Questions tagged [aether]

Aether (or ether) relates to the material which supposedly fills the entire universe. It is a concept used to understand action at a distance. Aether was described by Huygens as an "omnipresent, perfectly elastic medium having zero density", to support his wave theory of light.

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Why didn't Michelson and Morley assume or conclude that aether is homogenous and permeate all of space?

In the Michelson-Morley experiment, why didn't they assume or conclude that ether is homogeneous and permeate all of space instead of coming from an unspecified source or direction dubbed the ether ...
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Speed of light in Michelson-Morley experiment

The (failed) goal of the Michelson-Morley experiment was to detect the motion of the Earth with respect to the hypothetical ether. As far as I understand (e.g. from the exposition in Feynman’s ...
MKO's user avatar
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Was the Michelson & Morely experiment ever valid? [closed]

One of the key predecessors to Einstein's Relativity was another theory having to do with an "Aether" material. This substance was supposed to be the substrate that the universe is built ...
david.cowan's user avatar
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What would happen if the aether did exist and there was no such thing as relativity? [closed]

I'm curious as to the purpose of relativity and why the universe would function this way as opposed to a universe with an aether. So what would be different if we had an aether?
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All Michelson-Morley experiments have only been done in non-inertial conditions. Does special relativity apply or not?

As far as I know not a single Michelson-Morley experiment has been done in non-inertial conditions. Shouldn't it be general relativity that applies to Michelson-Morley experiments done so far?
mmx_in_orbit's user avatar
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Space expansion and change of electromagnetic radiation wavelenght

The expansion of the universe acts to a photon ray equally as an expanded baloon on points drawn on it just increasing the distances between this differential photons so the integral photon looks like ...
Krešimir Bradvica's user avatar
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1 answer
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Help with understanding Einstein's thought experiment of the train [closed]

My understanding is that Einstein claimed that the aether model of light is inconsistent with the principle of relativity (that you cannot tell the difference between constant velocity and being ...
DM Miller's user avatar
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Why does light (supposedly) move diagonally in Michelson-Morley Experiment? [closed]

(Im specifically referring to this video at 12:30) In Michelson-Morley experiment, one light beam goes perpendicular to the velocity of earth, and other goes parallel to the velocity of earth. Im ...
Rohit Shekhawat's user avatar
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The medium of electromagnetic waves [closed]

I'm just wondering if anyone else has ever pondered the question: what medium do electromagnetic waves travel through? and like me remained unsatisfied with the explanation that they are 'non-...
blake janssen's user avatar
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Can transverse waves be both mechanical and non-mechanical?

Transverse waves need a medium for particles to propagate perpendicular to the wave right? Then how can transverse waves be non mechanical which do not require any medium?
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Why does the speed of Etherwind change? [closed]

I am currently reading texts on ether theory. Now I have a question regarding the aether wind, since it is not well explained in the books I have read. According to the theory, there must be a ...
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What is Space in Physics? [closed]

Is space a physical thing like matter? Is it a concrete thing or just an abstract concept?
Ajad Ali Mondal's user avatar
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Compatibility of the existence of ether and Galilean relativity [closed]

Why does the idea of ether contradict Galilean relativity? Consider for example what Coiller wrote in his book, A Most Incomprehensible Thing - Notes Towards a Very Gentle Introduction to the ...
GedankenExperimentalist's user avatar
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Why was there a need to create the ether when we knew the existance of magnetic fields? [closed]

I have been reading about 19th century physics and how it was believed that electromagnetic waves needed a medium in which they traveled at c, my question is why was it thought that the ether needed ...
Mario Melendez's user avatar
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What impetus would Einstein have had to believe the speed of light, of all things, should remain constant for all reference frames? [duplicate]

If I was in the 1900's, and had to choose between something as "obvious" as time and space behaving "normally" The speed of light staying constant in all reference frames I ...
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Logistics of Recreating the Michaelson-Morley Experiment

I want to recreate the Michaelson-Morley Experiment and am wondering how technically challenging it would be. I'm not looking for it to be super precise, just good enough to provide reasonable ...
Aryan Prasad's user avatar
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Is space-time made of something?

General relativity introduced to us "space-time curvature", and also told us that space can be warped, deformed or curved when mass is acting upon it. Mass has atoms and particles inside but ...
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How do gravitational waves propagate?

How do gravitational waves work like water waves? Spacetime isn't supposed to be a surface, it is solid, so how do gravitational waves propagate through it like transverse waves on the surface of ...
Moiz khokhar's user avatar
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What does light travel through or why it is independent of a medium? [duplicate]

According to my research and understanding I cant get over the fact that light needs no media to travel, or is it scientifically or mathematically proven?
Ar1njay's user avatar
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If the EM field is a self-propagating field that doesn't need a media why should space expansion make any changes to its wavelength?

If the EM field is a self-propagating field that doesn't need a media why should space expansion make any changes to its wavelength? If it makes changes to the photons wavelength should it be ...
Krešimir Bradvica's user avatar
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Where/ how does light propagate? [duplicate]

The Michelson–Morley experiment proved there is no aether, but we (used to) know that a wave needs a medium in order to propagate. Einstein showed the invariance of speed but assigned no properties to ...
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Explanation for invariance of $c$ / Lorentz transformations? [closed]

First of all, I want to make it clear that I'm not proposing here that I have "discovered" something(I'm just trying to save myself here from accusations about being a relativity denier or ...
Michael Mitsopoulos's user avatar
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Doesn't Lorentz transformation disprove aether?

I am struggling to understand the reason behind why lorentz still believe in the aether theory after developing his transformation. The aether frame is the frame by which all velocities should be ...
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Why does the universality of the speed of light prove there is no ether?

So I definitely don’t think there is an ether for starters. I am reading electrodynamics by Griffith and he states that Einstein’s second postulate which says “The speed of light in vacuum is the same ...
JosephSanders's user avatar
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If gravity can only change light wavelength why does then the event horizon not emit light atleast with redshift?

If gravity can only change light wavelength and not velocity why does then the event horizon not emit light at all? If the light does not move away from the EH could we talk about presence of dynamic ...
Krešimir Bradvica's user avatar
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3 answers
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Propagation of gravitational waves

The mechanical waves requires medium to travel . The electromagnetic waves can travel without matter medium with the help of fields . But how do other types of waves , that don't come in either ...
Abbas's user avatar
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Is Michelson-Morley experiment useless? [closed]

Do you agree that any experiment with two-way there-and-back journeys will never show any discrepancy? Aren't all differences going to be counterbalanced, levelled in the journey back?.
user157860's user avatar
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${}$ Regarding Michelson-Morley Experiment [closed]

Why the Michelson-Morley experiment was rotated by 90 degree. $$Δt = (2/c)(l1-l2) + (2v²/c³)(l1-{l2/2})$$ The above expression is the time difference before the rotation. Then why there is the need of ...
Amrit Sagar Kar's user avatar
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2 answers
161 views

Quantum theory - How a particle functions as a wave without a medium? [closed]

I would love to understand, what does it mean that each particle also functions like a wave, after all even when sending a single particle it creates an indentation. How does a single particle in ...
ABE's user avatar
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What is the correct explanation of the null result of Michelson-Morley experiment?

Does the null result of the Michelson-Morley experiment rule out the existence of the ether medium? My understanding is that if instead of Galilean transformation, we use Lorentz transformation (i.e. ...
Solidification's user avatar
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Is space build of smaller space-particles?

In atomic physics one of the most decisive proves that the objects are build of atoms is that they can be deformed and twisted. So is it not logical to believe that space itself is also build of ...
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LIGO's upper-bound on the Michelson-Morley null result?

LIGO is essentially a Michelson-Morley experiment. What is its measured upper-bound on the fringe shift? The most recent Michel-Morley experiment "Michelson–Morley experiment#Subsequent ...
Geremia's user avatar
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Why don't the returning beams split a second time when they hit the half reflecting mirror in Michelson-Morley Experiment?

I understand the role of interference pattern in Michelson Morley experiment.I have just watched three videos, they all pretty much explain the set up in the same fashion. But none actually mentions ...
Kafi Kfishna's user avatar
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2 answers
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Einstein's return to aether

So it seems like that Einstein returned to the concept of aether, but from the point of view of a general relativistic framework. https://mathshistory.st-andrews.ac.uk/Extras/Einstein_ether/ This is ...
bedabrata-choudhury's user avatar
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What is Ether theory? (I think the book I had read is giving wrong explanation of Ether)

I was reading about Ether, Maxwell and Young-double-slit experiment. I got a question about Ether law. Let me say what I read about Ether Law. Suppose, a boat is traveling with Adverse of Water flow. ...
Unknown's user avatar
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3 answers
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Can we think of space as any kind of aether in any way? [duplicate]

I am not asking about the Michelson-Morley experiment in any way. I am specifically asking, if space (including the fields that QFT describes) itself can be thought of as any kind of aether that ...
Árpád Szendrei's user avatar
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1 answer
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Why does the derivation for the Michelson & Morley time difference assume Earth moves in only one direction relative to the Aether?

In the Michelson and Morley experiment, we predict with Galilean relativity and the assumption of the existence of a luminiferous aether that there should be a time difference between the two beams of ...
physBa's user avatar
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Since neutrinos have mass, is there a neutrino aether that could be detected by a Michelson-Morley experiment?

If there are trillions of neutrinos per second passing through my body each second, would this density of particles qualify as a neutrino aether? If so, it seems in principle that an interference-...
Incredible II's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
699 views

Is there any difference between ether and EM field?

I want to ask about a specific aspect; do we move relative to the EM field? Can we design an experiment similar to the Michaelson Morley experiment to measure our velocity relative to the EM field? If ...
Nitish Mandal's user avatar
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1 answer
234 views

If there is no ether what is the medium in which waves, pulses travel around the universe? [duplicate]

What is aether (ether) actually? Is it space-time fabric curve or is it anti-matter? If not this what is it then, does it exist? Why is the concept disregarded after Einstein's theory of Relativity? ...
DASH_quanta's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
160 views

What is the phemonemon behind electromagnetic waves being able to propagate in the vacuum?

I'm recently picking up interest about some aspects of physics, I never really studied physics apart from some basics and I'm having trouble finding a good course explaining the theorical approach ...
Jos B's user avatar
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1 answer
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How is matter different from space?

Scientists used to think that light requires a medium to travel, and it is aether. Then they conclude that there's no aether. Later quantum physics found that space is not empty, it's a thing. (i.e. ...
Yuht.D's user avatar
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Why light was said to be faster than electromagnetic changes in ether?

According to Wikipedia on the historical development of the Lorentz ether theory: ... Contrary to Clausius, who accepted that the electrons operate by actions at a distance, the electromagnetic field ...
Anas Khaled's user avatar
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Is General Relativity (GR) compatible with the expanding Earth hypothesis? [closed]

There is a lot of convincing evidence that the Earth and all the other planets and their moons are expanding with time. Prof. Samuel Warren Carey's summary of the evidence: https://www.youtube.com/...
Engr. Ravi's user avatar
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3 answers
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Isn't dark matter just another fancy name and explanation for aether? [closed]

I always get crucified by this, but it is something that has intrigued me for a lot of time, before Michelson Moorley and Einstein there was this idea that there was an invisible "substance" ...
S.s.'s user avatar
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Why is it said that light can travel through empty space?

Here are a few commonly heard sentences that will make my question clear: Statements #1 “The Michelson Morley experiment once and for all did away with the ether or the idea that light needs a medium ...
Lambda's user avatar
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4 votes
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In what medium do Gravitational waves propagate?

I am having a hard time understanding how gravitational waves move. The only reasonable thing that comes to my mind would be the aether but that idea was scrapped.
Struggling_Student's user avatar
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1 answer
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What Did the Michelson-Morley Experiment Say about the Speed of Light? [closed]

In the quotation below, does Banesh Hoffmann, Einstein's collaborator, admit that originally ("without recourse to contracting lengths, local time, or Lorentz transformations") the Michelson-...
Pentcho Valev's user avatar
3 votes
4 answers
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Who discovered the speed of light is constant?

As we know that Michelson & Morley's experiment was not able to detect any effect of Aether on the motion of light, but if we follow the classic mechanism of law of motions as peoples do at that ...
I am the hope of the Universe's user avatar
2 votes
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Spacetime as a medium for electromagnetic waves? [closed]

We typically break waves into two separate types mechanical waves and electromagnetic waves and treat them entirely differently based primarily on the observation that electromagnetic waves don't ...
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