Editors Note: The Bentham Open Astronomy Journal has now published a “Special Edition” with a focus on Plasma Cosmology. A peer-reviewed journal, its goal is to publish quality papers rapidly and to make them freely available to researchers worldwide. The following article by Thunderbolts Project principal Dave Smith offers an introduction to the plasma universe, emphasizing the essential role of electricity in the cosmos.
Due to the need to render many high-quality images to illustrate some of the points made and to maintain the flow of text in this paper, supplementary images are supplied and referenced thus: [Supplement x, Figure y]. High-resolution copies are posted online at http://www.plasmaresources.com/supplement1.html.
Our science and technology awareness and abilities have grown exponentially throughout the last century, and the trend continues into this, the 21 st. Tremendous amounts and newer types of data have been revealed due to our greatly enhanced ability to make observations. However, these newfound data have also brought to the attention of some, that many of the older and untestable scientific theories have, over time, quietly embedded themselves as scientific fact in our modern psyche. This has taken place to the point where these so-called ‘facts’ have been accepted and go unquestioned. One area of science where this is true is the study of how the universe works.
The Standard Model (of Cosmology) is the collective name given to the generally accepted explanation of the origin and current behavior of our Universe. It has at its heart the often quoted theory of ‘The Big Bang’ and is based upon Einstein’s theory of General Relativity. More recently, theorists have attempted to integrate the known forces in the universe. For many decades there have been significant challenges to the Standard Model. Some scientists either feel uncomfortable with an emphasis on mathematics at the expense of empirical evidence, or they know of alternate theories to account for much of what we observe, some of which offer simpler explanations than the Standard Model.
This paper is aimed at introducing readers to an alternative broadly known as the Plasma Universe or Plasma Cosmology, to examine some of the recent work of several theorists, and to highlight the importance of the role of plasma in space. It is deliberately broad in scope and sparse in detail to allow those from all disciplines to understand it without the need for dedicated training in any specific field, and to provoke questions that the inquisitive may wish to pursue further.
Plasma Cosmology is based on the work of Kristian Birkeland, Hannes Alfvén, Anthony Peratt and others, and requires an interdisciplinary approach. In particular the principles of plasma physics and electrical engineering are applied to astrophysics and cosmology, though there are other disciplines which may also be affected.
1.1. SETTING THE SCENE
Science is the art of taking a set of observations, proposing an explanatory structure of why and how those observations came about (hypothesis), and then rigorously testing that hypothesis to see if it comports with new observations. Hypotheses that repeatedly withstand such testing can be called theories. Where rigorous testing cannot be undertaken or new observations cannot be reconciled with the hypothesis, then what remains can only be described as a failed or falsified hypothesis – superficially plausible though it may seem. It is a fact that major “theories” of popular cosmology and its Standard Model have not been tested because they cannot be, so few if any actual facts or truths have been established. Continue reading …