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Tags cern , higgs boson , physics

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Old 13th November 2012, 06:32 AM   #521
sol invictus
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
It costs more energy to make an electron in the presence of a Higgs condensate then without a Higgs condensate, because electrons interact with the Higgs condensate.
^^ That's what this comes down to, Farsight. It's very, very simple.

Here, I'll break it down into a series of teeny steps:

(1) Making an electron (or pair producing an electron-positron pair) costs more energy in the presence of a Higgs condensate than without one (all else being equal), because of the interaction of the Higgs condensate with the electron field.

(2) Therefore, the energy content of an electron that was produced in the presence of a Higgs condensate is higher than one that was produced with zero Higgs condensate (all else being equal).

(3) Therefore, since m=E/c2, the mass of an electron that was produced in the presence of a Higgs condensate is higher than one that was produced with zero Higgs condensate.

Which of those steps violates E=mc2, Farsight?

Last edited by sol invictus; 13th November 2012 at 06:34 AM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 07:19 AM   #522
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Here we have someone who admits he is not a physicist and routinely demonstrates he is quite limited in his mathematics skills. This same person demands professionals and others accept that he has discovered that all mainstream physicists throughout the world are grossly wrong in how physics is done and interpreted. He takes the very bizarre position that only he has interpreted a milestone 1905 paper correctly and all subsequent developments in the intervening 107 years are mostly wrong. All this from someone who is not a physicist. Wow! Just plain -- WOW!
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Old 13th November 2012, 07:30 AM   #523
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
It isn't steenkh. Read Matthew Chalmers' particle headache article in New Scientist. You have to login to read it. Here's a fair-use excerpt:

"So we are left with a particle that looks like the standard Higgs, but we can't quite prove it. And that leaves us facing an elephant in the accelerator tunnel: if it is the standard Higgs, how can it even be there in the first place?

The problem lies in the prediction of quantum theory, confirmed by experiments at CERN's previous mega-accelerator, the Large Electron Positron collider, that particles spontaneously absorb and emit "virtual" particles by borrowing energy from the vacuum. Because the Higgs boson itself gathers mass from everything it touches, these processes should make its mass balloon from the region of 100 GeV to 10^19 GeV. At this point, dubbed the Planck scale, the fundamental forces go berserk and gravity - the comparative weakling of them all - becomes as strong as all the others. The consequence is a high-stress universe filled with black holes and oddly warped space-time."


The article carries comments by Gian Guidice of CERN, who I've referred to previously on this thread. I'm afraid you've been paying too much attention to the ill-advised rah-rah publicity material, when what you should be doing is looking at what the CERN physicists are saying.
So do Chalmers and Giudice have an alternative explanation for the observed interactions at 125 GeV/c?
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Old 13th November 2012, 08:18 AM   #524
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
(1) Making an electron (or pair producing an electron-positron pair) costs more energy in the presence of a Higgs condensate than without one (all else being equal), because of the interaction of the Higgs condensate with the electron field.
Heck, it costs more energy to make an electron in a magnetic field than it does without one.

In free space, the lowest-energy electron state is an electron at rest, "costing" one rest mass m_e. In the presence of a magnetic field, the electron must be in one of the (quantized) Landau levels, the lowest of which has energy 1/2 hbar q B/m_e. To create an electron in the presence of a magnetic field B costs at least m_e + 1/2 hbar q B/m_e --- the vacuum mass plus the interaction energy.
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Old 13th November 2012, 11:51 AM   #525
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Farsight, you missed out:
Farsight, Is the Higgs mechanism a relativistic quantum field theory?
i.e. it is based on special relativity and is thus consistent with E=mc^2.
First pointed out 1 November 2012

If your answer is no then does this imply that SR itself is not consistent with E=mc^2?
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Old 13th November 2012, 12:11 PM   #526
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
Read Matthew Chalmers' particle headache article in New Scientist. You have to login to read it. ...Because the Higgs boson itself gathers mass from everything it touches, these processes should make its mass balloon from the region of 100 GeV to 10^19 GeV.....
The Higgs boson has been researched extensively for decades. If that statement was true then how come any research was done on the Higgs boson when it was so obvious that it could not exist?

My guess: the "gathers mass from everything it touches" is wrong.
AFAIK the Higgs boson gets its mass from the Higgs field just like the other particles. For example:
We (Apparently) Found the Higgs Boson. Now, Where the Heck Did It Come From?
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Imagine this interaction of the two complex Higgs fields with the field of the electroweak force as a further cosmic blast that follows the Big Bang: Here, the 4-Higgs field described above “collides” with the electroweak field, and bam! This cataclysmic event forces three of the Higgses to become absorbed by three of the electroweak bosons, still acting like photons—the W+, the W-, and the Z. As a result of this “collision” the three bosons stop being photon-like and “gain weight” from “eating” one Higgs each. (This is how the physicist Barton Zwiebach of MIT describes this defining event.) This cosmic merger of three Higgs particles with two Ws and one Z still leaves one Higgs free and left over for us to discover (as, indeed, was just announced by CERN on July 4th!), and one still-massless boson of the old electroweak force: the usual photon, the particle (and wave) of light we all know and love—which somehow missed its chance to eat the last remaining Higgs and thus gain its own weight!
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Old 13th November 2012, 02:01 PM   #527
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
Farsight, you missed out...
Sorry RC, I forgot. I'll put a bit more effort into my response to try to make up for it.

Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
...you missed out is the Higgs mechanism a relativistic quantum field theory? i.e. it is based on special relativity and is thus consistent with E=mc^2.
First pointed out 1 November 2012
The answer is it's said to be, but it isn't. See this article for a potted history of SR where you can read about guys like Voigt, Fitzgerald, Poincare, Larmor, Lorentz and Minkowski. But anyway, in a nutshell the Michelson-Morley experiment didn't find any evidence to support the existence of aether, and demonstrated that whichever direction you measured the speed of light, you always got the same answer. Einstein essentially said OK, if speed equals distance over time, and if you're moving such that the distance changes, then if the speed looks the same the time has to change. And since you measure distance using something moving, namely light, along with time, that means your distance measure can change as well. So distance and time aren't fixed and inviolate, your measures of them "rotate" into one another when you move fast relative to me. As you know Minkowski later said they can be treated as two aspects of one thing called spacetime.

OK, how do you convert a measure of space into a measure of time? Space is measured in metres, time is measured in seconds, and speed is metres/seconds. So to go from metres to seconds you divide by speed, which is multiplying by the reciprocal, wherein metres x seconds/metres = seconds. And of course light is used for measuring space and time, so you when you divide by speed, you divide by the speed of light c. It's a conversion factor.

Now, Einstein's "special relativity" paper is On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies, so it's important to look at moving bodies such as our cannonball in space. You exert a constant force to bring it to a halt. Then you say it pushed me quite a distance before I stopped it, and for quite a time too. When you use the force x distance measure you are talking about energy, and when you use the force x time measure you are talking about momentum. And like space and time, energy and momentum are merely two aspects of the same thing called energy-momentum. You always divide by c to go from one to the other, for example for a photon energy E = hf whilst momentum p = hf/c. Hence momentum p=E/c. Forget about the vector aspect of momentum in all this, it's a distraction from energy-momentum. Anyway, Einstein's E=mc² paper is similar to this in that the upshot is you divide by c again for inertia aka mass, so m=E/c². It has to be like that because p=mv, so m=p/v so m = (E/c)/v, then replace v with c. So in essence, mass is just another aspect of energy-momentum. The Higgs mechanism totally disregards this, and proposes a Higgs substance instead. That's an aether, and it's totally at odds with SR. Sticking "relativistic" on the description just doesn't fix any of this.
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Old 13th November 2012, 02:13 PM   #528
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I'll sweep through page 13 and see if there's anything I've missed out. Ben declared an insult so I'm not talking to him. Ah, here's one:

Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
It costs more energy to make an electron in the presence of a Higgs condensate then without a Higgs condensate, because electrons interact with the Higgs condensate. This really isn't very hard to understand, Farsight.
That's a circular non-answer. It "costs" 511keV to make an electron, but you have to pay double because you have to make a positron too. Then you have to tip the neutron because of conservation of momentum, and then you have to tip the electron and positron to drive them apart so they don't annihilate. So your total expenditure will be more than 1022keV.

ETA: Tubby has been abusive, so he's out too. So is dafydd. Mickey mouse physics, bah. RC seems to be asking the same question again, plus a "where does energy come from?" which I can't answer because it's the one thing you can neither create nor destroy. Kwalish Kid is definitely out. OK, edd, post 517 is next.

Last edited by Farsight; 13th November 2012 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:02 PM   #529
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
You always divide by c to go from one to the other, for example for a photon energy E = hf whilst momentum p = hf/c. Hence momentum p=E/c.
Nope. That only works for massless particles.

Quote:
Anyway, Einstein's E=mc² paper is similar to this in that the upshot is you divide by c again for inertia aka mass, so m=E/c². It has to be like that because p=mv, so m=p/v so m = (E/c)/v, then replace v with c.
Nope again. p=mv is the classical (ie non-relativistic) formula for mass. The relativistic formula is p=γmv.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:05 PM   #530
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
That's a circular non-answer. It "costs" 511keV to make an electron, but you have to pay double because you have to make a positron too.
No it isn't.

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Then you have to tip the neutron because of conservation of momentum, and then you have to tip the electron and positron to drive them apart so they don't annihilate. So your total expenditure will be more than 1022keV.
Which is why pair production does not occur at 1.022 MeV.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:15 PM   #531
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Originally Posted by edd View Post
I certainly find fault with When you insist that one has negative momentum, countering the positive momentum of the other, E=pc or E=hf and p=hf/c then forces you to claim that E is negative. and plenty else.
You shouldn't edd. Learn the lesson that you cannot reduce that cannonball's momentum to zero without reducing its kinetic energy to zero. The negative sign associated with direction misleads you into thinking that if you bounce a Northbound cannonball South, you've taken away all its momentum, and then some and yet you leave its kinetic energy the same. It's energy-momentum. You can measure it in different ways, that's all.

Originally Posted by edd View Post
(edit: Oh and of course it doesn't physically change when I turn my back. We have perfectly sensible ways to handle the coordinate transformation I might choose to apply when I face the other way - it doesn't change the fact that momentum is a vector whose components can quite validly be declared to be negative in a given coordinate system)
You can "declare" what you want, but I'm sorry edd, that's Humpty-Dumpty physics. It leaves you claiming that a cannonball coming from the West has zero momentum. You try stopping it by applying a force for zero seconds. You can't do it.

Originally Posted by edd View Post
I'm still baffled that you think we have a problem with relativity and the Higgs together.
No you're not. I've made it quite plain. Momentum is resistance to change-in-motion for a wave travelling linearly at c, inertia is resistance to change-in-motion for a wave travelling at c this way → and this way ← which we call a standing wave. Hence Susskind's radiation in a gedanken box adds mass to that system.

Originally Posted by edd View Post
You say your photon in a box has acquired a mass.
No I didn't. I said the massless photon increases the mass of the system.

Originally Posted by edd View Post
Yes - by virtue of the confinement of the box, the interaction of the photon with the box, the combined system has done that.
That's what I said. I also said photons can interact with photons. Two-photon physics proves it, and the given QED explanation that a photon spontaneously transforms into an electron and positron is circular, because that's saying pair production occurs because pair production occurs. It is noticeable that you don't complain about pair production occurs because pair production occurs.

Originally Posted by edd View Post
The Higgs field when interacting with the massless particles that will ultimately be observed as an electron does something at least partially analogous, and we get a massive electron as the particle we see.
The electron is there because of a photon-photon interaction, and we all know about Light bends itself into an arc. What's going to happen if it bends itself into so much of an arc that it ends up looping the loop?

Originally Posted by edd View Post
Of course it isn't a self-interacting photon. It's a massless electron interacting with the Higgs field.
It's a body, edd. Einstein described it as such. And it isn't massless because "the mass of a body is a measure of its energy content". So saying it's massless contradicts Einstein from the off. It's like saying a cannonball has kinetic energy but no momentum. Then when you put the mass back in by claiming it interacts with the Higgs field, you're just digging yourself deeper into a hole. You can diffract an electron. And in atomic orbitals "electrons exist as standing waves". And electrons have a magnetic moment. And you can annihilate the electron with a positron and you get photons. And don't forget the Einstein-de Haas effect which demonstrates that "spin angular momentum is indeed of the same nature as the angular momentum of rotating bodies as conceived in classical mechanics" So something's going round and round in there. What do you think it might be? Cheese? A soft white cheese called quark?

Originally Posted by edd View Post
I simply don't see why you have a problem with it and think it disagrees with relativity.
See above. Doubtless you'll still say I simply don't see why you have a problem with it . That's starting to sound like a mantra, edd.

Last edited by Farsight; 13th November 2012 at 03:17 PM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:20 PM   #532
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
You shouldn't edd.
Of course he should. The equation E=pc concerns the magnitude of momentum which is always positive. Your claim that this would somehow give a negative number is trivially wrong. I'm absolutely disgusted that you are teaching students A-level if you can't understand this.

Quote:
You can "declare" what you want, but I'm sorry edd, that's Humpty-Dumpty physics. It leaves you claiming that a cannonball coming from the West has zero momentum. You try stopping it by applying a force for zero seconds. You can't do it.
No, no it doesn't.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:24 PM   #533
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No, I see why you have a problem with it. It's not an actual problem with the physics but multiple problems understanding it.
Thanks for your explanation.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:29 PM   #534
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Originally Posted by Tubbythin View Post
No it isn't.
Examples:

a) Start with a neutron; it decays to a proton, an antineutrino, and an electron. No positron. The electron costs 511 keV.

b) Start with a muon, you get an electron and two neutrinos. No positron. The electron costs 511 keV.

c) Start with a 136Xe nucleus; it decays to a 136Ba nucleus, plus two electrons (no positrons) and two antineutrinos. The electrons cost 511 keV.

I mention this so other people can use it in their arguments, he has me on ignore.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:43 PM   #535
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Originally Posted by ben m View Post
c) Start with a 136Xe nucleus; it decays to a 136Ba nucleus, plus two electrons (no positrons) and two antineutrinos. The electrons cost 511 keV.
And maybe not two antineutrinos?

Quote:
I mention this so other people can use it in their arguments, he has me on ignore.
Me too. I've been posting to make sure anyone else reading this knows that he's wrong (not that my contribution is particularly necessary in that respect).

Last edited by Tubbythin; 13th November 2012 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 03:53 PM   #536
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Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
No it doesn't. It says that the rest mass of a body depends on the Higgs mechanism when that body is one of a certain type of fundamental particle (those that interact with the Higgs field).
And Einstein described the electron as a body. And said the mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content. It depends upon its energy content, not on the Higgs mechanism. Ergo Higgs contradicts Einstein.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
A 1MeV photon and a 1MeV electron both have exactly the same inertia. So clearly the inertia of a particle does not depend on the Higgs mechanism. Again, this amounts to you conflating rest mass with inertial mass. The rest mass of a particle is not proportional to its inertia unless that particle is at rest.
I'm not conflating inertial mass with rest mass Stimpson. Do not accuse me of such. When mass is not qualified, physicists mean rest mass.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
At best, you could say that the inertia of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism. But that doesn't contradict the fact that it depends on the energy of the particle, because of course the energy of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism.
Not according to Einstein it doesn't. And according to Higgs, the mass of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
If A depends on B, and B depends on C, then A may depend on C. Claiming that "A depends on C" contradicts "A depends on B" in such cases simply makes no sense.
The Higgs mechanism is said to be responsible for only 1% of the mass of matter. The other 99% depends on the energy-content of a body. And Einstein described the electron, a particle, as a body. When you assert that it isn't, you contradict Einstein.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
No, it is not that simple. Because once again you are misrepresenting what the Higgs mechanism actually claims.
If it's not that simple, then explain it. But amazingly, nobody can. And yet they'd rather suck up this non-explanation instead of listening to what Einstein actually said.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
Yes, the combined inertia of the electron positron pair is exactly equal to the combined inertia of the two photons that produced them. This is clear from conservation of energy and the fact that the total inertial of a system is proportional to the total energy of the system.
It's perhaps better to say "inertial mass" or "energy" rather than inertia to avoid confusion. By the way, did you admit that you were wrong about only two photons ever being produced?

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
But since the Higgs mechanism does not claim that the total inertia of the electron positron pair won't be equal to the total inertia of the two photons, you are dead wrong in claiming that the Higgs mechanism somehow contradicts this.
I didn't claim it did. I said the Higgs mechanism isn't responsible for the rest mass of the electron.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
Your specific wording is interesting, though. The electron does not "obtain its inertia from the Higgs mechanism". The Higgs mechanism does not give any particle inertia. A particle with 1MeV of total energy will always have 1MeV/c^2 of inertial mass regardless of how strongly it interacts with the Higgs field. So the inertia of a 1MeV particle is the same regardless of how strongly it interacts with the Higgs field. All the Higgs mechanism does is determine how much of a particle's total energy will be in the form of rest energy, and thus how much of its total inertial mass will be in the form of rest mass.
Einstein made it clear that the photon conveys inertia. So if pair production provides only enough energy to create an electron (and a positron) at rest momentarily before they annihilate, then that electron at rest got its inertia from the photon energy. Not from the Higgs mechanism. And becaused it's at rest, its inertial mass is its rest mass.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
It would be like if I gave my Niece $100, and her mother made her put $80 in her savings acount and keep $20 as cash. I, not her mother, gave her the $100. The fact that her mother determined how much of that is in her savings account does not change that. The total money she has is still $100, just as the total energy (and thus the total inertia) of the electron and positron is the full energy/inertia "given" to them by the two photons. Her mother just determined how that money would be distributed between her savings and checking accounts, just as the Higgs mechanism determines how the energy/inertia will be distributed between rest-energy and kinetic-energy.
It's not the Higgs mechanism, it's h.

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
You can argue that it is incorrect to say that her mother determined that she would have $100, and you would be absolutely correct. Likewise, you can claim that the Higgs mechanism is not what gives the electron-positron pair their inertia in pair production. And again you would be absolutely correct. What is incorrect is the assertion that anybody is actually claiming that the Higgs mechanism does give particles their inertia. It does not. The Higgs mechanism does not provide inertia to particles. It just influences the rest mass of certain particles.
And when a particle is at rest it has inertial mass which is the same as rest mass when its at rest. What do you think Einstein was on about with Does the inertia of a body depend upon its energy content? He referred to trsting the theory with radium salts. Do you seriously want people to think they were flying around at a significant fraction of c?

Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat View Post
But as you have been forced to acknowledge, rest mass is not the same as inertia. A 10MeV electron has 10MeV/c^2 of inertia, but only 0.511MeV/c^2 of rest mass. Also, the Higgs mechanism does not provide the rest energy (which the rest mass is a measure of). That energy still has to come from somewhere else. The Higgs mechanism just determines how much of the particle's energy will be allocated to rest energy.

If you think that Higgs theory claims that the Higgs mechanism somehow provides the rest energy of particles, or that it results in the total inertia of a particle not being proportional to its total energy, then you have simply misunderstood what the Higgs theory actually says.

That said, I doubt very much that you actually know anything about the Higgs theory beyond various qualitative descriptions you have read about it on the web. If you had actually read (and understood) any of the actual science behind it, you would not be making such obvious misstatements about it.
Yeah yeah. You haven't forced me to acknowledge anything Stimpson. And it's me giving the actual science here. I'm the one quoting Einstein and referring to experiment and giving the carefully laid-out explanation. It's the other guys saying nay nay nay and you don't understand it when they even can't explain it themselves.

Last edited by Farsight; 13th November 2012 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 04:10 PM   #537
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
And Einstein described the electron as a body. And said the mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content. It depends upon its energy content, not on the Higgs mechanism. Ergo Higgs contradicts Einstein.
No. Higgs mechanism determines energy content.

Quote:
Not according to Einstein it doesn't. And according to Higgs, the mass of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism.
Well of course not according to Einstein. Einstein was dead when the Higgs mechanism was proposed.

Quote:
The Higgs mechanism is said to be responsible for only 1% of the mass of matter. The other 99% depends on the energy-content of a body. And Einstein described the electron, a particle, as a body. When you assert that it isn't, you contradict Einstein.
1% of the mass of normal at large but 100% of the mass of the fundamental particles (to the best of my knowledge).

Quote:
If it's not that simple, then explain it. But amazingly, nobody can. And yet they'd rather suck up this non-explanation instead of listening to what Einstein actually said.
It has been explained repeatedly.

Quote:
Einstein made it clear that the photon conveys inertia. So if pair production provides only enough energy to create an electron (and a positron) at rest momentarily before they annihilate, then that electron at rest got its inertia from the photon energy. Not from the Higgs mechanism. And becaused it's at rest, its inertial mass is its rest mass.
Farsight should really be called Brickwall. The electron got its energy from the energy of the photon. The Higgs mechanism determined how much of the electons energy was in the form of rest mass and how much was left over for kinetic energy. In your entirely contrived example there is no energy left over for kinetic energy.

Quote:
It's not the Higgs mechanism, it's h.
Pardon?

Quote:
I'm the one quoting Einstein
Being able to quote him is worthless. You need to be able to quote him in a manner that supports your claims. You have unequivocally failed to do this.

Quote:
and referring to experiment
Experiments that you don't understand and don't support your claims.

Quote:
and giving the carefully laid-out explanation.
Not in the slightest. Your explanations have been utterly risible from start to finish and have relied on violation of conservation of momentum, incorrect use of basic kinematic formulas and utter drivel.

Quote:
It's the other guys saying nay nay nay and you don't understand it when they even can't explain it themselves.
People have explained it to you and everyone else. Everyone agrees with them. Nobody agrees with you. The idea that they haven't is a delusion created in your brain alone because of cognitive dissonance. You cannot accept that you just do not have a clue what you are talking about.
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Old 13th November 2012, 04:34 PM   #538
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I didn't suggest that it appeared by some kind of spring mechanism: the book gets kinetic energy due to it's interaction with the gravitational field of the earth
OK. But note that the kinetic energy came from the book's potential energy, not from the gravitational field.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
You know that's a link to a google search, right? If you have a point to make, make it, if you have reference supporting the statement "potential energy is kinetic energy" just reference it.
I wanted you to do your own research. That's the difference between me and some of the other guys here. They accept what they're taught from some 50-year-old textbook bible. I'm a skeptic, I do my own research, I read contemporary papers they don't get to hear about. I would encourage you to do the same.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Yes, and why is that? Because as it leaves the box the one coming out of the lower box either has to climb higher out of a gravity well before delivering it's energy to your detector, or falls less far into it: either way that extra energy is energy that comes not from kinetic energy that the photon had while in the box, but energy it gains from it's interaction with the gravitational field.
Robo, it doesn't gain any energy from the gravitational field. The falling book doesn't. Nor does a "falling" photon. When a photon is high up, you measure its frequency using a clock. When its low down, you measure its frequency with a clock, but that clock is subject to greater gravitational time dilation, so you measure a higher frequency.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Re when it was in the box you couldn't see this extra kinetic energy, and called it potential energy. But all you ever had in the box was photon kinetic energy. Use the wave nature of matter to step up from a photon-in-a-box to a book.
I could see it just fine: I can see where the box is in the gravitational field and calculate it's energy because of that
OK. Pay attention, this is important.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Now, regarding a book on a shelf, I've got two books, A and B, each weighing one kg, one (A) is on the floor, the other (B) is on a shelf one meter above the floor Both are stationary with respect to the floor
The book on the shelf comprises more energy than the one on the floor, because you did work on it lifting it up to the shelf. That work equates to extra energy, that is now in the book. So it weighs more. Not so much that you could actually measure it, but conservation of energy tells you its true.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Here's what I get for the kinetic energy of both of them:
Ekinetic = mv2/2
= (1kg)(0m/s)2/2
= 0 Joules
KE=½mv² no problem, but we could replace that book with a photon in a box. And you said you could see its kinetic energy just fine. But it isn't zero.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Here's what I get for their respective potential energy relative to the floor:
E(A)potential= mgh
=(1kg)(10m/s2)(0 m)
= 0 joules

E(B)potential= mgh
=(1kg)(10m/s2)(1 m)
= 10 joules

Perhaps you could show me the calculation where B's kinetic energy is 10 joules, or something else other than 0?
No I can't. But I can tell you to replace each book with a photon in a box. Then you can't use E=mgh, because the box is a gedanken box where we say the mass is neglibible and we forget about it. The photon is massless too. It's just kinetic energy in a box, wherein E=hf. You did work on that photon in the box that we discount, and the coordinate speed of light varies in a non-inertial reference frame. So look at your two photons-in-boxes. Think of each as something like a parallel-mirror light clock. Which clock ticks faster? Which photon is rattling back and forth faster than the other? So which box contains more kinetic energy? The box on the shelf.

OK, I'm off to bed.

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Old 13th November 2012, 04:35 PM   #539
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Originally Posted by ben m View Post
Examples:

a) Start with a neutron; it decays to a proton, an antineutrino, and an electron. No positron. The electron costs 511 keV.

b) Start with a muon, you get an electron and two neutrinos. No positron. The electron costs 511 keV.

c) Start with a 136Xe nucleus; it decays to a 136Ba nucleus, plus two electrons (no positrons) and two antineutrinos. The electrons cost 511 keV.

I mention this so other people can use it in their arguments, he has me on ignore.
Probably why he knows less physics than me and that is very little indeed.
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Old 13th November 2012, 04:35 PM   #540
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
...a potted history that says nothing about the relativity in QFT snipped...
...more irrelevant stuff...
"relativistic" on the description just doesn't fix any of this.
You certainly wasted your time there with that wall of irrelevant stuff!

You never addressed the question: Farsight: Is the Higgs mechanism a relativistic quantum field theory?
i.e. is it is based on special relativity and is thus consistent with E=mc^2.
First pointed out 1 November 2012

How about just showing that the Higgs mechanism is not Lorentz invariant?

P.S. Higgs mechanism
Quote:
The relativistic model was developed in 1964 by three independent groups: Robert Brout and Francois Englert; Peter Higgs; and Gerald Guralnik, C. R. Hagen, and Tom Kibble.
...
The relativistic model was developed in 1964 by Peter Higgs,[7] and independently by Robert Brout and Francois Englert,;[8] and, finally, Gerald Guralnik, C. R. Hagen, and Tom Kibble.[9]
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Old 13th November 2012, 05:32 PM   #541
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
That's a circular non-answer. It "costs" 511keV to make an electron
There's nothing circular about it. According to the standard model with Higgs mechanism, it costs 511keV to make an electron only when the Higgs is condensed. If the Higgs is not condensed (i.e. there's no Higgs condensate around), it costs less than 511keV to make an electron. That's because the Higgs condensate interacts with the electron field in a particular way, and that's the sense in which the Higgs field is responsible for the mass of the electron.

Maybe you could try asking a question about the part you don't understand, instead of assuming you already know everything?

Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
in a nutshell the Michelson-Morley experiment didn't find any evidence to support the existence of aether, and demonstrated that whichever direction you measured the speed of light, you always got the same answer....The Higgs mechanism totally disregards this, and proposes a Higgs substance instead. That's an aether, and it's totally at odds with SR. Sticking "relativistic" on the description just doesn't fix any of this.
Nope. The Higgs condensate is not an aether, at least not in the 19th century sense. It's Lorentz invariant (actually, it's more - it's Poincare invariant). It does not have a rest frame and it does not pick out a direction, so it's very much not like a normal medium. The speed of light is c in all directions in the presence of such a condensate, because it's Lorentz invariant.

Last edited by sol invictus; 13th November 2012 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 13th November 2012, 05:51 PM   #542
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Originally Posted by tubbythin View Post
and maybe not two antineutrinos?
i sure hope not!
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Old 13th November 2012, 06:42 PM   #543
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Now that I've had the time to get caught up, I feel retroactively silly about my previous question. But, hey. Learning has occured.
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Old 13th November 2012, 10:01 PM   #544
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
LOL, I've got maths A level, I did more maths at university when I did a Computer Science degree, and I've done maths tutoring up to A-level.

No, I'm not wasting my time boring everybody to death pandering to your attempt to distract attention away from the evidence and the logic.

I've reported your post. Do try to talk physics instead of being abusive.
Farsight, saying that you have A-level math skills and then refusing to prove those skills by outlining the math behind your ideas will do you no favors here.

As one of my old grad school professors (a theoretical physicist named Ephraim Fischbach) once told me: "There are plenty of physics 'theories' gathering dust because their proponents didn't want to show the math."

Please, show your math, as Sol requested.
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Old 13th November 2012, 10:18 PM   #545
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Originally Posted by MattusMaximus View Post
As one of my old grad school professors (a theoretical physicist named Ephraim Fischbach) once told me: "There are plenty of physics 'theories' gathering dust because their proponents didn't want to show the math."
By the way, Ephraim Fischbach is practically the personification of the oft-repeated, crackpot-disproving statement: "real physicists are not afraid to look for evidence against the Standard Model"
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Old 13th November 2012, 10:19 PM   #546
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Originally Posted by Tubbythin View Post
Nope. That only works for massless particles.

Nope again. p=mv is the classical (ie non-relativistic) formula for mass. The relativistic formula is p=γmv.
Farsight, if you work through the math behind what Tubbythin is saying, you will find that the more general relationship between relativistic energy and momentum (neglecting the four-vector nature of momentum) comes out to:

E2 = (pc)2 + (mc2)2

which for massless particles, like photons, comes out to (m = 0)...

E = pc

No offense, but this is a pretty straightforward calculation requiring only a basic understanding of SR and some algebra. For someone claiming to be so well versed in SR, this isn't the kind of mistake you should be making.
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Old 14th November 2012, 04:05 AM   #547
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Originally Posted by ben m View Post
i sure hope not!
I was thinking of the theoretical neutrinoless double beta decay (which I've never really understood).
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Old 14th November 2012, 07:23 AM   #548
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Originally Posted by Tubbythin View Post
I was thinking of the theoretical neutrinoless double beta decay (which I've never really understood).
and I meant to reply : I hope neutrinoless decay occurs!

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Old 14th November 2012, 07:37 AM   #549
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Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
No it doesn't. It says that the rest mass of a body depends on the Higgs mechanism when that body is one of a certain type of fundamental particle (those that interact with the Higgs field).
And Einstein described the electron as a body. And said the mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content. It depends upon its energy content, not on the Higgs mechanism. Ergo Higgs contradicts Einstein.
Einstein never said that the mass of a body doesn't depend on the Higgs mechanism. You did. Einstein also never said that the mass of a body cannot depend on how strongly that body interacts with various fields. One reason Einstein never said this is because he never had any evidence to support such a claim. Another reason he never said it is because he knew perfectly well that the energy content (and therefore the mass) of a body can and often does depend on how that body interacts with various other fields.

Again, there is nothing contradictory about saying that a body's mass is a measure of its energy content and that its mass depends on how it interacts with the Higgs field, as long as it is also the case that the energy content of that body also depends on how it interacts with the Higgs field (which it does).

Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
A 1MeV photon and a 1MeV electron both have exactly the same inertia. So clearly the inertia of a particle does not depend on the Higgs mechanism. Again, this amounts to you conflating rest mass with inertial mass. The rest mass of a particle is not proportional to its inertia unless that particle is at rest.
I'm not conflating inertial mass with rest mass Stimpson. Do not accuse me of such. When mass is not qualified, physicists mean rest mass.
The fact remains that the standard model does not claim that the inertia of a particle ever depends on the Higgs mechanism. The rest mass does. And rest mass is not the same thing as inertia.

And like I said before, if you object to the term "mass" being used to refer to inertial mass, then you need to stop claiming that mass is a measure of energy content, because it quite demonstrably is not.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
At best, you could say that the inertia of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism. But that doesn't contradict the fact that it depends on the energy of the particle, because of course the energy of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism.
Not according to Einstein it doesn't. And according to Higgs, the mass of a particle at rest depends on the Higgs mechanism.
Show me where Einstein ever said that the energy of a particle cannot depend on how strongly that particle interacts with various fields. He never said it, because he knew better.

Originally Posted by Farsight
The Higgs mechanism is said to be responsible for only 1% of the mass of matter. The other 99% depends on the energy-content of a body.
No, all 100% of the mass of matter depends on the energy content of the various particles that make it up, including the part that results from the Higgs mechanism.

And by the way, all of that other 99% of the mass of matter comes from interaction with other fields. Mostly the gluon field (which is responsible for most of the mass of protons and neutrons). The only particle in the standard model that has intrinsic rest mass (meaning rest mass that is not the result of interaction with other fields) is the Higgs boson.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
But since the Higgs mechanism does not claim that the total inertia of the electron positron pair won't be equal to the total inertia of the two photons, you are dead wrong in claiming that the Higgs mechanism somehow contradicts this.
I didn't claim it did. I said the Higgs mechanism isn't responsible for the rest mass of the electron.
You said that the Higgs mechanism contradicts E=mc^2. It doesn't. You were wrong.

As for your claim that the Higgs mechanism is not responsible for the rest mass of the electron, you haven't provided any support for that claim. All you have provided is the non-sequitur that since the rest mass of the electron is a measure of its energy content when it is at rest, that the Higgs mechanism cannot be responsible for the fact that it has a non-zero rest mass.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Einstein made it clear that the photon conveys inertia. So if pair production provides only enough energy to create an electron (and a positron) at rest momentarily before they annihilate, then that electron at rest got its inertia from the photon energy. Not from the Higgs mechanism. And becaused it's at rest, its inertial mass is its rest mass.
Yes, it got its inertia from the photon, and not from the Higgs mechanism. If you think that the standard model claims that the electron would get its inertia from the Higgs mechanism, then you have misunderstood the model.

All the Higgs mechanism does is cause 0.511MeV of the energy that the photon does give the electron to take the form of rest energy rather than kinetic energy. And likewise it thus causes 0.511MeV/c^2 of the inertial mass that the photon gives the electron to take the form of rest mass.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
It would be like if I gave my Niece $100, and her mother made her put $80 in her savings acount and keep $20 as cash. I, not her mother, gave her the $100. The fact that her mother determined how much of that is in her savings account does not change that. The total money she has is still $100, just as the total energy (and thus the total inertia) of the electron and positron is the full energy/inertia "given" to them by the two photons. Her mother just determined how that money would be distributed between her savings and checking accounts, just as the Higgs mechanism determines how the energy/inertia will be distributed between rest-energy and kinetic-energy.
It's not the Higgs mechanism, it's h.
I have no idea what you mean by that.

Anyway, let's keep separate your theory about what determines the rest mass the electron separate from your claims about why the Higgs mechanism violated E=mc^2. What I am trying to refute here is your claim that the standard model somehow claims that the Higgs mechanism gives inertia to particles like electrons. That is not what the model actually claims.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Originally Posted by Stimpson J. Cat
You can argue that it is incorrect to say that her mother determined that she would have $100, and you would be absolutely correct. Likewise, you can claim that the Higgs mechanism is not what gives the electron-positron pair their inertia in pair production. And again you would be absolutely correct. What is incorrect is the assertion that anybody is actually claiming that the Higgs mechanism does give particles their inertia. It does not. The Higgs mechanism does not provide inertia to particles. It just influences the rest mass of certain particles.
And when a particle is at rest it has inertial mass which is the same as rest mass when its at rest. What do you think Einstein was on about with Does the inertia of a body depend upon its energy content? He referred to trsting the theory with radium salts. Do you seriously want people to think they were flying around at a significant fraction of c?
Did you even read what I just said? Because this response is completely irrelevant to it. What I am telling you is that the standard model does not claim that the Higgs mechanism provides inertia to particles.

Do you get that or not? Yes or no: Do you acknowledge that I have told you that the standard model does not claim that the Higgs mechanism provides inertia to particles?

If you disagree with me on this, then show me in the standard model where it says this.

Originally Posted by Farsight
Yeah yeah. You haven't forced me to acknowledge anything Stimpson. And it's me giving the actual science here. I'm the one quoting Einstein and referring to experiment and giving the carefully laid-out explanation. It's the other guys saying nay nay nay and you don't understand it when they even can't explain it themselves.
Yeah, you quote Einstein an awful lot. Too bad the quotes you provide don't actually support your claims. You are attacking a strawman version of the Higgs mechanism that is based on your complete ignorance about what the theory actually claims.

And at least two professional physicist here (possibly more) have been explaining it. But you don't listen. You seem to think that you understand this stuff better than people who have studied it extensively. You talk about "doing your own research" when your "research" appears to amount to reading things on the web, while those of us with PhDs in the field actually have done real scientific research, and have read about and studied the actual scientific research that the standard model is based on (as opposed to the non-technical stuff about it that you have read on the web).

Put bluntly, you are making a complete fool of yourself. Nobody here is impressed with your feigned expertise. Nobody reading this thread actually believes that you know what you are talking about. And nobody cares if you put them on ignore for being mean to you.
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Old 14th November 2012, 07:47 AM   #550
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
...waves are always associated with angular momentum.
Completely and utterly false. Wrong. Incorrect. Not what we observe. Cannot be substantiated by experiment.

You can't have a reasonable discussion about physics with someone who believes that waves are always associated with angular momentum. My evidence? This thread.
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:09 AM   #551
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
in a nutshell the Michelson-Morley experiment didn't find any evidence to support the existence of aether, and demonstrated that whichever direction you measured the speed of light, you always got the same answer....The Higgs mechanism totally disregards this, and proposes a Higgs substance instead. That's an aether, and it's totally at odds with SR. Sticking "relativistic" on the description just doesn't fix any of this.
Nope. The Higgs condensate is not an aether, at least not in the 19th century sense. It's Lorentz invariant (actually, it's more - it's Poincare invariant). It does not have a rest frame and it does not pick out a direction, so it's very much not like a normal medium. The speed of light is c in all directions in the presence of such a condensate, because it's Lorentz invariant.
In fact, this is beautiful demonstration of just how little Farsight understands. The Higgs field effectively is an aether just, as you say, not quite in the way the term was originally used. In fact, the path leading up to the work of Higgs and others was partly based on the early work of plasma physicist Anderson (check the references in the paper I linked earlier). Anderson wasn't actually particularly interested in that area of particle physics. What he was thinking about was how the universe might look to a hypothetical being that lived inside a plasma, and in particular what laws of physics such a being might deduce from observations.

Photons have zero rest mass, and as a consequence can have any energy. Massive particles cannot have any possible energy, since they have a minimum energy due to their mass. In a plasma, there is a phenomenon known as the plasma frequency. Above this frequency photons can penetrate the plasma, but below it they can't. This is how radio waves can bounce off the ionosphere, for example. That means the hypothetical being inside a plasma would observe photons to have a minimum energy, and would therefore deduce that they have mass. There is also another related phenomenon that light consists of transverse waves with no longitudinal component, while in a plasma they excite longitudinal oscillations called plasmons, and this also implies a massive particle.

So what Anderson had done was show that given a particular kind of background, a particle which would normally be expected to be massless could actually behave in every way as though they had mass. In a universe filled with a uniform plasma, photons would have mass due to their interaction with this all-pervading condensate. In effect, we're the being in Anderson's plasma. Without knowing about the Higgs field, we observe certain particles to have mass that we wouldn't expect. Interaction with the plasma/Higgs condensate simply explains why that happens.

Of course, the plasma in that case is non-relativistic and effectively matches early ideas of the aether - a plasma gives you a preferred frame of reference and we know there isn't one. As Farsight says, we've already disproved that this kind of aether exists. What Farsight completely misses is that we've only disproved this specific kind of aether. The Michelson-Morley experiment says absolutely nothing about a relativistic aether, and neither does Einstein, relativity, or anything else. Far from the Higgs mechanism ignoring this, the fundamental basis of the whole thing is the discovery of a way to generalise Anderson's work to what is essentially a relativistic aether. The entire reason this work was important is not because physicists are all idiots who just ignored Einstein's work, it's because they found a way to describe an aether that is entirely consistent with Einstein's work. It's generally not referred to as an aether because that term is associated with the long discredited non-relativistic aether. Farsight nicely demonstrates the sort of confusion that can cause in people who don't know anything about the field.

Now, the idea of some weird substance filling the whole universe might sound a bit crazy, but it's not actually a new or unusual idea at all. OK, the Higgs field is present everywhere in the universe. Well so is the gravitational field. So is the electromagnetic field. And we've long accepted that empty vacuum is actually filled with particles constantly popping in and out of existence. The behaviour of all particles is already governed by their interaction with these background fields of the universe. Adding in another one isn't really such a big step, especially if it explains a bunch of stuff that no-one's managed to explain in any other way.
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:13 AM   #552
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Originally Posted by Cuddles View Post
In fact, this is beautiful demonstration of just how little Farsight understands. The Higgs field effectively is an aether just, as you say, not quite in the way the term was originally used. In fact, the path leading up to the work of Higgs and others was partly based on the early work of plasma physicist Anderson (check the references in the paper I linked earlier). Anderson wasn't actually particularly interested in that area of particle physics. What he was thinking about was how the universe might look to a hypothetical being that lived inside a plasma, and in particular what laws of physics such a being might deduce from observations.

Photons have zero rest mass, and as a consequence can have any energy. Massive particles cannot have any possible energy, since they have a minimum energy due to their mass. In a plasma, there is a phenomenon known as the plasma frequency. Above this frequency photons can penetrate the plasma, but below it they can't. This is how radio waves can bounce off the ionosphere, for example. That means the hypothetical being inside a plasma would observe photons to have a minimum energy, and would therefore deduce that they have mass. There is also another related phenomenon that light consists of transverse waves with no longitudinal component, while in a plasma they excite longitudinal oscillations called plasmons, and this also implies a massive particle.

So what Anderson had done was show that given a particular kind of background, a particle which would normally be expected to be massless could actually behave in every way as though they had mass. In a universe filled with a uniform plasma, photons would have mass due to their interaction with this all-pervading condensate. In effect, we're the being in Anderson's plasma. Without knowing about the Higgs field, we observe certain particles to have mass that we wouldn't expect. Interaction with the plasma/Higgs condensate simply explains why that happens.
Genuinely fascinating. Top post Cuddles.
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:19 AM   #553
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
(1) Making an electron (or pair producing an electron-positron pair) costs more energy in the presence of a Higgs condensate than without one (all else being equal), because of the interaction of the Higgs condensate with the electron field.
A bald unsupported assertion.

Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
(2) Therefore, the energy content of an electron that was produced in the presence of a Higgs condensate is higher than one that was produced with zero Higgs condensate (all else being equal).
As above.

Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
((3) Therefore, since m=E/c2, the mass of an electron that was produced in the presence of a Higgs condensate is higher than one that was produced with zero Higgs condensate.
Huh? According to the Higgs mechanism, with no Higgs condensate the electron has no mass, contradicting what Einstein said: The mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content. You're left with an electron that not only has no mass, but has no energy either.

Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
Which of those steps violates E=mc2, Farsight?
The third one, because E=mc² means m=E/c², so if m=0 then E=0 too. Next!
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:28 AM   #554
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
Huh? According to the Higgs mechanism, with no Higgs condensate the electron has no mass, contradicting what Einstein said: The mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content. You're left with an electron that not only has no mass, but has no energy either.
No, you're left with an electron that has no rest mass. It's total energy would be determined by the same equation that determines that of a photon: E=pc.
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:28 AM   #555
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Originally Posted by Perpetual Student View Post
Here we have someone who admits he is not a physicist and routinely demonstrates he is quite limited in his mathematics skills. This same person demands professionals and others accept that he has discovered that all mainstream physicists throughout the world are grossly wrong in how physics is done and interpreted. He takes the very bizarre position that only he has interpreted a milestone 1905 paper correctly and all subsequent developments in the intervening 107 years are mostly wrong. All this from someone who is not a physicist. Wow! Just plain -- WOW!
Oh, just listen to those ad-hominems. Am I still talking to you? I can't recall, but I'll do you the honour anyway. The mass of a body is a measure of its energy-content doesn't take any interpreting. So how can you justify dismissing it? When you can't explain the Higgs mechanism at all? Your counter-argument is merely the evidence doesn't count, Einstein doesn't count, you must be wrong because we can't be wrong. Well I got news for you. You can. Next.
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Old 14th November 2012, 08:44 AM   #556
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Originally Posted by steenkh View Post
So do Chalmers and Giudice have an alternative explanation for the observed interactions at 125 GeV/c?
I don't know. As far as I know Chalmers is a science writer, reporting what physicists say instead of putting forward his own views. Giudice is a CERN physicist who was rather skeptical about the Higgs mechanism in A Zeptospace Odyssey: A Journey into the Physics of the LHC. There's a search-inside feature on Amazon, search on "higgs sector" and read pages 173 and 175. He says things like "frightfully ad-hoc", "toilet of the Standard model" and "The name gives the impression that the Higgs boson is the central particle of the Standard Model, governing its structure. But this is very far from the truth." You get a very different impression to the one you get from the CERN press releases.
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Old 14th November 2012, 09:03 AM   #557
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Originally Posted by Farsight View Post
According to the Higgs mechanism, with no Higgs condensate the electron has no mass
Actually, this is a part that you have completely wrong but that I think Sol has wrong as well. The Higgs mechanism addresses gauge bosons in a gauge theory. In the particular context of the Standard Model, the Higgs mechanism gives an electroweak theory with massive W and Z bosons and a massless photon, where previous attempts could only predict they were all massless. It actually says nothing at all about the mass of the electron, which was already adequately explained by QED around the 1940s.
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Old 14th November 2012, 09:15 AM   #558
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
The Higgs boson has been researched extensively for decades. If that statement was true then how come any research was done on the Higgs boson when it was so obvious that it could not exist?
Don't ask me, RC. But see Woit's blog where he talks about SUSY as an unstoppable juggernaut, and is skeptical of the way John Ellis always finds a way to say that a nil result supports it. Maybe the Higgs boson is something like that.

Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
My guess: the "gathers mass from everything it touches" is wrong.
Maybe. I've not been saying that, and was surprised to see it in New Scientist. That's black-hole-swallows the-Earth-stuff, which I've never advocated.

Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
AFAIK the Higgs boson gets its mass from the Higgs field just like the other particles. For example:
We (Apparently) Found the Higgs Boson. Now, Where the Heck Did It Come From?
I had a look. Here's a fair-use excerpt:

"But how did the electrons and quarks that make up all the matter in the universe (for technical reasons, perhaps except for neutrinos) get their mass? That we still don’t know. But once we understand how the Ws and the Z gain their mass from their interaction with the Higgs field, we assume that we also know how mass in general is created: through the same “Higgs mechanism”, and that this primeval cosmic event shortly after the Big Bang has thus created the mass of the universe: electrons, quarks, stars, galaxies, planets, trees, animals, and us."

Note that he's saying we don't know how the electron gets its mass, and that it's only an assumption that the Higgs mechanism is responsible. Also note that "how mass in general is created" is a falsehood, because the Higgs mechanism is only responsible for the 1% of the mass of matter. Here's another excerpt:

"So how did the Higgs itself get its mass?—we now know from the discovery just announced at CERN that the Higgs has a mass of about 125 GeV (about 1 1/2 times the mass of the Ws and the Z). The answer may surprise you: The Higgs gives itself mass!"

That's a junk-science pop-science circular non-answer. The mass comes from the kinetic energy given to the LHC protons, by virtue of E=mc². But if you insist that it's a self-interaction whereby an excitation of the Higgs field can interact with the Higgs field, then a photon can surely interact with a photon as per photon-photon pair production. The alternative is to believe that pair production occurs because pair production occurs, which is another circular non-answer. As a poster on a skeptics forum, you shouldn't be accepting stuff like that.
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Old 14th November 2012, 09:30 AM   #559
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Originally Posted by Cuddles View Post
Actually, this is a part that you have completely wrong but that I think Sol has wrong as well. The Higgs mechanism addresses gauge bosons in a gauge theory. In the particular context of the Standard Model, the Higgs mechanism gives an electroweak theory with massive W and Z bosons and a massless photon, where previous attempts could only predict they were all massless. It actually says nothing at all about the mass of the electron, which was already adequately explained by QED around the 1940s.
(Not a theorist, so a bit out of my depth, but

My understanding is that there *is* a gauge-invariance problem with any (non-Higgs-based) fermion masses in the Standard Model. My understanding is, further, that since you really need to posit a Higgs field to explain the gauge boson masses, you might as well (but aren't strictly forced to) reuse it to give you nice gauge-invariant fermion masses, too. If there's a necessary connection between these two, no one has ever explained it to me.

However: now that the LHC has actually seen the Higgs, and in particular since it's seen *both* a fermion-coupling decay (top loops leading to higgs gamma gamma) and a gauge-boson-coupling decay (H->ZZ and H->WW) of what appears to be the same 125 GeV particle ... well, that basically confirms the simple picture above. Seeing Higgs tau tau would nail it down. Building a 250GeV linear collider and measuring the Higgs resonance width would *really* nail it down, eh? Let's do that.
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Old 14th November 2012, 09:39 AM   #560
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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
You certainly wasted your time there with that wall of irrelevant stuff!

You never addressed the question: Farsight: Is the Higgs mechanism a relativistic quantum field theory?
i.e. is it is based on special relativity and is thus consistent with E=mc^2.
First pointed out 1 November 2012
Yes, I addressed it. I answered it, and you totally dismissed my answer. But you were part right. I certainly wasted my time there. Here's my answer in case you feel like discussing it in good faith: post #527. Until you do, please don't try to claim that I haven't answered your question.

Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
How about just showing that the Higgs mechanism is not Lorentz invariant?
There's no point. If it wasn't, it would be obviously at odds with SR even to you. Besides, Lorentz invariance isn't the issue, the issue is that E=mc² means what it says on the can. If you've got energy in the guise of a body, it has mass because m=E/c² and not for some other reason that is only assumed.
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