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Thread: Impossibly Empty Space

  1. #1 Impossibly Empty Space 
    Forum Freshman asxz's Avatar
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    Down at the levels of atoms, you have the nucleus and the electrons - but what is in-between these two objects? Furthermore, what is in-between the atoms themselves - as it can't be air (because air itself is made up of many different atoms) -as atoms are round and therefore cannot tessellate.


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    There is nothing between these objects. However, QM does say that there is no such thing as "empty space", so what actualli is between them are virtual particle-antiparticle pairs, which annihilate with each other soon after.


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    At least there are virtual photons that transmit the electromagnetic interactions between the nucleus and the electrons.
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    We don't know, it's all speculation, some theories appear to explain things, QM is purely a mathematical explanation, which could be overtaken at any time.

    It's a bit like this, suppose you break into a sealed room which was locked from the inside, in it you find a man bound and gagged, his hands firmly tied behind his back there is a gun on the floor, a spent cartridge and clearly the man has been shot. you are not aware of there being anything else in the room.

    Make up your own theory to fit the facts. Acording to QM things can appear and dissappear so maybe a pink elephant materialised and did the deed, Atomic theory suggests the guy used his feet to operate the gun. You choose or come up with another equally valid/outageous theory.........
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    If quantum mechanics is purely a mathematical explanation, then so is special relativity and general relativity. The predictions of quantum mechanics have been extremely accurate, and there are no flaws in it to make physicists doubt its absoluteness in describing subatomic behaviour.

    Quantum mechanics is the one theory that is able to describe perfectly the interactions of subatomic particles.
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    As for describing what anything is made of at the atomic, subatomic, quantum level it is a bit of a challenge.

    What we think is a solid object like a steel ball bearing for example, is not truly solid. What we call a wave in the ocean is a disturbance in the water and its molecules etc.

    When we try to describe "objects" at a quantum level we are sort of limited to explain them by what we really think objects are (at our macroscopic reality). The objects in the quantum world only exhibit behaviors similar to objects and actions we are familiar with but it actually creates problems to think of these atomic materials as actual objects or actions like waves. Because waves seem to require a medium, and solid objects tend to remain as objects.

    The same kind of question arises from asking what a magnetic field is made of, or EMR, or gravity?

    If you run a current of electricity through a wire, a magnetic field forms around it. But, what really is a field? Is it a disturbance in a medium? A disturbance only relative on the atomic scale? A bunch of orbiting virtual photons?


    The fact of the matter is in my opinion, there is no certain macroscopic world clone that applies directly to a quantum behavior/property. So, we play this game of relativity even trying to describe what things are made of, that make up all things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liongold
    If quantum mechanics is purely a mathematical explanation, then so is special relativity and general relativity. The predictions of quantum mechanics have been extremely accurate, and there are no flaws in it to make physicists doubt its absoluteness in describing subatomic behaviour.

    Quantum mechanics is the one theory that is able to describe perfectly the interactions of subatomic particles.
    You are overstating the case for quantum field theories. They are far from perfect, but they are the best that we have. The predictions are very accurate, but they involve some steps that are not rigorously defined mathematically. Renormalization for instance, a process of eliminating infinities to produce the final accurate prediction, is not on firm mathematical ground. It is rather ad hoc. Similarly there is no mathematically rigorous definition for Feynman path integrals.

    Of course quantum theory, special relativity and general relativity are mathematical explanations. So are Newtonian mechanics, Newton's theory of Univresal Gravitation, Maxwell's theory of classical electrodynamics, Gibbs formulation of classical thermodynamics, fluid dynamics and every other physical theory. Formulating accurate predictive models requires mathematics and that is what physics is all about. That is simply good science.

    Quantum theory is NOT absolute, in any sense. Neither is general relativity. In fact quantum theory and general relativity are mutually inconsistent. There is great deal of research in progress to formulate a theory that will encompass both and be mathematically consistent. Nobody knows how to do that yet. In the meantime quantum theory and general relativity are the best theories that we have, and they are very good. But not perfect.
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    Forum Sophomore Tharghana's Avatar
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    As Stated Before, The Space is ether filled with nothing, small Photons and different forces.

    Quantum Physics, I believe makes the most sense of any there, I've read a lot about it.
    www.periodicvideos.com - A Great Site

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    Quote Originally Posted by arkain101
    As for describing what anything is made of at the atomic, subatomic, quantum level it is a bit of a challenge.

    What we think is a solid object like a steel ball bearing for example, is not truly solid. What we call a wave in the ocean is a disturbance in the water and its molecules etc.

    When we try to describe "objects" at a quantum level we are sort of limited to explain them by what we really think objects are (at our macroscopic reality). The objects in the quantum world only exhibit behaviors similar to objects and actions we are familiar with but it actually creates problems to think of these atomic materials as actual objects or actions like waves. Because waves seem to require a medium, and solid objects tend to remain as objects.

    The same kind of question arises from asking what a magnetic field is made of, or EMR, or gravity?

    If you run a current of electricity through a wire, a magnetic field forms around it. But, what really is a field? Is it a disturbance in a medium? A disturbance only relative on the atomic scale? A bunch of orbiting virtual photons?


    The fact of the matter is in my opinion, there is no certain macroscopic world clone that applies directly to a quantum behavior/property. So, we play this game of relativity even trying to describe what things are made of, that make up all things.
    I think I agree with your post if you are saying that we know quite a lot, about the behaviour of sub atomic particles or quantum "objects"/concepts, but very little about what they really are.
    Altho' it is not important one could argue that a steel ball bearing was solid because solidity is a property of matter, in aggregate, altho' not a property of matter per se.
    As far as I know matter, at the level of atoms, is mostly empty space. I am vague as to what causes the appearance of solidity at our "macroscopic reality".
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    Forum Freshman asxz's Avatar
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    Cool, I'm only a student, and don't really get most of this QM stuff, but that explains it a bit. Thanks guys!
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