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Still Chasing the Ghosts of ‘Dark Matter’ and ‘Dark Energy’
By Michael Goodspeed

The French existentialist writer Albert Camus once wrote, “…there is no more dreadful punishment than futile and hopeless labor.” Though we are not accustomed to thinking of science as hopeless labor, there is a domain of science today for which the description may be perfectly apt. Space Age technology has achieved wonders. But according to critics, many theoretical adventures undertaken to explain astonishing Space Age discoveries have set the theoretical sciences down a dead-end path.

An example of this may be the unyielding belief of a majority of scientists in the existence of “dark matter.” Dark matter entered the lexicon of astronomers and cosmologists as a way of dealing with a serious theoretical problem. In observing the motions of galaxies in clusters, they calculated the mass needed to hold the cluster together. They found there was not nearly enough. So they calculated the amount of mass that could not be seen but MUST be there in order to account for the observed motions.

The line of reasoning seemed unassailable, and it followed directly from a theoretical assumption shared by almost all astronomers. This foundational assumption is that, at the macrocosmic scale, gravity reigns supreme. It is gravity that organizes galaxies and gives birth to their constituent stars. So if there is not enough visible mass to do the surprising things seen in space, then the only option is to add invisible mass to make the astronomers’ equations match observations.

Another “weird” and “invisible” influence that supposedly affects the motions of galaxies is “dark energy.” Discovered (or perhaps “invented”) in 1998 in response to anomalously low brightness of Type 1a supernovae in high-redshift galaxies, dark energy is believed to be a kind of cosmic antigravity. Its proponents say that its repulsive effect causes galaxies to fly apart at an ever-increasing speed – thus accelerating the supposed “expansion” of the Universe. But these claims depend on the astronomers’ interpretation of redshift as a reliable indicator of velocity in an expanding universe and therefore, distance. It also depends on a shaky theoretical understanding of Type 1a supernovae. (See Supernova 1987A Decoded) Today, that interpretation is challenged by a rapidly growing number of contradicting observations, causing scientists to look for alternative causes of redshift. (See The Picture That Won’t Go Away and Redshift Rosetta Stone

Under the pressure of unsolved enigmas, the current position of official astronomy is that only 4% of the universe is “visible” matter. The other 96%, is composed of dark matter and dark energy—all of which, by definition, is invisible. "The universe is made mostly of dark matter and dark energy," says Saul Perlmutter, leader of the Supernova Cosmology Project headquartered at Berkeley Lab, "and we don't know what either of them is."

But these mysterious, ubiquitous, and invisible inventions are only “necessary” because astronomers hold to a belief that is no longer tenable -- that electromagnetism plays no appreciable role in the organization of cosmic structure and powering of stars. Plasma cosmologists and proponents of the “Electric Universe” – who study the behavior of electrically powered plasma in the lab and in nature – insist that the astronomers’ belief is incorrect.

One of the great scientific “secrets” in modern times is that many of astronomy’s most fundamental mysteries find their resolution in plasma discharge behavior. On the pages of, this point has been enumerated in countless Pictures of the Day. For example, computer simulations have demonstrated that the motion of the spiral galaxy can be achieved through nothing other than interactions of electric currents in plasma. From the TPOD Plasma Galaxies:

“Plasma experiments show that rotation is a natural function of interacting electric currents in plasma. Currents can pinch matter together to form rotating stars and galaxies. A good example is the ubiquitous spiral galaxy, a predictable configuration of a cosmic-scale discharge. Computer models of two current filaments interacting in a plasma have, in fact, reproduced fine details of spiral galaxies, where the gravitational schools must rely on invisible matter arbitrarily placed wherever it is needed to make their models ‘work’.

“The photograph of spiral galaxy M81 above is one of the first images returned by NASA's new Spitzer space telescope, an instrument that can detect extremely faint waves of infrared radiation, or heat, through clouds of dust and plasma that have blocked the view of conventional telescopes. The result is the picture of striking clarity.

“Beneath this photograph we have placed snapshots from a computer simulation by plasma scientist Anthony Peratt, illustrating the evolution of galactic structures under the influence of electric currents. Through the ‘pinch effect’, parallel currents converge to produce spiraling structures.

“To see the connection between plasma experiments and plasma formations in space, it is essential to understand the scalability of plasma phenomena. Under similar conditions, plasma discharge will produce the same formations irrespective of the size of the event. The same basic patterns will be seen at laboratory, planetary, stellar, and galactic levels. Duration is proportional to size as well. A spark that lasts for microseconds in the laboratory may continue for years at planetary or stellar scales, or for millions of years at galactic or intergalactic scales.

“Plasma experiments, backed by computer simulations of plasma discharge, are changing the picture of space. Plasma scientists, for example, are able to replicate the evolution of galactic structures both experimentally and in computer simulations without recourse to a popular fiction of modern astrophysics--the black hole. Astronomers require invisible, super-compressed matter as the center of galaxies because without Black Holes gravitational equations cannot account for observed movement and compact energetic activity. But plasma discharge achieves such effects routinely.” (Full TPOD can be read here)

The low brightness of supernovae in highly redshifted galaxies is easy to explain, based upon Halton Arp's linking of high redshift and faintness of a galaxy to the youthfulness of a nearby galaxy. In an electric universe, a galactic circuit powers supernovae. In a new galaxy the driving potential is low, causing both the observed faintness and high intrinsic redshift. A supernova in such a galaxy will therefore have reduced power and brightness.

Nevertheless, official science continues to laud the great “progress” in its cosmic quest, a public relations act that exasperates scientists who have a much different interpretation to offer. Too often, “science by news release” resorts to self-congratulation and prizes for spurious “achievements.” An illustration is the $1 million Shaw Prize recently given to an astrophysicist and two of his colleagues for their “discovery” that dark energy is driving the theoretical expansion of the Universe. To call “dark matter” and “dark energy” DISCOVERIES is a violation of a long-cherished scientific principle, one calling for the rigorous separation of undisputed observation and theoretical conjecture.

A recent Knight-Ridder news report refers to dark matter as the “ghostly-glue” that keeps galaxies from flying apart. But scientists in increasing numbers are asking if astronomers have invoked the ghostly-glues of dark matter and dark energy to keep their THEORIES from flying apart. The most fundamental cosmological questions – How did the Universe begin? What is it made of? How does it work? – may remain unanswered until astronomers explore the role of electric currents in space. Until then official science may be doomed to an expensive and futile chase of theoretical ghosts.



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