|Subject: RE: some basic
questions on energy.
Date: Mon, 29 Apr 2002 17:49:15 -0500
Good question on "what is energy". Indeed, no one in all the world knows. To quote Nobelist Feynman, " Everything we know is only some kind of approximation, therefore, things must be learned only to be unlearned again or, more likely, corrected.
And with regard to force, he said, ""One of the most important characteristics of force is that it has a material origin, and this is not just a definition. ... If you insist upon a precise definition of force, you will never get it!" Richard P. Feynman, Robert B. Leighton, and Matthew Sands, The Feynman Lectures on Physics, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA, Vol. 1, 1964, p. 12-2.
With regard to energy itself, he said it rather plainly: ""It is important to realize that in physics today, we have no knowledge of what energy is." Richard P. Feynman, ibid., p. 4-2.
So no one really knows what energy is. Indeed, no one "exactly" knows anything at all. Whether we like it or not, we live behind mental models constructed from our experience, but everything we actually detect and experience is internal to us, not to the "external world". We had to go into this area quite deeply some years ago, and we were able to get at what creates our sense of self, sense of the external world, sense of belonging to the external world yet being separate from it, etc. That takes a whole book to describe, and it is one of those future books I may write if I live that long.
In physics, many very basic things (mass, force, energy, time, etc.) are "defined" not as proper definitions but as axioms (assumed truths). One of those is energy. Rigorously stated, one would write something like "there is an entity called energy. Energy has ..... Energy does.... " etc. One states the "thing" as an axiom, then lists its characteristics (these may be postulates). Then one uses experiments to substantiate the postulates or refute and change them. And one tries to make a mathematical model capable of expressing the results of these experiments and all these postulated characteristics.
And that is what the scientific model is, and science is. We already know (from Godel's theorem and proof) that there is never a perfect model. Always, there is something else other than what we have been able to crank into our proposed model.
For this reason, science is never done, but continues indefinitely. It continually refines, adjusts, and even changes the models, as ever more sophisticated experiments are done with results diverging from the former model.
And that is called the "progress of science".
However, it's a very useful enterprise, or it can be. As the models and experiments get more sophisticated, so does our comprehension of the "world around us and how it works". We are then able to engineer systems and do things we never were able to do before.
The real problem then becomes the moral issue. Science basically is amoral. As a tool, it can be used to "cut either way" and to benefit humanity, the environment, whatever or to damage humanity, the environment, whatever.
So science does not let us escape from our moral dilemma and the responsibility for our actions. The real problem is that, as the power of our tools ever increases (a technological animal is a tool-building and tool-using animal), eventually they become so powerful that one can destroy the Earth itself. It gets so small that one can hold it in two hands. It gets so cheap that it can be built for, say, $2,000.00. It gets so simple to build, say, that many thousands of technicians can easily build one. At about that stage, we have breached the threshold of the continued survival of the human race. Unless we have solved the problem of human's inhumanity to one's fellow human, ultimately one or more humans will build the device and explode it, destroying the earth and all life on it.
Nature is patient, and in a few billion years just starts again.
Anyway, when one asks the most fundamental questions, such as what is energy, that is what one has now run headlong into. We dealt with some of that in our first book, decades ago. My present opinion is that we are on the road to self-destruction of the species, probably along with the biosphere, with greater probability than we are on the road to survival. I fervently hope I am very, very wrong. ----------------------------
That's quite a lot of work you have done on your website, and certainly you have wrestled determinedly with the problems. You are to be commended for even tackling such a fearsome set of problems.
The only thing I could point out is that nature permits both time-forward and time-reversed interactions, and they can even be engineered. In a time-reversed interaction, heat really does flow from cold to hot regions, and negentropy increases rather than entropy. The physical phenomenon videotape is reversed, so to speak. As an example, like charges now attract and unlike charges repel. My forthcoming book will go into how this is unwittingly done in cold fusion, and how this generates a totally new kind of nuclear reaction. We write the exact equations from the new nuclear reactions that yield the transformations into deuterium, into tritium, and into the alpha particles.
We also go into how all EM energy in 3-space really comes from the time-domain, and is time converted into 3-space energy by the negative charge, and the 3-space energy is then converted back to time by the positive charge. Thus the well-known polarization of the vacuum by any charge automatically sets up a spreading circulation of EM energy from the fourth Minkowski axis to 3-space and back. This is a giant negentropy, and we explain the source charge problem, often called the most difficult problem in electrodynamics. Oddly, the basis for the solution has been known and proven in particle physics since 1957.
If you wish to penetrate a little further, I suggest you read intensely into broken symmetry and what it means so universally in physics, since it was predicted in 1956 and proven in 1957. So revolutionary a change was that to all of physics, that the Nobel Committee awarded the Nobel Prize to Lee and Yang that same year, in Dec. 1997. An almost unprecedented action.
I would advise you to pursue the invention you have in your mind, if you can obtain proper financing without losing control of the project. You will never know unless you give it your best shot.
The best way to approach thermodynamics is to just get out of classical equilibrium thermodynamics altogether, and get into the thermodynamics of open systems far from equilibrium. Such systems are already known to be permitted to do five magic functions. Such a system can (1) self-organize, (2) self-rotate or self-oscillate, (3) output more energy than the operator inputs (the excess is freely input by the active environment), (4) power itself and its load (all the energy is input by the active environment; a windmill is an example), and (5) exhibit negentropy.
Indeed, the entropy of an open dissipative system in disequilibrium with its environment cannot even be computed. All we can say is that the condition of equilibrium is the state of maximum entropy, and therefore the system in stable disequilibrium with its active environment exhibits less entropy than the same system in equilibrium with it. I strongly suggest you purchase and read and reread Lindsay and Margenau, Foundations of Physics. It is written for the educated layperson, and you will find many great truths and clear statements therein.
Best wishes in your project, and I hope you get that invention finished, patented, and onto the market.
Monday, April 29, 2002 4:28 PM
Subject: some basic questions on energy.
Being an autodidact thermodynamicist I have developed a thermodynamic cycle, based on polytropic expansion/compression, which in theory would allow to achieve a cooling machine, that can break the Carnot Rule. If I ever achieve that, my second object will be to invert the cycle in order to achieve the "Negentropy Machine". Both objects are in my view allowed on the authority of Boltzmann's S=k log W. Do you agree?
I have recently been approached by someone, who wants to finance my research, as to achieve a commercial product (...yes, I know), and he asked me to view your MEG device for my opinion.
Let me directly say that the physics behind the MEG are way above my level, but I would like to have a layman's understanding, similar as I claim to have about the implements of entropy. You can see it here: http://www.draaisma.net/rudi/entropy.html (I would be very greatful to hear your opinion about this 4-page essay.)
My specific question though is about energy.
On this page: http://www.cheniere.org/correspondence/031702.htm
I quote your following statement:
"....I then exactly define work for them as "the changing of the form of energy". We then point out that, given a joule input energy to a "form changer", the joule does one joule of work on that transducer, but then you still have a joule of energy left -- just in a different form. So that joule in its altered form can do another joule of work on a second "change of form" entity and process, but you still have a joule of energy remaining in different form!"
If you say that "work" is changing the form of "energy", I ask you the "simple" question: "what is energy"?
What I am asking for is the H2O of energy. To my knowledge, nobody has ever answered this question, not even Einstein, in spite of his E=mc2 ( so equally, what is the H2O of matter?)
If you could give me an insight in what energy actually is (not forms thereof, including matter), you might be able to give me an insight in your MEG also? (not the detailed technology, but basically how it works).
I think this is a crucial issue, because if we don't know what "energy" is, what are we talking about at all?
I'm awaiting your very appreciated answer.