New physics book challenges Einstein

Issue date: 03 May 2006

Researchers from the University of the West of England and Keele University have
published a book that challenges some of the long established and most cherished principles of physics.

The book, Immediate Distant Action and Correlation in Modern Physics: the Balanced Universe is a collection of contributions, by an international group of scholars, following a series of workshops held at the University of Wales, Swansea.

One of the authors, Professor Alan Winfield from UWE, explains, “Einstein's proposition that action at a distance cannot propagate faster than the speed of light has been held as a sacrosanct truth in the world of physics for almost a century. What this book explores is the possibility that Einstein was wrong. Indeed two of the book's contributors take an even more radical step by questioning Newton's first law of motion.”

This book follows a lifetime's work for N Vivian (Viv) Pope, Philosophy of Science graduate of the University of Wales and erstwhile visiting philosopher at CERN (the particle physics laboratory in Switzerland). While in his 20s, Viv wrote to Einstein questioning “how he knew that time was not the same everywhere”. Einstein replied and that letter inspired a 50 year odyssey.

Viv Pope continues, “At present, relativity theory and quantum physics are notoriously at odds. Relativity holds that nothing travels faster than light but quantum physics requires particles to interact instantaneously and reciprocally. The essays in this book explore the heretical proposition that instantaneous action at a distance is simply a fact of nature. In this way these writers seek to unify relativity and quantum theory”.

Author Anthony Osborne adds, “The chapters in this book cover the whole spectrum of physics from the quantum to the relativistic, from atoms to galaxies and from mechanics to electrodynamics.”

The three editors, N Vivian Pope, Honorary Research Associate of Keele University, Dr Anthony D Osborne, (also of Keele) and Professor Alan F T Winfield from UWE, have worked together to advance the debate on unmediated instantaneous action at a distance. The book is published by the Edwin Mellen Press. Professor Winfield continued, “Because the ideas of our book so radically challenge the accepted norms in Physics we were turned down by a number of establishment university publishers, so we are grateful to Edwin Mellen for their courage in agreeing to publish a book that many physicists consider heretical.”


Editor's notes

The book was officially launched, at UWE Bristol, on Thursday 19 January 2006.
The book is available from the Edwin Mellen press:

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