Image courtesy of Manel Carrillo, Josep Miquel Girart (CSIC-IEEC), Nimesh Patel (SMA), Spitzer

Magnetic Fields Dominate Young Stars of all Sizes?

Article Updated: 24 Dec , 2015

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When it comes to the role of magnetism in the formation of stars, size might not matter.

A team of researchers led by Josep Girart, of the Institut de Ciències de l’Espai (in Spain), studied the slow evolution of a dust cloud into a massive star, and realized that the cloud’s magnetic field controls the star’s development more than any other factor. They propose that the story is the same for small stars — an idea that could offer a new way to understand the formation of the early universe.

The new hypothesis is presented in this week’s issue of the journal Science, and the lead image represents an artist’s rendering of the concept.

The background shows a false-color Spitzer image of the massive star-forming region G31.41, with the colors indicating various wavelengths of light.  The zoom-in region represents the dust emission from the massive hot core (color and contour image) superposed with bars showing the structure of the magnetic field.

Pictured in the bottom of the image is the Submillimeter Array in Hawaii, which was used for the observations.

The authors describe how the magnetic field at G31.41 has deformed the dust cloud into an hourglass shape – a telltale sign of magnetically controlled star formation.

They say that this magnetic energy dominates over the other energies at play — e.g., centrifugal force and turbulence — and suggest that the role of the magnetic field in the early stages of star formation could be very similar for both small and massive stars.

“The energetic relations do not differ too much” between massive and small stars, the authors write. “Both cores are collapsing because gravity has overcome pressure forces, but the collapsing dynamics are controlled by the magnetic energy rather than by turbulence.”

Girart and his colleagues point out that this only holds true for forming stars; older massive stars are more influenced by radiation and ionization pressure, turbulence, and outflows than by magnetic fields.

Massive stars play a crucial role in the production of heavy elements and in the evolution of the interstellar medium, so this discovery might eventually lead to new insights about the formation of the early universe.

Source: Science


179 Responses

  1. DrFlimmer says:

    It has been clear to the community for quite some time that star formation is influenced by magnetic fields.
    I can go into the details if someone wishes, for now I don’t have the time.

    Just as an information for some of our fellows here. I guess they will appear soon….

  2. Lawrence B. Crowell says:

    This one is a perfect curtain call for Anaconda to make another pitch!

  3. mgmirkin says:

    Interesting…

  4. mgmirkin says:

    So, from whence do these dominant magnetic fields originate? Currents of some form or function, I assume?

  5. IVAN3MAN says:

    Lawrence B. Crowell:

    This one is a perfect curtain call for Anaconda to make another pitch!

    You mean like this?

  6. Jon Hanford says:

    Yes, this is directly related to Astrofiend’s ‘dim matter’ comment on another thread (although not as he intended it to be used) 🙂

  7. Astrofiend says:

    😉

    As I said – catchy.

  8. Torbjorn Larsson OM says:

    Yes, whence the magnetic fields? Remnants from ionization or other particles with magnetic moments lining up, or large scale charge separation somehow?

    Help, please. “Nature abhors an empty head”.

    catchy

    Catchy by being preemptive. For example, “to take a dim view of the matter” is out. :-/

  9. Nereid2 says:

    @mgmirkin: are you the same ‘MGmirkin’ who W.T.”Tom” Bridgman responds to on his blog (http://dealingwithcreationisminastronomy.blogspot.com/2008/11/electric-cosmos-solar-resistor-model.html)?

    If so, I’m wondering if you could help Anaconda out, and tell him how one can estimate the strength and direction of an electric current in space (beyond the solar system), based on astronomical observations. A particularly nice bonus would be if you could cite a paper (or three) of Alfvén’s, where he outlines (or even details!) the steps one could take to arrive at such estimates …

  10. mgmirkin says:

    No doubt a tricky feat, but, one would assume that if it were possible to determine the magnetic field topology, size, distance.

    Looking for synchrotron radiation or using the Faraday effect are fairly standard for ferreting out magnetic fields of faraway objects in space, yes?

    Such information could be used to reverse engineer the corresponding currents that would produce such a field configuration. Might take a supercomputer to do so, but there seem to be plenty of those around for reverse engineering “dark matter” out of the lack of enough OBSERVABLE mass in galaxies and clusters to keep them from flying apart. Astrophysicists are wily that way, they’ll figure it out. I’d suggest starting at Maxwell’s equations. 😉

  11. mgmirkin says:

    And just as another overly simplistic question, do our measurements give a 3D model of magnetic field strengths around a star, or a flat 2-dimensional map? I’m assuming the latter, but I may be mistaken? Obviously it would be more difficult to go from a 2D map to a 3D simulation. But such is the burden of observation and theory of objects so far away, no? We take what little we can actually get and have to try to fill in the gaps, while trying to not violate any known laws of physics. 😉

  12. Nereid2 says:

    @mgmirkin: thanks for the swift reply! 🙂

    May I infer, from your reply, that you do not know *how* to go about estimating an electric-current-in-space’s magnitude and direction, beyond some vague feeling that it should be possible?

    Also, may I infer, from your lack of mention in your comment of Alfvén, that you do not know where, or indeed if, he outlines *how* such estimates could be made, in any of his published works?

    No doubt a tricky feat, but, one would assume that if it were possible to determine the magnetic field topology, size, distance.

    (bold added)
    Perhaps … but I am not aware of any technique, in astrophysics, by which the “magnetic field topology” in a region of space (outside the solar system) can be reliably estimated.

    It seems, from your comment, that you are aware that this can be done; if so, would you be kind enough to share the knowledge?

    For avoidance of doubt, I am not talking about estimates of the *integrated* magnetic field strength of the ISM (or any part of it) or IGM (ditto); nor am I referring to possible reconstructions of the magnetic fields of stars (including pulsars).

    Looking for synchrotron radiation or using the Faraday effect are fairly standard for ferreting out magnetic fields of faraway objects in space, yes?

    Indeed, that is so.

    But how does one go from estimates of the *integrated* magnetic field strength, from such observations, to estimates of any associated electric currents?

    Such information could be used to reverse engineer the corresponding currents that would produce such a field configuration

    If you know a way to do this – even if only in principle – I urge you to write it up and get it published! 🙂 It is likely that by doing so you will have made a major breakthrough in astrophysics!!

    Might take a supercomputer to do so, but there seem to be plenty of those around for reverse engineering “dark matter” out of the lack of enough OBSERVABLE mass in galaxies and clusters to keep them from flying apart

    You certainly don’t need a supercomputer to do that! After all, there were no such things back in the 1930s (when Zwicky published the first paper about dark matter in galaxy clusters), and no computers at all (other than the human kind) … all you need is a pencil and one or two sheets of paper. Ditto a few decades later (i.e. Vera Rubin and spiral galaxy rotation curves).

    In fact – as I’m pretty sure you already know – you can even outline the method for estimating dark matter in spiral galaxies and galaxy clusters (to within half an order of magnitude or so) within a UT story comment; would you be interested in such a demonstration (I’d be pleased to provide one, as would, I’m sure, quite a few others who post here regularly)?

    Of course, making such estimates from gravitational lensing data is a good deal more tricky … but then neither Zwicky nor Rubin used that technique (it wasn’t even discovered, in astronomical observations of galaxies or clusters, until several decades later).

    I’d suggest starting at Maxwell’s equations.

    And I invite you to show us all how … right here, and now … (an outline will suffice).

  13. Nereid2 says:

    Stars rotate … and so (spectral) line profiles will show changes with time (i.e. as the star being observed rotates). There are techniques to recover (estimated) ‘starspot’ distributions from the time variation of line profiles … but of course they are only as good as the assumptions built into the models (and data analyses).

    do our measurements give a 3D model of magnetic field strengths around a star, or a flat 2-dimensional map?

    (bold added)

    AFAIK, the same sort of techniques can be used to reconstruct the strength of magnetic fields on the photospheres of stars whose lines show clear evidence of the Zeeman effect … of course, this is not ‘around’, but ‘on’.

    BTW, how do you think the Sun’s 3D magnetic fields can be mapped, from observatories on the surface of the Earth?

  14. mgmirkin says:

    Though, Zeeman splitting or similar process is I suppose more applicable to magnetic field measurements of stars (as opposed to nebulae and other more tenuous sources)?

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1980ApJ…239..961R

  15. Nereid2 says:

    Indeed.

    however, the method is insensitive to field strengths below 1000 Gauss

    (from that source’s abstract).

    I presume you have some knowledge of the estimated of interstellar medium (ISM) magnetic field strengths?

  16. mgmirkin says:

    how can one estimate the strength and direction of an electric current in space (beyond the solar system),

    Well, I’ll admit that I’m not specifically familiar with the maths involved… However, that said I’m becoming slightly familiarized with the concepts involved, so if you don’t mind a death of maths, we can take a quick conceptual look at an example.

    I’d simply point out that the right hand rule is quite helpful when dealing with currents and magnetic fields.

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_current#Electromagnetism

    A long straight filament of current will generate a cylindrical magnetic field about it. The right hand rule describes the relationship between the current direction and the magnetic field direction (curl?).

    How does that help? Well, as stated in the link above, it can be used diagnostically. IE, one can take a current and from that determine the magnetic field strength and direction. The reverse is also true. If you know the field direction and strength (and the proper maths), you can determine the current direction and strength required to generate the aforementioned fields.

    One example I might point out would be the magnetic fields found around the molecular cloud in Orion:

    “Astronomers find magnetic slinkies in Orion”
    berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2006/01/12_helical.shtml

    The title tickles my funny bone every time. Can’t help but smile just a little.

    In any event, the tentative conclusions reached were that a magnetic field is essentially cylindrically / helically “wrapped around” the cloud of plasma. In my book, it’s not a huge deductive leap to utilize the right hand rule… If there’s a cylindrical or helical magnetic field encircling the molecular cloud that seems a strong indication that a current flows through it.

    If we know the distance, thus the apparent size of the molecular cloud (and the radius about its axis) and can determine the field strength at some distance from the axis (that’s perhaps the tricky part), then should it not be a matter of plugging in those pieces of information on distance and field strength into the appropriate equations to yield the strength of the current required to flow along the axis to generate the observed fields? As in the lab on Earth…

    Just my thoughts on the matter, anyway.

  17. mgmirkin says:

    Err, that should have read “dearth” not “death,” my bad.

  18. mgmirkin says:

    “The magnetic field lines are like stretched rubber bands; the tension squeezes the cloud into its filamentary shape.”

    As an aside, the statement about the humorously named “magnetic slinkies” isn’t all that far off the mark…

    In fact the effect of a current flowing through plasma will tend be a magnetic field and the magnetic field will tend to constrict the flow of current. This is known as the magnetic pinch effect in plasma physics (also known as the Bennett pinch, electromagnetic pinch, z-pinch, plasma pinch, and probably a few other colorful names I’ve forgotten).

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinch_(plasma_physics)

    A pinch is the compression of an electrically conducting filament by magnetic forces. The conductor is usually a plasma

    In a z-pinch, the current is axial (in the z direction in a cylindrical coordinate system) and the magnetic field azimuthal

    So, the effect of the magnetic fields maintaining the filamentary shape of the molecular clouds is EXPECTED under an electrical interpretation, as are the magnetic fields themselves (integral to the process of pinching the material into filaments rather than something more diffuse).

  19. mgmirkin says:

    In any event, didn’t mean to divert conversation away from stars. Just a particular example of how one might interpret things under the electrical paradigm and how it might match up with observations and be useful in tracing / calculating from observations of magnetic fields back to current strength / direction.

    I assume everyone else here is probably better with the maths than I am. So, I won’t argue that point. But, hopefully you at least see where I’m coming from and how it might be applied by those with the requisite skills for the task.

    I’m off for a bit. Probably shouldn’t waste too much time @ the day job. Feel free to discuss amongst yourselves.

  20. mgmirkin says:

    Poking around a bit, one would assume that Ampere’s law would be the correct bit of Maxwell’s equations to use as a starting point…

    Granted this would all lead to a rough guesstimate, and reality is considerably messier than a simple straight wire in the lab. But, what *does* conform to “idealized” equations in science these days? 😉 Not much, I’d wager.

  21. Nereid2 says:

    @mgmirkin:

    Ah the joys and frustrations of trying to divine (learn?) astrophysics from press releases!

    berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2006/01/12_helical.shtml

    I haven’t the time now, but later I’ll see if I can find the *papers* published on this, and those which came afterwards, but I suspect it’ll be a lot messier than one might imagine from simply reading the PR.

    And then there’s something which tripped Anaconda up (and still, apparently, causes him problems, even after TomM tried to set him straight), namely the spatial relationship between a magnetic field and its associated current: that there is a chunk of space in which a planetary magnetic field dominates is, I hope, well-known to you (Earth, and its magnetosphere, likewise Jupiter, …). Good. Now where is the current associated with this magnetic field?

    Or try something else in the solar system, namely the Sun. From detailed observations of the Sun, from a single location on the Earth’s surface, detailed maps of magnetic fields on, and above, the Sun can be produced. Using those maps *alone* can you, mgmirkin, ‘reverse engineer’ the associated electric currents? Should be easy, right? I mean, the Sun is a plasma, and you’re familiar with Alfvén’s papers on plasmas, right? Perhaps you could even cite a paper or three by Alfvén, in which he described how to do such reverse engineering, and provides specific, concrete, quantitative examples?

  22. Jon Hanford says:

    Nereid 2 and mgmirkin’s discussion reminded me of papers published in the 60’s & 70’s by Zwicky, Arp, and, I believe Geoff Burbidge trying to pin down the intergalactic magnetic field strength between interacting galaxies ( using ordinary poloroid filters in front of the photographic emulsion) and the 200 inch Hale reflector. As I recall, the results were inconclusive and no meaningful value for IGM magnetic field strength was obtained. I, too, would be interested in reading about any independently validated model that accurately portrays the magnetic field topology of any galaxy. I don’t dispute that magnetic fields exist between galaxies and within superclusters, only the overall magnitude of the effect 🙂

  23. DrFlimmer says:

    Even if one could apply Maxwell’s laws, one will still face great difficulties to “reverse engeneer” the currents.
    I mean, take a look at the picture above in the article. The magnetic field is quite ordered, but still, just from viewing at it, I think it will be a really difficult task (even for a computer) to examine the underlying current.
    The first problem is that we are only seeing a two-dimensional area. We are lacking the “depth”-information which is critical, since Maxwell’s equations are three-dimensional.
    The second problem is that the field lines do not seem to be closed. What is their curl? How do they bend back? Do they bend back at all or are they connected otherwise (to the ISM, e.g.)?
    What we see from this point is that we lack the information how the magnetic field really looks like. This should make it quite impossible to calculate the underlying current, when we even lack the knowledge of the structure of the magnet field.

    And another thing is: Let’s take a look at the sun. We can see magnetic fields evolving yround it and we can measure them in 3-d. Even the field that expands from the sun is measurable.
    But I think that it is quite a task to calculate the current that should flow somehow through the sun. The magnetic field of a single protuberance is really complicated stuff since it can become quite twisted and can reconnect and all such things. Even if it “just” becomes twisted, I wonder if there is a current responsible for such a behaviour.
    The structure of the magnetic field close to the sun is quite chaotic, as must be the “current system” inside the sun.
    This means it should be really difficult if not impossible to calculate the currents.
    This does not even include the 22-year-cycle, which should make it even more difficult.
    (And btw: How does the magnetic field look like inside the sun? I think this is quite unknown and makes the task harder and harder…)

  24. Nereid2 says:

    I missed this part of mgmirkin’s comment earlier …

    So, the effect of the magnetic fields maintaining the filamentary shape of the molecular clouds is EXPECTED under an electrical interpretation, as are the magnetic fields themselves (integral to the process of pinching the material into filaments rather than something more diffuse).

    Correct me if I’m wrong, mgmirkin, but there is not a single published paper on what might, or might not, be “EXPECTED under an electrical interpretation”; wrt “the effect of […] magnetic fields maintaining the filamentary shape of the molecular clouds”, is there?

    I mean, this is just a cute idea of yours (a ‘personal theory’, perhaps), isn’t it?

    Worse, all “electrical interpretation[s]” applied to astronomy have either been long since shown to be quite inconsistent with a great deal of high quality astronomical observations (e.g. Peratt’s on galaxy formation), or ripped to shreds by the likes of Tom Bridgman (e.g. Scott’s EU ideas).

    Why is it, do you suppose, that proponents of these ideas seem to such a hard time developing even one credible, quantitative, model?

  25. Jon Hanford says:

    @Nereid2, responses from mgmirkin to your questions and those of others seem to be met with ‘science by press release, blogging, intuition and pictures’. People who have no clue as to how science is practiced, at least among astrophysicists. Didn’t we do this dance several times with Anaconda. While mgmirkin may not have the mathematical background to to articulate his position, I would hope that he could provide links to published, peer-reviewed papers that specifically address and explain a whole host of problems that QM, GR and the Standard Model already address quite well. I also find it hard to follow some of his posts concerning fields and currents in the IGM, but then to reference a 29 year-old paper that specifically discusses how to measure the magnetic field of a single star (with the added stipulation that for this technique to work, the star must have a field strength > 1000 Gauss! Does mgmirkin have any idea of the relative scales of the objects he mentions? It’s a big extrapolation from solar & terrestrial scales to interstellar scales to galaxy scales to galaxy cluster scales and eventually cosmological scales! Anyway, links to peer-reviewed published papers detailing this theory have been requested MANY times on specific objects, with none being proffered. How can ordinary people and scientists evaluate current PC/PU/EU/EC claims in lieu of non-existent or unpublished work!?!?

  26. solrey says:

    The abstract of the paper from which this article was apparently derived:

    [quote]
    Massive stars play a crucial role in the production of heavy elements and in the evolution of the interstellar medium, yet how they form is still a matter of debate. We report high-angular-resolution submillimeter observations toward the massive hot molecular core (HMC) in the high-mass star-forming region G31.41+0.31. We find that the evolution of the gravitational collapse of the HMC is controlled by the magnetic field. The HMC is simultaneously contracting and rotating, and the magnetic field lines threading the HMC are deformed along its major axis, acquiring an hourglass shape. The magnetic energy dominates over the centrifugal and turbulence energies, and there is evidence of magnetic braking in the contracting core.
    [/quote]

    This paper by Carlqvist explains the Bennet pinch in a plasma, published in ’87 but confirmed with these new observations:

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-data_query?bibcode=1988Ap%26SS.144…73C&link_type=ARTICLE&db_key=AST&high=

  27. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: the Girart et al. paper (which the UT story refers to) does not seem to be on arXiv, nor in ADS yet, and I can’t access it on the Science site here, so I am unable to check whether this Carlqvist paper is cited by Girart et al. or not.

    May I ask how you ascertained that it was?

    (I presume you are familiar with how references work in published science – or at least (astro)physics – papers … if, as you assert, the Girart et al. observations do indeed confirm Carlqvist’s model, then the 1987 paper will be cited; OTOH, if the two are not related, then it is unlikely that Girart et al. will have cited Carlqvist (1987)).

  28. Jon Hanford says:

    @solrey, I echo Nereid2s question. How can you deduce the scientific method used by Girart solely by reading the abstract?!?! Without access to the full published paper by Girart you can only speculate on it’s contents. Check out the citation history of your 22 year old paper, if you are able. how many are there? This is what gets me about people who post links to abstracts or quote from abstracts. Call it ‘science by abstract’. How far is that going to further astronomical research. Astronomers prefer to read the entire paper from a researcher or researchers before commenting on the work. They want to see the ‘nuts & bolts’ of the work and how various conclusions in the paper were derived. You certainly can’t cram in all those ‘details, mere details’ into a paper’s abstract.

  29. wjwbudro says:

    Please be kind…I am not a scientist and I certainly do not possess the academic and field credentials that some regulars here obviously have so, at the risk of getting a dressing down, I’ll present a thought and a question.
    IIRC, magnetism manifests itself in two different ways; induction via an electric current or naturally per the chemistry of ferrite material which is still not clearly understood as I understand from what I’ve read on the subject so, my question is:
    If systems such as described here are a result of previous activity such as SN or PPN (assuming prior core dynamics and heavy metal production) then isn’t it reasonable to assume that remnant ferrite material, with their dipole characteristic, may be responsible for this (1st stage) coalescence? Chaotic at first and gradually aligning and forming the “hour glass” as the article describes, with the apices being the center of mass (the embryonic star). As the system moves toward equilibrium and continues to align and come together, the resulting mass increase will eventually give rise to the dominant and long ranging gravitational force.
    Small stones please!

  30. wjwbudro says:

    I left something important out.
    …the resulting mass increase, the heavy metals forming the core, will eventually give rise to the dominant and long ranging gravitational force which will subsequently attract the lighter elements, specifically hydrogen and depending on how much hydrogen is gathered determines the characteristic (mass) class of the new born.
    Again, small stones please.

  31. solrey says:

    @nereid2
    I never said Carlqvist’s paper was cited in the Girart paper. I merely said that the new observations, which the Girart paper is based on, confirms the paper by Carlqvist from over 20 years ago.
    It doesn’t matter whether Girart cited Carlqvist or not, the fact is that the recent observations confirm the cosmologic plasma pinch described (with plenty of math) in Carlqvist’s paper.

    @jonhanford
    I tried to find the full paper, but all that is available is the abstract. Unless you’d like to pay for my subscription to access those full papers.

    @wjwbudro
    There was no mention of ionized iron emissions in the article, nor in the abstract. It’s an axially aligned electric current that produces the magnetic ‘pinch’ zone, in an area of higher particle/charge density, along a cylindrical current filament, that creates the hourglass shaped magnetic field. Any iron atoms in that dusty plasma would be too diffuse to create the effect of a ‘permanent’ magnet.

  32. IVAN3MAN says:

    The “Electric Universe” Emblem.

  33. Nereid2 says:

    Thanks for the clarification, solrey.

    However, I’m puzzled … without reading the actual Girart et al. paper, how did you arrive at the ‘confirms’ conclusion?

    @nereid2
    I never said Carlqvist’s paper was cited in the Girart paper. I merely said that the new observations, which the Girart paper is based on, confirms the paper by Carlqvist from over 20 years ago.
    It doesn’t matter whether Girart cited Carlqvist or not, the fact is that the recent observations confirm the cosmologic plasma pinch described (with plenty of math) in Carlqvist’s paper.

    (bold added)

    I’ve not read the Girart et al. paper, but I have read the Carlqvist one, and I’m sorry to say that I can’t see how, from the abstract alone, you could possibly reach a ‘confirms’ conclusion.

    BTW, here you do quotes by

    (without the spaces, of course).

    Earlier, from mgmirkin:

    So, from whence do these dominant magnetic fields originate? Currents of some form or function, I assume?

    I doubt that the Girart et al. paper even mentions that, let alone sets out to present some answers.

    AFAIK, when a portion of a molecular cloud undergoes gravitational collapse, the magnetic fields go along for the ride … the ISM is pervaded by magnetic fields, as you know.

    So your question then becomes, in part, where did the magnetic fields in the ISM come from? I’m not sure there’s a good answer to that, not only because the evolution of the ISM is, today, only poorly understood, but also because the fine details of how structure formed in (ordinary, baryonic) matter, from the tiny density perturbations at the end of the era of radiation dominance, are essentially unconstrained by observations.

    @wjwbudro: to add to what solrey wrote, even if there were ferrite (or similar) grains dispersed throughout the HMC observed by Girart et al., and even if its temperature were well below the relevant Curie temperature, I doubt that the individual grains’ magnetic fields would be aligned in any coherent fashion (but I could well be quite wrong).

  34. DrFlimmer says:

    @wjwbudro

    the chemistry of ferrite material which is still not clearly understood as I understand from what I’ve read on the subject

    Magnets are very well understood, today. It is a quantum mechanical effect. The magnetic moments of electrons are aligned in some way and add up to a macroscopic magnetic field (that has nothing to do with currents, btw, because the magnetic moment has nothing to do with motions of electrons, which is an ill-defined term in quantum mechanics). But you can destroy this magnetic field if you increase the temperature that is coupled to the (chaotic) motion of the atoms. If the temperature of the magnet reaches the Curie-temperature (already mentioned by Nereid2) the chaotic motion of the atoms destroys the alignment of the magnetic moments and the magnetic properties of the material vanish.

    So, although you had a good idea, it seems rather impossible to have “magnets” in space, since (also already mentioned by solrey and Nereid2) the densities are far too low and the temperatures are too high normally.

    @Ivan3man

    Brilliant 😀

  35. Nereid2 says:

    Following up, as promised …

    I haven’t the time now, but later I’ll see if I can find the *papers* published on this, and those which came afterwards, but I suspect it’ll be a lot messier than one might imagine from simply reading the PR.

    First, the ‘paper’ is, in fact, an AAS presentation (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2005AAS…20719503R):

    A detailed inspection of the polarization properties of the 100-m Green Bank Telescope (GBT) by the authors has revealed that the GBT should be unparalleled among large single-dish radio telescopes for making Zeeman-splitting measurements of spectral lines in emission. The off-axis design and unblocked aperture of the GBT provide a characterizable polarized beam structure with negligible response outside of the main beam. This talk will focus on recent GBT detections of Zeeman splitting of the 21-cm line in emission. First, detection of the 8 ? G line-of-sight magnetic field towards the North Celestial Pole will be discussed. Then results will be shown from two slices across the major axis of a filamentary molecular cloud in Orion. The measured line-of-sight fields in combination with plane-of-sky polarization measurements suggest that this may be the first evidence of a helical magnetic field. Support for this work was provided by the NSF through award GSSP 05-0004 from the NRAO.

    I have, so far, been unable to find any papers, by Heiles or Robishaw, on the GBT Orion MC observations (doesn’t mean there aren’t any, of course, just that I’ve not found any), so …

    … I am unable to say whether the magnitude and direction of the magnetic fields in this cloud were estimated, by Heiles and Robishaw, or not; at least, wrt the fields being ‘helical’.

    Next, neither of the two papers which cite the Heiles and Robishaw AAS presentation refer to the Orion MC (so they’re no help).

    There are certainly quite a few interesting documents in the ADS database, with Carl Heiles as (at least one) author, relating to the esimation of magnetic fields in the ISM, using the technique briefly described in the 2006 PR (referenced by mgmirkin)! However, none of them seem to provide even the slightest help to mgmirkin’s quest to estimate currents in the ISM, from astronomical observations …

  36. wjwbudro says:

    Thank you DrFlimmer, Sorely and Nereid2,
    The article stated “the cloud’s magnetic field controls the star’s development more than any other factor. ” which lead me to jump off the deep end here. I was aware of the Curie point but, I assumed that dust and gas clouds in the ISM would be cooler than that point and that if a prior SN/PPN was the precursor, the cloud should contain a substantial amount of ferrite material.
    I’ll go away now and do some more research. Thanks once again.

  37. solrey says:

    Thanks for trying to help with the quotes thing nereid. It was kinda funny that you obviously typed the code, but it was invisible in the comment. Gave me a little chuckle.

    BTW, here you do quotes by

    (without the spaces, of course).

    Gee, that’s helpful. LOL
    Just kidding. I appreciate nereid taking time to play with the quote code a little bit on an older thread.

  38. solrey says:

    drflimmer said:

    It has been clear to the community for quite some time that star formation is influenced by magnetic fields.

    But the following is from 2005, not that long ago.

    The measured line-of-sight fields in combination with plane-of-sky polarization measurements suggest that this may be the first evidence of a helical magnetic field.

    Actually, it’s plasma cosmology that has known of/predicted magnetic fields throughout the cosmos in general, and star formation specifically, going back several decades.

  39. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: you’re welcome.

    I think you’re confusing two quite different things …

    That magnetic fields play a role, possibly a quite significant role, in star formation is at least several decades old (I’ll dig up some papers later), however …

    … possible observational signatures of *helical* magnetic fields in dense ISM clouds was reported only in 2005 (tentative result, a thorough literature search may turn up earlier reports).

    Actually, it’s plasma cosmology that has known of/predicted magnetic fields throughout the cosmos in general, and star formation specifically, going back several decades.

    AFAIK, at the general level of ‘magnetic fields in space’ (beyond the solar system), I think you’ll find papers on this well before Alfvén coined the term plasma cosmology (PC for short; I am right, aren’t I, that it was he who first used that term?).

    The main difference between Alfvén’s PC and the then mainstream astrophysics is in the role of currents … but I could be wrong …

  40. Nereid2 says:

    My comment is ‘awaiting moderation’, most likely because it contains two links.

    Here it is again, with only one link …
    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    That took hardly any time at all …

    AFAIK, at the general level of ‘magnetic fields in space’ (beyond the solar system), I think you’ll find papers on this well before Alfvén coined the term plasma cosmology (PC for short; I am right, aren’t I, that it was he who first used that term?).

    If we date the term ‘plasma cosmology’ (PC) to the publication of Worlds-Antiworlds (i.e. 1965), then the role of magnetic fields in the collapse of ISM clouds to form solar systems predates PC by at least a decade, as this 1955 paper in AJ demonstrates:
    “On the decay of the magnetic field in a proto-star” (source: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1955AJ…..60Q.172M).

    This 1953 paper, by no lesser figures than Chandrasekhar and Fermi (yes, *that* Fermi!), demonstrates that the idea of large scale magnetic fields pervading the ISM significantly pre-dates PC …: “Magnetic Fields in Spiral Arms” (source: *I’ll put it in my next comment*).

    Perhaps of interest to readers is the fact that this paper attributes “[t]he hypothesis of the existence of a magnetic field in galactic space” to a certain “E. Fermi“, in a paper published in …. 1949!

  41. Nereid2 says:

    Here’s the source for the 1953 Chandrasekhar and Fermi paper: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1953ApJ…118..113C

  42. DrFlimmer says:

    lol…solrey, magnetic fields in general control star formation, they do not have to be specifically helical in structure, I guess.

    This is the standard folklore (in a brief version, of course) that I learned in a course in the last semester:

    The gravitational collapse compressed the ball of gas so hard that, although not burning hydrogen already, it gives off a lot of heat and therefore a lot of radiation that could potentially blow away the still infalling envelope. But other things have taken place, too. Due to the rotation of the precursor star and the envelope the latter has been significantly flattened and has become an accretion disk (such disks have been observed directly, e.g. by a group of astronomers of my university in M17).
    But how is it possible that material can still fall in? How is the angular momentum transferred away? And how does the rotational period of the star increase (it should be quite fast)?
    The last question is answered with this: The precursor star is already hot enough to be made of plasma. Its rotation induces some magnetic fields that extend far into the accretion disk. At the inner edge of the disk the magnetic fields acts like a scraper and leads clumps of disk material onto the star. When the material reaches the surface of the precursor star it deaccelerates and its kinetic energy is radiated away. So the place on the star will shine brighter than the rest of the star. This is called a “hot spot” and since it rotates with the star it moves in and out of view. And this change of flux from the percursor star is detectable on earth – and has been detected.
    Still, we face the problem of the angular momentum. The current theory says that it is transferred away by so called “X-winds”. These have nothing to do with X-rays, but are particles that are blown away from the disk and the precursor star in radial direction with high speeds. This would result in blue-shifted parts of the spectrum of the precursor star. And at least there are hints of such shifted spectra.

    This is the story for precursor stars that end in a low-mass star as the sun and are normally called T Tauri-stars.
    The story for high-mass stars is different and far less well understood.
    So the important point of this UT-story is that it seems that high-mass star formation is also controlled by magnetic fields and hence with probably a similar mechanism as the one described here.
    And one should remember: This all happens after the gravitational collapse….

  43. DrFlimmer says:

    @wjwbudro

    Yeah, it’s true that the temperature in the ISM is quite low, but so is the density. Ferro-magnetism normally occurs in solid bodies and not in gases (it would surprise me if it would be otherwise) and there are quite few big enough solids in the ISM.
    Some asteroids have been found to contain iron and have at least a small magnetic field (IIRC), but they would be far too weak to explain any of the effects seen “out there”.

  44. wjwbudro says:

    @DrFlimmer
    First let me say that I am flattered to be exchanging with the professionals in this forum and I did say that I would go back to lingering and learning.
    Are you basically saying that a region of ISM, after undergoing SN/PPN activity, would not contain a lot of bar magnets floating around in it. lol
    Again, I was probably reaching too far. Now waiting for the next enlightening discussion(s) and I promise I’ll refrain from popping in. You don’t have to respond as I know you can make better use of your time.

  45. Nereid2 says:

    Finding Fermi’s name reminded me of the following piece of astrophysical history …

    In that same 1949 Fermi published a paper on a possible mechanism for particle acceleration, in supernova remnants for example, that might be responsible for (galactic) cosmic rays (or at least a significant fraction of them).

    Some time later, IIRC, Alfvén proposed an alternative mechanism, one that involves something that has become iconic among PC/EU proponents (anyone care to guess?).

    Fast forward several decades and what mechanism do we find currently favoured among astronomers, at least for galactic CRs up to ~the ‘knee’? Why, Fermi’s! And why is this favoured? Many reasons, but perhaps the strongest is that so many kinds of independent observations are consistent with it.

    So where does that leave Alfvén’s, and others’, alternative mechanisms? It doesn’t rule them out, of course, but it does strongly suggest that either the details of these alternative mechanisms need to be rather drastically tweaked and modified, or that they contribute in only a very minor way to the observed galactic CRs (<0.01%, perhaps).

    There’s an interesting corollary (probably more than one) to this, that relates to the existence of ‘PC’ currents in the ISM; can anyone think of what it is?

  46. DrFlimmer says:

    @wjwbudro

    Are you basically saying that a region of ISM, after undergoing SN/PPN activity, would not contain a lot of bar magnets floating around in it. lol

    I don’t they that there are no “bar magnets”. But they are small, only a few atoms big, if at all. It’s mostly a gas (or a plasma, depending on the environment). A “normal” bar magnet is a solid that consits of a tremendous number of atoms (1ccm contains 10^23 atoms!) and all these atoms (especially the magnetic moments of some special electrons) are aligned. In the chaotic environment of space, in a gaseous phase, I think that it is really unlikely that you can have a significant number of aligned “bar magnets”.

    First let me say that I am flattered to be exchanging with the professionals in this forum and I did say that I would go back to lingering and learning.

    Thanks for the flowers, but I am just a student in the 8th semester and start working on my master’s thesis…

    Now waiting for the next enlightening discussion(s) and I promise I’ll refrain from popping in. You don’t have to respond as I know you can make better use of your time.

    Don’t be shy! Ask as many questions as you have. The worst thing will be that noone answeres and this is probably unlikely. Questions are what keeps science going (in general). For me it helps reevaluating my own knowledge and what I should look up (again) or should learn. And it’s always a good thing to share knowledge – it helps nobody if someone knows the key to the universe but doesn’t tell the others 😉

    @Nereid2

    There are two Fermi processes. I’ve tried to go through his papers, but that was quite a difficult task. I have to read them again and/or have to find some other explanations in other papers or I’ll ask my lecturers.
    The interesting point about those two mechanisms is that both creat a power-law dependent energy-spectrum of the particles. That is the reason why the Fermi mechanisms can explain the spectrum of cosmic rays – it is also a power-law.

  47. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid2,

    That link to “On the decay of the magnetic field in a proto-star” doesn’t work. However, I found the article and the correct link here.

    @ DrFlimmer,

    Thanks! 🙂

  48. Nereid2 says:

    @IVAN3MAN: thanks, and yes, that’s it (I’m not sure why the link didn’t work … I guess I’ll have to be more careful, and check after my comment is up …)

    There’s a 1956 paper, also by Mestel (with Spitzer as co-author) in MNRAS, that is on the same general topic. It is more appropriate, not least because it’s been cited >300 times! And its 12 references include the 1953 Chadrasekhar and Fermi paper I referenced above, the 1949 Fermi paper (“On the Origin of the Cosmic Radiation”), as well as another 1953 Chadrasekhar and Fermi paper: “Problems of Gravitational Stability in the Presence of a Magnetic Field”, source:
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1953ApJ…118..116C
    (I’ll check to see that this works).

    Link to the 1956 Mestel and Spitzer MNRAS paper, “Star formation in magnetic dust clouds”, in a later comment.

  49. Nereid2 says:

    Link seems to work.

    The 1956 Mestel and Spitzer paper:
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1956MNRAS.116..503M

  50. Nereid2 says:

    That seems to work too …

    @wjwbudro: I second DrFlimmer’s coment … don’t EVER be shy about asking questions! 🙂

    @DrFlimmer: you may find a (later) review paper on cosmic rays easier to follow than the original Fermi paper (I’ll see if I can dig one up if you’re interested). Also, while the basic mechanisms Fermi proposed for how particles are accelerated to become galactic CRs (up to ~the knee) have been shown to be consistent with observations, other aspects of the origin of CRs, in that 1949 paper, were subsequently modified. Also, many details have been added, to account for the observed anisotropies, their dependence on time, energy, and CR composition, etc, etc, etc. FWIW, ADS says that Fermi’s 1949 paper has been cited >600 times, and many of those citing it are well-known to readers (G. Burbidge, F. Hoyle, Chandrasekhar, Spitzer, Alfvén, Parker, Philip Morrison, Edward Teller, Unsöld, to name just a few).

  51. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid2,

    Have you noticed how EU/PC proponents always bugger off when they are faced with difficult questions? 🙂

  52. DrFlimmer says:

    @ Nereid2:

    It would be nice, if you could dig one up – so I wouldn’t have to search for myself ;).
    But if you don’t have the time, don’t worry. I will definitly search for it myself, in order to understand the processes a little bit better than I did when I wrote my bachelor thesis one year ago. So, it would be no problem, if you don’t search for it. Still: Thank you!

    @ Ivan3man:

    “Same procedure as every year, James….”

    And in this case: Every time. I wonder where they all are…. Hiding “behind” the thunder**** probably, but I don’t mind…. They will be back…

  53. ND says:

    “the same thing we do every night, try to take over Cosmology!”

  54. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ DrFlimmer,

    I found this, if it’s of any interest:
    The Origin of the Galactic Cosmic Radiation [PDF].

  55. DrFlimmer says:

    Thanks, Ivan.
    Your paper provides an interesting overview about CR’s. I am more interested in an explanation about the accelaration mechanisms (Fermi acceleration type 1 and 2) and especially their derivation – I have to find something about that (and/or have to ask a lecturer who should know 😉 ).

  56. solrey says:

    ivan3man: Maybe posting on the internet is a pretty low priority for folks with obligations to the real world. That’s my scene anyways.
    Plus, I took the time to review the papers that others took the time to dig up and link to. 🙂

    I said in an earlier post:

    Actually, it’s plasma cosmology that has known of/predicted magnetic fields throughout the cosmos in general, and star formation specifically, going back several decades.

    That was supposed to be electro-magnetic fields.
    I should proof-read more carefully, since there is no preview option. hint hint.

    Thanks for the links folks. Each of those papers is based on the, now known to be false-assumption, of ‘frozen-in’ magnetic fields due to the causational false-assumption of plasma having infinite conductivity. Alfvn began with these assumptions, but experiments later proved them to be incorrect. He revised his hypotheses as a result. So even though those papers by Fermi, et. al, address the issue of magnetism, the premise of ‘frozen’ magnetic fields has since been proven incorrect.

    Without having seen the full paper which this article refers to, I would think there is a high probability that Carlqvists paper, and others like it dealing with electro-magnetically induced star formation, are relevant to the raw data collected in this study.

    The arguments that I’ve seen recently about Birkeland not using the term plasma are like saying that the indigenous nations of North America did not call a certain river the Mississippi, therefore making their actual experiences with it irrelevant. Birkeland was using the common scientific terminology of the times for a state of matter that was just beginning to be studied.
    Much of the research that is relevant to an overall body of work/hypotheses, predates the term Plasma Cosmology, and much of it is foundational to research being conducted today in the field of PC/EU.

  57. solrey says:

    Alfvèn

  58. DrFlimmer says:

    @ solrey

    The problem is, however, that I guess that even the paper that this thread is based upon is using the unsual model:

    First a gravitational collapse and when the cloud becomes hot enough to be ionized, magnetic fields can become important.
    This matches the discription of the current model about star formation I gave above. Here is the link back to my post:
    http://www.universetoday.com/2009/06/11/magnetic-fields-dominate-young-stars-of-all-sizes/comment-page-3/#comment-67448

    So, still, there is no hint of an “electromagnetic induced” star formation. Normally neutral, cold clouds collapse (newborn stars tend to be found in such large, cold molecular clouds) into stars. How should a neutral cloud be influenced by (electro)magnetic fields?
    (I could mention the point, again, that neutral clouds also fly as fast as normal stars in galaxies – a strong hint for dark matter. But this is another story!)

  59. DrFlimmer says:

    Proof-read, yeah…. that’s supposed to be the “USUAL” model….

  60. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: what you wrote – the comment with the link to the paper by Carlqvist – made some sort of sense (it was wrong in several aspects, but at least it wasn’t nonsense) … sadly, your revision (reconstructed below) is now close to meaningless …

    Actually, it’s plasma cosmology that has known of/predicted electro-magnetic fields throughout the cosmos in general, and star formation specifically, going back several decades.

    Now you’re into making up your own meaning for “electromagnetic fields”, in a manner similar to the sort of thing Anaconda did.

    Perhaps you wrote in haste? Perhaps you forgot that all electromagnetic radiation is electro-magnetic fields? Perhaps you forgot that Maxwell’s equations were written, and studied and applied to astronomical objects before Alfvén was born?

    Please, take some more time and revise what you wrote …

    Each of those papers is based on the, now known to be false-assumption, of ‘frozen-in’ magnetic fields due to the causational false-assumption of plasma having infinite conductivity. Alfvén began with these assumptions, but experiments later proved them to be incorrect. He revised his hypotheses as a result. So even though those papers by Fermi, et. al, address the issue of magnetism, the premise of ‘frozen’ magnetic fields has since been proven incorrect.

    Well, um, I suppose so …

    But again I think you’re typing without much thinking …

    You see, from around the 1920s, *all* of classical physics was discovered to be based on false assumptions, hence all of Alfvén’s work, on MHD for example, has been “proved […] to be incorrect”, by solrey logic.

    And so on.

    The point is that every physicist knows about ‘spherical cows’ (recall my earlier comment?), just as they know about plasmas with their less than infinite conductivity (yes, you can be quite sure Fermi and Chandrasekhar were well aware that they don’t have infinite conductivity).

    (to be continued)

  61. Nereid2 says:

    Well, when we get hold of the paper, we’ll see, won’t we?

    Without having seen the full paper which this article refers to, I would think there is a high probability that Carlqvists paper, and others like it dealing with electro-magnetically induced star formation, are relevant to the raw data collected in this study.

    One good thing about that Carlqvist paper is that it seems to provide a very quick and easy to check assertions like yours … a few quick calculations, and there you are … either Carlqvist was in the right ballpark or he was not (actually, that should read ‘solrey’).

    The arguments that I’ve seen recently about Birkeland not using the term plasma are like saying that the indigenous nations of North America did not call a certain river the Mississippi, therefore making their actual experiences with it irrelevant. Birkeland was using the common scientific terminology of the times for a state of matter that was just beginning to be studied.

    Way to go solrey!

    Dude, you either haven’t been paying attention, or you have a, shall we say, unique perspective on history!

    Why not take up the cause where Anaconda left off? Why not tell us all what, in classical terms, the key characteristics of stuff are, for said stuff to be called a plasma? With that in hand, we can then – you and I with everyone else along for the ride – go through Birkeland’s *actual work* and assess the extent to which he wove these key characteristics into his research … how about it?

    Oh, BTW, the review IVAN3MAN linked to gives some good clues as to why Anaconda’s and mgmirkin’s quests (to attempt to estimate the magnitude and direction of electric currents in space, given the inferred magnetic fields) are likely in vain (in all but a few, particular, cases); did you find at least one of those clue, solrey?

  62. solrey says:

    According to our manner of looking at the matter, every star in the universe would be the seat and field of activity of electric forces of a strength that no one could imagine.

    We have no certain opinion as to how the assumed enormous electric currents with enormous tension are produced, but it is certainly not in accordance with the principles we employ in technics on the earth at the present time. One may well believe, however, that a knowledge in the future of the electrotechnics of the heavens would be of great practical value to our electrical engineers.

    It seems to be a natural consequence of our points of view to assume that the whole of space is filled with electrons and flying electric ions of all kinds. We have asumed that each stellar system in evolutions throws off electric corpuscles into space. It does not seem unreasonable therefore to think that the greater part of the material masses in the universe is found, not in the solar systems or nebulae, but in “empty” space.

    Kristian Birkeland, 1908

    Langmuir didn’t apply the term plasma to a state of free electrons and ions until 1920, or thereabouts.
    I believe those electric corpuscles eventually came to be known as Birkeland currents.

    The point is, ongoing research and hypotheses regarding electric currents/electromagnetism in plasma throughout the cosmos is over a hundred years old.

    When I have more time, I’d like to comment on measuring electric currents in space. I’ll just say for now that if anyone bothers to review the equations in the Carlqvist paper, one will see how many factors/variables are involved that constitute the total power of a “cosmic circuit”. But from that, we can glean methodology for at least estimating the current, under certain conditions. 😉

  63. solrey says:

    Ack, the proofread gremlin strikes again.

    Bold emphasis is mine in the above quote by Birkeland. I’m sure folks knew that, but it’s proper and polite editing to acknowledge it, imo.

  64. Nereid2 says:

    Thanks solrey.

    What 1908 document of Birkeland’s are you quoting from? And where (section, chapter, page, etc)?

    I’m sure many readers would like to check for themselves, not least because a now apparently departed commenter-on-UT stories was quite masterful at mis-quoting and quoting out of context (NOT, I stress, that I think you are, just noting that there is recent example).

    Langmuir didn’t apply the term plasma to a state of free electrons and ions until 1920, or thereabouts.

    Aye, that may be so …

    … however, that is not the key aspect of what a plasma is, at least not according to Langmuir and not today (after all, by that definition, dissolving a salt in water would a plasma make!).

    You do know, don’t you, what the key characteristics of a plasma are?
    (HINT: Debye)

    I believe those electric corpuscles eventually came to be known as Birkeland currents.

    And I believe you are wrong, quite wrong … what do you think a ‘Birkeland current’ is?

    When I have more time, I’d like to comment on measuring electric currents in space. I’ll just say for now that if anyone bothers to review the equations in the Carlqvist paper, one will see how many factors/variables are involved that constitute the total power of a “cosmic circuit”. But from that, we can glean methodology for at least estimating the current, under certain conditions.

    I’m looking forward to it. May I repeat what I said to mgmirkin? If you do actually do this, write it up and get it published … you’ll become instantly famous (at least among astrophysicists).

  65. Anaconda says:

    I see from the progress of this discussion that electric currents are being discussed — good.

    So, it’s not so easy to calculate electric currents. Do the difficult.

    Nereird2 the “Destroyer” is a little premature in her smugness. No she wasn’t succussful at “running me off” — I simply had other things to do.

    solrey has it right on Birkeland, Nereid2 the “Destroyer” simply was attempting to delegitamize Birkeland’s work, but she was doing it in her usual passive/aggressive style.

    Or is it Nereid version 2.0 the “Destroyer”.

    No it’s just the same old Nereid.

    Interesting that the “hourglass” pinch effect is exactly as Plasma Cosmology predicts star formation happens.

    AS PLASMA COSMOLOGY PREDICTED!

    Now, DrFlimmer is right that “magnetism” has been noted in star formation before, as a matter of fact, I linked the Space.com article, here, that noted the actions of matter were 10 times faster than gravity alone could account for.

    The difference and advance here in this paper is that they note the shape of the “compression”.

    It is in the shape of an hourglass.

    It is not gravitational “collapse”, but rather electromagnetic “compression” that forms the stars.

    The magnetic field as a result of electric currents compresses around the pinch until gravity can also act on the matter flowing into the pinch (if gravity acts on it at this early phase of star formation, at all).

    But it is the “hourglass” of the region of compression due to magnetic fields generated by electric currents this paper presents, even if the authors are not entirely aware of it (I suspect they are aware of it, but they also know the “sensitivities” involved in mentioning electric currents in “modern” astronomy circles).

    Birkeland set the stage for Astronomy, even if “modern” astronomy didn’t know it, and people like Nereid2 the “Destroyer” try and delegitamize Birkeland — his work has passed the test of time.

    And this paper with its “hourglass” magnetic compression confirms Plasma Cosmology predictions and theorizing.

    Break out the champaign and caviar!

  66. Jon Hanford says:

    This seems like a great look at the state of astronomy and physics in 1908, but, um, the year is 2009 and the name of this site is Universe TODAY 🙂

  67. solrey says:

    Nereid,
    That Birkeland quote is from a lecture given in 1908 while he was a professor at the University of Oslo, I believe.

    A Birkeland current is a field aligned current, a.k.a. magnetic rope, magnetic cable, flux tube, magnetic tornado. They are all names for a field aligned current, which is the result of a flow of charged particles, that when above a critical charge density in relation to the surrounding plasma environment, forms a plasma sheath/Langmuir sheath/charge sheath boundary/double layer, which separates the particle flow from the immediate plasma environment, resulting in a field aligned current, which can take the form of a filament or a sheet.

    Did I mention that a Birkeland current is a field aligned current?

    This abstract from 1968 used the term Birkeland current, to describe a field aligned current, for the first time.

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1969/JA074i001p00247.shtml

    Gichi-ziibi may not be the same word as Mississippi, but they are both names for the same Big River

    And I believe you are wrong, quite wrong … what do you think a ‘Birkeland current’ is?

    I believe I’m right, quite right, “bloody well right” (to quote the Who)…I know what a Birkeland current is. 🙂

    I would consider the auto-ionization process, not the same as dissociation, of water to be a form of quasi-plasma, but salt just makes water more conductive/reduces the resistance, by providing additional valence electrons due to sodium atoms, rather than providing a significant increase to the level of ionization, resulting in plasma-esque behavior at lower voltage potentials relative to non-salinated water.

    physorg.com/news110191847.html

    (I’ve discovered that whenever I include more than 1 full URL in a comment, it gets rejected in “moderation”. So one must copy/paste this one into your favorite browser.)

    While it’s one of the most important and abundant chemical compounds on Earth, water is still a puzzle to scientists.

    Perhaps that’s because water should be quantified as a quasi-plasma?

    Anyways, much to do before leaving for a couple of relaxing days on the coast. 🙂

  68. Anaconda says:

    I present an article on the Z-pinch or Bennett pinch (named in honor of Willard Harrison Bennett, a plasma physicist who discovered it) so folks can learn about this electromagnetic phenomenon:

    http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Pinch_%28plasma_physics%29

    Scroll down the screen page on the link and one will see physical depictions of what a Bennett pinch will do to matter — it compresses it in the shape of…wait for it…an hourglass.

    Also, scroll to the bottom of the link and one can see all the documentation for the Z-pinch or Bennett pinch effect of electromagnetism when electric current is flowing 🙂

  69. Anaconda says:

    @ Jon Hanford:

    There maybe references to Kristian Birkeland, but he is as fresh and relevant as the scientific paper profiled in this post.

    The paper that describes a magnetic field causing stars to form in the shape of an “hourglass”.

    And while the authors don’t say it — electric currents generate the magnetic field and the hourglass shape is what a Bennett pinch does, it compresses the matter within the pinch to the shape of an hourglass.

  70. solrey says:

    @jonhanford

    Well, the universe, as observed with the latest instruments today, appears to confirm the hypotheses proffered by insightful scientists, such as Birkeland, studying the electro-magnetic nature of the cosmos.

    This seems like a great look at the state of astronomy and physics in 1908, but, um, the year is 2009 and the name of this site is Universe TODAY.

    Funny how the most recent observations confirm prolific electro-magnetic activity in the cosmos, as predicted over a hundred years ago.

  71. solrey says:

    nereid:
    Debye length is as applicable to a semiconductor or electrolyte as it is to a plasma, and is more relevant to the double layer boundary than the plasma itself.

    Hannes Alfvén pointed out that: “In a low density plasma, localized space charge regions may build up large potential drops over distances of the order of some tens of the Debye lengths. Such regions have been called electric double layers. An electric double layer is the simplest space charge distribution that gives a potential drop in the layer and a vanishing electric field on each side of the layer. In the laboratory, double layers have been studied for half a century, but their importance in cosmic plasmas has not been generally recognized.”

  72. Jon Hanford says:

    As usual solrey and Anaconda berate ‘modern’ astronomy for all its supposed failures yet can provide no recent, peer-reviewed, published paper that gives a thorough quantitative description of PC that exactly accounts for the many successful measurements made concerning the Standard Model. With no overarching theory of exactly how Plasma Cosmology can find exact answers to a myriad of questions, its validity is in serious doubt. Where are the countless PC papers published in relevant journals over the past couple of years, if PC is such a hot topic in current astronomy?

  73. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    I present an article on the Z-pinch or Bennett pinch…

    And I would like to present you and solrey with the N-pinch!

  74. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Anaconda,

    BTW, that article that you’ve linked to was pinched (plagiarized) verbatim from Wikipedia’s Pinch (plasma physics) article — even the bloody pictures!

    These EU/PC guys are like creationists: they come to a conclusion and then cherry-pick facts (hijacked from someone else’s work!) to support it, while totally ignoring the mountain of evidence against it.

  75. Nereid2 says:

    Girart et al. paper is up on ADS:
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2009Sci…324.1408G
    Click on ‘References in the article’ for which papers they cite (no prize for having guessed correctly that the Carlqvist paper solrey mentioned is not among the 28).

    Paper itself does not seem to be available for free …

  76. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: that’s nice, and thanks, and I don’t intend to be casting aspersions, but can you be a bit more specific please?

    And specifically, how can anyone interested verify that what you wrote is indeed a direct quote (and see what he meant, in context)?

    Nereid,
    That Birkeland quote is from a lecture given in 1908 while he was a professor at the University of Oslo, I believe.

  77. Nereid2 says:

    @DrFlimmer: Sorry, I don’t have any suggestions at the moment (I’m away from my usual sources, and I couldn’t find anything, from a few quick minutes surfing, that would suit your purposes).

    It would be nice, if you could dig one up – so I wouldn’t have to search for myself 😉 .

    My I suggest you ask on the BAUT forum, in the Q&A section? There are lots of knowledable and friendly people who hang out there …
    http://www.bautforum.com/space-astronomy-questions-answers/

  78. solrey says:

    @ivan3man

    Can one plagiarize, or hijack, ones own workf? The Wiki article and the Plasma Universe article’s first drafts and edits were written by the same person, lantresman.

    Wiki

    16:01, 30 May 2006 Iantresman (talk | contribs) (First draft)

    Plasma Universe

    22:48, 8 February 2007 Iantresman (First draft)

    Most of the first drafts on the PU site are by lantresman. So both Wiki and PU ‘pinch’ entries were written by the same author, but the PU website didn’t start up until around early ’07. I would say that an author can give themselves permission to publish their own article in more than one place.

    Talk to the mirror about cherry picking facts and jumping to conclusions, ivan3man.

  79. Nereid2 says:

    Um, solrey, you seem to be running rather too fast …

    … you see the link between your initial statement:

    I believe those electric corpuscles eventually came to be known as Birkeland currents.

    and your later ones:

    A Birkeland current is a field aligned current, a.k.a. magnetic rope, magnetic cable, flux tube, magnetic tornado. They are all names for a field aligned current, which is the result of a flow of charged particles, that when above a critical charge density in relation to the surrounding plasma environment, forms a plasma sheath/Langmuir sheath/charge sheath boundary/double layer, which separates the particle flow from the immediate plasma environment, resulting in a field aligned current, which can take the form of a filament or a sheet.

    This abstract from 1968 used the term Birkeland current, to describe a field aligned current, for the first time. [URL omitted]

    is as obscure as SgrA* is in the optical waveband.

    Would you mind taking some time to fill in the missing pieces in your logic? Thanks.

    For other readers: AFAIK, even such exulted PC figures as Peratt seem to think that what Birkeland wrote about would today be called the solar wind.

    That’s one disconnect in solrey’s logic.

    Further, his proposed source (first use) of the term ‘Birkeland current’ for ‘field aligned current’ refers to plasma behaviour in the Earth’s magnetoshere, not the solar wind!

    May I ask if you have at least the equivalent of a BSc with a major in physics? If not, then at what level are you comfortable having discussions wrt physics? It will make our discussion on this topic a lot more effective if I were able to pitch what I write appropriately.

  80. solrey says:

    The quote from the 1908 lecture is included in this paper by Peratt on Page 3 of the article, which is page 5 in the Adobe file.

    http://plasmascience.net/tpu/downloads/Peratt-LegacyBirkelandTor.pdf

  81. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: I’ll write at more length once I know what level of detail you’re comfortable with, wrt physics, so just briefly for now …

    nereid:
    Debye length is as applicable to a semiconductor or electrolyte as it is to a plasma, and is more relevant to the double layer boundary than the plasma itself.

    Here’s the key (physics) point: characteristics such as shielding (hence debye length) and plasma frequency are what makes a plasma a plasma, rather than a hot gas, say.

    I suggest (I’m not you, so I leave more room for doubt upfront) that you will not find anything in any of Birkeland’s work that even remotely hints that he was aware of any of these key characteristics.

    There’s more.

    One of the things that makes astrophysical plasmas (including those in our own solar system and our planet’s magnetosphere) so interesting is the huge difference in mass between the positive charge carriers (ions) and the negative ones (electrons)*.

    AFAIK, Birkeland had no knowledge of this huge mass difference, and certainly none of its consequences, in terms of the physics of plasmas.

    The above is just a brief sketch of some reasons why it is intellectually dishonest to make the claims you have about Birkeland and plasma physics (shall I copy what you wrote earlier, so we can all refresh our memories?)

    Now you are clearly not the troll Anaconda is, and also clearly do actually understand at least some of this material, so I do hope you take the time to seriously reflect on this.

    Oh, and just in case anyone may have missed it … I could be wrong, and would welcome the opportunity to learn … starting with direct references to material in Birkeland’s published work showing that he was aware of the above key characteristics of plasmas.

    *there are some exceptions.

  82. Nereid2 says:

    @Anaconda: you may understand what you wrote, in your comment above, dated June 16th, 2009 at 3:46 pm, but I certainly don’t, and I doubt many other readers do either.

    Would you care to try to rewrite it in a form that is intelligible?

    Oh, and do you intend to answer the questions I asked you in the other UT story thread? I’d like a straight answer, if only so as to have a record of your intentions wrt engaging in a science-based discussion.

  83. Nereid2 says:

    @Jon Hanford:

    As usual solrey and Anaconda berate ‘modern’ astronomy for all its supposed failures yet can provide no recent, peer-reviewed, published paper that gives a thorough quantitative description of PC that exactly accounts for the many successful measurements made concerning the Standard Model. With no overarching theory of exactly how Plasma Cosmology can find exact answers to a myriad of questions, its validity is in serious doubt. Where are the countless PC papers published in relevant journals over the past couple of years, if PC is such a hot topic in current astronomy?

    If you read the material on the Bridgman blogsite*, esp the March, April, and May blogs (and the links therein), you’ll see why Dave Smith, Anaconda, and (likely) mgmirkin cannot provide any such material (not to put it too harshly, but they simply don’t understand what’s in published papers, especially ones on applications of plasma physics to astronomical objects).

    At first I had hopes that solrey would be different – the Carlqvist paper he provided a link to seemed to me to show understanding far beyond that of Anaconda, for example – but his evident lack of understanding of the key characteristics of astrophysical plasmas, his apparent conflating of Birkeland currents with the solar wind, and his ‘incorrect assumptions’ gaffe, leads me to doubt my early view (he seems to glean his understanding by glossing words and pictures/images, rather than by grasping the physics).

    *shall I post a link again?

  84. solrey says:

    @jonhanford

    Take your pick of EU/PC papers from this list.

    http://sites.google.com/site/cosmologyquest/peer-reviewed-papers

    @nereid
    Birkeland was studying the Aurora Borealis. I don’t believe his electric corpuscles were referring to the solar wind in general, they were describing, more specifically, the “magnetic flux ropes”, or field aligned currents from Sun to Earth.. A Birkeland current is one of many terms for a field aligned current, regardless of it’s source or location, it doesn’t necessarily refer to the magnetosphere specifically.

    May I ask if you have at least the equivalent of a BSc with a major in physics? If not, then at what level are you comfortable having discussions wrt physics? It will make our discussion on this topic a lot more effective if I were able to pitch what I write appropriately.

    I do have the equivalent of a BSc in Aerospace Technology. You may write at any level you desire, you won’t exceed my comfort zone, I promise.

  85. Nereid2 says:

    @solrey: is this another example of you typing without thinking?

    @jonhanford

    Take your pick of EU/PC papers from this list.

    [URL omitted]

    The URL contains the words ‘peer reviewed papers’, and the title of the webpage is ‘Peer Reviewed Papers In Cosmology’, but on it there is:

    * at least two books (by definition not peer-reviewed)

    * a piece of academic fraud (Thornhill’s, on comets)

    * a document from a non-peer reviewed journal

    * several conference presentations (by definition not peer-reviewed)

    * at least two unpublished preprints (one nearly ten years old!), by definition not peer-reviewed

    (that’s a *far* from exhaustive look)

    But perhaps you were just being cautious? I mean, ‘[t]ake your pick of EU/PC papers’ seems to imply that you know full well that only a subset are ‘EU/PC papers’; would you please clarify?

    You may write at any level you desire, you won’t exceed my comfort zone, I promise.

    Thanks! 🙂

    How much effort do you think would be involved in you producing a version of Figure 1 in the 1987 Carqvist paper you cited, for T = 100K, and a mean particle density more appropriate to the objects Girart et al. studied?

    Thanks too for the info on the source of your Birkeland quote.

    Oh, and can you please clarify what you actually mean by ‘electro-magnetic fields’?

    Actually, it’s plasma cosmology that has known of/predicted electro-magnetic fields throughout the cosmos in general, and star formation specifically, going back several decades.

  86. Jon Hanford says:

    @ solrey, thanks for the links to some current PU/EC papers. Now I can study some of the newer, published work in this field. Again, many thanks. @ Nereid2, Thanks for the mention of the Bridgeman blogsite* and I will check out the material you specify. Also, many thanks for the link to the ADS page for the original paper this story was based on (esp. the history section!). I’m still looking for at least a draft or preprint, so the hunt goes on 🙂 . Thanks for your input.

  87. Nereid2 says:

    You keep using this word ‘believe’ solrey, in situations where it seems to me that the reality can be objectively established, through research (and, often, relatively little research); may I ask why?

    It’s not language I’m used to hearing from someone who has the equivalent of a BSc in a branch of engineering …

    @nereid
    Birkeland was studying the Aurora Borealis. I don’t believe his electric corpuscles were referring to the solar wind in general, they were describing, more specifically, the “magnetic flux ropes”, or field aligned currents from Sun to Earth.. A Birkeland current is one of many terms for a field aligned current, regardless of it’s source or location, it doesn’t necessarily refer to the magnetosphere specifically.

    (bold added)

    I would very, very much like you to clarify what you wrote here … I think the most obvious reading of what you meant is something like “Birkeland’s ‘electric corpuscles’ refer to, or describe, ‘field aligned currents from Sun to Earth’, and he fully understood what ‘field aligned currents’ are, even though he didn’t refer to them in those terms.” If so, that’s deeply disturbing (to me) to read it; if not, then what did you mean to say?

  88. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ solrey,

    “Iantresman”, you say? Hmm… that name rings a bell…

    Wikipedia:

    User: Iantresman.

    This user has been banned indefinitely from editing Wikipedia by the community. […]

    It is suspected that the operator of this account has abusively used one or more accounts. […]

    Sockpuppet evidence: Tsyko 84.9.191.165 Coppertwig (talk) 21:50, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

    😀
    In that case, I would take anything that he has written with a ‘pinch’ of skeptical salt.
    😛

  89. DrFlimmer says:

    I will try to download the paper from an internet connetcion at my university, tomorrow. Could be that my institute has an account for it. I don’t know if I am “allowed” to make it public here – but at leat I will look through it. But this will take some time….

  90. DrFlimmer says:

    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090617.html

    Hmm… I wonder how the currents are distributed in there…..

  91. Anaconda says:

    @ Nereid:

    I’m not worried by your claims of “unintelligible”. Your purpose, here, is clear — I hardly ever see comments from you on articles where issues of electromagnetism aren’t raised.

    You are a “blocker”, you aren’t interested in learning or being open-minded when considering evidence (you’ve already expressed open contempt for anything “Plasma Cosmology”.

    Your claims of “unintelligible” are like my sister putting her hands over her ears and saying, “I can’t hear you.”

    As far as your request, no I’m satisfied with what I previously wrote and I don’t plan on adding anything to it.

    It’s clear from your continued obstinance regarding Kristian Birkeland that extended dialogue often isn’t fruitful because your purpose isn’t to reach agreement or understanding but to “block” and obscure.

    I’ll engage in dialogue and discussion where appropriate.

    Actually, it is you, Nereid, who won’t directly answer questions, but instead engage in circumlocutions.

    (Nereid, your continued attempted “blocking” regarding Kristian Birkleland is a real “eye opener”. And frankly I suggest it hurts your credibility with other readers — it’s all too apparent where you are coming from.)

    Nereid states: “…[solrey’s] apparent conflating of Birkeland currents with the solar wind, and his ‘incorrect assumptions’ gaffe, leads me to doubt my early view (he seems to glean his understanding by glossing words and pictures/images, rather than by grasping the physics).”

    Please, this is laughable, it’s apparent that anybody who expouses Plasma Cosmology viewpoint will fall into Nereid’s “doghouse”.

    Nereid’s contempt is simply too evident to take her seriously because it clouds her judgment. Let’s take an example: Nereid states: “a piece of academic fraud (Thornhill’s, on comets)”

    She offers no reasons for her statement, and when you toss around “academic fraud”, but hope people will take your word for it, that says more about the speaker than about the work they are characterizing.

    Any reference list will have some papers that aren’t peer reviewed. I imagine that Astronomy professors have non-peer reviewed books on their library shelf.

    Maybe another more folksy way to put Nereid’s purpose, here, is the lyrics of Eric Clapton’s “I Shot the Sheriff”:

    Sheriff John Brown always hated me, for what I don’t know
    Every time that I plant a seed
    He said: “Kill it before it grows!”
    He sais: “Kill it before it grows!”

    You can’t reason with a person that has that attitude.

    @ Ivan3Man:

    The documentation of the Z-pinch article stands on it’s own merit. Do you have any disputes with the actual merits of the article?

    By the way, I thought the Vulcan or Neymoy neck pinch was funny 🙂

    Did Birkeland understand every “jot” and “tittle”? No, he didn’t and I don’t think solrey was saying that.

    This simply is another example of Nereid’s pedantic passive/aggressive style, where she reveals her inability to acknowledge Birkeland’s foundational work — that isn’t too surprising since she parrots the party-line and “modern” astronomy doesn’t want Birkeland known as the Father of Modern Astronomy.

    Again, Nereid’s purpose is clear.

  92. solrey says:

    @nereid

    How much effort do you think would be involved in you producing a version of Figure 1 in the 1987 Carqvist paper you cited, for T = 100K, and a mean particle density more appropriate to the objects Girart et al. studied?

    Actually, I’d like to see the data in the Girart paper, or at least find some data on G31.41 from other sources, at minimum temperature and density.
    I’m admittedly a bit rusty, but probably not too much effort to plug those numbers into the equations. The issue is priorities. If this were a class and I had no seriously conflicting obligations, no problem.
    Although I am really curious to see how the data fits into the equations.

    Regarding the use of the word believe. In the Birkeland quote, he said…

    One may well believe, however, that a knowledge in the future of the electrotechnics of the heavens would be of great practical value to our electrical engineers.

    Can’t one use the word believe in a legitimate scientific discussion?
    He does specify electrons, ions and electric corpuscles in that quote. Corpuscle had been a term for the electron since the time of Newton, but since Birkeland identifies electrons and ions, and he predicted the currents before they were actually discovered in-situ.

    I didn’t say anything about peer-review regarding the link of EU/PC related papers. Most are peer-reviewed, but quite a few are not. I just thought it was a convenient list of papers for anyone choosing to review some of them.

    Seriously gotta run. Vacation…woohoo 🙂

  93. ND says:

    solrey: “Can’t one use the word believe in a legitimate scientific discussion?”

    Of course. I believe that a lot of current theories will be revised with ongoing new research. That’s the history of science. But what about when assessing predictions scientifically? The prediction has to be fairly well laid out and justified. Otherwise it’s just a gut feeling.

    Nereid got to it before I was going to ask, but what are the most scientificly detailed description that Birkeland gave that can be compared with field aligned currents?

    When are you getting back from your vacation?

  94. ND says:

    Anaconda,

    You really need to tone down the demonizations. You seem to have adopted EU/PC as a personal cause (even though you have no deep understanding of the sciences involved) and lash out after people debate you point by point. Have you considered your debating style as a problem? Before you came along I saw magnetic fields, solar winds, solar flares, the Jupiter-Io flux as absolutely amazing physical processes that we do not completely understand. There is so much we don’t know. After you, I get a negative feeling every time magnetism, plasma is mentioned in a astronomical news. You’re actually hurting the cause you are so fanatical about. And the reason some people react negatively to you is that you have no scientific credibility and yet you continue to debate and present yourself as a victim.

    “you aren’t interested in learning or being open-minded when considering evidence ”

    This has been you since I first saw you on Bad Astronomy and I can present evidence from past debates.

    If you really want to debate and discuss things on their scientific merits please stop demonizing people. While you’re here posting, you have some open and relevant questions to answer.

  95. Anaconda says:

    @ Jon Hanford:

    I appreciate your request for peer-reviewed papers, that is reasonable and I appreciate your acknowledgement of solrey’s offering.

    In an attempt to further that request I offer the following link:

    http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Special:Allpages

    The link lists a series of terms and topics related to Plasma Cosmology, click the term or topic wanted and it will present an article — at the bottom of each article is a bibliography of footnoted documentation each article used.

    The footnotes state whether it is a peer-reviewed paper, a textbook, or generally what is the footnote’s provenance. (Yes, there are some papers and sources that aren’t peer-reviewed. Again, somewhat like a professor’s library shelf.)

    It also states whether it is the full text or an abstract. Not all footnotes are linked, but most are.

    I think you will find that each article is copiously footnoted with the footnotes at the bottom of the screen page of each article.

    Jon, I hope this helps you and other interested readers dig into the material 🙂 because ultimately it is up to each individual doing their own research in their own time frame and coming to their own conclusions.

  96. Jon Hanford says:

    Yeah, Nereid2 and IVAN3NAN, you both echoed my sentiments to some (all) of Anaconda’s and slorey’s responses. As far as ‘referereed’ full papers’ on EU/PC , only one full paper on magnetic fields from 2007 was included. I was most interested in reading Thornhill’s full 2007 paper on the z-pinch mechanism and SN 1987A (particularly the neutrino generation specifics) but the best I could find was the paper’s abstract and this ADS listing: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2007ITPS…35..832T . Once again no new quantitative information to go on. Maybe Nereid2 has a point, as I have read the previous blog postings by these people. They may really have no idea as to what constitutes a scientific paper or how to interpret and compare conclusions from the literature. You definitely need some formal education to go about that properly. And preferably stick to the field in which you are most immersed in . Rarely do scientists find wide acceptance in completely different fields of science (there are exceptions, of course) 🙂 🙂

  97. Jon Hanford says:

    DrFlimmer, I guess its obvious to ‘some’ that the magnetic fields are all aligned with the Bikeland currents connecting the millions of stars in this globular cluster 🙂 (Great pic, Doc!)

  98. Jon Hanford says:

    @Anaconda, thanks for your reply for some concrete info on this theory, but it may take me some time to thread through all the new PC terminology and hopefully find some new papers among the definitions. Again, thanks for the response to my request for papers.

  99. Jon Hanford says:

    Some of the problem asking for new peer-reviewed published papers on PC/EU may stem from my definition of ‘new’. I’m quite familiar with literature up to around 2006-2007. I’m looking for relevant full papers from 2007 to present, with emphasis on this year or 2008. Maybe this clarification may be helpful.

  100. Nereid2 says:

    I must say I was surprised you’d pick up on this one Anaconda, it seems you really have no idea about the material you seem quite happy to promote …

    Nereid’s contempt is simply too evident to take her seriously because it clouds her judgment. Let’s take an example: Nereid states: “a piece of academic fraud (Thornhill’s, on comets)”

    She offers no reasons for her statement, and when you toss around “academic fraud”, but hope people will take your word for it, that says more about the speaker than about the work they are characterizing.

    To be honest, I was gobsmacked when I came across it …

    I devoted several posts in a BAUT Forum thread to going through the fraud in some detail, and I even explicitly made iantresman and mgmirkin aware of what I’d found (I’ll provide a link to the relevant BAUT Forum posts later).

    In a nutshell, the major academic fraud that the ‘Electric Comet’ document commits is to not give credit for images and work that is done by people other than the authors (Talbot and Thornhill, ‘T&T’ for short). In at least one case this is accompanied by something that I wouldn’t be surprised a lawyer would find good grounds for legal action against them (T&T include an image in the document from a source which explicitly claims both copyright for the image and explicit permission for reproduction; the T&T document has a copyright notice on page 2!).

    Then there’s the claim that this document was a presentation at an international scientific conference (it wasn’t), the lack of references for words quoted, etc, etc, etc.

    Now of course anyone can get clumsy and forgetful, and there may well have been a perfectly innocent explanation for the academic fraud … but then, as solrey helpfully indicated, this document is not only still up on a T&T website, but it hasn’t been edited!

    @IVAN3MAN: I think iantresman’s responses to being publicly informed of the Thornhill academic fraud are still available on the web, for all to read (let me know if you’re interested and I’ll see if I can dig them up); his sock puppetry on Wikipedia, that you found, seem to suggest that he too has a somewhat different view of academic probity than what is expected of scientists …

    Perhaps you’ll consider revising your opinion of Thornhill when you’ve had a chance to examine the evidence for yourself Anaconda?

  101. Nereid2 says:

    @Jon Hanford: I managed to get a copy of this a while ago, and was blown away that the editors allowed it to be published (I can only imagine that the reviewers had no university level training in physics, much less any understanding of astronomy)!

    As far as ‘referereed’ full papers’ on EU/PC , only one full paper on magnetic fields from 2007 was included. I was most interested in reading Thornhill’s full 2007 paper on the z-pinch mechanism and SN 1987A (particularly the neutrino generation specifics) but the best I could find was the paper’s abstract and this ADS listing: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2007ITPS…35..832T . Once again no new quantitative information to go on.

    Perhaps it’s just as well that it’s a paper that’s hard to obtain, it really damages the reputation of the journal.

    I don’t have it with me right now, but later I’ll dig it up from my archives and share my review of it with everyone (Anaconda, if you wish you may obtain your own copy so that you can check the veracity of my review).

    Has anyone else read it?

  102. Nereid2 says:

    Anaconda, how much of the material on the linked webpage have you yourself read?

    How much would you say you understand?

    I appreciate your request for peer-reviewed papers, that is reasonable and I appreciate your acknowledgement of solrey’s offering.

    In an attempt to further that request I offer the following link:

    [URL omitted]

    The link lists a series of terms and topics related to Plasma Cosmology, click the term or topic wanted and it will present an article — at the bottom of each article is a bibliography of footnoted documentation each article used.

    The footnotes state whether it is a peer-reviewed paper, a textbook, or generally what is the footnote’s provenance. (Yes, there are some papers and sources that aren’t peer-reviewed. Again, somewhat like a professor’s library shelf.)

    It also states whether it is the full text or an abstract. Not all footnotes are linked, but most are.

    I think you will find that each article is copiously footnoted with the footnotes at the bottom of the screen page of each article.

    Jon, I hope this helps you and other interested readers dig into the material 🙂 because ultimately it is up to each individual doing their own research in their own time frame and coming to their own conclusions.

    (bold added)

    I am particularly interested in discussing the material on redshift … where do you suggest that I – or any other reader with a similar interest – go to have such a discussion?

    Specifically, are you a person I could have a discussion about redshift with (within the framework of the material on that webpage)? If not, why not?

    FYI, I have read most of the material cited on that linked PC webpage, and have already had extensive discussions online about much of it (this includes some discussions with iantresman).

    @general readers: although there may be an idea or two I have not reviewed, none of the alternatives on iantresman’s webpage have been shown to provide a consistent explanation for the millions of observations that back up the Hubble relationship. The continuing inability of an PC/EU proponent to provide a self-consistent quantitative explanation for these millions of observations must surely count as one of this cosmological model’s biggest failures.

    And perhaps one of the most ironic things about this is that Alfvén himself accepted the validity of the conclusion drawn from the observations, even though there were far fewer observations in the last years of his scientifically active life (c’mon Anaconda, don’t tell me you don’t know this!?!).

  103. Anaconda says:

    @ Nereid:

    Let’s take one example, and let’s make it a threshold question: Are there electric currents in space plasma?

    Let’s take the entry off the list of articles entitled, “Electric currents in space plasmas”, see link below:

    http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Electric_currents_in_space_plasmas

    I note in the bibliography there are 22 peer-reviewed papers. To break that down, there are 15 peer-reviewed papers in the footnote section and there are 7 peer-reviewed papers in the general reference section.

  104. Anaconda says:

    @ Nereid:

    I take your point on academic fraud, it is important to provide credit to the work of others.

  105. Jon Hanford says:

    I can find no explicit peer-reviewed, published PC/EU explanation of the chaotic magnetic fields of Mercury, Mars, or smaller solar system bodies like Ceres or Vesta or even a PC/EU detailed explanation of the remnant lunar magnetic field. Any current PC/EU papers specifically addressing quantitatively the lunar magnetic field, the Martian or Mercurian magnetic fields or those of smaller solar system objects with remnant magnetic fields (i.e. Ceres, Vesta, Iris, Eros, etc.)?

  106. Jon Hanford says:

    Anaconda, of the 22 peer-reviewed papers that you mention in your PC link, exactly how many of these have you fully read and how many of these papers are you ready to discuss in a rigorous, quantitative manner using conventional astrophysical terminology?

  107. Anaconda says:

    @ Jon Hanford:

    It is true that there are not “armies” of PC/EU cosmologists and so not every topic/ celestial body gets covered. In terms of the solar system, cosmology is taking into account the NASA findings (which tend to get released through their media organs) by in situ satellite probes. And to give NASA credit, their scientists are duly reporting electromagnetic phenomenon and processes in the news releases.

    This is an advance due to increased technological capability — this is to be welcomed.

    And increased technological capability is effecting the power to make more detailed observations & measurements beyond the solar system. Again, this is to be welcomed.

    @ Nereid:

    Your point has been made about giving due credit for work done and I agree with your point. It is a specific criticism (and important), but it is seperate matter from the scientific validity of the conclusions, themselves.

    There is substantial scientific evidence that backs up Thornhill’s conclusion: Namely that comets and their tails are an electromagnetic phenomenon. Your label without explanation can be misunderstood to suggest the scientific conclusions are invalid, that is the way I took it, I’ll acknowledge my failure to recognize the term of art “academic fraud”.

    That said, the logical chain of reasoning based on the scientific evidence supports Thornhill’s conclusions that comets are an electromagnetic phenomenon.

  108. ND says:

    Nasa plans on sending a solar probe that will make the closest approach ever made.

    science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2008/10jun_solarprobe.htm?list1065474

    Maybe EU/PC can come up with detailed predictions of what to expect given the instruments on board and compare the results. The probe is supposed to be launched no sooner than 2015.

  109. Anaconda says:

    @ Jon Hanford:

    I haven’t read all of them by any means: This is an avocation not a vocation.

    I suppose more to the point is this: Do you, Jon, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma or do you reject the theory?

  110. IVAN3MAN says:

    Nereid:

    May I ask if you [solrey]have at least the equivalent of a BSc with a major in physics?

    More likely that he has a BA in Sophism.

    @Nereid,

    Yes, indeed, I would be interested in the details of Thornhill’s academic fraud — more ammunition for me against the EU/PC proponents. 🙂

    Also, Nereid, my apologies for the gender mix-up on the other thread; I am as knowledgeable about Greek mythology as Anaconda is about astrophysics! 😉

  111. Jon Hanford says:

    As I suspected, Anaconda has little knowledge of what he promulgates as EU/PC propaganda. Not even the slightest idea of the research he is endorsing concerning PC/EU! I would be most interested in Nereid2’s references to Thornhill’s conjectures. And, yes, Anaconda, I do NOT subscribe to your particular personal theory of “electric currents in space plasma” word salad theory ! Prove me wrong! 🙂

  112. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    I suppose more to the point is this: Do you, Jon, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma or do you reject the theory?

    @ Jon Hanford,

    Anaconda went through that same routine on Bad Astronomy.

  113. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    And to give NASA credit, their scientists are duly reporting electromagnetic phenomenon [sic] and processes in the news releases.

    You still do not get it, do you?! Electromagnetic waves have been observed with “increased technological capability” since the early 17th century with optical instruments; firstly, by Thomas Harriot on July 26, 1609, and secondly, over four months later, by Galileo.

  114. Nereid2 says:

    I devoted several posts in a BAUT Forum thread to going through the fraud in some detail, and I even explicitly made iantresman and mgmirkin aware of what I’d found (I’ll provide a link to the relevant BAUT Forum posts later).

    The BAUT Forum thread in which my analysis is presented is called “New research results from the “Stardust” mission”; it was started on 28 Feb 2008 (not by me), is 8 pages (222 posts) long, and is in the ATM (Against The Mainstream) section.

    My analsis begins on page 3, post#64; here’s the link to that page (you have to scroll down a bit to find post #64):
    http://www.bautforum.com/against-mainstream/70933-new-research-results-stardust-mission-3.html

    The posts which contain the ‘apparent academic fraud’ content are, principally, #71, #72, and #73.

    In post #84, after some discussion, I draw a pretty stark conclusion, which I think is worth repeating:

    I must say I was pretty surprised … claiming a document is a poster presentation at an international plasma physics conference when it’s not is intellectual fraud, in my view.

    Of course, there may be some perfectly innocent explanation …

    And I don’t think you appreciate just how bad this is … if [Thornhill and Talbot] are happy with this kind of mis-representation (if that’s what it is), then it follows that nothing they write can be trusted.

    (bold added)

    As I said earlier, I made iantresman and mgmirkin aware of my findings, and their responses are, I think, still available on the internet (though not all are in the BAUT Forum); I should add that there is a very small possibility of ambiguity wrt names (i.e. there may be two quite different people who post using the name ‘mgmirkin’ for example). Some posts in BAUT Forum on this can be found in a different thread, in the same ATM section, “Frozen-in Magnetic Field Lines “, starting at approx post #42 (on page 2); I won’t post the link (this comment be forever stuck in moderation if I do), so you’ll have to find the material yourself if you’re sufficiently interested …

  115. Nereid2 says:

    Thanks Anaconda; I was familiar with some of those, but not all.

    Let’s take one example, and let’s make it a threshold question: Are there electric currents in space plasma?

    Let’s take the entry off the list of articles entitled, “Electric currents in space plasmas”, see link below:

    [URL omitted]

    I note in the bibliography there are 22 peer-reviewed papers. To break that down, there are 15 peer-reviewed papers in the footnote section and there are 7 peer-reviewed papers in the general reference section.

    I’ll comment at greater length later, but this seems very pertinent to how up-to-date work on EU/PC ideas seems …

    The year of publication of the papers is (some years have more than one paper): 2005, 2002, 2001, 1997, 1992, 1990, 1988, 1983, 1978, 1969, 1967, and 1942.

    For the references (same caveat): 1967, 1988, 1990, 1996, and undated.

  116. Nereid2 says:

    I want to make some things extremely clear, about T&T’s ‘Electric Comet’ document, for avoidance of any possible doubt …

    First, I do not in any way, shape, or form claim or assert that either Thornhill or Talbot (‘T&T’ for short) have commited fraud, in the legal sense. My use of the word ‘fraud’ should ALWAYS be prefaced by ‘academic’ or ‘intellectual’. If I overlook this (in typing in haste, without a review function, for example), I trust that this comment will always be available to establish my meaning. Where such omissions are brought to my attention I shall endeavour to rectify them ASAP.

    Second, a number of facts are entirely objective, and verifiable by anyone with internet access; facts about the T&T document will remain independently verifiable for as long as that document remains available at the URL on the webpage solrey provided a link to earlier in this thread. These facts include, but are not limited to:

    – the copyright notice on page 2 of the T&T document

    – a complete lack of any image credits, or other acknowledgement of others’ intellectual property or prior ‘discovery’, within that document

    – usage statements and copyright notices on websites where instances of images in the T&T document may be found.

    Initially I tried to ensure that every time I wrote ‘academic fraud’ or ‘intellectual fraud’ I prefaced it with ‘apparent’, or synonyms. However, in light of the responses from iantresman and mgmirkin (many, perhaps most, or even all, are available on the web), I have tended to drop the word; in brief, no ‘perfectly innocent’ explanations have come to light, and none seem plausible.

    HOWEVER, I freely acknowledge that there may be an explanation which removes any reasonable basis for a conclusion of ‘academic fraud’ or ‘intellectual fraud’, and if any such should be brought to my attention, I will – after making my own investigations to ascertain the likely veracity of such – fully retract all my comments regarding such a conclusion.

    Finally, if any reader is in any doubt as to what I mean by any of the above, please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification … I will try to respond to any such requests quickly and completely.

  117. Nereid2 says:

    Applying an Anaconda criterion, from other UT story comments (I’ll dig up the original if anyone is interested), and restricting ourselves, for now, to regions of space outside the solar system and specifically to the ISM (interstellar medium), we can ask of the referenced peer-reviewed papers “what observational evidence is presented for the existence of electric currents in space plamas?”

    Let’s take one example, and let’s make it a threshold question: Are there electric currents in space plasma?

    Let’s take the entry off the list of articles entitled, “Electric currents in space plasmas”, see link below:

    [URL omitted]

    I note in the bibliography there are 22 peer-reviewed papers. To break that down, there are 15 peer-reviewed papers in the footnote section and there are 7 peer-reviewed papers in the general reference section.

    Now I think there are only three peer-reviewed papers of relevance to this question, 12, 13, and 16.

    I acknowledge, upfront and openly, that I may have missed something (Anaconda, please point out what I may have missed in any of these three papers), but there is no observational evidence for the existence of currents in (ISM) space plasmas!

    That’s right readers, you read correctly … by Anaconda’s very own criteria, such currents can only be inferred!!

    It gets worse, much worse.

    How do Zweibel, Ellen G. and Brandenburg, Axel, the authors of reference 12, the most recent of these three references, infer the existence of such currents?

    Why they do so using a method that Anaconda is on record as stating is false, incorrect, wrong, erroneous, etc, etc, etc (I think a search will show that his own words are considerably more vehement) … magnetic reconnection!!!

    Here is the abstract from that 1997 paper:

    There is phenomenological evidence that magnetic reconnection operates in the interstellar medium, and magnetic reconnection is also necessary for the operation of a galactic dynamo. The extremely long ohmic diffusion times of magnetic fields in typical interstellar structures suggest that reconnection occurs in two stages, with thin current layers that have relatively short resistive decay times forming by magnetohydrodynamical processes first, followed by reconnection of the fields in the layers. We propose that ambipolar drift can lead to the formation of these thin sheets in weakly ionized interstellar gas and can delineate the parameter regime in which this occurs by means of a numerical model: we find that the magnetic field cannot be too large and the medium cannot be too diffusive. Both limits are imposed by the requirement that the field be wound up about 1 time by the eddy.

    (bold added)

    Let me quickly quote Anaconda himself, wrt these peer-reviewed papers:

    I haven’t read all of them by any means: This is an avocation not a vocation.

    I suppose more to the point is this: Do you, Jon, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma or do you reject the theory?

    So let us turn the question back to Anaconda:

    Do you, Anaconda, subscribe to electric currents in ISM space plasmas or do you reject the theory, given that there is no observational evidence for such currents, and that the primary source you yourself have provided relies upon “magnetic reconnection” to infer their existence?

    I look forward to your answer.

  118. DrFlimmer says:

    Girart et al. paper is up on ADS:
    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2009Sci…324.1408G

    I was able to download the paper from an account at my university. However, I don’t want to upload it to link it here and would prefer to send it per email. So if anyone is interested in it, send an email to ssccooling “at” googlemail.com .

    It is an interesting paper and it mentions some papers that seem to predict the “hourglass” shape, too. (The paper is freely accessible on the NASA/ADS page:
    adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2008A%26A…490L..39G )

    Interesting that the “hourglass” pinch effect is exactly as Plasma Cosmology predicts star formation happens.

    AS PLASMA COSMOLOGY PREDICTED!

    Congratulations! (as an old teacher said: It is easy to use irony but hard to detect it)

    The difference and advance here in this paper is that they note the shape of the “compression”.

    It is in the shape of an hourglass.

    […]

    And this paper with its “hourglass” magnetic compression confirms Plasma Cosmology predictions and theorizing.

    Hmm… reading the abstract (and the paper) again and again and I still have some difficulties with your statement. If I understand you right, you say, that PC predicts that the CLOUD should be shaped by an hourglass? Is that correct? (It seems to be according to all I have read about the pinch effects at Wiki (and your plasma-wiki))
    The problem is, the paper doesn’t say that. It states (in the abstract):

    …and the magnetic field lines threading the HMC are deformed along its major axis, acquiring an hourglass shape.

    So, the magnetic field takes this shape – not the cloud! This is different from your statement as I understand it, and it is an important difference.
    Now the magnetic field is compressed, too. And the location of the maximum of its strength coincides with the location of the proto-star. This is interesting. Why did it happen? I think it is reasonable (from my point of view) that the magnetic field has been compressed due to the collapse.
    This would automatically result in an hourglass shape of the magnetic field.
    Of course: The mechanism that could provide something like this is “frozen-in flux”, which is even considered by your sources (as Nereid2 states).

  119. Anaconda says:

    Sigh…Why am I not surprised at Jon Hanford’s response.

    Hanford wrote: “As I suspected, Anaconda has little knowledge of what he promulgates as EU/PC propaganda. Not even the slightest idea of the research he is endorsing concerning PC/EU!”

    Talk about jumping to conclusions.

    It’s pretty apparent this is a “personal thing” with Hanford and others.

    “…slightest idea…”

    Why do they make it a “personal thing”? Well, I’ll admit I’ve rubbed their noses in it a few times (more than a few times).

    Hanford wrote: “Anaconda, I do NOT subscribe to your particular personal theory of “electric currents in space plasma” word salad theory ! Prove me wrong! ”

    Hanford, that’s not the question I asked you:

    This is what I asked: ‘ Do you, Jon, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma or do you reject the theory?”

    So, what do we have, here?

    An avoidance of the question by turning it into a “personal thing”.

    “Prove me wrong!”

    Why should I?

    You, Hanford, can’t even answer a straightforward question for goodness sake.

    Too bad, you’ve let your personal animosity get the better of you.

    Basically, your avoidance speaks volumes. You can’t dispute the 22 peer-reviewed papers that support the proposition that there are electric currents in space plasma, so you attempt to change the focus from the science to me.

    Hanford, that’s called “shooting” the messenger” when you can’t dispute the message.

    And I also suppose it has to do with your loathing to agree with any proposition I might make, even if it’s a relatively innocuous question at one level, but a threshold level question, nevertheless.

    Ivan3Man wrote: “@ Jon Hanford, Anaconda went through that same routine on Bad Astronomy.”

    Yes, where you and a bunch of others wouldn’t even acknowledge that electric currents flow through space plasma.

    Of course, NASA teaches to highschoolers that electric currents do flow through space plasma and have since 2001.

    And scientists state unmistakenly that electric currents flow through space plasma:

    “Although magnetic reconnection is one of the bedrock theories within the field of space plasma physics, it has been very difficult to observe. We know that magnetic instabilities and electric currents operate within the plasma environment, but the triggering mechanism is difficult to understand.”

    http://www.astroengine.com/?p=475

    “We know that…electric currents operate within the plasma environment…”

    To bad Ivan3Man you aren’t even up to high school level in your understanding of the near-space Earth environment 🙂

    Ivan3Man wrote: “You still do not get it, do you?! Electromagnetic waves have been observed with “increased technological capability” since the early 17th century with optical instruments; firstly, by Thomas Harriot on July 26, 1609, and secondly, over four months later, by Galileo.”

    No, Ivan the “terrible” , you don’t understand the difference between light which is a function of electromagnetic waves, and electron/ion dynamics, also known as electric currents, although related, certainly, they are different aspects of electromagnetism.

    Nereid wrote: “The year of publication of the papers is (some years have more than one paper): 2005, 2002, 2001, 1997, 1992, 1990, 1988, 1983, 1978, 1969, 1967, and 1942.

    For the references (same caveat): 1967, 1988, 1990, 1996, and undated.”

    So?

    That doesn’t dispute their scientific validity.

    It seems that’s just another avoidance technique, rather than just acknowledging electric currents to exist in space plasma.

    So, I end up asking you the same question (perhaps more focussed) I asked Hanford: Do you, Nereid, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma within the solar system or do you reject the theory?”

    Nereid wrote: “…but there is no observational evidence for the existence of currents in (ISM) space plasmas!”

    Wrong.

    A magnetic Z-pinch as directly observed & measured in this post only happens because there is electric current through the plasma.

    Also, because of the validity of Maxwell’s equations, Science knows that the detection of magnetic fields requires the presence of electric currents.

    I note Nereid avoids addressing the scientific validity of Thornhill’s hypothesis on comets and goes back to a point I already conceded.

    Why?

    Because Nereid doesn’t want to address the merits.

  120. Nereid2 says:

    Halt the presses!

    Breaking news!!

    Anaconda has admitted that, gasp, neutron stars have been directly observed & measured!!!

    A magnetic Z-pinch as directly observed & measured in this post only happens because there is electric current through the plasma.

    And black holes – both stellar mass and supermassive ones – too.

    He has also confessed to subscribing to galaxies embedded in dark matter halos, to the Hubble relationship, to …

    Seriously Anaconda, you’ve repeatedly shown your ignorance of the math that underlies plasma physics, but this is the first time I’ve seen in something you wrote an equally profound ignorance of what astronomical observations are.

    Do you, Nereid, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma within the solar system or do you reject the theory?”

    Apart from the extraneous double quote mark, what does this question mean?!?!?

    Is ‘electric currents in space plasma within the solar system’ some sort of magazine or book club?

    And what ‘theory’ are you referring to?

    In any case, I addressed something like this (making generous assumptions, given your avowed profound ignorance) at some length, quite some time ago, remember? IIRC, I even invoked Maxwell’s equations, and provided a link to a published paper where you could read more details (i.e. the mathematical derivations; did you read that paper? No, I didn’t think so).

    Perhaps it’s time for me to find it and repeat it …

    @other readers: in case you have missed it, “pace” Anaconda, the Girart et al. paper does NOT report the direct observation of “[a] magnetic Z-pinch” (DrFlimmer will confirm that this phrase does not even occur in the published paper!)

  121. Nereid2 says:

    that should be
    pace Anaconda,
    not
    “pace” Anaconda,

  122. DrFlimmer says:

    Small correction of my previous post

    If I understand you right, you say, that PC predicts that the CLOUD should be shaped by an hourglass?

    This should actually read: If I understand you right, you say, that PC predicts that the CLOUD should be shaped LIKE an hourglass?

    The paper does, indeed, not mention a z-pinch. The magnetic field does not have the structure of it, as I see it, so there is no possibility for it.

    And probably a short note on Maxwell’s equations.
    The equation at hand is obviously:

    curl B = µ_0 J + c^(-2) dE/dt

    where B, J and E are vectors and the magnetic field, the current density and the electric field, respectively. µ_0 is the permeability of free space, c is the speed of light, d/dt is the derivative with respect to time and curl is the curl-operator (an operator including derivatives with respect to position (is this the correct term?).
    What does this question tell us? Well, if we have a current, we have a magnetic field. This direction is true. But, although Anaconda claims otherwise, the opposite direction is not (always) true. The presence of a magnetic field does not imply a current. It could also be a time-dependent electric field. It is possible to have magnetic and electric fields in a vaccum (light!!).
    And: This equation says nothing about the location of the fields/currents. You can see a magnetic field but probably the cause is “far away”.

    Moreover, plasma physics (and solar physics) tell us that a “transportation” of magnetic fields is possible. Otherwise it seems not reasonable that the magnetic field of the sun that extends through interplanetary space is somehow wound up:

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interplanetary_Magnetic_Field

    How could this happen if the plasma wouldn’t act somehow on the magnetic field (and vice versa)?
    I wonder if and how the Parker Spiral (the easiest discription of the interplanetary magnetic field) is considered in EU?

  123. Anaconda says:

    Nereid presents my [Anaconda’s] question to her: “Do you, Nereid, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma within the solar system or do you reject the theory?”

    Nereid wrote: “…what does this question mean?!?!?”

    Nereid follows up with “And what ‘theory’ are you referring to?”

    The logical construction of the sentence my question was embedded in is clear: The theory that electric currents exist in space plasma within the solar system.

    A direct question is put to Nereid and her response is a varient of “unintelligible” or in other words, she puts her hands over her ears and says, “I can’t hear you.”

    Nereid wrote: “@other readers: in case you have missed it, pace Anaconda, the Girart et al. paper does NOT report the direct observation of “[a] magnetic Z-pinch” (DrFlimmer will confirm that this phrase does not even occur in the published paper!)”

    Nereid is quite right the paper doesn’t say “Z-pinch” , rather the paper says that the magnetic field was shaped in the figure of an “hourglass”, which is the shape of a Z-pinch…and that this “hourglass” was not the result of gravity, but of the magnetic field.

    @ DrFlimmer:

    DrFlimmer wrote: “The magnetic field does not have the structure of it, as I see it, so there is no possibility for it.”

    The paper states that the magnetic field was in the shape of an “hourglass” which is as I state above the shape of a z-pinch.

    DrFlimmer, please explain your statement: “It could also be a time-dependent electric field.”

    DrFlimmer wrote: “You can see a magnetic field but probably the cause is ‘far away’.”

    How far away and under what circumstances?

    And what is the basis/authority for your assertion, “probably” far away?

    After all, Science knows that magnetic fields spiral AROUND electric currents in the form of the ‘right hand rule’.

  124. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    The documentation of the Z-pinch article stands on it’s [sic] own merit. Do you have any disputes with the actual merits of the article?

    Not at all. In fact, we had a demonstration of that phenomenon in physics class, and I intend on building my own Z-pinch “can crusher”, but I don’t see how it applies in the interstellar medium as you assert:

    Interesting that the “hourglass” pinch effect is exactly as Plasma Cosmology predicts star formation happens.

    AS PLASMA COSMOLOGY PREDICTED!

    So, Anaconda, may I refer you to the Wikipedia schematic
    on “Pinch (Plasma Physics)” — it’s the same as the one in the link that you have provided — and also to note the words “HIGH VOLTAGE DC POWER SUPPLY” on the left of it.

    Got it? Good! Now, may I ask you (again!) to explain to all of us “modern” (as you call it) astronomers here: WTF is the source of that Universal power supply to drive these electric/Birkeland currents that allegedly creates the Z-pinch effect in dense ISM clouds?

  125. Anaconda says:

    @ Ivan3man:

    I don’t know.

    I suppose I could ask you, “what caused the big bang,” but then I’d be a smart ass, wouldn’t I 🙂

  126. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Anaconda,

    I don’t know either, and neither do astrophysicists, but they are working on finding out — just like detectives do after an unexplained explosion: was it terrorist bomb or just an accidental gas explosion? Whatever it was, the evidence of the explosion is everywhere to see.

  127. Anaconda says:

    @ DrFlimmer:

    I understand you may have access to the full text of the paper. If so, do the authors report whether they attempted observation & measurement of synchrotron radiation? And if they did make the attempt, did they detect any?

    Peratt, Astrophysics and Space Science (1995) states that synchrotron radiation emission should be detected from pinched particle beams: “Z-pinches are among the most prolific radiators of synchrotron radiation known. In this regard, the Bennett-pinch, or Z-pinch, as a synchrotron source has been treated by Meierovich (1984) and Newberger (1984).”

    http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1995Ap%26SS.227…97P

    The detection or non-detection of synchrotron radiation would shed evidentiary light on whether the “hourglass” shape observed & measured in the present paper is a result of a Z-pinch.

  128. Nereid2 says:

    Anaconda, when you post a link some readers do you the courtesy of clicking on it and reading what’s on the resulting webpage before they write a reply comment.

    Would it be too much to expect that you show others here that simple courtesy too?

    I note Nereid avoids addressing the scientific validity of Thornhill’s hypothesis on comets and goes back to a point I already conceded.

    Dude, if you had clicked on the link I supplied, and actually *read* the material on the linked webpage you’d’ve found rather a lot of material on “the scientific validity of Thornhill’s hypothesis on comets”.

    I have no intention of copying it all (there is, after all, rather a lot), so here is the Reader’s Digest view, dumbed down in the hope that you, Anaconda, can understand it.

    “Thornhill’s ideas, as presented in that document are not so much wrong, scientifically, as meaningless.”

    The document contains no references, so it must be assessed solely on its own merits.

    The document contains no equations, no models, no parameters, no numbers, so it must be assessed solely on its internal logic and the words it uses.

    The key terms used in the document are not defined, so most of the logic is either circular (and hence meaningless) or empty (as there’s no way to assess the premises, the conclusions are equally opaque).

  129. Nereid2 says:

    Oops, formatting got messed up (sorry), the last part should read:

    Thornhill’s ideas, as presented in that document are not so much wrong, scientifically, as meaningless.

    The document contains no references, so it must be assessed solely on its own merits.

    The document contains no equations, no models, no parameters, no numbers, so it must be assessed solely on its internal logic and the words it uses.

    The key terms used in the document are not defined, so most of the logic is either circular (and hence meaningless) or empty (as there’s no way to assess the premises, the conclusions are equally opaque).

  130. IVAN3MAN says:

    Furthermore, on the subject of explosions, the Tunguska event on June 30, 1908, was most likely caused by an extinct comet or a chondrite asteroid; however, UFO aficionados have claimed that the Tunguska event was the result of an exploding alien spaceship or even an alien weapon going off to “save the Earth from an imminent threat”, but the proponents of the UFO hypothesis have never been able to provide any significant evidence for their claims.

    No doubt that EU/PC proponents will claim that the Tunguska event was the result of a gigantic(!) electrical discharge. 🙄

  131. Nereid2 says:

    DrFlimmer has had a go at trying to show Anaconda (and Dave Smith and mgmirkin and solrey) why it is extraordinarily difficult to make estimates of currents in space plasmas solely from astronomical (remote) observations within the solar system; he has done this by giving a quick and dirty walk through an application of Maxwell’s equations.

    Sadly, based on Anaconda’s comments on UT stories, I am very confident this attempt will fail … Anaconda, for one, simply doesn’t have the necessary background in math and astronomy to follow it (I doubt that Dave Smith does either; mgmirkin might be willing to try, and solrey would, most likely, claim he can follow it).

    So, I’m going to have a go myself.

    WARNING! What follows is an extreme simplification; parts of it may be so oversimplified as to be misleading or wrong! So, please, those readers who are actually familiar with the relevant math and (astro)physics, be gentle.

    B is the standard symbol for magnetic field.

    It is bold because, in the usual convention, it is a vector quantity; it has both magnitude and direction.

    From Maxwell’s equations, if one knows B and v (the velocity, a vector quantity, remember), one can, in principle work out E (electric field) and j (electric current).

    An extremely simplified summary of how one *infers* something about magnetic fields in space (beyond the solar system) might be as follows: light detected on a sightline is polarised to degree x, with direction a (‘on the sky’). Mechanism M is known to polarise light; at the heart of M is B. Assuming M operates on stuff on the sightline, the observed polarisation will be the combined result of the B at every point on the sightline where M operates … and assuming no other mechanism produces any polarisation.

    In the case of some objects – e.g. ‘ultracompact HII regions’ – the assumption that the observed polarisation towards some of these objects is due principally to M is well-founded.

    Further, the assumption that M operates only in these objects is also well-founded.

    Thus observations of the polarisation may be used as inputs to models, built on M, that will produce as outputs estimates of the *integrated* magnetic field strength and the *projected* direction of the integrated fields on the sky.

    Can one infer the strength and direction of any electric fields and currents in or near the regions where M operates, by applying Maxwell’s equations? After all, one has in hand an inferred estimate of the magnetic field strength and direction, doesn’t one?

    In a word, no.

    There are many, many reasons why not, most of which are highly pertinent to ultracompact HII regions, and I’d be happy to walk readers through these if anyone’s interested.

  132. Nereid2 says:

    Anaconda, the following is a good example of something that I find all too common in your comments, a failure of basic logic

    Nereid is quite right the paper doesn’t say “Z-pinch” , rather the paper says that the magnetic field was shaped in the figure of an “hourglass”, which is the shape of a Z-pinch…and that this “hourglass” was not the result of gravity, but of the magnetic field.

    For starters, the words in the paper’s abstract are:

    The HMC is simultaneously contracting and rotating, and the magnetic field lines threading the HMC are deformed along its major axis, acquiring an hourglass shape.

    so your summary is already inaccurate.

    For seconds, unless and until you know the details of how Girart et al. arrived at conclusions about the HMC’s magnetic field, how can you have any basis for making conclusions about the nature of the 3D magnetic field?

    But most important of all, how can you conclude – from shape alone – that there is a Z-pinch?

    After all, an hourglass has an hourglass shape, yet it is not a Z-pinch; further, part of the projected field of a dipole magnet looks like an hourglass , yet it is not an hourglass shape (and so on).

    Isn’t this an example of one of the most basic logical fallacies? You know, ‘all cats are black, this thing is black, therefore it is a cat’ (all Z-pinches have an hourglass shape, this thing has an hourglass shape, therefore it is a Z-pinch).

    But you what’s particularly ironic Anaconda?

    It’s the method Girart et al. used to infer magnetic fields.

    You see their observations are of the polarisation of sub-mm electromagnetic waves, which emission they *infer* is due to dust grains (the grains’ heat, basically), and the polarisation due – they *infer* – to the grains being not spherical and having preferred alignment. They further *infer* that the grains’ alignments are due to magnetic fields … by a mechanism that owes nothing to whatever net charges the grains may have!

    Among different
    alignment mechanisms, radiation torques seem to be a promising mechanism to align the
    dust grains with the B field (Draine & Weingartner 1996; Lazarian & Hoang 2007).

    (that’s a quote from an earlier paper of theirs; I expect the method they used in the Science paper is essentially the same).

    Could it be, perhaps, that G31.41+0.31 (the object Girart et al. studied) is not, *gasp*, a plasma?!?

    Here’s a suggestion: if you want to be an astronomer – and so be able to comment on the published results of other astronomers with understanding – get a PhD in a relevant field. If you don’t, rather than inflict your gross ignorance on readers, why not ask questions first? Many readers have shown they are only too pleased to help other readers, by sharing their understanding and knowledge.

  133. Nereid2 says:

    Oops, that should read “part of the projected field of a dipole magnet looks like an hourglass, yet it is not a Z-pinch”

  134. Nereid2 says:

    Anaconda, as I have just shown, your comments often seem to lack logic, or contain logical fallacies.

    Further, you use key words in highly idiosyncratic ways, so your meanings are often difficult to impossible to fathom (example: ELECTROMAGNETISM).

    Finally, you have a tendency to ask questions that contain gross errors wrt key concepts in the very questions (e.g. “infinity”, “directly observed”).

    Surely, then, it is only prudent to ask for clarification (not to mention showing respect)?

    Nereid presents my [Anaconda’s] question to her: “Do you, Nereid, subscribe to electric currents in space plasma within the solar system or do you reject the theory?”

    Nereid wrote: “…what does this question mean?!?!?”

    Nereid follows up with “And what ‘theory’ are you referring to?”

    The logical construction of the sentence my question was embedded in is clear: The theory that electric currents exist in space plasma within the solar system.

    (bold added)

    So here’s a follow on question of clarification: what is this ‘theory’ that you are referring to? Where may one read up on its details?

  135. Nereid2 says:

    I am particularly interested in discussing the material [in the link Anaconda provided] on redshift … where do you suggest that I – or any other reader with a similar interest – go to have such a discussion?

    Specifically, are you a person I could have a discussion about redshift with (within the framework of the material on that webpage)? If not, why not?

    That’s from me. Here’s Anaconda’s response:

    Let’s take one example, and let’s make it a threshold question: Are there electric currents in space plasma?

    Has Anaconda let slip an EU cult secret?

    Is there some private discussion forum, where serious questions about EU ideas can be asked and serious answers given?

    And entry into this secret world is via some initiation ceremony, the first step (“threshold”) of which is getting the answer to Anaconda’s question right?

    Dude, why do I need to answer this question in order for you to tell me where I can go to have a discussion on the material on iantresman’s webpage (on redshift)?

    For goodness sake man, if you don’t know of any place where such a discussion may be had, simply say so!

  136. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid2,

    On that Bad Astronomy thread that I had referred you to, I have used a similar example of syllogistic logic (A = B, and B = C, therefore A = C) to illustrate to Anaconda the fallacy of it: While some cats (A) are black (B), and some black things (B) are televisions (C), it does not follow from the parameters that some cats (A) are televisions (C).

    Did he learn anything? Bugger-all!

  137. Nereid2 says:

    By reading the BA blog, I learned that you’ve had this explained to you before Anaconda.

    That you are asking again seems to show that you didn’t learn then; may I ask why you’re asking again?

    DrFlimmer wrote: “You can see a magnetic field but probably the cause is ‘far away’.”

    How far away and under what circumstances?

    And what is the basis/authority for your assertion, “probably” far away?

    I don’t want to suggest that I am DrFlimmer, so this response is my own entirely.

    You’re in the woods around the town in which you live. You take out your compass and note that it points north (more or less), indicating that there is a magnetic field … where is the associated current Anaconda?

    You are aboard a balloon, at a height of several km. You take out your compass and note that it points north (more or less), indicating that there is a magnetic field … where is the associated current Anaconda?

    You download the readings of a magnetometer on the end of a boom attached to a spacecraft some distance from Earth. The magnetometer tells you there is a magnetic field in that part of space, and that it has a strength and direction consistent with the Earth being a dipole, and consistent with your earlier compass readings … where is the associated current Anaconda?

    I won’t speak for DrFlimmer, but I suspect that his ‘authority’ is a long-dead gent who went by the name James Clark Maxwell, another long-dead gent whose name was Birkeland, and … in other words, this is basic physics Anaconda, classical electromagnetism to be precise.

    If you’d like to learn more, and see how this is applied to plasmas, I can suggest an online university course in plasma physics … but I should warn you that the math prerequisites are such that you’d likely need to spend ~four years, studying full time, to meet them …

  138. Nereid2 says:

    @IVAN3MAN: perhaps Anaconda is a troll? Who could have guessed that! 😉

    BTW, did you read the Thundercraps post that ND (or was it JonH?) found? I’m still amazed that Anaconda is so obviously proud of his self-admitted gross ignorance and his point-blank refusal to even consider doing anything about it!

  139. Nereid2 says:

    Oops, that should be James Clerk Maxwell …

  140. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid,

    I’m not sure which “Thundercraps” post you are referring to specifically, but I have seen a number of them — such as this one on their Forum on the subject of (now get this!) Experimental Verification of Electric Gravity. Note that solrey is one of the contributors to the discussion — he seriously thinks that “if gravity is an EM induced atomic dipole phenomena…”!
    😆

  141. DrFlimmer says:

    @ Anaconda

    DrFlimmer wrote: “The magnetic field does not have the structure of it, as I see it, so there is no possibility for it.”
    The paper states that the magnetic field was in the shape of an “hourglass” which is as I state above the shape of a z-pinch.

    AFAIU the wiki entries about the z-pinch, I concluded that they are able to deform things (like cans or wires) into an hourglass shape – not that the magnetic field itself has this shape. Normally the magnetic field “curves” around the current or the current flows along the magnetic field (and induces a curved magnetic field around itself). The articles never mentioned a magnetic field in the shape of an hourglass for a pinch – where do you have this from?

    DrFlimmer, please explain your statement: “It could also be a time-dependent electric field.”

    Time-dependent means that the value of a thing is not constant over time. E.g. the electric field strength can vary with time. A simpler example is probably a car. If the velocity is not zero the car changes its position with time – so the position is time-dependent.
    In more mathematical description this means that the derivative with respect to time does not vanish. In the case of the car this is: dx/dt=v, where x is the position of the car, d/dt is the derivative wrt time and v is the non-vanishing velocity of the car. If the car stops, it does not change its position anymore and hence dx/dt=0.
    So a time-dependent electric field means that its derivative wrt time does not vanish. Even more it is explicitly time-dependent and hence changing with time.
    The implication for the Maxwell equation is that you can have a magnetic field, although there could be no current!

    DrFlimmer wrote: “You can see a magnetic field but probably the cause is ‘far away’.”
    How far away and under what circumstances?
    And what is the basis/authority for your assertion, “probably” far away?

    Nereid2 wrote a wonderful answer that I didn’t think of. I was about to talk about a straight wire with a current and the magnetic field that surrounds it. If you do the math (Biot-Savart law) you would find that the magnetic field drops inversely with the distance from the wire – so it would drop to zero at an infinite distance. Being a little closer than infinity from the wire ( 😉 ) would mean you could measure a magnetic field – but the underlying current is probably VERY far away and it could be hard, just from the measurement of the field strength, where the current is and how strong it is! It could be weak and nearby – or strong and far away.
    To add something to Nereid2’s example: Take a look at Jupiter’s magnetic field. It reaches out to the orbit of Saturn which is about twice the distance from the sun than Jupiter. This is quite a distance!

    After all, Science knows that magnetic fields spiral AROUND electric currents in the form of the ‘right hand rule’.

    If there is a current: Yes. But how is should a current look like that produces a magnetic field that looks like an hourglass?

    I understand you may have access to the full text of the paper. If so, do the authors report whether they attempted observation & measurement of synchrotron radiation? And if they did make the attempt, did they detect any?
    Peratt, Astrophysics and Space Science (1995) states that synchrotron radiation emission should be detected from pinched particle beams: “Z-pinches are among the most prolific radiators of synchrotron radiation known. In this regard, the Bennett-pinch, or Z-pinch, as a synchrotron source has been treated by Meierovich (1984) and Newberger (1984).”
    [link omitted]
    The detection or non-detection of synchrotron radiation would shed evidentiary light on whether the “hourglass” shape observed & measured in the present paper is a result of a Z-pinch.

    If you want to have the paper, too, then send an email to the address I posted above.

    So, now, let’s talk a little bit about the paper. I will quote a few passages that I find interesting and comment on them as far as I can (some equations are modified in order to be readable; numbers in brackets, e.g. (14,15), are references).

    […] suggesting that the core’s center harbors O-type hydrogen-burning stars (14, 15). It is associated with very weak free-free emission (16), implying that an ultracompact HII region has not yet developed and therefore that the embedded young stellar objects are in a very early stage of their evolution.

    This is the only passage in the paper where the authors talk about free-free emission. This emission could be synchrotron radiation, but bremsstrahlung is also a possible mechanism. That this emission is very weak seems to indicate that the underlying mechanism is not very effective and thus the source is very weak.

    The 4 GHz of bandwidth available for the SMA allowed us to detect a large number of spectral lines. The myriad of lines is dominated by CH3OH, with more than 30 lines, but also by HCOOCH3, CH3OCH3, and SO2.

    There are huge and high numbers of molecules in the cloud. I think this means that at least the envelope of the new-forming star is not very ionized.

    One of the lowest excitation lines, C34S 7-6, shows a clear inverse P-Cygni profile in its spectrum

    This means that the envelope is collapsing and hence the star is accreting.

    We proceeded, similarly to (11), to derive the magnetic field properties by first fitting its morphology with a family of exponential functions. We find that the center of symmetry of the magnetic field coincides within the measured uncertainty, ~0.2”, with the center of the core (i.e., the position of the dust emission peak).

    I have spoken about this point in a previous post. I think this indicates that the collapsing cloud took the magnetic field with it. As I see it, a mechanism like this would result in an hourglass shape for the magnetic field.

    The magnetic field strength can be estimated from the dispersion in polarization angles (which is a consequence of the perturbation by Alfvén waves or turbulence in the field lines). With use of the value of the volume density derived from our data, n(H2) = 3.1 × 10^6 cm^?3, and a turbulent velocity dispersion of dvlos ? 2.7 km s^–1, the expected value from the Osorio et al. modeling (14) at the scale of ?1.5 × 10^4 AU, which is the scale of the observed polarized emission—we calculated the magnetic field strength in the plane of the sky to be B_pos ? 9.7 d_(7.9)^(–1/2) mG.

    Here “d_(7.9)” is the distance to the object in kpc – which is a number with some uncertainties, so the values of the magnetic field (and some other values in the paper) are normalized with the distance. One of the important things is that the magnetic field can only be measured in the “plane of the sky”. There is a lack of information about the 3rd dimension. This is the point which makes it impossible to calculate any underlying current, since Maxwell’s equations are strictly three dimensional. If one is missing (as is the case here) there is no chance to calculate anything.

    The mass accretion rate can be estimated from the infall velocity derived from the inverse P-Cygni profile.
    […]
    Following Beltrán et al. (26), the mass accretion rate onto the star (4*pi*R^2*m(H_2)*n*V_(infall)) inside a solid angle “Omega” is M_acc = Omega/(4*pi)(3 × 10^?3 to 3 × 10^?2) M_sol year^(?1), which is in agreement with the estimate from modeling G31.41 (14). Such a high value of the infall rate has also been estimated for other O-type (proto)stars (26–28), supporting the non-spherical accretion scenario for the formation of massive stars, which is expected in the presence of a substantial magnetic field, as observed here.

    I think no further comments are necessary for this point.

    For a collapsing core with angular momentum conservation and with a very weak magnetic field, the rotation velocity is expected to be inversely proportional to the radius (10). This is the opposite of what is observed in the HMC, in which the rotation velocity decreases for decreasing radius, indicating that the angular momentum is not conserved during the collapse. Given the hourglass magnetic field morphology in the HMC, this spin-down in the HMC suggests magnetic braking, a process proposed to remove the excess of angular momentum. Theoretical models of magnetic braking predict a spin-down qualitatively in agreement with what is shown in Fig. 4 (7, 10).

    This also needs no further commenting. Finally I want to quote the whole last paragraph, which also speaks for itself:

    The HMC in G31.41 is much larger (by a factor of 20) and more massive (by a factor of 200) and luminous (by five orders of magnitudes) than the Sun-like IRAS 4A. However, both sources show an inverse P-Cygni profile, indicative of infall motions (30), and have similar magnetic field properties (a hourglass configuration approximately along the major axis and a similar mass-to-flux ratio). The energetic relations do not differ too much, either: Both cores are collapsing because gravity has overcome pressure forces, but the collapsing dynamics are controlled by the magnetic energy rather than by turbulence. This similarity suggests that the role of the magnetic field in the early stages of the formation of high- and low-mass stars may not be too different. However, once the massive stars turn on an ultracompact HII, the feedback from the massive stars (radiation and ionization pressure, turbulence, and outflows) becomes energetically more important than the magnetic fields (31).

    As I said, if someone is interested in the paper, send me an email! The paper is only 4 pages long, so reading takes only a short amount of time 😉

  142. ND says:

    Some additional evidence that no matter how much effort you put into trying to explain things to Anaconda. You’re not going to get anywhere because he will not be able to advance beyond his insanely limited understanding of scientific concepts he talks about.

    thunderbolts.info/forum/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1870&p=22075#p22075

  143. Nereid2 says:

    @ND: one thing that several people have noted, in various fora, is that proponents of EU ideas seem to act as if the essential core of science (or at least astronomy) is something like ‘if it looks like a duck, it is a duck’ … i.e. the ultimate validation of a hypothesis is finding an image which has features that match artistic representations loosely based on that hypothesis …

    … and it matters not one bit how the image was created, what the image is ‘of’, what its scale is, and so on.

    (Anaconda’s ‘hourglass shape’ is a good example here; he clearly doesn’t understand *what* has this shape, but as it is the same – at the word level – as that of Z-pinches, it *is* “A magnetic Z-pinch as directly observed & measured in this post”! Another example is his ‘here are radio images of SgrA, they don’t *look* at all like a black hole’ … if we take this at face value, his complete blindness to the *scale* left me gobsmacked).

    I came across a passage in a book I’m reading that may shed some light on this, relating to some core characteristics of science … I’ll copy them here later …

  144. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid,

    Hey, did you know that mgmirkin is a moderator on the Thunderbollocks Forum?

  145. ND says:

    Nereid2,

    It’s both infuriating and fascinating at the same time. It’s like a novel you can’t put down, in a wierd sort of way.

    It’s not just looks-like-a-duck, but also “it’s going to be currents in space, you’ll see, just wait and you’ll see”. And this in complete contradiction with the how-science-is-done lecturing we hear. Anaconda has got the rhetoric down, but not the deeper understanding of the theories and concepts. He also looses his cool at times and gets very upset. I don’t understand why. It’s just sunspots and aurora!

    When I showed Anaconda gravitational simulations of galaxy collisions that looked remarkably like what we see, he was rather silent.

    It’s definitely been fun and an opportunity to learn and dig deeper into various topics that Anaconda gallops through.

  146. Anaconda says:

    @Nereid:

    I normally do click links, but your statement suggested it was about “giving credit where credit is do” and since I agree with you, I didn’t want to hash through a forum thread.

    Nereid wrote: “Thornhill’s ideas, as presented in that document are not so much wrong, scientifically, as meaningless.”

    Yes, you address the merits in your typical pedantic way. I disagree with you and there were others on the forum thread who did as well.

    You obviously had a “thing” against Plasma Cosmology long before I got here.

    It’s off topic, so I’ll address it if an appropriate post comes along.

    Nereid presents a quote from the instant paper: “The HMC is simultaneously contracting and rotating, and the magnetic field lines threading the HMC are deformed along its major axis, acquiring an hourglass shape.”

    I’m fine with that, and go with the actual words in the paper (except for “lines”, field “lines” are a conceptual aid, a magnetic field is an undifferentiated continuum of magnetic strength, there are no actual “lines”).

    “contracting and rotating”, this is consistent with a magnetic field acting around an electric current, remember the right hand rule.

    Nereid, it’s clear from everything I’ve seen, your mind is closed and you’re a pseudo-sceptic.

    Nereid, I show as much respect as I’m shown and frankly you disagree and dodge questions on evident points, divert the questions often into the weeds, and express raw contempt, so i’m not likely to sign up for your advice.

    You want to go hemispheric and rehash, no, I’ll stay on topic.

    DrFlimmer: “The implication for the Maxwell equation is that you can have a magnetic field, although there could be no current!”

    No.

    Your analogy is false because a car at rest is still a car, but an electric current at rest is not an electric current. An electric current is only a current with electrons in motion, without electrons in motion their is no magnetic field.

    Wherever you got that analogy gave you a bum steer.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “Being a little closer than infinity from the wire ( ) would mean you could measure a magnetic field – but the underlying current is probably VERY far away and it could be hard, just from the measurement of the field strength, where the current is and how strong it is! ”

    No.

    You are ignoring the paper’s language and magnetic compression. The physical constriction requires the magnetic field to surround the object and the magnetic field surrounds the current.

    Another piece of faulty logic.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “It reaches out to the orbit of Saturn which is about twice the distance from the sun than Jupiter. This is quite a distance! ”

    But it doesn’t exhibit a constricting and rotating ability. It stretches out the same way the Earth magnetosphere does, but it does’t constrict.

    Your logic is unhinged from the object in the instant paper. DrFlimmer keep an open-mind, not this attitude Nereid and the others display — you’ll be much better off.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “This means that the envelope is collapsing and hence the star is accreting.”

    Magnetic fields compress matter from the outside, not collapse it from the inside via a pull mechanism — that is what is remarkable about the paper.

    Okay, we don’t have enough data to know if there is synchrotron radiation.

    The instant paper stated: “We proceeded, similarly to (11), to derive the magnetic field properties by first fitting its morphology…”

    So, the shape, “morphology”, of an “hourglass” is important to their analysis.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “I have spoken about this point in a previous post. I think this indicates that the collapsing cloud took the magnetic field with it.”

    No.

    The magnetic field is constricting on the plasma/neutral matter (as the magnetic field constricts the current density increases and temperature rises and a greater degree of ionization is likely achieved).

    Read the paper, the magnetic field is acting on the matter not the other way round.

    Magnetic fields constrict because of increased current density, this is the Z-pinch effect, a self-reinforcing mechanism (self-reinforcing mechanisms or positive feedback is often seen in electrical dynamics.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “This is the point which makes it impossible to calculate any underlying current, since Maxwell’s equations are strictly three dimensional. If one is missing (as is the case here) there is no chance to calculate anything.”

    Okay, but an inability to measure does not mean an electric current doesn’t exist, it just means current techniques aren’t able to measure it.

    The instant paper stated: “Given the hourglass magnetic field morphology in the HMC, this spin-down in the HMC suggests magnetic braking, a process proposed to remove the excess of angular momentum. Theoretical models of magnetic braking predict a spin-down qualitatively in agreement with what is shown in Fig. 4 (7, 10).”

    Actually, electromagnetic effects are known to dissipate angular momentum. So if the paper’s authors would have considered electromagnetic processes they would not have had to invoked a speculative idea, such as “magnetic braking”. This is another concept the gravity “only” model has had to invoke because it does not consider electromagnetism.

    Since it’s not apparent whether synchrotron radiation was detected or not. It seems a reasonable follow up to this paper would be to bring to bear instrumentation on this object that can detect synchrotron radiation at a high level of sensitivity and observe & measure whether there is such synchrotron radiation.

    If there is synchrotron radiation it adds weight to the electric current/magnetic field, Z-pinch hypothesis, if there isn’t then it goes a long way to falsifying the hypothesis.

    I understand Science has the detector instruments to be able to do this now.

  147. Nereid2 says:

    @Anaconda: this last comment of yours reads like a garbled message from some alternate universe …

    I thought I’d lost an ability to be dumbstruck by how appallingly ignorant (and proud of it) your comments could be … but I was wrong, this last one really does raise delusion to a new level.

    I mean have you ever actually *read* a paper by Alfvén (say)? Did you understand *anything* in such a paper other than some simple words like ‘move’?

    OK, OK, let’s take a really, really, really simple step, shall we, to trying to talk with words that we mutually understand?

    Since it’s not apparent whether synchrotron radiation was detected or not. It seems a reasonable follow up to this paper would be to bring to bear instrumentation on this object that can detect synchrotron radiation at a high level of sensitivity and observe & measure whether there is such synchrotron radiation.

    Let’s be charitable and assume that this was meant to be one sentence.

    Let’s stay focussed on this and see if we can get to a point where you express what you intend to say in a way that makes any kind of sense, within the framework of classical electromagnetism and its extensions to incorporate the fact that charges are quantised.

    What – in your own words – do you think “synchrotron radiation” is?

    What – in your own words – do you think its observational signature would, or could, be wrt objects, or sources, outside the solar system?

    What do you think would be suitable “instrumentation” that could be used to “observe & measure” such radiation?

    Leave aside, for now at least, any thoughts about z-pinches, ultracompact HII objects, the HMC, etc, etc, etc, and focus on synchrotron radiation.

  148. Nereid2 says:

    @ND: it sure is!

    Look at this latest comment by Anaconda for example, the level of self-delusion is breath-taking!

    I mean, despite all the effort that so many people have put in, over many months, to try to help him understand the basics of classical electromagnetism, he writes such unintelligible gibberish, with the features and attributes of someone who actually thinks they understand what any of this means.

    Worse, he clearly thinks he has a deep insight into the way the universe works, certainly an insight he considers to be far superior to that of Girart et al. … despite the obvious fact that he has not understood anything important about what’s actually in the paper, and doesn’t understand the very physics he so volubly proclaims is at the heart of his insight!!

    Tomorrow I will find time to copy the passage from this book I’m reading; I think you’ll find it quite interesting …

  149. Anaconda says:

    Ah…the static…the flak. Must be over the target.

    Since it’s not apparent whether synchrotron radiation was detected or not, it seems a reasonable follow up to this paper would be to bring to bear instrumentation on this object that can detect synchrotron radiation at a high level of sensitivity and observe & measure whether there is such synchrotron radiation.

    A straightforward proposition, but some just want to put their hands over their ears, and chant, “I can’t hear you.”

    Synchrotron radiation is a type of electromagnetic radiation that can be emitted over different parts of the electromagnetic wave spectrum. It is a product of ultrarelativistic (i.e., moving near the speed of light) electrons spiralling around a magnetic field. A couple of its characteristics are non-thermal radiation and polarization.

    It was predicted to exist in space by Hannes Alfven, 1970 Nobel Prize winner, and his associate in 1950, six years before it was actually detected by 1956 by Geoffrey R. Burbidge.

    It can be detected by astromomical instruments and has been for over 60 years.

    But as usual Nereid wants to distract from the relevant issue. Synchrotron radiation is a signature of Z-pinches and it CAN be detected, but apparently it wasn’t determined if present in this paper.

    Subsequent follow up investigation should be carried out to determine whether syanchrotron radiation is present or not.

    A reasonable suggestion to investigation given the evidence already in hand, but that’s not what Nereid wants to hear.

    Too, Bad. 🙂

  150. Nereid2 says:

    If you’d like to learn more, and see how this is applied to plasmas, I can suggest an online university course in plasma physics

    That’s me; how did Anaconda respond?

    Here’s how:

    Nereid, I show as much respect as I’m shown and frankly you disagree and dodge questions on evident points, divert the questions often into the weeds, and express raw contempt, so i’m not likely to sign up for your advice.

    (bold added)

    In case any other reader would be interested, Richard Fitzpatrick, of the The University of Texas at Austin, has a graduate course online entitled “Introduction to Plasma Physics”, and it can be found here:
    http://farside.ph.utexas.edu/teaching/plasma/lectures/

  151. Nereid2 says:

    Someone may have asked this of Anaconda before, but I don’t recall the answer and I’m curious to know …

    DrFlimmer, please explain your statement: “It could also be a time-dependent electric field.”

    That’s Anaconda’s question, about Maxwell’s equations, and it’s a good one.

    Here’s DrFlimmer’s full reply:

    Time-dependent means that the value of a thing is not constant over time. E.g. the electric field strength can vary with time. A simpler example is probably a car. If the velocity is not zero the car changes its position with time – so the position is time-dependent.

    In more mathematical description this means that the derivative with respect to time does not vanish. In the case of the car this is: dx/dt=v, where x is the position of the car, d/dt is the derivative wrt time and v is the non-vanishing velocity of the car. If the car stops, it does not change its position anymore and hence dx/dt=0.

    So a time-dependent electric field means that its derivative wrt time does not vanish. Even more it is explicitly time-dependent and hence changing with time.

    The implication for the Maxwell equation is that you can have a magnetic field, although there could be no current!

    Now keep in mind that Anaconda doesn’t understand Maxwell’s equations … he can’t, because he doesn’t have the required grasp of the math that underpins it.

    Also keep in mind that the topic is Maxwell’s equations, in general.

    Here’s how Anaconda responded:

    DrFlimmer: “The implication for the Maxwell equation is that you can have a magnetic field, although there could be no current!”

    No.

    Your analogy is false because a car at rest is still a car, but an electric current at rest is not an electric current. An electric current is only a current with electrons in motion, without electrons in motion their is no magnetic field.

    Wherever you got that analogy gave you a bum steer.

    (bold added)

    Given that you don’t understand Maxwell’s equations, Anaconda, how did you conclude that DrFlimmer is wrong?

    Specifically, what is the basis for your certainty that “without electrons in motion their is no magnetic field”?

    Let’s take light.

    Light is, I think you’ll agree, electromagnetic radiation. Now in standard textbooks on electromagnetism, you’ll find a derivation of light as an electromagnetic wave, from Maxwell’s equations (I can’t explain the derivation to you because the math is far beyond what you can grasp, today).

    Specifically, light (or any electromagnetic radiation) is a time-varying electric field that is orthogonal to a time-varying magnetic field; one creates the other in a mutually dependent way*.

    There is no electric current, yet there is a magnetic field.

    There is, as DrFlimmer said, a time varying electric field, and it creates a magnetic field.

    Perhaps you can grok this by asking yourself this question: where are the “electrons in motion” associated with the magnetic fields in light?

    *note to those who know this stuff: if you know a better way to explain this to someone who is obviously entranced by electromagnetism but whose math skills don’t even include simple calculus, please jump in!

  152. Nereid2 says:

    Let’s recap how we got to where we are now …

    I am particularly interested in discussing the material on redshift … where do you suggest that I – or any other reader with a similar interest – go to have such a discussion?

    That’s me; I’m following up on this, from Anaconda:

    I appreciate your request for peer-reviewed papers, that is reasonable and I appreciate your acknowledgement of solrey’s offering.

    In an attempt to further that request I offer the following link:

    [URL omitted]

    The link lists a series of terms and topics related to Plasma Cosmology, click the term or topic wanted and it will present an article — at the bottom of each article is a bibliography of footnoted documentation each article used.

    The footnotes state whether it is a peer-reviewed paper, a textbook, or generally what is the footnote’s provenance. (Yes, there are some papers and sources that aren’t peer-reviewed. Again, somewhat like a professor’s library shelf.)

    It also states whether it is the full text or an abstract. Not all footnotes are linked, but most are.

    I think you will find that each article is copiously footnoted with the footnotes at the bottom of the screen page of each article.

    OK so far, right? A request (from JonH) for peer-reviewed papers, a good reply from Anaconda, and a follow-up by me.

    Here’s what happened next:

    Let’s take one example, and let’s make it a threshold question: Are there electric currents in space plasma?

    Let’s take the entry off the list of articles entitled, “Electric currents in space plasmas”, see link below:

    [URL omitted]

    I note in the bibliography there are 22 peer-reviewed papers. To break that down, there are 15 peer-reviewed papers in the footnote section and there are 7 peer-reviewed papers in the general reference section.

    OK, not a straight answer to my question, but an interesting topic (“Electric currents in space plasmas”), and an apparent promise that there are peer-reviewed papers on it.

    Things start to go awry soon after though.

    The webpage in the link talks about electric currents in several kinds of space plasma, one of them is the interstellar medium, and it is reasonable to start digging into Anaconda’s sources systematically; besides, it’s the ISM that I have the most familiarity with (and the greatest interest in).

    Applying an Anaconda criterion, from other UT story comments (I’ll dig up the original if anyone is interested), and restricting ourselves, for now, to regions of space outside the solar system and specifically to the ISM (interstellar medium), we can ask of the referenced peer-reviewed papers “what observational evidence is presented for the existence of electric currents in space plamas?”

    […]

    Now I think there are only three peer-reviewed papers of relevance to this question, 12, 13, and 16.

    I acknowledge, upfront and openly, that I may have missed something (Anaconda, please point out what I may have missed in any of these three papers), but there is no observational evidence for the existence of currents in (ISM) space plasmas!

    I don’t know about you, but in this kind of situation I’d’ve expected a response along the lines of

    “Good point Nereid2. As I said earlier, I’ve not actually read any of those three papers, so I’ll download them, read them, and get back to you.”

    or perhaps

    “Good to see that you’re taking the trouble to try to learn about this Nereid2; however, you did miss something: you see in {paper}, in section {X}, …”

    or even

    “That’s right, none of those three papers do present any observational evidence for the existence of currents in (ISM) space plasmas. However, in this subsequent paper, which cites {one of the three}, {author} reports {summary of observations}.”

    Did Anaconda respond with something like this?

    No; here’s his response:

    Nereid wrote: “…but there is no observational evidence for the existence of currents in (ISM) space plasmas!”

    Wrong.

    A magnetic Z-pinch as directly observed & measured in this post only happens because there is electric current through the plasma.

    Also, because of the validity of Maxwell’s equations, Science knows that the detection of magnetic fields requires the presence of electric currents.

    And it went downhill from there (Girart et al. did not report the direct observation and measurement of any “z-pinch” (they didn’t even use the term!), such a direct observation is impossible anyway (per Maxwell’s equations and current astronomical techniques), and Anaconda’s personal interpretation of Maxwell’s equations is wrong).

    So, I’ll make this effort to get back on track: what observational evidence is there, Anaconda, of currents in (ISM) space plasmas, as reported in papers published in relevant peer-reviewed journals?

    Specifically, did I miss any such evidence in the three papers referenced on the webpage you provided a link to? If so, what?

  153. Nereid2 says:

    Why is it important to note the dates of publication of the peer-reviewed papers referenced in the resource website Anaconda provided a link to?

    Nereid wrote: “The year of publication of the papers is (some years have more than one paper): 2005, 2002, 2001, 1997, 1992, 1990, 1988, 1983, 1978, 1969, 1967, and 1942.

    For the references (same caveat): 1967, 1988, 1990, 1996, and undated.”

    So?

    That doesn’t dispute their scientific validity.

    It seems that’s just another avoidance technique, rather than just acknowledging electric currents to exist in space plasma.

    There are many reasons, but the one I am focussed on now relates directly to something that both Anaconda and I seem to agree on; namely, observational evidence.

    I have asked whether any EU/PC proponent can provide the outline of a method of analysing astronomical data (observations) that would permit ‘electric currents in space plasmas’ to be robustly estimated (i.e. 3D representation of both magnitude and direction). I do not think it can be done, in general, and even in very special circumstances is likely to be extremely challenging.

    Why? Well, Maxwell’s equations combined with the ‘2D’ constraints of astronomical observations combined with the fundamental constraints of remote sensing.

    As I expected, no EU/PC proponent has been able to provide such an outline.

    Further, their inability to do so has a solid foundation, in the form of a paper (papers actually) by someone all such proponents respect … Hannes Alfvén.

    Even more striking is that the inability of remote sensing to robustly and unambiguously infer, or characterise, ‘electric currents in space plasmas’ is described in some detail in references on the very webpage Anaconda cites (do you know which ones, Anaconda?).

    The closest space plasma to us here on Earth is the Earth’s magnetosphere; no surprise to learn that it has been studied extensively, and even in situ. What has been discovered is both fascinating and astonishing, and, among other things, provides confirmation in the form of dozens and dozens of peer-reviewed papers that electric currents in space plasmas cannot be characterised by remote sensing.

    Perhaps the most imporant discoveries – about electric currents in the Earth’s magnetosphere (including the interface with the solar wind) – have come from Cluster/Double Star and from THEMIS.

    The Cluster mission took its first scientific data in early 2001, and THEMIS in 2007; the scientific data from these mission has resulted in a great many published papers.

    Now comes the part where you, dear reader, need to be sitting down … not a single one of these papers is referenced on the ‘Electric currents in space plasmas’ webpage!

    So no, Anaconda, the date of publication of a paper does not, in and of itself, “dispute their scientific validity”; however, when dozens, perhaps hundreds, of later papers are not mentioned – papers which contain the results of in situ studies of these very currents (or lack of them) – my curiosity is piqued.

    It gets even more curious.

    References 14 and 15 are Press Releases (PR), on THEMIS findings (so iantresman certainly was actively working on the content of this page at the time), unlike most other references. There are dozens of published papers, based on THEMIS results, many of them available around the time of the PRs cited … yet not a single one is cited!

    Why?

    I think I know what’s going on here, but I would welcome others’ comments – and especially Anaconda’s – before I comment further.

  154. Nereid2 says:

    Forgot to add: if anyone is interested, I will provide links to webpages with THEMIS and Cluster/Double Star publications.

  155. Nereid2 says:

    It’s not just looks-like-a-duck, but also “it’s going to be currents in space, you’ll see, just wait and you’ll see”. And this in complete contradiction with the how-science-is-done lecturing we hear. Anaconda has got the rhetoric down, but not the deeper understanding of the theories and concepts.

    (bold added)

    I don’t think it necessary to walk readers through the ‘Thornhill’s intellectually fraudulent document on comets’ set of comments, to illustrate ND’s point about Anaconda’s rhetoric, but there is one part of Anaconda’s final comment on the matter (for now anyway) that I’d like to discuss

    Yes, you address the merits in your typical pedantic way.

    Anaconda obviously means this in a negative way (subtext: being pedantic is *bad*).

    Yet consider this: what is at the heart of the scientific method if not ‘be pedantic, systematically’?

    Do you, Anaconda, have a version of doing science in which being pedantic is bad?

  156. Nereid2 says:

    Solrey’s attribution was not quite right; the text of the quote is to be found in “Birkeland, Kr. : 1908, 1913 The Norwegian Aurora Polaris Expedition 1902-1903, Christiana, Norway, Aschehoug, Secs. 1 and 2”

    That Birkeland quote is from a lecture given in 1908 while he was a professor at the University of Oslo, I believe.

    I don’t have my copy of that document to hand now, but I’ll check it out when I do, and comment on how faithful it is, and, more important, the extent to which it establishes the point solrey was trying to make.

  157. Nereid2 says:

    As promised, the extract from a book I’ve just finished reading (source, and further comments, below)

    To research this chapter, I did something that I had never done before: I visited some Web sites representing creationism in its many guises. This exercise was a revelation indeed, but probably not of the sort that Webmasters had intended. What I found most striking was the appalling lack of integrity of those concerned. The deliberate misuse of quotations and details from the work of scientists suggested that all honor and honesty had been cast to the four winds. I realized that I was in a different social context from the one I have known and loved for my whole scientific career, where an honest search for the truth is at the heart of things. Instead, I was in a milieu where the dominant ethos was to force acceptance of a particular worldview by any means whatever.

    […]

    What makes the scientist’s naturalistic view of the universe any better than its divine-interventionist counterparts? Well, precisely this. Most of those who hold the naturalistic view do so in a tentative way. The English evolutionary biologist John Maynard Smith put it memorably when he said that, unlike a creationist, he was prepared to abandon his stance if he were to find strong evidence against it.

    […]

    It is precisely this tentativeness, and a willingness to consider the possibility of evidence contrary to one’s worldview, that is lacking from the stance of creationists. Their writings reveal quite the opposite: a false certainty, and a desire to distort any evidence so that it appears to support them.

    Source: Wallace Arthur, “Creatures of Accident” (2006) pp226-227

    Now what does the comments of a biologist (zoologist actually) about creationism have to do with EU/PC ideas?

    Well, I think it’s fair to say that many scientists and disinterested observers have much the same reaction as Arthur’s upon encountering material by EU/PC proponents; the similarities between creationists and EU/PC proponents are striking.

    Here, for example, are some extracts from Tom Bridgman’s blog, “Dealing with creationism in astronomy”:

    My list of similarities between EU and creationism has grown significantly, largely thanks to this post from Mr. Smith.

    […]

    My original posts were responses to earlier similar queries. It appears that Mr. Smith now wants to avoid my responses by claiming that those issues are no longer important. Now it is these additional topics that I must address. This overloading of topics is also a popular creationist debate tactic, a variant of the “Gish Gallop”.

    […]

    EU wants us to talk about the currents, but we don’t directly detect the currents. We can directly detect magnetic fields or radiation from electrons accelerating in fields, and to a lesser extent, electric fields. […]

    Another fallacy that Mr. Smith makes here is the assumption that any problem in the standard model cosmology automatically favors the EU model. Many creationists use this same argument, also utilizing many of the same ‘problems’ in mainstream cosmology as evidence in favor of their interpretation of cosmology.

    […]

    Am I interested in the EU stellar model?

    Which model would that be? A claimed scientific model composed of nothing but cartoons, hand-waving explanations but nothing that comes close to the physical and mathematical rigor of any scientific model that makes even reasonable predictions. Those predictions are needed to explain a pheonomenon or build a technology. Mr. Smith accuses me of ‘hand-waving’, but it is EU models’ lack detailed predictions that we can test against real measurements which is the definition of ‘hand-waving arguments’ in science.

    Source:
    http://dealingwithcreationisminastronomy.blogspot.com/2009_05_01_archive.html

    (to be continued)

  158. Nereid2 says:

    (continued)

    I found this on the JREF Forum, while googling for material on electric currents in space plasmas. It seems this UT story is not the only place on the internet where EU proponents are hawking the Girart et al. PR as iron-clad evidence of a z-pinch!

    Sol88: … this “new” finding confirms the EU understanding that they (stars) form in a Bennett pinch and are powered by Birkeland currents (FAC’s), taking on a classic “hourgalss” shape along with broadband radiation and filamentry structure on the extremites!

    Tim Thompson: That’s a complete fairy tale. At best it allows you to argue that an EU scenario is plausible, but only on a very general, heuristic level. But it certainly does not “confirm” the EU hypothesis for the very simple reason that there is no EU hypothesis to confirm.

    One thing you will notice that is common to all EU arguments ever presented anywhere, in books or on websites or anywhere else, is that they are never specific about anything. There is a reason for this. As long as you don’t say anything specific then nobody can pin you down.

    So, for instance, exactly why would any kind of plasma pinch give an “hour glass” shape? And more importantly, how do you get a pinch to sit around and keep on pinching for zillions of years? What specific field strengths and current densities allow for this? and where does all that charge separation come from? After all, you need an electric field to separate charges, but you need to separate charges to get an electric field. So which one is the “chicken” and which one is the “egg”? We never get specific answers to specific questions. Hence, there is in reality no EU hypothesis to defend.

    (some formatting in the original is lost in this copy)

    Source:
    http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=4827154#post4827154

  159. DrFlimmer says:

    @ Anaconda

    Nereid2 already said some words, but I am so bold to answer for myself.

    DrFlimmer: “The implication for the Maxwell equation is that you can have a magnetic field, although there could be no current!”
    No.
    Your analogy is false because a car at rest is still a car, but an electric current at rest is not an electric current. An electric current is only a current with electrons in motion, without electrons in motion their is no magnetic field.
    Wherever you got that analogy gave you a bum steer.

    That analogy was not intended to be an analogy for the electric current but rather for what it means to be “time-dependent”. I thought that was clear, but obviously it was not. Whatever, my explanation of the Maxwell equation still holds: You can have a magnetic field without having a current. That is fact! And this fact was introduced by Maxwell to correct Ampère’s law which had some flaws with experiments. The term with the time-dependent electric field is called “Maxwell’s displacement current”, but it is not a current in the normal sense.
    Oh, and btw. According to special relativity it is possible to transform oneself into the system of rest of the current, hence in this system there is no current and no magnetic field – but in other systems you have a magnetic field. This in turn leads to the interpretation that magnetic and electric fields are just two sides of the same coin. But this another story and to explain you this, I need more than simple calculus, what even a school boy should understand.

    DrFlimmer wrote: “Being a little closer than infinity from the wire ( ) would mean you could measure a magnetic field – but the underlying current is probably VERY far away and it could be hard, just from the measurement of the field strength, where the current is and how strong it is! ”
    No.
    You are ignoring the paper’s language and magnetic compression. The physical constriction requires the magnetic field to surround the object and the magnetic field surrounds the current.
    Another piece of faulty logic.

    I was not referring to the paper; I was just giving an example about a simple straight wire in a wall. And since the magnetic field of a straight wire vanishes at LARGE distances (in other words at infinity) there is no possible way to determine where the current is and how strong it is, wherever you are. You can measure the strength of the field, and probably how it curves. But this could lead to a strong current far away or to a weak current nearby – how could you judge?
    And just with the right-hand rule you can examine the field of a straight wire. However, if the magnetic field curves very strangely (in the form of an hourglass, e.g.) then I wonder how the current looks like, if you just apply the right-hand rule. Tell me, Anaconda! How does the current look like?

    DrFlimmer wrote: “It reaches out to the orbit of Saturn which is about twice the distance from the sun than Jupiter. This is quite a distance! ”
    But it doesn’t exhibit a constricting and rotating ability. It stretches out the same way the Earth magnetosphere does, but it does’t constrict.

    Yeah, and? My statement wanted to say that you can measure a magnetic field at the orbit of Saturn. How do you know it is from Jupiter, if you just measure it? And if it constricts or not, what does it matter? I was just saying that measuring a magnetic field and probably its form, it doesn’t tell you anything if the underlying current (if it exists) is nearby or not. You cannot judge from the strength and the form of the magnetic field where a probably existing current should be – this is impossible!

    DrFlimmer wrote: “This means that the envelope is collapsing and hence the star is accreting.”
    Magnetic fields compress matter from the outside, not collapse it from the inside via a pull mechanism — that is what is remarkable about the paper.

    LOL! You have taken my statement out of context! I think I know why: Do you know what an “inverse P-Cygni profile” is?
    And how do you know that the magnetic field compresses the envelope? Have you read the paper, does it clearly state this? I haven’t read such a passage.

    The instant paper stated: “We proceeded, similarly to (11), to derive the magnetic field properties by first fitting its morphology…”
    So, the shape, “morphology”, of an “hourglass” is important to their analysis.

    No, it’s just good to know, how the magnetic field looks like. That it actually takes the shape of an hourglass has been found in their analysis and by comparing this result with another paper they found similarities. And how do you judge from not reading the paper that the hourglass is important to their analysis? I say, they found that it has an hourglass-shape and that is an interesting fact. (This is probably nitpicking, but judging what is important or not from “not” reading the paper, is quite a task!)

    DrFlimmer wrote: “I have spoken about this point in a previous post. I think this indicates that the collapsing cloud took the magnetic field with it.”
    No.
    The magnetic field is constricting on the plasma/neutral matter (as the magnetic field constricts the current density increases and temperature rises and a greater degree of ionization is likely achieved).
    Read the paper, the magnetic field is acting on the matter not the other way round.

    My interpretation from reading the whole paper is that first the cloud collapses and the pressure of the magnetic field that is confined in the collapsing cloud is acting against the infall. But this is my interpretation. If you read the whole paper, you’ll probably come to another conclusion.

    Magnetic fields constrict because of increased current density, this is the Z-pinch effect, a self-reinforcing mechanism (self-reinforcing mechanisms or positive feedback is often seen in electrical dynamics.

    The problem is that no one knows if there is a current. It could be that there is none and then there is also no Z-pinch. And as I said before: AFAIU pinches: They normally don’t create an hourglass-shaped magnetic field – but rather an hourglass-shaped cloud (or can, or whatever) after the magnetic field acted!

    DrFlimmer wrote: “This is the point which makes it impossible to calculate any underlying current, since Maxwell’s equations are strictly three dimensional. If one is missing (as is the case here) there is no chance to calculate anything.”
    Okay, but an inability to measure does not mean an electric current doesn’t exist, it just means current techniques aren’t able to measure it.

    That’s true, but astronomy is in most cases bound to two dimensions, although there are techniques to analyze the 3rd one. But especially in the case of magnetic fields those techniques do not work. I wonder if we will ever find a technique to measure (far away) magnetic fields in all three dimensions. So, we will never be able to analyze an underlying current, because it does not reveal itself in another way. That’s too bad!

    The instant paper stated: “Given the hourglass magnetic field morphology in the HMC, this spin-down in the HMC suggests magnetic braking, a process proposed to remove the excess of angular momentum. Theoretical models of magnetic braking predict a spin-down qualitatively in agreement with what is shown in Fig. 4 (7, 10).”
    Actually, electromagnetic effects are known to dissipate angular momentum. So if the paper’s authors would have considered electromagnetic processes they would not have had to invoked a speculative idea, such as “magnetic braking”. This is another concept the gravity “only” model has had to invoke because it does not consider electromagnetism.

    Another LOL! I think “magnetic braking” is just another term for saying “magnetic fields dissipate angular momentum”. Or this is how I understand and translate the term – I don’t think that there are magnetic field lines actually breaking up – they are breaking the rotational speed of the cloud and the core, which is important! What does “magnetic braking” mean in your point of view?
    And a third LOL is also necessary! Gee, I told you to forget the term “gravity only”. It’s nonsense! The paper obviously includes magnetic fields. What do you think it is? I think this is an electromagnetic effect, since a magnetic field is in some strange ways related to electromagnetism. “Gravity only” does not exist in science!

    Since it’s not apparent whether synchrotron radiation was detected or not. It seems a reasonable follow up to this paper would be to bring to bear instrumentation on this object that can detect synchrotron radiation at a high level of sensitivity and observe & measure whether there is such synchrotron radiation.
    If there is synchrotron radiation it adds weight to the electric current/magnetic field, Z-pinch hypothesis, if there isn’t then it goes a long way to falsifying the hypothesis.

    Since synchrotron (or the less energetic cyclotron) radiation is produced in the moment when you have a charge and a magnetic field, there is no way to say “oh, synchrotron radiation – it MUST be a z-pinch”. We have a magnetic field and we certainly have charged particles – so there definitely IS synchrotron radiation. The only way to judge if this radiation is due to a z-pinch would be if there is a detailed prediction made by EU, which clearly states to which amount of synchrotron radiation should belong a so-and-so strong z-pinch. Just from the fact that there IS synchrotron radiation one cannot say it is a z-pinch. We need a clear prediction!

    I took this last quote “out of context” in order to give it some thoughts:

    DrFlimmer keep an open-mind, not this attitude Nereid and the others display — you’ll be much better off.

    Well, Anaconda, speaking of “open minds”. Taking your criticism about our rejection of EU, I wonder how you can think that you have an open mind? We say that EU/PC/PU is nonsense – and you state the same about “mainstream” science. Isn’t it the same, just the other way around? Aren’t you then as close-minded as we are?
    And do you really think that you can judge what is really right and what is not so right? Don’t you think that the ability of reading and understanding a paper with all its figures, tables, equations and technical terminology is a better way to think about what is going on than just be able to read a few press releases?
    You can still send me an email and I would gladly send you a copy of the paper. Then you can read the whole thing for yourself and draw your own conclusion that are not based on my (indeed arbitrary) quotes.

  160. DrFlimmer says:

    Dammit. Something went wrong with the last but one blockquote. The second of the three paragraphs before the last blockquote should also be a blockquote… dear reader, please take this in mind 😉

  161. Nereid2 says:

    @Anaconda: thanks for your comments on synchrotron radiation.

    Synchrotron radiation is a type of electromagnetic radiation that can be emitted over different parts of the electromagnetic wave spectrum. It is a product of ultrarelativistic (i.e., moving near the speed of light) electrons spiralling around a magnetic field. A couple of its characteristics are non-thermal radiation and polarization.

    It was predicted to exist in space by Hannes Alfven, 1970 Nobel Prize winner, and his associate in 1950, six years before it was actually detected by 1956 by Geoffrey R. Burbidge.

    It can be detected by astromomical instruments and has been for over 60 years.

    But as usual Nereid wants to distract from the relevant issue. Synchrotron radiation is a signature of Z-pinches and it CAN be detected, but apparently it wasn’t determined if present in this paper.

    Just a couple of (pedantic?) clarifications, if I may …

    First, any charged particle can emit synchroton radiation, not just electrons. In astrophysics synchrotron radiation from electrons is more likely to be seen than that from iron ions, say, or positrons, but these two most certainly *can* produce synchrotron radiation. If you’d like more details, just ask, and I’ll be happy to provide them.

    Second, ‘spiralling around’ is a bit of an overkill; all a charged particle needs to do to emit radiation is accelerate (though polarisation happens only if there is some preferred direction).

    So let’s talk about “ultrarelativistic (i.e., moving near the speed of light)” charged particles moving in magnetic fields, shall we?

    A good place to start might be the huge amount of observational evidence that points to the ubiquity of magnetic fields throughout the ISM … I expect this is not a topic which you, Anaconda, will make a sharp comment on, and demand that I provide copious references to back up my statement … (but, as always, I could be wrong).

    Now what about ultrarelativistic charged particles? Well, they exist, and in quite some abundance … they’re called cosmic rays.

    So, there should be no doubt whatsoever that the sky is bathed in synchrotron radiation from cosmic rays ‘spiralling around’ the magnetic fields which pervade the ISM (and the solar system, and the Earth’s magnetosphere, and …), right Anaconda?

    Next: if this is so (and if I’m wrong I trust that you’ll tell me so quickly Anaconda), then the detection of synchrotron radiation from the direction of G31.41 is a no brainer … the astonishing news would be if no synchrotron radiation were detected!

    But, as you say Anaconda, if there is a z-pinch out there, somewhere, in or around G31.41, there should be some synchroton radiation; how, then, to distinguish between that which comes from cosmic rays and that which comes from the z-pinch (if it exists)?

  162. Nereid2 says:

    Here’s some words by Nereid2 that Anaconda has been dying to read … space is pervaded by vast numbers of electric currents!

    In some detail, the pedantic details …

    What is an electric current?

    At Anaconda’s preferred level of understanding, it is a movement, or flow, of electrically charged particles. Further, an electric current is proportional to the speed of the particles, as well as the charge of the particles. So if we have a highly charged particle – an fully ionised iron ion say – moving at ultrarelativistic speed, then the current will be far greater than an electron moving very slowly.

    What are cosmic rays?

    They are charged particles, moving at ultrarelativistic speeds. Some of these particles are fully ionised iron ions, some are even fully ionised lead ions; some are electrons, and some are positrons (and so on).

    It follows then, from the defintion of an electric current, that cosmic rays are currents.

    Now since cosmic rays seem to pervade space (at least within the Milky Way galaxy, and certainly the solar system), it follows, logically, that there are vast numbers of electric currents in space (and since most of space is filled with plasma, there are vast numbers of electric currents in space plasma).

    Am I right, Anaconda? Did I get the threshold question right?

  163. Nereid2 says:

    @DrFlimmer:

    Oh, and btw. According to special relativity it is possible to transform oneself into the system of rest of the current, hence in this system there is no current and no magnetic field – but in other systems you have a magnetic field. This in turn leads to the interpretation that magnetic and electric fields are just two sides of the same coin. But this another story and to explain you this, I need more than simple calculus, what even a school boy should understand.

    In an earlier comment of mine – on some other UT story I think – I introduced this too; Anaconda’s response, IIRC, was essentially “I don’t understand what you’re talking about, you’re just trying to obfuscate, and in any case I have no interest in learning anyway” (not his exact words of course, but I think the tone and meaning is fairly accurately summarised).

    His “I’m ignorant, I know I’m ignorant, I’m proud of my ignorance, and I have no intention or desire to change anything” attitude continues to shock me.

  164. Nereid2 says:

    @rFlimmer: I stumbled on this webpage; it gives the four pages of Fermi’s notebook where he worked out his idea on the cosmic ray acceleration mechanism (later published in his 1949 paper).

    http://www.symmetrymagazine.org/cms/?pid=1000231

    It doesn’t address your question, I know, but I think it’s pretty cool …

  165. IVAN3MAN says:

    @ Nereid2,

    If you think that Anaconda’s ignorance is shocking, wait until you see the “fake doctored [Moon landing] photos” rambling diatribe by “Neil” on the “Shuttle delayed until July, LRO goes up Thursday” thread at Bad Astronomy. 🙄

  166. Nereid2 says:

    @IVAN3MAN: at least with Anaconda there is, at last, some common ground on which to build, in terms of mutually agreed words etc … IOW, meaningful communication is at least possible.

    IMVHO, with hoaxers/deniers/conspiracy theorists/etc one cannot engage in meaningful communication, period (you think you’re speaking the same language, but you’re not).

    And the gulf cannot, I think, be bridged. Why? Because meaningful communication requires common ground on how to deal with the problem of induction (sure the Sun rose this morning, and yesterday, and … but how do you *know* it will rise tomorrow?). Vast swathes of language work principally by mutual acceptance that the meanings of words – and phrases and so on – can be generalised beyond the immediate, very narrow meaning in each particular use (this leaf on this tree is green, that leaf on the same tree is green, this leaf on that tree is green, … -> mutual acceptance of ‘green’ in general).

    My impression – which, it goes without saying, could be wrong – is that at the heart of each confirmed conspiracy theorist’s (CT) thinking is a big red ‘I REFUSE TO GENERALISE’ button, which can be pressed at any time, for any reason … and it used with considerable frequency when it comes to the intentions of others.

    Elwood Herring, post#11, has it in a nutshell:

    Some people would deny the moon landings even if they were magically transported there and had their thick skulls banged repeatedly against the remnants of the landing craft.

    Try this (if you haven’t already): ask a CT to *commit* to providing clear, unambiguous criteria for ‘proving me wrong’ (i.e. there is, and was, no conspiracy). I doubt that any CT would do so, and if any did, the criteria would amount to ‘I cannot be proven wrong, ever, under any circumstances’.

  167. IVAN3MAN says:

    Nereid2:

    Try this (if you haven’t already): ask a CT to *commit* to providing clear, unambiguous criteria for ‘proving me wrong’ (i.e. there is, and was, no conspiracy). I doubt that any CT would do so, and if any did, the criteria would amount to ‘I cannot be proven wrong, ever, under any circumstances’.

    Somebody on that thread has already asked that from “Neil”, but his response was sadly predictable:

    Granted subpoena power, an independent, fully funded and fully empowered investigation could acquire proof of the Apollo hoax. I could acquire it in a day.

    🙄
    These conspiracy nutters (mostly men, but some women too!) are like kids in the schoolyard: they want to believe in some major conspiracy because they think that they are somehow empowered when they are in possession of some ‘classified information’.

    Furthermore, due to their low self-esteem, they are unwilling to give up their delusion, despite the overwhelming evidence against their belief, because that will take away from them their ‘power’ — it is like depriving a drug addict of his/her ‘fix’. You cannot reason with a drug addict!

    At least with Anaconda, he serves as a “Devil’s advocate” and prompts one to do more research whenever he asks awkward questions, but even he shows total stubbornness when you provide the mountain of evidence against his assertions, which he fails to acknowledge, and he just parrots the same questions again on another “modern” (as he calls it) astronomy post.
    🙄

  168. ND says:

    I’m going to summarize some of the points brought up in this post. Please correct me so this summary is correct as I am skimming a bit on the multitude of posts in this thread. There have been some important points made in this thread worth summarizing. I think the summary is light on the physics of synchrotron radiation.

    – A magnetic field can be created by something other than a current of charged particles. This according to Maxwell’s equations. A changing electric field can generate magnetic fields.

    – Beyond our solar system, if an electric current is generating a magnetic field, it is difficult to calculate this current simply by the magnetic field measurements. We are constricted by the limits of astronomical measurements. What else is new in Astronomy. What astronomer would not love to have probes orbiting nearby stars and interstellar space. Hey at least we can see back in time 😉 A 3D observational view of such of the magnetic field would be a good first step.

    – Polarization in light is used to measure magnetic fields beyond our solar system. Polarisation can also be caused by objects between us and the object being measured (this adds to uncertainty?).

    – Given the difficulty in calculating currents beyond our solar system, the EU/PC claim that new observations support currents in space cannot be scientifically supported at this time.

    – The paper does not discuss Z-pinches. The observational data in the paper is not enough to come to such a conclusion. The hourglass shape of the magnetic field can be explained by the shape of the cloud itself. In other words a collapsing cloud could be deforming the magnetic field into an hourglass shape. Further observations should be done to detect things like synchrotron radiation.

    – Magnetic fields are involved in the formation of stars and this has been part of star formation models for quite a while.

    – There can never be enough observations and data points. Just to throw that one in there 🙂

  169. Anaconda says:

    …well…well…well…when the cat’s away the mice will play 🙂

    Nereid don’t be passing out false information on this website.

    ND states: “- A magnetic field can be created by something other than a current of charged particles. This according to Maxwell’s equations. A changing electric field can generate magnetic fields.”

    False.

    Dr. Eugene N. Parker acknowledges the requirement of Maxwell’s equations that electric currents cause magnetic fields:

    “…magnetic fields appear only in association with electric currents…”

    And, “In the laboratory we create static magnetic fields by driving an electric current through a coil of wire. The emf [electromotive force, 10^39 more powerful than gravity] and the current are clearly the CAUSE [original emphasis] of the magnetic field.” (p. 25, Conversations)

    So, Dr. Parker acknowleges that, here, on Earth in the laboratory electric currents are the cause and magnetic fields are the effect, not the other way around.

    But Dr. Parker does immediately state in the next sentence: “On the other hand, in the cosmos the deformation of the magnetic field embedded in the swirling plasma causes the flow of electric current in the plasma…” (p.25)

    The reason for this difference is the assumed difference of the terrestial environment and space as Dr. Parker expressed: “The air that we breathe is an example and only upon reaching the ionosphere does MHD [magnetohydrodynamics] become effective.” (p.3 Conversations)

    There are several problems with this assertion:

    Dr. Parker cites no experiments for his proposition, but relies on a priori mathematical extrapolation for his hypothesis. In other words, instead of in situ observation & measurements or in situ experiments, Dr. Parker relies on mathematical ‘thought experiments’ as justification.”

    Nereid, it is very bad form to pass out false infomation Eugene N. Parker would not approve of your conduct.

    http://books.google.com/books/p/princeton?id=7gJ_i3CTcpQC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ViewAPI&hl=en

    ND states: “- Given the difficulty in calculating currents beyond our solar system, the EU/PC claim that new observations support currents in space cannot be scientifically supported at this time.”

    No that is false. More information is needed such as whether synchrotron radiation is detected.

    There is no experimental evidence that a magnetic field can stand in isolation without an electric current to generate it.

    Following the empirical Scientific Method’s axiom: to understand the unknown one needs to compare it with the known.

    There is no known experimentally or observationally verified instance of a magnetic field standing without an underlying electric current, Period.

    So, the reasonable inference is that ALL magnetic fields in the Universe are supported by electric currents.

  170. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda, you would NOT know electric currents from black currants! 😛

  171. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    Dr. Eugene N. Parker acknowledges the requirement of Maxwell’s equations that electric currents cause magnetic fields:

    “…magnetic fields appear only in association with electric currents…”

    And, “In the laboratory we create static magnetic fields by driving an electric current through a coil of wire. The emf [electromotive force, 10^39 more powerful than gravity] and the current are clearly the CAUSE [original emphasis] of the magnetic field.” (p. 25, Conversations)

    So, Dr. Parker acknowleges [sic] that, here, on Earth in the laboratory electric currents are the cause and magnetic fields are the effect, not the other way around.

    So, Anaconda, you’re up to your old tricks of quoting out of context again, like your jive-ass friend, OilIsMastery, and cherry-picking those bits that support your assertions while ignoring the essential context of the article.

    Well, here’s the full and unadulterated context of that quote by Dr. Eugene N. Parker from chapter 3 on Magnetic Fields in his book Conversations on electric and magnetic fields in the cosmos:

    In the absence of magnetic charges, magnetic fields appear only in association with electric currents and in association with time varying electric fields, in the manner described by [equation 1.6]. In the laboratory we create static magnetic fields by driving an electric current through a coil of wire. The emf driving the current is the source of energy that creates the magnetic field, so the emf and the current are clearly the cause of the magnetic field. On the other hand, in the the cosmos the deformation of the magnetic field embedded in the swirling plasma causes the flow of electric current in the plasma in the manner described by [equation 1.6], because the energy that drives the current comes from the magnetic field. […]

    Now here is the kicker:

    The curious popular notion that the electric current causes the magnetic field in the cosmos has led to the even more curious notion that the electric current is the more fundamental dynamical variable. [<< My emphasis.] Then, since currents are driven by electric fields, it is declared that the fundamental dynamical variables are E and j. As already noted, the difficulty is that there are no tractable dynamical equations for E and j. The current is dynamically passive, consisting of no more than the tiny inertia of the electron conduction velocity, while, as we shall see, the stresses in the electric field are small to second in v/c and quite negligible. The dynamics of the plasma-magnetic field system is driven by the magnetic stress and the inertia and pressure of the plasma.

    So, Anaconda, you’re a fraud, a charlatan, and a goddamn sophist rolled into one.

  172. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda:

    There is no experimental evidence that a magnetic field can stand in isolation without an electric current to generate it.

    Following the empirical Scientific Method’s axiom: to understand the unknown one needs to compare it with the known.

    There is no known experimentally or observationally verified instance of a magnetic field standing without an underlying electric current, Period..

    One word answer: Lodestone.

    😎

  173. ND says:

    Well the cat has a tendency to go away when the questions get too tough.

    Anaconda: “There is no known experimentally or observationally verified instance of a magnetic field standing without an underlying electric current, Period.”
    Where do magnets fit into this then?

    Anaconda “ND states: “- Given the difficulty in calculating currents beyond our solar system, the EU/PC claim that new observations support currents in space cannot be scientifically supported at this time.”

    No that is false. More information is needed such as whether synchrotron radiation is detected.”

    *double take*, are you saying no and then yes? Your brief response isn’t clear to me.

    As for my summary. I was summarising what was discussed in this thread. And one of the points was that magnetic fields can be generated by something other than an electric current. If there are issues with anything in the summary I’m open to corrections, but I would prefer by those who have actually studied science (particularly Maxwell’s equations)

  174. IVAN3MAN says:

    Nereid2:

    So, Anaconda, the game is up … your dishonesty has been objectively revealed, and it would seem that you are merely a troll.

    The Troll’s Brain and MEMORY.

  175. Nereid2 says:

    Oh Anaconda, if only you had bothered to actually *read* what was written while you were away …

    Here’s some words by Nereid2 that Anaconda has been dying to read … space is pervaded by vast numbers of electric currents!

    And who wrote that?

    Why Nereid2 did! (UT date June 20th, 2009 at 11:22 am)

    More information is needed such as whether synchrotron radiation is detected.

    And I actually started to do the scientific grunt work for you, on investigating the question of the detection of synchrotron radiation from the direction of G31.41(no UT date this time, you go look it up).

    There is no known experimentally or observationally verified instance of a magnetic field standing without an underlying electric current, Period.

    Ah yes, so by now we have pretty solid evidence that is consistent with the hypothesis that you are not only ignorant Anaconda, but also dishonest to boot.

    You see I walked you through an example of a well-detected magnetic field, and asked you where the associated current is … but you chose to not answer.

    Then DrFlimmer added some more stuff on the same topic … but you chose to not answer.

    Finally I followed up with the example of light (electromagnetic radiation) – which is, of course, an extremely known experimentally AND observationally verified instance of a magnetic field standing without an underlying electric current – but you chose to not answer.

    So, Anaconda, the game is up … your dishonesty has been objectively revealed, and it would seem that you are merely a troll.

    Now there may be a perfectly innocent explanation for your not answering any of the specific, and detailed, comments which address your misunderstandings and ignorance, so why not take the time to read ALL the comments in this thread? If there’s stuff you don’t understand, then by all means ask questions. And if you find that you’ve shot your mouth off, your apologies would go a long way to having the ‘troll’ label removed from you.

  176. DrFlimmer says:

    Well, I wondered if I would get an answer for my post from

    June 20th, 2009 at 8:18 am.

    Sadly, nothing happend, and Anaconda just went the way we all should have known that he would go!

    He is not even interested in the paper (it only contains two minor equations, so it is even easy for you!). Two have asked so far, btw….

    There is nothing more to add, everything is said by others.

    So, Anaconda. I would like to read a reaction to my comments from the specific post that I mentioned above. I’ll be waiting…

  177. IVAN3MAN says:

    Anaconda: **CRICKETS**

  178. Anaconda says:

    Well, Nereid I’m glad to see you acknowledge electric currents in space, but it is more than cosmic rays, it is organized “flows” of electrons and ions.

    Ivan3Man, I see that you are okay with distortion. I linked the Parker citation so you could review it and you did. Good boy 🙂

    And I stated Dr. Parker’s paper in summarized fashion and did in fact mention that he proposed a hypothesis that magnetic fields stand in the plasma.

    Nereid, It should have been obvious from Parker’s paper that the discussion is about electrons and ions and emf (electromotive force), not the electromagnetic wave spectrum and by the way “light” or X-rays, or what have you doesn’t generate a magnetic field.

    Never mind Nereid that never stopped her before.

  179. DrFlimmer says:

    and by the way “light” or X-rays, or what have you doesn’t generate a magnetic field.

    This was not about light creating a magnetic field. This was about light BEING an oscillating electric and magnetic-field. (One can derive this VERY easily by applying Maxwell’s laws for the vaccum case (j and rho equaling zero).

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