consideration concerning modern cosmology.

Q1- I have read Galileo Was Wrong by Robert Sungenis and Robert Bennett and in it the claim is made that there is no aberration of moon light observed. If the earth and moon are orbiting the sun at 30km/s and the solar system is moving through space at about 380km/s then the aberration angel of 4' 20" and including the transit delay, the total aberration angel is then 8' 40". Can you locate any published data that supports an observed aberration of moon light of 8’ 40”? If no observations of aberration of moon light have been observed, does that mean the earth is stationary relative to the moon?

Q2 - If the positions of the planets are not known as they are in the real, but only the apparent positions are known as observed from earth, how then does an almanac take into account the aberration of light from the planets when calculating predicted positions of the planets as observed from earth? In other words, if aberration of light from the planets is used in the almanac calculations, what aberration is used and how do we know what the real aberration is? If aberration of light from the planets is not used in the almanac calculations, is that an implicit admission that the calculations are either ad hoc, or perhaps the earth really is stationary relative to the planets?

Q3 – The retro-reflectors have been designed to bounce back a laser beam in the exact same direction from which the beam enters the reflector. Say for example a laser is shot of from a stationary position and hits the reflector. The beam will then bounce back to the same point from which it came. We can vary the scenarios as follows –

Let point 1 be the point (0,0) at which the beam is initially shot off from the laser gun. Point 1 also has a receiver mechanism to read the incoming laser from the retro-reflector.

Let point 2 be the point at which the retro-reflector is located at (0, 1.25c).

Scenario 1. Point 1 is moving at 400km/s along the x axis and point 2 is stationary at (0, 1.25c). The laser return travel time is 2.5 seconds. The laser beam returns along the same flight path in space from which it travelled to (0,0). When the laser has travelled for 2.5s, point 1 has moved 1000km from its original firing point to (1000,0). Therefore the return laser from the retro-reflector will not be measured by receiver mechanism which returns to (0,0).

Scenario 2 – Point 1 is moving at 400km/s along the x axis. The laser return travel time is 2.5 seconds. Point 2 is moving at 400km/s along the x axis. The laser beam returns along the same flight path in space from which it travelled. When the laser has travelled for 2.5s, point 1 has moved 1000km from its original firing point to (1000,0). Therefore the return laser from the retro-reflector will not be measured by receiver mechanism, which returns to (0,0).

If point 1 is the earth and point 2 is the moon and the earth and the moon are moving through space at about 400km/s, with a laser spread of about 20km when it returns to the original laser launch point (0,0), then how is the return laser ever received, when the earth has moved through space and is 1000km/s from the point at which the laser was shot off (1000,0)?

If the answer to this problem is the retro reflector mirror shrinks according to the Lorentz contraction and therefore the laser path forms a triangle shape relative to the moving earth, then –

johnmartin said...

What scientific evidence is there to experimentally verify that the retro-reflectors shrink in the direction in which the moon is moving through space?

In a similar way, if the earth and moon are moving through space at 400km/s when the retro-reflectors were made on earth, why then is a Lorentz contraction required in the lunar laser ranging experiment calculations, when the retro-reflectors were measured on earth to ensure the laser path returns the laser along the same flight path to which it entered the retro reflector? In short, earth moves through space at 400km/s and the dimensions of the retro reflectors are known. The moon also moves through space at 400km/s, and therefore the Lorentz contraction is physically not required, but is included in the lunar laser ranging calculations. Why?

Q4 – The fringe shift predicted for a moving earth through an aether in the Michelson Morley experiment was expected to be 0.40 of a fringe if the earth travels through space at about 380km/s. Yet only a fringe shift of about 0.02 was found by experiment. As such, Albert Einstein posited that the lengths of the arms that move in the direction of the earths motion shrink according to Lorentz contraction formula. Why does modern science take the ad hoc Lorentz contraction formula seriously, when there is no known force within the universe that uniformly acts on/in bodies to shrink bodies in the direction in which the body travels? Furthermore, if the Lorentz contraction theory is to be routinely used by modern physics, what experiments are proposed to test and invalidate the Lorentz contraction theory?

Q5 - There was a small positive fringe shift in the Michelson Morley and other similar experiments, clearly indicating there is something such as an aether flow passing by the earth’s surface. If the Lorentz contraction is used to explain away the apparent “null” fringe shift, how does science account for the small positive result that was observed and which does not fit into relativity theory?

Q6 – According to relativity, a body at rest has a proper length, which is its maximum length. When a body moves, its length shrinks according to the Lorentz contraction theory. What happens to the body when it stops moving? Does it return to its original length and if so, what is the force inside the body that causes this action to occur?

Q7 – Newtonian mechanics says the elliptical motion of the planets can be adequately accounted for through the notions of gravity caused by mass attraction and centrifugal acceleration. However modern science also says the universe is largely composed of dark matter, which is proposed as a cause for the action of spiral galaxies that do not act as predicted by Newtonian physics. Why is it that the motions of the planets within the local solar system can be accounted for using Newtonian physics, when the far larger forces caused by dark matter are ignored?

Q8 – Doesn’t the existence of dark matter and dark energy invalidate Newtonian physics, simply because these causes within the universe are posited to dominate the motions of galaxies?

Q9 – Modern science says Newtonian physics doesn’t hold for spiral galaxies, due to the need for dark matter. Modern science posits the earth and the solar system is located within a spiral galaxy, therefore it follows that the galaxy in which the earth is located has a physics different to that of other galaxies. This is so, simply because Newtonian mechanics can be used to account for the motion of the planets without the need for dark matter. Therefore if we are in a unique galaxy, what modern theory accounts for the manner in which our earth and its galaxy move without the need for dark matter?

johnmartin said...

Q10 – The standard theory says the galaxies are receding from the earth according to Hubble’s law, whereby redshift is interpreted as an indication of relative galaxy motion. Sometimes Galaxy motion is split into a cosmic component and a proper component of the galaxy itself. As such, how does modern science know experimentally if the cosmic expansion is real or if the proper motion of the galaxy is real?

Q11 – If space is expanding between the earth and the galaxies, what causes the redshift when the light travels through the expanding space? What scientific experiments have been performed to verify an expanding space causes redshift of light?

Q12 – If expanding space causes redshift and relativity theory denies the existence of an aether in space, and ignores any properties to the vacuum of space, how then can a vacuum without properties expand and also have a redshift effect on light?

Q13 – alternatively, if space is not nothing, but is “something” (dark matter) which expands, how is this “something” any different to the old notions of an aether that permeates space?

Q14 - Modern science posits the existence of dark matter which permeates throughout the universe and comprises about 95% of the universes matter. Evidently if this dark matter is throughout the universe, then it must be also located within our solar system and around the earth. How then is dark matter taken into account in the Michelson Morley experiment and other similar experiments, that modern science thinks produced “null” results? After all, if the null results are accounted for within the need for an aether around the earth, then how does modern science think there is no aether, but plenty of dark matter around the earth?

Q15 – George Airy completed an experiment to determine the motion of the earth through space. He posited that if the earth moved through space, then a water filled telescope would slow down the light travelling through the telescope and the telescope would have to be tilted forward to have the star light hit the same spot in the telescope. It is well known that Airy’s experiment failed to detect any motion of the earth – the results are known as Airy’s failure. How does modern science account for the results of Airy’s failure that logically mean the earth is stationary relative to the stars? If you use relativity theory to account for the experiment, I request you include experimental evidence for any time dilation and length contracted assumed to have occurred in the experiment.

Q16 – The twin Quasar Q0957+561 was used to confirm gravitational lensing in 1979. The quasar and its lensing galaxy have distances that are only theoretically known and may be out by not less than 15% as stated in the Universe Today -, as such any example of gravitational lensing is merely a case of assuming distances and then applying a theory to those distances to produce the required results. Please comment.

Q17 - Gravitational lensing should occur all over the night sky because very many objects in the night sky have objects behind them. Therefore if gravitational lensing is applied uniformly over the night sky, shouldn’t there be multiple images of the same object all over the night sky, causing the night sky to filled with real and apparent objects caused by gravitational lensing? If not why not?

Q18 – If a source star emits light and the light passes by multiple objects, which must then act as multiple lenses, why don’t we observe an almost infinite number of objects in the sky due to multiple lensing of source star light?

Q19 – According to the famous example of Einstein’s cross shown on this link, the cross is used as an example of gravitational lensing. The lensing galaxy is not symmetrically located within the lensed galaxies. Therefore, how can the lense work when it is not located in the same line (the center of the lights) as the lensed galaxies?

johnmartin said...

Q20 – Einstein’s cross shows the four stars around the lensing galaxy, meaning the curved light should vary with distance from the lensing galaxy. Nevertheless, the four stars are not curved, with an arc shape, caused by a variable distance from the lensing galaxy. Why do the lensed galaxies have a uniform shape and do not vary in shape according to distance from the lensing galaxy?

Q21 – Modern physics says it looks as though the earth is at the center of the universe, with the galaxies moving away from the earth on all sides. It is said that this is only an appearance and really the earth is just another object in the universe that looks as though it is at the center of the universe because any point would look as though it is at the center of the universe. Why? Because due to dark matter and dark energy, the universe is uniformly expanding in all directions. Question – if the universe is expanding uniformly, or at least nearly uniformly in all directions, why is there no evidence for the expansion of space between the sun and the earth, or the earth and the moon of the earth and any other planet in the solar system? If however there is evidence for such expansion, how does such expansion consistent with Newtonian mechanics that requires specific distances in relation to a bodies mass and centrifugal force?

Q22 – If the expansion of the universe is uniformly everywhere and as such, the earth only looks as though it is at the center of the universe, but really isn’t, why then does space expand only between the galaxies and not between the stars and planets within the galaxies?

Q23 – Why is relativity taken so seriously to the point of sending up gravity probe B to investigate the motion of gyroscopes in space due to the space time continuum, when the space time continuum is nothing more than the figment of the mind of a mathematician? After all the space time continuum is nothing more than a version of the good old Cartesian coordinate system with a fourth time variable ‘t’. Therefore, as x,y,z,t are only mathematical quantities, which do not have any physical cause, or properties in the real, how can modern physics be taken seriously when gravity probe B, which costs millions of tax payers dollars, was sent up to check the effects of the space time continuum on gyroscopes?

Q24 – alternatively, if the space time continuum really has physical properties, then how is this any different to the aether and its purported properties, which Einstein sort to remove in relativity, due the Michelson Morley null result?

I look forward to your response.

Thank you


W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...

Okay, now you're overtaxing your welcome…

1) Most of these questions appear to be on your blog: Thoughts of John Martin
so dumping these as a load of text in my blog rather than publishing a link to your specific blog posts is kinda rude and is probably the reason why I found two of your latest four posts filed under the spam tab.

2) Your latest posts have raised the question of whether these questions are yours, or mined from another source. If the latter, it is customary to include information on the actual source (with page numbers, web links).

I am not your personal research assistant. My To Do list is already quite full of things that I regard as significantly higher priority than most of these questions.

I will complete my writeup on the earlier set of comments, but these latest comments will be added to the end of my current 'to do' list.

johnmartin said...


Thanks for your reply. I'm pretty sure I posted my questions direct into your combox first. I wasn't sure if you would answer them or not so I posted them on my blog. From memory my questions are from my own head. If I do get questions from another site I will acknowledge such in the future.

Thanks for your time. I look forward to your responses when you are able to post.

I've got some further questions concerning redshift, universe epxansion, dark matter, black holes and the hubble telescope on my blog for viewing if you have the time -

Again, thanks for your time. You have been very kind to answer my questions.


Anonymous said...

John Martin,

Some of your questions are good, and are often asked by curious folk just starting to learn astronomy; others, sadly, reflect badly on your teachers (you write that you "do have a degree in engineering, meaning I have studied physics at university").

There is a forum devoted to answering these sorts of questions, the "Bad Astronomy and Universe Today Forum", BAUT for short; specifically the Space/Astronomy Questions and Answers section:

Why not post your questions there, ones that Tom has not already addressed? In fact, if you yourself don't start doing that, I will ... as I said, some questions are quite good ones, and while answers can easily be found - in dozens of books, hundreds of websites, etc - it can be refreshing to read them anew, when answered directly.


W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...


Thanks for making this invitation to Mr. Martin. If his desire to learn is legitimate, I recommend that he take you up on the offer.

However, Mr. Martin's heavy mining of Sungenis' material (and I suspect much of the uncredited material may be from Sungenis as well) has me suspecting that John Martin may in fact be a sockpuppet for Sungenis.

johnmartin said...


I've posted some questions today at the bad astronomy website and await the approval of the thread owners.

May the answers be interesting and provocative.

Thanks for the suggestion.


johnmartin said...


I'm happy to inform you that I'm not a sockpuppet of Robert Sungenis. I have read his book and I've also engaged him on a number of occasions. Robert is from America and I'm from the other hemisphere of downunder.

I'm genuinely interested in relativity, the standard model, astronomy and geocentrism. I've now posted some of my questions at the bad astronomy website and you are welcome to post all the other questions as well if you so desire.


W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...

To John Martin,

Good for you! It helps to learn so facts before engaging in these types of discussions/arguments.

Anonymous said...

I posted four questions in BAUT, under the title Gravity, physics, and science. There's been a good response:

I also posted some of your questions, John Martin, in Starship Asterisk*, the discussion forum attached to the incredibly popular Astronomy Picture of the Day, under the title Gravity, relativity, physics, and science:

Would you like to join in either discussion, or both?


Anonymous said...

Dr. Bridgman,

As you know, I started this thread via your allowance of same. I have read Drs. Sungenis and Bennett two volume work, Galileo Was Wrong: The Church Was Right and I found it to be extremely well written and very even handed. (I am not a so called sockpuppet for either of these individuals.) Nevertheless, and as I imagine you may possibly well know, due to the aforementioned books' strong and extensively researched and documented challenge to the long time reigning (and secular dogmatic?) heliocentric paradigm, it has either been conveniently ignored or strongly and even viciously attacked.

Please allow me to make the following observation. I note that generally those who seek to counter (not necessarily including yourself) John Martin and others who hold to the geocentric model of the universe on various blogsites (and sometimes websites) do so with a certain and peculiar viciousness. Such viciousness (maliciousness?) includes sarcasm to the nth degree and various gratuitous ad hominem attacks such as questioning the sanity or asserting the insanity of those who would even question the heliocentric model. This common type of rottweiler/pit bull seemingly fanatical kind of response to those who simply disagree with or question the heliocentric model certainly leaves one to wonder why the degree of viciousness.

One thing is certain: the lives and careers of a good number of individuals in the scientific community are strongly tied to an ironclad maintenance of the heliocentric model. To even question it is to invite certain ridicule and very possibly worse. With all this in mind, I express my appreciation to you for whatever allowance you have extended and may further extend to the helicocentric vs. geocentric discussion.

James Phillips

Thomas said...

Interesting article, to say the least, and my suggestion may seem a bit Einsteinian, but maybe future astrophysics will show that, what with the vastness of space, saying any space body is the "center" of any system will be a moot point. That is, until someone can make themselves sufficiently large enough to go out into space, turn around, and look back at a particular system and say, "Oh, yes, now I see how it's arranged," it's all just a matter of personal view and math - both of which are subject to errors.
Just my point of view. ;-)

- Thomas

W.T."Tom" Bridgman said...

To Breatherboy,

The day your 'personal view' can successfully navigate spacecraft between planets, you might have a point. But I won't be holding my breath.

So...What Happened?

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