Internal structure of the electrostatic force?

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Grurgle-the-Grey
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Internal structure of the electrostatic force?

Post by Grurgle-the-Grey »

I hope this is the right place to mention this.
We are taught that the strong force overwhelms the electrostatic force by a critical amount. were it a smidgeon less then the universe would be entirely hydrogen, a smidgeon more and the universe would have burnt out yonks ago leaving lumps of an element higher than iron.
But what Rutherford actually was working from was a lab result that showed the non inverse square behaviour of the electrostatic force as r -> 0.
Actually this is to be expected since the electrostatic force couldn't be inverse square all the way to a singularity.
So the strong force is really just the internal structure of the electrostatic force?

Nik
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When is a point not a point...

Post by Nik »

Don't forget that a proton is a prial of charged quarks, and an electron is 'distributed'.

Get close enough, the apparent point-source resolves to something more complex...

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

i've always been under the impression that an electron has no internal structure. as far as we can measure. and that it really is singular at r=0.

presumably for causality to be preserved in a feymann diagram where a photon becomes an electron and an positron, the electron and positron must attract and then annihalite into a photon wihtout an energy barrier. having internal structure would seem to violate this.

from my understanding as far as we know, an electron has no internal structure. i'm not aware of any experiments that you seem to imply.

kunkmiester
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Post by kunkmiester »

Aren't electrons supposed to be made of leptons, or something like that?
Evil is evil, no matter how small

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

kunkmiester wrote:Aren't electrons supposed to be made of leptons, or something like that?
no. a lepton is a category of elementary particle. electrons are fermions i.e. spin 1/2. they're called fermions because they obey "fermi-dirac statistics", whatever that means. likewise "bosons" are "bosons" because they obey "bose-einstein statistics". don't know what a lepton is.

EDIT: ah, just looked at the standard model chart. fermions (spin 1/2) are the "matter" and bosons are the "forces" (spin 1). an electron is a fermion and a lepton. the other fermion/leptons are the muon and the tau, which are just heavier versions of the electron, and their corresponding neutrinos, and the antiparticles of each.
Last edited by happyjack27 on Wed Jan 05, 2011 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

as for as QED is concerned, all neccessary info about an electron is contained in its quantum numbers: charge, mass, spin, and strangeness. and i'm not aware of any experiments that reveal any more detail or has any disagreement with this theory. if anyone knows of any, you have my ear!

Grurgle-the-Grey
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Post by Grurgle-the-Grey »

Hmm, didn't know strangeness applied to leptons.
Presumably a neutrino has strangeness to balance neutron decay? Or weak force interactions don't play?
Another thought I'd like to hear discussed is concerning neutrinos.
We know they're fermions so presumably they nod to Pauli's Principle, but with neglible mass/charge nothing else we know really affects them.
So presumably their wave-functions keep expanding till Pauli interferes on a scale of the Universe itself.
Shouldn't the Universe have a Fermi level of neutrinos??
Shouldn't there be a 1/2 wavelength standing wave-function spanning the whole Universe for the very lowest energy neutrino??
Should the Expansion of the Universe be seen as the condensation of fermionic neutrinos from their bosonic counterpart as the energy density of the Big Bang dropped??
(Not too serious with the last 2, though I can't immediately see why not)

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

Grurgle-the-Grey wrote:Hmm, didn't know strangeness applied to leptons.
Presumably a neutrino has strangeness to balance neutron decay? Or weak force interactions don't play?
Another thought I'd like to hear discussed is concerning neutrinos.
We know they're fermions so presumably they nod to Pauli's Principle, but with neglible mass/charge nothing else we know really affects them.
So presumably their wave-functions keep expanding till Pauli interferes on a scale of the Universe itself.
Shouldn't the Universe have a Fermi level of neutrinos??
Shouldn't there be a 1/2 wavelength standing wave-function spanning the whole Universe for the very lowest energy neutrino??
Should the Expansion of the Universe be seen as the condensation of fermionic neutrinos from their bosonic counterpart as the energy density of the Big Bang dropped??
(Not too serious with the last 2, though I can't immediately see why not)
the weak nuclear force affects them. through it they're coupled to their electron counterparts, as well as quarks.

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

Grurgle-the-Grey wrote:Hmm, didn't know strangeness applied to leptons.
it "applies" it just may be "0". i just meant to say that every particle in the standard model (leptons, quarks, and bosons) is uniquely identified by its quantum numbers. ....not all of which we know. (i speak particularly here of mass)

Nik
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Uncertainty principle...

Post by Nik »

Sorry, I meant the 'Uncertainty Principle' for electron...

Grurgle-the-Grey
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Post by Grurgle-the-Grey »

Ok, but is there a lowest energy neutrino with a wavelength twice the width of the Universe. If not what top limits the size of a neutrino's wave-function?

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

Grurgle-the-Grey wrote:Ok, but is there a lowest energy neutrino with a wavelength twice the width of the Universe. If not what top limits the size of a neutrino's wave-function?
that i don't know.

good question.

jarek
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Post by jarek »

I completely agree that we shouldn't just ignore the problem of 'gluing' electric field toward the center of e.g. electron:
- because of singularity, the interaction cannot be just pure electromagnetism - it has to deform (e.g. into weak/strong interaction),
- if field in vacuum would enforce that charge(/spin) inside a region can obtain only integer values (like for topological charge), particles could be just such stable field configurations themselves (solitons).

There are some models searching for field configurations of e.g. electron, like 'Penrose twistors', or just as solitons guarded by topological constrains like charge or spin.
One such approach is of prof. Faber (paper) - there is a field of directions: a point from 2D sphere in each point of spacetime, which is equator of 3D sphere, but going out costs energy (potential term).
So the simplest topologically nontrivial configuration is hedgehog (we cannot have fractional charges) - but to avoid topological conflict, it has to get out of the equator (2D sphere) in the center of electron, toward one of 2 poles of 3D sphere (choosing spin) - it gives electron rest energy, which through Lorentz invariance became also inertial mass. Vacuum dynamics of this field occurs to recreate electromagnetism on effective level.
This simple model doesn't leave place for e.g. internal clock of particles required for their wave nature and can only model single electron - the perfect situation would be having a single field, which family of topological solitons correspond with our particle menagerie and their dynamics - it seems it can be obtained by just adding auxiliary axes perpendicular to Faber's main axis and make deformations less abstract, getting quite promising ellipsoid field - here are pictures.

Nik
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Electron is surprisingly round...

Post by Nik »

Slightly OT:

http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-05-ele ... -year.html

(PhysOrg.com) -- Scientists at Imperial College London have made the most accurate measurement yet of the shape of the humble electron, finding that it is almost a perfect sphere, in a study published in the journal Nature today.

:o

happyjack27
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Post by happyjack27 »

as far as is known, an electron has no internal structure, no volume, and is its charge distribution is perfectly spherical. as was mentioned above, quantum uncertainty about its position prevents the singular nature of the 1/r^2 electromagnetic force - as well as gravitational force (for as far as we know an electron is a massive point-particle) - from acting like a black hole. and besides, when you're at scales where quantum uncertainty dominates, "internal structure" starts to lose its meaning, as now you're looking at phenomena dominated by quantum interference.

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