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A Blind Spot in Superstring Theory
Oct 24, 2005
(Translated by Transn and Edited by Kaer)
If we consider the quantum field theory as one leg in a pair of pants and the general relativity theory as the other leg, then the superstring theory would be the waist part trying to connect them.
Einstein’s general relativity mainly discusses gravity and holds that it does not exist but is the result of the curvature of space. It assumes that space itself is smooth and flat, but when celestial bodies of great mass such as the sun appear, they cause it to curve inward. It is like pressing hard on a girl’s round and smooth face with an index finger which breaks the smoothness and forms an indentation. The geometric deformation of space gives rise to apparent gravity which defines it from a macro-perspective. With regard to a person or a stone, its mass is too small to deform space any noticeable amount, thus microscopic matter has almost no apparent gravity.
The problem with microcosmic matter is that its space is not smooth and flat, but is filled with countless, flying particles which are unable to curve space to produce gravity as huge masses do. The movements of microparticles have nothing to do with gravity; they are the results of electromagnetism, the strong nuclear force, and the weak nuclear force. Quantum mechanics appeared when general relativity failed to explain the source of these three forces.
Quantum mechanics studies fundamental particles at the microcosmic level. Whether large celestial bodies or grains of sand on the beach, all matter is made of hundreds of types of fundamental particles with masses close to zero but whose trajectories change unpredictably with no rules to follow but are always in motion. Motion is not caused by gravity, but by the three aforementioned forces of nature being converted from the particles. Electromagnetism is converted from photons, the strong force is converted from gluons, and the weak force is converted from bosons, however the conversion of particles cannot generate gravity; therefore, the quantum mechanics does not explain gravity.
The macroscopic world and the microscopic world are unified integral, but general relativity theoary which can explain motion at the macroscopic level and quantum mechanics which can explain it at the microscopic level, are not fully compatible. An overall description of the universe can only be had by combining these two seemingly contradictory theories and this mosaic theory is called the Superstring Theory.
This Superstring theory believes that matter is made of molecules, molecules are made of atoms, atoms are made of electron shells and nuclei, and the nuclei consist of protons and neutrons which are made of quarks. What are quarks and electrons made of? Scientists believe that both are fundamental “point” particles which have no internal structures and cannot be divided any further.
Superstring argues that these particles do not really exist, but are only strings in motion in space, and a variety of different types of particles are formed by these strings vibrating differently. All interactions between matter and energy can be explained by combining and separating strings, but strings do not move in normal three-dimensional space. Rather, they move in a high-dimension of space which is beyond our imagination. Our traditional ideas about space are wrong because space has more than three dimensions; maybe ten or even twenty-six of them.
If this sounds confusing, consider the following scenario:
· An ant crawls into a shallow pit.
· It climbs out and goes further until it falls into a deeper pit.
· It climbs out and continues to go until after some time, it drops into a sand pit.
· It climbs out, but eventually lands inside a mud pit.
These four pits are totally irrelevant to the ant which simply comes across them by chance. Living on a two-dimensional plane, it cannot see the interrelation of the four pits, let alone know that they may be related integrally.
What is the reality of the situation? These four pits are footprints left by an elephant as it ate. One foot stood on hard ground, another stood on soft ground, a third in sand, and the fourth was in a pond of rainwater. So there are the shallow pit, the deep pit, the sand pit, and the mud pit. That is to say, the seemingly unrelated pits are actually integral parts of a whole. It is only when we think beyond our two-dimensional plane to include three-dimensional height, four-dimensional time, five-dimensional retention information, and six-dimensional space movement and so on, that we begin to understand how these unrelated pits are integral parts left by a single elephant.
Gravity, electromagnetism, the strong force, and the weak force are our four pits, but they are actually parts of a whole. Superstring theory was conceived to explain their integration.
“Superstring is the most promising theory to unify our understanding of fundamental particles with the interactions of the four forces”;
“Superstring holds that strings are the most basic units of matter and that all fundamental particles such as electrons, photons, neutrinos, and quarks are different vibrational states of energy strings.”
“Superstring combines the two major basic theories of the twentieth century, general relativity and quantum mechanics, for the first time into a mathematically self-consistent framework.”
“Superstring has the potential to solve long-standing problems that have troubled physicists, including the nature of black holes and the origin of the universe. If experimentation confirms it, then our understanding of the structure of matter, space, and time would change fundamentally.”
The prospect is tempting and theoreticians are struggling with it, but it seems ridiculous and childish to me because of some major blind spots; they are:
1. How have these strings come into being?
2. How do they move?
3. Could they represent the origin of the universe?
How can a unified field theory of the universe be established when the origin of the universe is still unknown?
Only Lifechanyuan can answer these questions.
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