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Tags Alfven waves , Birkeland currents , hannes alfven , Kristian Birkeland

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Old 10th December 2011, 05:51 PM   #6121
Tim Thompson
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Lightbulb Magnetic Reconnection In Vacuo VIII

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Tim, that last reference by Priest was ALL ABOUT THE PHOTOSPHERE AND CORONA. They didn't even draw full loops ANYWHERE, and the whole thing is based on plasma movements in the photosphere! Whatever code they use *MUST* involve MHD theory.
Reference Priest & Schrijver, 1999.

As usual, you are wrong. The simulation places magnetically polarized sources on an electrically conducting surface. The surface is surrounded by a vacuum. The magnetic fields from the sources extend into the vacuum. As the sources move on the surface, the magnetic field lines necessarily move through the vacuum to follow the motion of the sources. As the sources move, the magnetic fields merge and reconnect, as shown in the video and as diagrammed in figures 12 through 14 of the paper. They do not use MHD. They do not need to use MHD. The magnetic field lines are in a vacuum, they reconnect in a vacuum. There is no plasma in the vacuum. What part of the word vacuum did you fail to understand?

To this Mozina responds in post 6111 by selecting out a few key words of his own to rationalize his selective interpretation of the paper. Herein I will refute Mozina's sloppy attempt to refute me.

The following are the three paragraphs that make up the full test of section 5 ("Toy Model for Vacuum Reconnection"), pages 17-19 in the paper Aspects of Three-Dimensional Magnetic Reconnection; E.R. Priest & C.J. Schrijver; Solar Physics 190(1/2): 1-24, December 1999. I reproduce the test only, but the paper (PDF) including the referenced figures, as well as the CD-ROM contents (99.2 MBytes zip archive) can be accessed from the paper's webpage at Solar Physics ( http://www.springerlink.com/content/.../fulltext.html ). All emphasis (e.g., italics) is found in the original, except the bold face paragraph title, which is mine.

Paragraph 1
"We have constructed a toy model for vacuum reconnection driven by the motion of photospheric sources and have presented the results in the accompanying CD-ROM. We calculate the potential magnetic field due to two, three or four sources in the solar surface and then extend it to a many-source case in which the surrounding fields generally limit the motions of the field lines in response to the footpoint motions to much smaller amplitudes than in the few-source case. The sources are slowly moved around and we assume that the field remains potential. Although this is an oversimplified model, the resulting motion of the field lines is instructive and it is a useful preliminary for the resistive MHD numerical model that we are planning to undertake."
This is the paragraph that sets the stage, so to speak. See the very first sentence: "We have constructed a toy model for vacuum reconnection driven by the motion of photospheric sources ..." This should be clear enough for anybody, but evidently not Mozina. What is there to say but this: vacuum reconnection is reconnection that takes place, strangely enough, in a vacuum. Indeed, look at the title for the section, "Toy Model for Vacuum Reconnection". Could the authors have been more clear? Yet, Mozina continues to stubbornly foist upon us the fairy tale that this is all MHD, all really currents reconnecting in a plasma, despite explicit language from the authors to the contrary. And pay attention to the part about "driven by the motion of photospheric sources". That does not mean that the photosphere is at all involved in this process, it means that the motions of the sources that drive the vacuum reconnection are chosen to match the observed motions of photospheric sources. This is no great surprise, since the eventual goal is to study magnetic reconnection in the solar corona. This is all reinforced by the comment about footpoint motions; same thing, the motions of the sources match the motions observed for real solar footpoints. Nowhere can we find any evidence, any language, any indication at all that the magnetic reconnection takes place anywhere except a vacuum, as explicitly indicated in the text.

The only mention of MHD is a plan to create a resistive-MHD model in the future. This is not an unimportant point. As is well known, all forms of magnetic field line reconnection in a plasma are possible only in the realm of resistive MHD. Magnetic field line reconnection in a plasma is not physically possible in the realm of ideal MHD. If the authors are already using MHD, then it must be only resistive MHD, but then why would they say they have not done that yet and plan to do so in the future? This only serves to reinforce the obvious point: in this study the magnetic field line reconnection all happens in a vacuum, just like the authors said it did.

Magnetic field line reconnection in a vacuum is easy, just solve Maxwell's equations, no plasma complications required. But it is also boring because it does not do anything remotely interesting, except perhaps allow cute animations. However, magnetic field line reconnection in a plasma can get really exciting. So what the authors have done here is model magnetic field line reconnection in a vacuum (which is what they said they were doing, and I assume the authors actually do know what they did), as a preliminary exercise, just to see how the field lines behave, as a benchmark for later, resistive MHD studies of magnetic field line reconnection in a plasma. In the absence of seriously complicating issues, the reconnection of magnetic field lines in a plasma should look similar to reconnection in a vacuum

Paragraph 2
"First of all, we consider a simple model of binary reconnection due to the motion of two sources (Figure 14(a)). The right-hand source is the larger and it performs an orbit around the other source, during which we keep the directions constant of most of the field lines from the larger source. The way in which the field lines reconnect by changing from being open to closed and back to open can be seen clearly. (Of course, if the field lines are potential, we cannot prescribe both footpoints of a field line as the sources move around, so the choice of which field line directions at the source to keep fixed is entirely arbitrary.) Then we added a third (Figure 14(b)) and a fourth (Figure 14(c)) source and as the sources move slowly around, a rapid counter-flipping of the field lines can be seen due to fan reconnection or separator reconnection. The flipping occurs as they reconnect and move close to the separatrix surface."
Having set the stage in the first paragraph, here we find the description of what is really happening. Notice the comments, "The way in which the field lines reconnect by changing from being open to closed and back to open can be seen clearly"; "a rapid counter-flipping of the field lines"; "The flipping occurs as they reconnect and move close to the separatrix surface." In all cases field lines do the reconnecting. Not "field aligned currents", just "field lines". Now I think it is safe to assume that Priest & Schrijver both know what a field line is, what a field aligned current is, and how to tell the difference between them, especially in their own simulation. Furthermore, as already established above, we have magnetic field lines reconnecting in a vacuum.

Paragraph 3
"These simple experiments demonstrate a fundamental property of magnetic fields in association with magnetic reconnection: for reconnection that occurs on scales comparable to or larger than the characteristic separation of the magnetic poles (i.e., excluding the reconnection associated with small-scale footpoint motion resulting in what is generally described as field-line braiding), there are motions of pairs of field lines towards and later away from the reconnection site. In the simple simulations shown in Movie I on the CD-ROM, vacuum reconnection occurs through null points as field lines move through separators (the intersections of separatrix surfaces) whenever two pairs of field-line segments exchange connectivity at the reconnection location. The simulations suggest that most of the time field lines move through the coronal volume in response to source motions with speeds comparable in magnitude to that of the footpoints themselves. Just prior to reconnection, however, field lines approach the separator and slide past it often with a substantially increased speed. That speed decreases again after reconnection as the (new) field lines move away from the separatrix surface in their new domain of source connectivity. The potential-field simulations of the quiet-sun corona (i.e., in a mixed-polarity region) suggest that the velocities just prior to and just after reconnection could easily be an order of magnitude larger than the source speeds (to be confirmed by resistive-MHD simulations). In an active region, the velocities are generally much smaller because of the many surrounding sources of like polarity (as in the last segment of Movie I), but, in favorable conditions, substantial velocities can be expected there too."
The simulation was introduced in the first paragraph and described in the second. Now, in the third paragraph, the authors discuss the implications and ramifications of the study. Notice again in this paragraph that the authors are explicit about the reconnection of magnetic field lines specifically. References to the corona are not associated with the simulation, but rather with the discussion of its implications. In the case, for instance, of magnetic reconnection in the solar corona, one would expect the field lines to move with a speed & pattern similar to that revealed by the vacuum reconnection study. In particular, see the remark, "The simulations suggest that most of the time field lines move through the coronal volume in response to source motions with speeds comparable in magnitude to that of the footpoints themselves." Here the specific reference is to the coronal volume, not to the corona itself, and the difference is important. Later on there are specific references to simulations of the quiet corona, but those are of course independent from the vacuum study done here.

My conclusion is simple enough. Mozina does not know how to read a science paper. There certainly is a great deal of evidence already in hand that he cannot read or understand the equations found in plasma physics & electromagnetism. This is evidence that he cannot read the English either. Remember, technical & scientific research papers are not directed towards a general readership. Rather, they are the means by which professionals communicate with other professionals; sometimes in the form of a general review intended to inform non-specialists, sometimes in detailed studies intended for specialists (the Priest & Schrijver paper is one of the general review type). Aside from a liberal dose of usually unspectacular mathematics (meaning it's pretty basic stuff even if it looks extreme to outsiders), there is also a fairly dense & precise language (exclusively English now in all of the "major" journals). In order to follow the papers one must be able to read both the mathematics and the English, and both occur in the form of jargon, language as precise as possible to cut down on confusion (for the intended readership, not for the outsider or neophyte).

I see nothing confusing about the language here, and I don't fancy supplementing my math & science lessons to Mozina with English-101 to boot. What we see is Mozina "cherry picking" his favorite disembodied words and trying to rationalize an irrational interpretation of a paper that he otherwise cannot read. No language works that way. No language allows you to pick out key words, without context, and know thereby, everything you need to know. And "context' does not mean the two or three words nearby. It means the whole sentence, the whole paragraph, or more (what does this sentence mean: "Flying planes can be dangerous.").

The truth is that Priest & Schrijver are explicit and clear about two major points: (1) The reconnection is being done by magnetic field lines and not by field aligned currents, and (2) the reconnection of magnetic field lines does happen in a vacuum. Mozina has been reduced to clutching desperate linguistic straws to avoid these conclusions and so has found a way to rationalize and pretend that the authors are actually saying things they are not saying. Really, he is trying to do the same thing to Priest & Schrijver that he has already done to Dungey.

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Get over it, and admit already that electrical discharges occur in plasmas and flares and Dungey claimed! You can't use only 1/2 his work and ignore the other half *ENTIRELY*.

Does your admonition to others not apply equally to yourself?

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Dungey's paper discussed *ELECTRICAL DISCHARGES* in PLASMA.

Dungey's paper (and Dungey himself one might assume) also explicitly identify the source of energy for the electrical discharges as the reconnection of the lines of force of the magnetic field. See below:

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
See The Neutral Point Discharge Theory of Solar Flares. a Reply to Cowling's Criticism, J.W. Dungey, 1958 (this is the paper that Mozina's "Dungey" comment above refers to).

"Certain other features of flares may be accounted for by the bulk motion resulting from a discharge at a neutral point. The effect of the discharge is to 'reconnect' the lines of force at the neutral point, and this happens quickly. The 'reconnection' upsets the mechanical equilibrium in the neighborhood in a way that can be visualized, if the lines of force are seen as strings. Then the mechanical disturbance will spread from the neutral point and may have energy comparable to the energy of the spot field in the solar atmosphere."
Dungey, 1958, page 139

So, did Dungey correctly identify the energy source or not?

Sure, but his "lines of force" were in the form of charged particles flowing up through the Z axis Tim. They weren't massless, simple B lines.

OK, now I have to understand this more clearly ...
Did Dungey say "lines of force" but actually mean something else?
Was Dungey unable to tell the difference between "lines of force" and "lines of current"?

You see, what's going on here is that Dungey is quite explicit in the words he uses, "lines of force", but you have decided to substitute other words in their place. Why should we trust you and your words, instead of simply taking Dungey's own words at face value, and assume that Dungey actually said what he intended to say?

You work hard to make hay out of the fact that it was Dungey who used the words "electric discharge".

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
The claim that Dungey actually meant anything other than an electrical discharge when he said electrical discharge, having been demonstrated unsupportable, has been rejected. Denial won't save you.

Does your admonition to others not apply equally to you? You are adamant that Dungey meant "electrical discharge" when he said "electrical discharge". So why do you refuse to believe that when Dungey said "The effect of the discharge is to 'reconnect' the lines of force at the neutral point, and this happens quickly." that he also meant what he said in this case as well?

To this Mozina responded ...

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
But those "lines of force" are NOT simple magnetic lines Tim! He's talking about an ELECTRICAL DISCHARGE process from the neutral to the X,Y axis. Those LINES OF FORCE from the neutral to the X,Y axis are in the form of CURRENT, and the source and sink of the kinetic energy of the discharge are the E fields, not Origin the great NULL, the great NOTHING, the great FRAUD!

It's the same desperate clutching at the same desperate straws. Dungey said "lines of force", but we can trust Mozina that Dungey didn't really mean it.

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Why do you think that you know more about plasma physics than all of the physicists and engineers involved in the magnetic reconnection experiments that you summarily rejected?
Why do you think that you know more about plasma physics than Priest, Schrijver, Yamada, Kulrsrud and Ji?
Why do you think that you know more about plasma physics than Dungey?
I don't know more than they do.

Well, you sure have a funny way of showing it. You insist that Dungey can't tell the difference between a "line of force" and an electrical current; you insist that Priest & Schrijver really mean "plasma" when they say "vacuum", and you insist that all of the experimenters (e.g., Gekelman, Lawrence, Yamada, Ji & etc.; Comments on magnetic reconnection, 13 Feb 2009; Comments on magnetic reconnection III, 9 Mar 2010) cannot understand their own experiments, foolishly assigning the reconnection to magnetic field lines instead of filed aligned currents. Priest & Forbes are explicit with hundreds of pages of detailed description of the topological reconnection of magnetic field lines (Magnetic Reconnection: MHD Theory and Applications, Eric Priest & Terry Forbes; Cambridge University Press, 2000). Likewise, Paul Bellan spends a whole chapter on the reconnection of magnetic field lines (not field aligned currents; Fundamentals of Plasma Physics, Paul M. Bellan; Cambridge University Press, 2006). And many more. But you insist that all of them, each, and every one of them, is dead wrong. You do in fact explicitly insist that you know more about plasma physics and electromagnetism than they do, and your insistence is laced with accusations of deceit & fraud against anyone who dares to agree with them.

So, when you say, "I don't know more than they do", how is anyone supposed to believe you say that with a straight face? Why would anyone believe this is a truthful self-portrait, when you fall all over yourself insisting to the contrary, every single day?

If you really believe that Dungey knows more than you do, about plasma physics, then why don't you believe Dungey when he says that lines of force reconnect?
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Old 11th December 2011, 05:36 PM   #6122
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Lets go through again that according to his description, CURRENTS exist in SOMOV's experiment. Nobody here doubts that CURRENTS can "reconnect".
Everyone here (except you) know that Somov's experiment does not exist because he does not have an experiment. He has an example of MR in a vacuum.
Of course no one doubts that currents exist in Somov's example. We can read English. We can read where he states that there are two parallel electric currents in his example.
Of course no one doubts that CURRENTS can connect. Every one knows what happens when you connect two wires together .

Only an idiot would say that current connect or reconenct in Somov's example because he states that they are 2 parallel electric currents.

Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section VI

Last edited by Reality Check; 11th December 2011 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 11th December 2011, 05:46 PM   #6123
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Originally Posted by Humanzee View Post
Just so I am clear....

This would be a sink;
<A href="http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/vbimghost.php?do=displayimg&imgid=24749" rel="nofollow" target=_blank>http://www.internationalskeptics.com...2bbf88d83e.jpg

This would be a monopole;
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...2bc3bd56c6.jpg

And this is what was shown in WD Clingers presentation;
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...2bc6f45f5c.jpg

Doesn't look like a sink or a monopole to me. Have I gotten it all wrong?
That is correct - it is not a sink or a monopole since it has an equal number of field lines entering and exiting it.
Thus it is obvious that this situation obeys Gauss's law for magnetism - draw any closed curve and the flux through that curve must be zero (equal number of field lines entering and exiting the curve).
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Old 11th December 2011, 05:55 PM   #6124
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
All you're doing RC is adding things to your own personal "denial-go-round". Deny that electrical discharges occur in plasmas and flares all you like, but you can't change the fact that Dungey called it an ELECTRICAL DISCHARGE.
You are lying.
From Michael Mozina's delusion about electrical discharges in plasma.
Dungey's obsolete usage
  1. Dungey's and Peratt's definition of discharge are different.
    13th January 2011 (11 months and counting )
  2. Dungey's 'electric discharge' = high current density in magnetic reconnection
    18th October 2011
  3. MM: Citing Dungey means that cause of solar flares is magnetic reconnection!
    8th November 2011
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Deny the fact that B lines *DO NOT* begin or end all you like, but they do not.
You remain ignorant: MM: The definition of magnetic field lines = no lines at a neutral point II
MM: 1000's of references for MR = field lines breaking and reconnecting III that include MR in vacuum.

[quote=Michael Mozina;7828614]Deny the fact that plasma is not optional in the ELECTRICAL DISCHARGE PROCESS known as 'magnetic reconnection', but it's not optional.
You remain deluded: Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section VI

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Deny the fact that "currents" are non-neutral plasmas if you like, but those currents are plasmas.
That is insanley wrong because currents in wires are not non-neutral plasmas !
Unless this is just Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section VI
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Old 12th December 2011, 04:57 PM   #6125
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Mr. Mozina is enjoying the restful and rejuvenating benefits of a *suspension* from the JREF forum.
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Old 12th December 2011, 07:01 PM   #6126
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Originally Posted by Perpetual Student View Post
Mr. Mozina is enjoying the restful and rejuvenating benefits of a *suspension* from the JREF forum.
Suspended for 2 months on 9 December, last Friday. I wondered what might fuel an uncharacteristic silence. Can't say I am surprised. That means he won't be back until February.
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Old 13th December 2011, 12:03 AM   #6127
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Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Suspended for 2 months on 9 December, last Friday. I wondered what might fuel an uncharacteristic silence. Can't say I am surprised. That means he won't be back until February.
Perhaps in two months he might learn enough mathematics and physics to see the error of his ways.
But, then again -- maybe not!
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Old 13th December 2011, 02:39 AM   #6128
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I'm actually amazed he's lasted this long.
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Old 13th December 2011, 02:30 PM   #6129
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Smile Happy Birthday Birkeland

I note in passing that today marks the 144th birthday of Kristian Birkeland. Despite being somewhat misunderstood by Mozina, he was nevertheless a figure of significance in the history of space physics & geomagnetism. He was, as far as I know, the first to propose the true nature of the aurora borealis, and the first to propose the flow of electric current from the sun to Earth.
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Old 13th December 2011, 03:34 PM   #6130
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Originally Posted by Humanzee View Post
Just so I am clear....

This would be a sink;

This would be a monopole;

And this is what was shown in WD Clingers presentation;

Doesn't look like a sink or a monopole to me. Have I gotten it all wrong?
It looks so different when someone actually learns from the real science presented in the thread.
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Old 16th December 2011, 01:56 PM   #6131
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There are many reasons why MM's posts, and the underlying approach he seems to be taking to the subject, are not science (or at least physics) as we know it today.

Several folk who've posted here - and in other threads on the topic in this forum - have explained, described, analyzed, etc one aspect or another of the gap between MM's apparent basic approach and the foundations of contemporary physics.

However, I think one feature of MM's approach has received little discussion or examination; namely, his contention that it is possible to discuss 'how the universe works' (to create a shorthand) without mathematics. There are many, many examples of MM taking this stance; one that springs immediately to mind is his (apparently to him) observation that putting a 9v battery on one's tongue and feeling the tingling is an iron-clad proof of the existence of electromagnetism*.

Now the extreme disconnect is not that one cannot demonstrate that the tingling feeling is a consequence - at some level - of electromagnetism (it may, or may not, be easy to provide such an explanation); rather it is that MM does not realize that no demonstration of this kind exists without 'the math'!

Put another way: there is no way to show that there is, in nature/the universe, something we can call 'electromagnetism' without the use of math^. And, in physics at least, it has been like this since the time of Galileo and Newton.

Note that is more fundamental than saying that mathematics is the language of physics; it is saying that none - let me repeat that NONE - of the core concepts used in physics today have meaning if you remove the math completely.

FWIW, I'd guess that a great many (but certainly not all) EU proponents have a similar world-view to MM's (whether they are fully aware of it or not), in thinking that the core concepts they hold so dear can be accepted without any math, at any stage, whatsoever.

To be clear: math, in some form or in some way, is necessary in order to be able to hold a meaningful discussion of any aspect of modern physics. This does NOT mean that it's math, wholly math, nothing but math, (so help me Gauss)! Think necessary, but not sufficient.

* I really don't care to search for his several (many?) posts on this; if I have grossly mis-remembered, I'd appreciate being corrected
^ I'd love to see a concrete, self-consistent counter-example!

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Old 17th December 2011, 05:52 PM   #6132
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As I have said before math is simply a language, though more structured and rigorous than most others. I think a lot of these ‘no math’ types turn to natural langue instead because it is comfortable and just feels more intuitive without perhaps understanding the lack of needed structure and rigor that is inherent (though perhaps in some cases some actually count on that lack of structure and rigor). We can see this exemplified in Michael Mozina’s attempts to redefine magnetic reconnection as some kind of sudden release of energy (discharge as he puts it) that involves plasma. Basically because in all the papers he tries to read (not understanding the language of math) that’s what they talk about seemingly in the natural language he can try to make some semblance of sense from.

As you note, DeiRenDopa, it is more fundamental than just that language aspect, physics is a science and science is (among other things) quantitative. Remove the math and you have removed that quantitative aspect and thus a very fundamental part of science, as a result you would end up squarely in the realm of just pseudo-science.
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Old 17th December 2011, 09:57 PM   #6133
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I think the above two posts are right on target.

Edited by jhunter1163:  Edited for Rule 12. Address the argument, not the arguer.
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Old 24th January 2012, 01:45 PM   #6134
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Lightbulb Magnetic Field Lines and Flux Tubes Defined

Preface

In anticipation of the eventual re-awakening of this thread (it seems that "Mozina vs The World" is its sole reason for existence) I would like to address one of the key problems I see: There is a great deal of discussion that hinges on semantics and the sloppy use of language, rather than a properly precise discussion of the scientific aspects. Science requires a precise use of language. We have to understand that colloquial language has to give way to precise scientific language when the circumstances require it. So, here I want to present proper, authoritative scientific definitions for key elements of the discussion. In this case I want to make sure that, before we proceed, we have proper definitions in hand for "field lines" and "flux tubes", the key elements of the magnetic fields involved in plasma physics.

I have highlighted what I think are the key points, but I have tried to cite enough language to provide proper context, as well as to avoid insufficiently brief descriptions. Any other emphasis besides the highlight is carried over from the original text. I encourage the reader to pay attention to the full text of the quotes, and to refer directly to the original sources, which I have linked to as best I can, wherever possible.


Lines of Force Defined

From 26 January 2010
Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
What is a "field line"?

"In electric and magnetic phenomena, the magnitude and direction of the resultant force at any point is the main subject of investigation. Suppose that the direction of the force at any point is known, then, if we draw a line so that in every part of its course it coincides with the direction of the force at that point, this line may be called a line of force, since it indicates the direction of the force in every part of its course. By drawing a sufficient number of lines of force, we may indicate the direction of the force in every part of the space in which it acts. Thus if we strew iron filings on paper near a magnet, each filing will be magnetized by induction, and the consecutive filings will unite by their opposite poles, so as to form fibres, and those fibres will indicate the direction of the lines of force. The beautiful illustration of the presence of magnetic force afforded by this experiment, naturally tends to make us think of the lines of force as something real, and as indicating something more than the mere resultant of two forces, whose seat of action is at a distance, and which do not exist there at all until a magnet is placed in that part of the field. We are dissatisfied with the explanation founded on the hypothesis of attractive and repellant forces directed towards the magnetic poles, even though we may have satisfied ourselves that the phenomenon is in strict accordance with that hypothesis, and we cannot help thinking that in every place where we find these lines of force, some physical state or action must exist in sufficient energy to produce the actual phenomena."

From the paper "On Physical Lines of Force" by James Clerk Maxwell, originally published in The Philosophical Magazine, vol. XXI (1861)
See The Scientific Papers of James Clark Maxwell, volume I; Dover publications, 2003, pages 451-452 (a republication of the 1965 Dover reprint of the original, published in 1890 by Cambridge University Press). Emphasis in the quote is from the original.
The concept for "lines of magnetic force" comes from Michael Faraday and was adopted by Maxwell (see On Faraday's Lines of Force; page 155 in the same volume I of Maxwell's collected papers; read Dec 10, 1855 and Feb 11, 1856). He later generalized the concept and used it to literally invent the theory of electromagnetic fields, and really the general topic of field theory (see A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field; page 526 in the same volume I of Maxwell's collected papers; read Dec 8, 1864; and see the subsection On Lines of Magnetic Force, page 551 and On Magnetic Equipotential Surfaces, page 553). In the passage above, where Maxwell begins "We are dissatisfied ...", he is expressing his dissatisfaction with the notion of "action at a distance" (an idea Newton did not like either), and his belief that some "physical state or action" must permeate the space around the magnet. That "physical state or action" of 1861 became Maxwell's electromagnetic field of 1864.

{ ... }

PDF copies of Maxwell's papers On Physical Lines of Force and A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field are available on the Wikipedia page A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field.

From 20 November 2011
Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Just in case Maxwell is not good enough, here is another, more recent definition for a field line:

"If we join end-to-end infinitesimal vectors representing E, we get a curve in space - called a line of force - that is everywhere normal to the equipotential surfaces. The vector E is everywhere tangent to a line of forces."
From Electromagnetic Fields and Waves, Lorrain & Corson, W.H. Freeman & Co., 1970 (2nd edition), page 46 [this was my undergrad textbook]. This definition for an electric field line works just fine for a magnetic field, just replace E with B and you have the definition for a magnetic field line; the definition is general, so just substitute your favorite letter for your favorite field and you've got it.

This definition from Lorrain & Corson is quite the same as Maxwell's and is the standard definition for field lines in general; not just electric and magnetic fields, but for any classical field, that is how "field lines" are defined. For example, we find this definition in another, older, standard textbook:

Originally Posted by Smythe, 1950
A most useful method of visualizing an electric field is by drawing the "lines of force" and "equipotentials". A line of force is a directed curve in an electric field such that the forward drawn tangent at any point has the direction of the electric intensity there. It follows that if ds is an element of this curve, ds = λE, where λ is a scalar factor. Writing out the components in rectangular coordinates and equating values of λ, we have the differential equation of the line of force, dx/Ex = dy/Ey = dz/Ez.

This definition comes from Static and Dynamic Electricity, William R. Smythe, McGraw-Hill 1950, 2nd edition (1st 1939), section 1.08 "Lines of Force" on page 7. As before, note that this definition is general despite the specific reference to an electric field. Just replace electric field with magnetic field and the definition is precisely the same, and is in fact so for any classical field.


Flux Tubes defined

Originally Posted by Deiter Biskamp, 1993
A fundamental concept in MHD theory is that of a magnetic flux tube. It is based on the conservation of the magnetic flux

\phi = \int_F \boldsymbol B \cdot d \boldsymbol F

through an arbitrary surface F(t) bounded by a curve which moves with the fluid as illustrated in Fig. 2.1

Taking the surface integral of equation 2.11 one obtains

 \int_F \partial_t \bold B \cdot d \bold F = \oint (\bold v \times \bold B) \cdot d \bold l = -\oint \bold B \cdot (\bold v \times d \bold l)

and hence

 \dfrac {d\phi}{dt} = \int \partial_t \bold B \cdot d \bold F + \oint \bold B \cdot (\bold v \times d \bold l) = 0

using

\int_{dF} \bold B \cdot d \bold F =  \oint \bold B \cdot (\bold v \times d \bold l) dt .

Sweeping the boundary curve along the field lines defines a magnetic flux tube. Because of flux conservation the picture of field lines frozen to the fluid has a well defined physical meaning as flux tubes of infinitesimal diameter

The definition quote above is from the book Nonlinear Magnetohydrodynamics by Deiter Biskamp (Max Planck Institute for Plasma Physics); Cambridge University Press 1993. His reference to equation 2.11 is just Faraday's Law after replacing E with vxB:

Biskamp Equation 2.11:

 \partial_t \boldsymbol B = \nabla \times (\boldsymbol v \times \boldsymbol B)


Comments

All magnetic fields are originally generated by electric currents. However, while the current flows in a confined volume, the consequent magnetic field will fill a vastly larger volume than the current. Hence it is possible to measure an active and time variable magnetic field in a vacuum far removed from the current that generated it. This is a point which seems to be overlooked to me so I want to make sure the point is made explicitly somewhere. Furthermore, magnetic fields and plasmas commonly couple together, so that the plasma will carry the "frozen in" magnetic field with it. So a plasma can be magnetized by a magnetic field that is not generated by that plasma, but by another completely independent plasma far away. As an example, the solar wind carries the solar magnetic field along with it. The magnetic field was originally generated in the sun, but is carried to the outermost reaches of the solar system by the solar wind, which can deform that magnetic field, but has nothing to do with the generation of that magnetic field. Likewise, magnetic fields generated deep inside the sun will pass through the photosphere of the sun and couple with it, despite not being formed in the photosphere by the plasma it is coupled to. So it is important to understand that we can have a magnetic field in a plasma, but not assign the task of generating that magnetic field to that particular plasma.

Also note that, as defined, both field lines and flux tubes are strictly mathematical objects, not physical objects. There are, of course, physical manifestations that go along with the mathematical theory. The mathematics becomes in essence a second language, far more efficient than our own human languages, used to describe the physics. The language of mathematics is far more precise than any human language, and it is truly universal across humanity; everyone has the same understanding of an equation, regardless of the human language they use to discuss that equation. In my short preface I spoke of the "semantics and the sloppy use of language". This thread is replete with attempts to replace mathematical and physical rigor with colloquial English and that is a serious mistake, which we should make an effort to repudiate in the future, for this or any other thread.
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Old 24th January 2012, 02:57 PM   #6135
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Lightbulb Magnetic Reconnection Defined and Described

Preface

As a preamble to an understanding of magnetic reconnection, I defined field lines & flux tubes in my previous post. Here I present several definitions and descriptions of magnetic reconnection as a physical process. Once again, I have tried to stick to unimpeachably authoritative & reliable sources. I present several, rather then just one, because the process is complicated and there are different ways to describe it. Hopefully everyone will find at least one explanation that resonates with their understanding.

I have highlighted what I think are the key points, but I have tried to cite enough language to provide proper context, as well as to avoid insufficiently brief descriptions. Any other emphasis besides the highlight is carried over from the original text. I encourage the reader to pay attention to the full text of the quotes, and to refer directly to the original sources, which I have linked to as best I can, wherever possible.

Magnetic Reconnection Defined and Described

Magnetic Reconnection
Masaaki Yamada, Russell Kulsrud and Hantao Ji; Center for Magnetic Self-Organization in Laboratory and Astrophysical Plasmas, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton University
Reviews of Modern Physics 82(1): 603-664, January 2010.

Originally Posted by Yamada, Kulsrud & Ji, 2010, first two paragraphs of introduction
Magnetic fields are observed at all scales in the universe, in the Earth's dipole field, in the magnetosphere, in the solar corona, and on a larger scale from the interstellar medium to galaxy clusters. How are magnetic fields generated in the Universe? How are they involved in determining the characteristics of plasmas? Understanding magnetic reconnection, a topological rearrangement of magnetic field lines, provides a key to these questions. In magnetized astrophysical and laboratory plasmas, magnetic reconnection rearranges the magnetic field-line configurations restructuring macroscopic quantities of plasmas such as flow and thermal energy.

Magnetic reconnection is seen in the evolution of solar flares, coronal mass ejection, and interaction of solar winds with Earth's magnetosphere and is considered to occur in the formation of stars (Parker, 1979; Kulsrud, 1998; Biskamp, 2000; Priest and Forbes, 2000). It occurs as the self-organization process in current carrying fusion plasmas, typically observed in major and minor disruptions of tokamak discharges, and in relaxation processes in reversed field pinch (RFP) and spheromak plasmas (Taylor, 1986; Yamada, 1999b). Magnetic reconnection involves a topology change of a set of field lines, which leads to a new equilibrium configuration of lower magnetic energy. During this process magnetic energy is converted to kinetic energy through acceleration or heating of charged particles.

And ...

Originally Posted by Yamada, Kulsrud & Ji, 2010, Third and fourth paragraphs of Appendix A: "The Nature of Reconnection"
Any change in topology of the lines involves a change in the corresponding equilibrium and, in general, a change in the energy of this equilibrium. An abrupt change in the topology to a new topology, say by breaking magnetic field lines at some place, puts the plasma into a nonequilibrium state with generally no change in its energy. After this change the plasma will evolve with ideal plasma motions that will conserve this new topology but will lower its energy, say by viscous processes, until it reaches the new equilibrium corresponding to its new topology.

This discussion is based on the result that ideal plasma motions do not break lines or change their topology. In this manner, one sees that a sudden change in topology by a nonideal motion leads to a rapid conversion of magnetic energy into kinetic energy and then a subsequent conversion of this kinetic energy into heat, radiation, or particle acceleration by some viscous process. This abrupt change in topology is a nonideal change which magnetic reconnection can trigger. It is of considerable importance just because it can lead to a rapid conversion of magnetic energy to other forms.



Magnetic Reconnection in Astrophysical and Laboratory Plasmas
Ellen G. Zweibel and Masaaki Yamada
Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics 47: 291-332 (2009)

Originally Posted by Zweibel & Yamada, 2009, abstract
Magnetic reconnection is a topological rearrangement of magnetic field that converts magnetic energy to plasma energy. Astrophysical flares, from the Earth's magnetosphere to gamma-ray bursts and sawtooth crashes in laboratory plasmas, may all be powered by reconnection. Reconnection is essential for dynamos and the large-scale restructuring known as magnetic self-organization. We review reconnection theory and evidence for it. We emphasize recent developments in two-fluid physics, and the experiments, observations, and simulations that verify two-fluid effects. We discuss novel environments such as line-tied, relativistic, and partially ionized plasmas, focusing on mechanisms that make reconnection fast, as observed. Because there is evidence that fast reconnection in astrophysics requires small scale structure, we briefly introduce how such structure might develop. Several areas merit attention for astrophysical applications: development of a kinetic model of reconnection to enable spectroscopic predictions, better understanding of the interplay between local and global scales, the role of collisionless reconnection in large systems, and the effects of flows, including turbulence.



Fundamentals of Plasma Physics
Paul M. Bellan, Bellan Plasma Group, California Institute of Technology; Cambridge University Press 2006

Originally Posted by Bellan 2006, page 410, 2nd paragraph of chapter 12, "Magnetic reconnection"
It is possible for an MHD equilibrium to be stable to all ideal MHD modes and yet not be in a lowest energy state. Because ideal MHD does not allow the topology to change, a plasma that is not initially in the lowest energy state will not be able to access this lowest energy state if the lowest energy state is topologically different from the initial state. However, the lowest energy state could be accessed by non-ideal modes, i.e., modes that violate the frozen-in flux condition, and so the available free energy could drive an instability involving these non-ideal modes. Magnetic reconnection is a non-ideal instability where the plasma is effectively ideal everywhere except at a very thin boundary layer where the ideal MHD frozen-in assumption fails so magnetic fields can leak across the plasma and change their topology. Even though this boundary layer is microscopically thin, the reconnection and associated change in magnetic topology at the boundary layer allow the configuration to relax to a lower energy state. Magnetic reconnection thus describes how a very slight departure from ideal MHD leads to important new behavior.



Magnetic Reconnection: MHD Theory and Applications
Eric Priest & Terry Forbes; Cambridge University Press, 2000

Originally Posted by Priest & Forbes, 2000, from the Preface
At present the whole field of reconnection is a huge, vibrant one that is developing along many different lines, as can be seen by the fact that a recent science citation search produced a listing of 1,069 published articles written on this subject in only the past three years. We are therefore well aware of the impossibility of comprehensively covering the whole field and apologise in advance to those who may be disappointed that we have not found space to discuss their work on reconnection. We have attempted to cover the basics of the various aspects of magnetic reconnection and to give brief accounts of the applications at the present point in time. Because of the vastness of the field and our own limited knowledge, we decided to focus only on the magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) aspects of reconnection, but those aspects do provide a foundation for treatments using kinetic theory.

Originally Posted by Priest & Forbes, 2000, from the Introduction, page 1
Like most fundamental concepts in physics, magnetic reconnection owes its appeal to its ability to unify a wide range of phenomena within a single universal principle. Virtually all plasmas, whether in the laboratory, the solar system, or the most distant reaches of the universe, generate magnetic fields. The existence of those fields in the presence of plasma flows inevitably leads to the process of magnetic reconnection. As we shall discuss in more detail later on, magnetic reconnection is essentially a topological restructuring of a magnetic field caused by a change in the connectivity of its field lines. This change allows the release of stored magnetic energy, which in many situations is the dominant source of free energy in a plasma. Of course, many other processes besides reconnection occur in plasmas, but reconnection is probably most important one for explaining large-scale, dynamic releases of magnetic energy.



Review of controlled laboratory experiments on physics of magnetic reconnection
Masaaki Yamada
Journal of Geophysical Research, Space Physics, 104(A7): 14529-14542, July 1999

Originally Posted by Yamada, 1999, First two paragraphs of the Introduction
Magnetic reconnection is the topological breaking and rearrangement of magnetic field lines in a plasma and is the most fundamental process in the interplay between plasma and magnetic field (Parker, 1979; Priest, 1984; Vasyliunas, 1975). For the past several decades, this important phenomenon has been attracting much attention in space physics research as a key process in the fast evolution of solar flares and in the Earth's magnetosphere. Magnetic reconnection always occurs during plasma formation or configuration change and is regarded as the most important self-organization process in plasmas.

In this paper we review results from the most recent experiments in which magnetic reconnection has been generated and studied in controlled laboratory settings. As a whole, research on the fundamental physics of the reconnection process and its hydromagnetic consequences has been largely theoretical. Most magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) theories of magnetic reconnection have been based on steady two-dimensional (2-D) models. Although the Sweet-Parker (Sweet, 1958; Parker, 1957) and Petschek (1964) models are well known (Sonnerup and Wang, 1987), the extensive literature describing these two-dimensional theoretical models has remained unchallenged until the most recent MHD plasma experiments. A careful comparison of experimental data in a well-controlled laboratory setting with analytical theories should reveal fundamental mechanisms of magnetic reconnection.



Nonlinear Magnetohydrodynamics
Deiter Biskamp (Max Planck Institute for Plasma Physics); Cambridge University Press 1993

Originally Posted by Biskamp, 193, Page 127, first paragraph of chapter 6, "Magnetic Reconnection"
There is hardly a term in physics exhibiting more scents, facets and also ambiguities than does magnetic reconnection or, simply, reconnection. It is even sometimes used with a touch of magic. The basic picture underlying the idea of reconnection is that of two field lines (thin flux tubes, properly speaking) being carried along with the fluid owing to the property of flux conservation until the come close together at some point, where by the effect of finite resistivity they are cut and reconnected in a different way. Though this is a localized process, it may fundamentally change the global field line connection as indicated in Fig. 6.1, permitting fluid motions which would be inhibited in the absence of such local decoupling of fluid and magnetic field. Almost all nonlinear processes in magnetized conducting fluids involve reconnection , which may be called the essence of nonlinear MHD.

Note his comment "thin flux tubes, properly speaking". Flux tubes are defined in section 2.2, "Conservation laws in ideal MHD", specifically on pages 13-14. I have used that as the definition for flux tubes in my previous post.




Relaxation and magnetic reconnection in plasmas
J.B. Taylor
Culham Laboratory, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, England
Reviews of Modern Physics 58(3): 741-763, July 1986

Originally Posted by Taylor, 1986, First two paragraphs of Introduction
In this paper a plasma is regarded as a conducting fluid having small resistivity and small viscosity. Even in this simple model interaction of the plasma with magnetic fields leads to extremely complex behavior, especially when turbulence occurs. It is therefore remarkable that one can make quantitative predictions about the plasma configuration resulting from such turbulence. This is possible because the turbulence, allied with small resistivity, allows the plasma rapid access (in a time short compared with the usual resistive diffusion time) to a particular minimum-energy state. This process, known as plasma relaxation, involves the reconnection of magnetic field lines and is a remarkable example of the self-organization of a plasma (Hasegawa, 1985). Since plasma turbulence occurs frequently, so does this relaxation process, and the theory has now been successfully applied to plasmas in many different laboratory systems (see references herein) and even to astrophysical plasmas (Heyvaerts and Priest, 1984; Konigl and Choudhuri, 1985).

An important concept in the theory is that of magnetic helicity,  \int \boldsymbol A \cdot \boldsymbol B d\tau , as an invariant of plasma motion. This was used by Woltjer (1958) and by Wells and Norwood (1969), but relaxation theory as described here began with the work of Taylor (1974a, 1975 (link is a PDF file), 1976), which explained why the total helicity alone, rather than the infinity of invariants of ideal magnetohydrodynamics, should be important and determined properties of the relaxed states of toroidal plasmas. These calculations showed that the relaxed state accounted quantitatively for many hitherto unexplained observations on toroidal pinch experiments.

Comments

As we already know, magnetic field lines are mathematical objects not physical objects. Therefore, the reconnection of magnetic field lines is, strictly speaking, a mathematical process not a physical process. This is a distinction that I have made before, on 19 November 2011 ...

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Ok Tim, what do YOU PERSONALLY expect to "reconnect" in part 4, in a vacuum, *WITHOUT* plasma?
Physically: Nothing "reconnects", that's just a word we use to name the process. What physically happens is that the magnetic field changes from a higher energy state to a lower energy state, and the energy lost by the field escapes as electromagnetic photons. In the presence of a plasma, that energy will transfer to the plasma and manifest itself as an impulsive increase in plasma kinetic energy.

Mathematically: Field lines are the mathematical tool of choice to describe and analyze any field, ever since Maxwell. Mathematically, the lines of force representing the physical magnetic field literally reconnect, resulting in a change in the topology of the field. The name, "magnetic reconnection", comes from this mathematical reconnection of field lines.

That's what I, personally think.

I think my opinion then is justified by the definitions & descriptions I have posted here. The twin themes of a change on topology and a transition from a higher to a lower energy state are consistent in the definitions provided by multiple reliable sources. The change in topology is a mathematical process, the transition from higher to lower energy is a physical process. This is where the intimate relationship between mathematics and physics is well illustrated. We can pretend that the lines of force are physical, rather than mathematical, and we can likewise pretend that the reconnection of field lines is a truly physical process. If we do that, and make predictions regarding anticipated physical observations, our predictions are verified. And so one might ask, while there is a difference between the mathematics and the physics in principle, what is the real, practical difference, if the two are literally interchangeable, if the mathematical objects can be treated as if they were physical objects?

The fact remains, as demonstrated here, that magnetic reconnection is well defined, both as a physical process and a mathematical process.
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Old 25th January 2012, 01:05 AM   #6136
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Lightbulb Plasma Physics: "E orientation" or "B orientation"?

Unfortunately for Mozina, despite his extreme self-confidence, his understanding of physics in general is woefully inadequate to the task of carrying on a meaningful conversation on the topic in the presence of people who actually do know what they are talking about. His mistakes don't happen at the tricky cutting-edge of active research, they happen at the foundation of knowledge. His mistakes are fundamental and broadly conceptual, not necessarily mistakes in handling this or that detail. One of his favorite complaints, repeated constantly for years, is the idea of the "E orientation" versus the "B orientation", or the "electric" versus the "magnetic" orientation for understanding plasma physics. Here are a couple of representative remarks, highlighted emphasis added by me.

From 2 December 2011 ...
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
I'm not personally confused. It's an unnecessarily confusing term that is mostly related to the mainstream's aversion to any sort of CIRCUIT/CURRENT flow orientation to events in space. You dumb everything down to the B orientation even though it's the electric horse that does all the actual work, including "opening" those lines of (PLASMA) force.

From 11 August 2011 ...
Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
You're attempting to DUMB DOWN an ELECTRICALLY DRIVEN process to the B orientation just so you can call the whole thing "magnetic reconnection". BS.

This preference for the "electric" over the "magnetic" is a major and fundamental failure by Mozina, which by itself is probably sufficient to permanently cripple any ability to understand what's really happening throughout the discipline of plasma physics. It is certainly the major stumbling block to his ever appreciating what magnetic reconnection really is or really does. I addressed this failure some time ago, but with little effect. Again, I have added highlighting emphasis for this occasion.

From 30 December 2009 ...
Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Reference the book Magnetic Reconnection: MHD Theory and Applications by Eric Priest & Terry Forbes, Cambridge University Press, 2000. Magnetic reconnection is not induction. Here is the induction equation in a plasma as given in Priest & Forbes, page 5:

(1)  $ \partial \boldsymbol B / \partial t = \nabla \times (\boldsymbol v \times \boldsymbol B) - \nabla \times (\eta \nabla \times \boldsymbol B) $

Here \eta is the magnetic diffusivity. If \eta is uniform then the induction equation reduces to ...

(2)  $ \partial \boldsymbol B / \partial t = \nabla \times (\boldsymbol v \times \boldsymbol B) + \eta \nabla^2 \boldsymbol B $

{ ... }
Given the equation I have labeled (2) above, we find ...

"This is the basic equation of magnetic behavior in MHD, and it determines B once v is known. In the electromagnetic theory of fixed conductors, the electric field and electric current are primary variables with the current driven by electric fields. in such a fixed system the magnetic field is a secondary variable derived from the currents. However, in MHD the basic physics is quite different, since the plasma velocity (v) and magnetic field (B) are the primary variables, determined by the induction equation and the equation of motion, while the resulting current density (j) and electric field (E) are secondary and may be deduced from equations (1.8) and (1.10a) if required (Parker, 1996)."
Priest & Forbes, page 14.
The conversion of magnetic energy into a current always operates on a time-scale characteristic of the system, and that time scale is controlled by the ability of the magnetic field to move through the conductor, in order to create a dB/dt term from which the current is generated. That time-scale in a plasma is rather different than it is for a fixed conductor. Here we find the real deal once again in Priest & Forbes:

"In space physics the distinction between ideal and non-ideal processes is important because simple estimates imply that magnetic dissipation acts on a time-scale which is many orders of magnitude slower than the observed time-scale of dynamic phenomena. For example, solar flares release stored magnetic energy in the corona within a period of 100 s. By comparison, the time-scale for magnetic dissipation based on a global scale length of 105 km is of the order of 106 yrs."
Priest & Forbes, page 6

In the highlighted portion we see that Priest & Forbes, who surely know far more about plasma physics than does Mozina, directly contradict the claim that the "E orientation" should be favored. But they really don't explain why, at least not here. Here I will add another complementary set of comments from Eugene Parker, one of the foremost living plasma astrophysicists, where he makes the same point, but also explains why the "E orientation" is inferior, or in his words, "a curious notion".

From the book Conversations on Electric and Magnetic Fields in the Cosmos by Eugene N. Parker, Princeton University Press 2007, chapter 3 "Magnetic Fields", section 3.1 "Basic Considerations", pages 25-26.
Originally Posted by Eugene Parker, 2007
In the absence of magnetic charges, magnetic fields appear only in association with electric currents and in association with time varying electric fields, in the manner described by eqn. (1.6). In the laboratory we create static magnetic fields by driving an electric current through a coil of wire. The emf driving the current is the source of energy that creates the magnetic field, so the emf and the current are clearly the cause of the magnetic field. On the other hand, in the cosmos the deformation of the magnetic field embedded in the swirling plasma causes the flow of electric current in the plasma in the manner described by eqn. (1.6), because the energy that drives the current comes from the magnetic field. That is to say, 4πj is maintained close to the value c X B by the fact that any deviation produces a ∂E/∂t that quickly provides an E that drives j to the required value. So in the cosmos the large scale currents are obliged to obey Ampere's law,

j = c X B

In view of the small but nonvanishing friction between the relative motions of the electrons and ions, there is a continuing trickle of energy from the field to the current to maintain the flow of current required by Ampere,from which it follows that the field is the continuing cause of the current and not vice versa.

The curious popular notion that the electric current causes the magnetic fields in the cosmos has led to the even more curious notion that the electric current is the more fundamental variable. Then, since currents are driven by electric fields, it is declared that the fundamental variables are E and j. As already noted, the difficulty is that there are no tractable dynamical equations for E and j. The current is dynamically passive, consisting of no more than the tiny inertia of the electron conduction velocity, while, as we shall see, the stresses in the electric field are small to second order in v/c and quite negligible. The dynamics of the plasma - magnetic field system is driven by the magnetic stress and inertia and pressure of the plasma.

So when we inform ourselves on real plasma physics, the true nature of Mozina's failure is exposed. The "E orientation" gets the physics backwards, and in many cases, it is not even a solvable, or "tractable" system. It is in fact Mozina who is working hard to dumb-down, to borrow his words, his own understanding of plasma physics by substituting his own ill-informed notions of amateur level plasma physics for real plasma physics, as it is practiced by real plasma physicists. It must be clearly understood that in astrophysical plasmas, in nearly all cases, the "B orientation" is absolutely correct, is the orientation that actually gets the physics right, and in many cases is the only way to understand the physics of the plasma at all.

And be mindful of my earlier comment:

Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
All magnetic fields are originally generated by electric currents. However, while the current flows in a confined volume, the consequent magnetic field will fill a vastly larger volume than the current. Hence it is possible to measure an active and time variable magnetic field in a vacuum far removed from the current that generated it. This is a point which seems to be overlooked to me so I want to make sure the point is made explicitly somewhere. Furthermore, magnetic fields and plasmas commonly couple together, so that the plasma will carry the "frozen in" magnetic field with it. So a plasma can be magnetized by a magnetic field that is not generated by that plasma, but by another completely independent plasma far away. As an example, the solar wind carries the solar magnetic field along with it. The magnetic field was originally generated in the sun, but is carried to the outermost reaches of the solar system by the solar wind, which can deform that magnetic field, but has nothing to do with the generation of that magnetic field. Likewise, magnetic fields generated deep inside the sun will pass through the photosphere of the sun and couple with it, despite not being formed in the photosphere by the plasma it is coupled to. So it is important to understand that we can have a magnetic field in a plasma, but not assign the task of generating that magnetic field to that particular plasma.

The sentence I have highlighted here illustrates the basic idea that is described in physical detail by Priest & Forbes and by Parker. Mozina seems to think that the local magnetic field must always be generated by the very same local plasma that it threads through, but this is certainly not the case in almost all astrophysical circumstances. The motion of the local magnetic field necessarily generates a time variable magnetic field, ∂B/∂t, which is the local source of the local energy that drives the currents in the local plasma. Mozina's preference for the "E orientation" is wrong and is a major stumbling block for him. As long as he holds to it, he prevents himself from ever understanding plasma physics & magnetic reconnection.
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Old 27th January 2012, 08:01 AM   #6137
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Woa. That's a lot of physics. Looks right to me. Now we just have to wait for Michael to come back and say it's all baloney.
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Old 1st February 2012, 08:10 PM   #6138
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Lightbulb Plasma Physics: "E orientation" or "B orientation"? II

In my previous post, Plasma Physics: "E Orientation" or "B Orientation"?, I presented the basic justification for the superiority of the "B" (magnetic field) orientation over the "E" (electric field) orientation when dealing with astrophysical plasmas. I want to complete that task in this post by presenting in more detail the physics involved. In this way we can go beyond any sense of relying solely on the assertion of individuals, even if their expertise is unquestioned, and have in place for ourselves an understanding for why the assertion is valid, based on sound physical principles. In that previous post I include a passage from the book Conversations on Electric and Magnetic Fields in the Cosmos by Eugene Parker, one of the foremost living plasma astrophysicists. In that comment he says, "As already noted, the difficulty is that there are no tractable dynamical equations for E and j". His "As already noted" refers to the passage I now quote first below. As before, any hilight emphasis is mine, but all other emphasis is carried over from the original.

Originally Posted by Eugene Parker, "Conversations on Electric and Magnetic Fields in the Cosmos", Introduction, page 2
It is here that a fundamental misunderstanding has become widely accepted, mistaking the electric current j and the electric current (sic) E (the E, j paradigm) (Parker 1996a) to be the fundamental physical entities. {Editors comment: clearly the second use of "current" for E is a typo where the word "field" is appropriate - TJT} Steady conditions often can be treated using the E, j paradigm, but the dynamics of time-dependent systems becomes difficult, if not impossible, because of the inability to express Newton's equation in terms of E and j in a tractable form. That is to say, E and j are proxies for B and v, but too remote from B and v to handle the momentum equation. So it is not possible to construct a workable set of dynamical field equations in terms of j and E from the equations of Newton and Maxwell. The generalized Ohm's law is often employed, but Ohm's law does not control the large scale dynamics. The tail does not wag the dog. This inadequacy has led to fantasy to complement the limited equations available in the E, j paradigm, attributing the leading dynamical role to an electric field E with unphysical properties. Magnetospheric physics has suffered severely from this misdirection, and we will come back to specific aspects of the misunderstanding at appropriate places in these conversations.

Here Parker makes a point that we have not emphasized in this thread, but will now. A plasma is a collection of charged particles and those particles have mass as well as charge, so they are not only affected by electric & magnetic fields as by Maxwell's equations, but they also have momentum and kinetic energy as by Newton's equations, and we have to respect all of the physics that counts, not just the parts we like. There is no overlap between the E, j paradigm and classical Newtonian mechanics; Newton's equations do not include either E or j. However, there is an overlap between the B, v paradigm and classical Newtonian mechanics; the velocity, v, of the particles shows up in both, which immediately connects the Newtonian energy & momentum to Maxwell's equations. Hence the obvious preference for the B, v paradigm: It makes the difference between tractable and intractable physics.

Parker says above that "we will come back to specific aspects of the misunderstanding ... ". I want to do that now so we can see exactly what is happening.

Originally Posted by Eugene Parker, "Conversations on Electric and Magnetic Fields in the Cosmos", chapter 7 "Moving Reference Frames", pages 69-70
Now, there has been an unfortunate practice in the (E, j) paradigm literature on magnetospheric physics to assert that E(r, t) plays an active dynamical role in driving the motions in the plasma. For instance, working in the frame of reference defined by Earth, there is an electric field Esw = -vsw X Bsw/c in the solar wind where the plasma velocity is vsw and the magnetic field is Bsw. It is sometimes asserted that Esw actively penetrates from the wind into the magnetosphere, thereby setting the plasma in the geotail into motion approaching the electron drift velocity

\bold v_D = c \frac{\bold B \times ( \bold v_s_w \times \bold B_s_w)}{B^2}

where now B is the geomagnetic field. Note that this motion can be in most any direction, depending on the relative orientation of B and Bsw. The antisolar streaming wind could just as well drive a solar-directed convection, contrary to the observed antisolar motion of the outer layers of the geomagnetic field. However, it is alleged that this is the basic cause of magnetospheric convection. A cross section of the geotail is sometimes drawn with the magnetotail between two wide parallel condenser plates, between which there is an implied potential difference in excess of 104 V in the direction to give the actual convection. But if the electric field were a driving force, in which frame of reference are we to use the electric field for computing the driving of the plasma? All those electric fields in the many different moving frames of reference are there, eagerly waiting to be exploited. There is, of course, no comparable magnetic field penetrating from the magnetosphere outward to affect the wind, so it appears that the wind suffers no gain or loss of momentum. On the other hand, if the calculation is carried out in the frame of the wind, then there is no electric field in the wind to drive magnetospheric convection, but rather an electric field +vsw X B/c in the magnetosphere that, by the same principle, actively penetrates into the solar wind, causing the electric drift velocity (vsw X B) X Bsw/B2 of the solar wind plasma relative to the solar wind. The principle of covariance is violated, and what ever happened to the conservation of momentum?

This author suggests that the electric field E' in the frame of the plasma is negligible, based on the considerations leading to eqn. (1.8). Another prejudice of the author is that Newton's equation of motion is the proper venue for the discussion of driven motions. Yet, when we come to Newton's momentum equation in chapter 8, we find no such driving effect introduced by electric fields. Indeed, it is obvious from eqn. (7.2) that the stresses, E2/8π, in the electric field are small O(v2/c2) compared to the stresses, B2/8π, in the magnetic field. That is to say, the stresses in the electric field are small to the same order as time dilation and Lorentz contraction, both of which we neglect to very good approximation. So the electric stresses are to be neglected. Vasyliunas (2001, 2005a, 2005b) has investigated in detail the dynamical role of E, showing how E is shaped by the plasma motions, rather than vice versa.

In contrast, in the E, j paradigm the force ±eE on an individual ion or electron looms large in the generalized Ohm's law and is considered to be an important dynamical effect. The net force on the plasma is very small, of course, because of the electrical neutrality of the plasma, so it is evident that ±eE has no role in the large-scale dynamics in spite of its prominence in the E, j paradigm. This is just one more illustration of how the E, j paradigm has such difficulty in coming to grips with the time-dependent dynamics of the plasma.

In this passage above the notation "O(v2/c2)" means "on the oder of v2/c2" and shows an approximate order of magnitude. Also note that the papers by Vasyliunas (retired director of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research) are particularly interesting and reinforce what Parker tells us quite nicely.

Parker's reference to equation 1.8 is this:

E'/B = c/4πσl = (10-4/l)(104/T)3/2

which equates the electric field in the moving reference frame of the plasma (E') and the magnetic field (B) (σ is the electrical conductivity). This is all found in Parker's Conversations on page 8. The upshot is that E'/B is likely never greater then 10-9, and since the stresses induced by the fields are proportional to (E'/B)2, the stress induced on the plasma by E' must be ~ 10-18 compared to the stress induced by B.

Parker's reference to equation 7.2 is this:

E(r, t) = [-v(r, t) X B(r, t)] / c

This is the electric field E(r, t) in the laboratory frame of reference when the electric field in the plasma frame of reference (E') is zero. It is found in Parker's Conversations at the bottom of page 68.

What it all boils down to is this: One cannot construct physically meaningful equations to describe the dynamics of a plasma in the "electric" paradigm favored by Mozina. One can do so only in the "magnetic" paradigm, increasingly favored by plasma physicists. This post and my previous post detail the physical reasoning behind this choice of "B" over "E". It is not as simple as Mozina claims, it's not simply a prejudice for one over the other, and it certainly is not "putting the magnetic cart before the electric horse", as Mozina has said it. The physical horse is in fact the magnetic field in almost all astrophysical cases. It is important to note the distinction that astrophysical plasmas and laboratory plasmas, despite both being plasmas, are not the same; astrophysical spatial scales cannot be reproduced in a laboratory, and that is significant. The relationship between electric and magnetic fields in the two plasmas are not the same, as a direct result of the difference in spatial scales, and that affects plasma dynamics. One should not blindly apply the paradigm of one unto the other. As is often the case in physics, each situation is like a position in a chess game: While there are general principles one can apply, each must be considered carefully on its own merits for its own proper solution.
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Old 11th February 2012, 10:28 AM   #6139
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Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Preface

In anticipation of the eventual re-awakening of this thread (it seems that "Mozina vs The World" is its sole reason for existence) I would like to address one of the key problems I see:
FYI, it's going to take awhile for me to respond to all of your posts, but I suppose I'll start here. Let's clear up your first misconception Tim. It's not me vs. the world of physics since folks like Mann and Onel, Somov, Alfven, Peratt and many others are fully capable of embracing the E orientation of plasma physics and treating magnetic ropes as "Bennett Pinches" of current carrying plasmas that act as part of a "circuit" of energy.

Quote:
There is a great deal of discussion that hinges on semantics and the sloppy use of language, rather than a properly precise discussion of the scientific aspects. Science requires a precise use of language.
Yes, but unfortunately E orientation "haters" are incapable of accepting the term "electrical discharge" in spite of Dungey's work, in spite of the work by Mann and Onel, in spite of Aflven's work, in spite of all physics in general that is geared toward the E orientation of plasma physics.

Quote:
We have to understand that colloquial language has to give way to precise scientific language when the circumstances require it. So, here I want to present proper, authoritative scientific definitions for key elements of the discussion. In this case I want to make sure that, before we proceed, we have proper definitions in hand for "field lines" and "flux tubes", the key elements of the magnetic fields involved in plasma physics.

I have highlighted what I think are the key points, but I have tried to cite enough language to provide proper context, as well as to avoid insufficiently brief descriptions. Any other emphasis besides the highlight is carried over from the original text. I encourage the reader to pay attention to the full text of the quotes, and to refer directly to the original sources, which I have linked to as best I can, wherever possible.
We might then add Alfven's comments about "flux tubes" from his book Cosmic Plasma to the discussion:

Quote:
"However, in cosmic plasmas the perhaps most important constriction mechanism is the electromagnetic attraction between parallel currents . A manifestation of this mechanism is the pinch effect, which was studied by Bennett long ago (1934), and has received much attention in connection with thermonuclear research . As we shall see, phenomena of this general type also exist on a cosmic scale, and lead to a bunching of currents and magnetic fields to filaments or `magnetic ropes' . This bunching is usually accompanied by an accumulation of matter, and it may explain the observational fact that cosmic matter exhibits an abundance of filamentary structures (II .4 .1) . This same mechanism may also evacuate the regions near the rope and produce regions of exceptionally low densities."
He essentially describes it as a "Bennett Pinch" and then treats is as a "wire" in part of a "circuit" of energy.

Quote:
Also note that, as defined, both field lines and flux tubes are strictly mathematical objects, not physical objects.
Um no. No more than an TORNADO is simply a mathematical construct. Math doesn't cause things to happen Tim, physical PROCESSES cause PHYSICAL things to happen. Those "flux tubes" you're describing are in fact "twisters" of CURRENT composed of moving charged particles.

Quote:
There are, of course, physical manifestations that go along with the mathematical theory. The mathematics becomes in essence a second language, far more efficient than our own human languages, used to describe the physics. The language of mathematics is far more precise than any human language, and it is truly universal across humanity; everyone has the same understanding of an equation, regardless of the human language they use to discuss that equation. In my short preface I spoke of the "semantics and the sloppy use of language". This thread is replete with attempts to replace mathematical and physical rigor with colloquial English and that is a serious mistake, which we should make an effort to repudiate in the future, for this or any other thread.
The problem Tim is that folks like Mann and Onel HAVE expressed the E orientation of these same FLUX TUBE events very nicely. Those however that resist one orientation or another (E or B) have a hard time "not hating" one particular orientation. Alfven wasn't a fan of the B orientation for instance. EU haters typically refuse to embrace the E orientation. It all depends on which way one choose to relate to the events. IMO there's no BEST way. If there is, I'd lean toward the E like Alfven, but IMO that falls short in "some" (not all) scenarios.
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Old 11th February 2012, 11:46 AM   #6140
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
The problem Tim is that folks like Mann and Onel HAVE expressed the E orientation of these same FLUX TUBE events very nicely. Those however that resist one orientation or another (E or B) have a hard time "not hating" one particular orientation. Alfven wasn't a fan of the B orientation for instance. EU haters typically refuse to embrace the E orientation. It all depends on which way one choose to relate to the events. IMO there's no BEST way. If there is, I'd lean toward the E like Alfven, but IMO that falls short in "some" (not all) scenarios.
Wait, so in your opinion “there's no BEST way” and even if your opinion was wrong and there were a best way you would still “lean toward the E” despite your own subsequently stated opinion that it “falls short in "some" (not all) scenarios"?


Remember “Those however that resist one orientation or another (E or B) have a hard time "not hating" one particular orientation.”

Looks like you’ve found the only “hater” you need to address, perhaps you should take another month or so alone with him to straighten him out (at least in your opinion).
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Old 11th February 2012, 11:50 AM   #6141
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How many years is this now, and still not a single post from MM with any math in it?

If a child had been born when MM started here, I bet that child would learn algebra before MM posted any.
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Old 11th February 2012, 11:57 AM   #6142
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Well its hard to post math Ziggurat when all one has are their opinions, particularly and evidently opinions they don’t even agree with.
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Old 11th February 2012, 12:16 PM   #6143
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
How many years is this now, and still not a single post from MM with any math in it?

If a child had been born when MM started here, I bet that child would learn algebra before MM posted any.
So what? Since when did any mathematical theory rise and fall on the math skills of a single poster on the internet? That particular self defense mechanism is bizarre and rather pathetic IMO. It's akin to a creationist *INSISTING* that some specific individual they meet on the internet personally create life in a test tube BEFORE they will even consider studying the works of others of the same topic.

What was wrong with the maths presented by Mann and Onel? Let me guess, you can't handle it, so you attack the messenger randomly?
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Old 11th February 2012, 12:19 PM   #6144
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What difference did it make when I presented the *EXACT FORMULA* where Priest turned moving charged particle kinetic energy into magnetically quantized mathematical units? You all ignored that math too. Math's are ultimately irrelevant to you. All you do is use the concept to attack individuals. Yawn.
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Old 11th February 2012, 12:29 PM   #6145
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Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Unfortunately for Mozina, despite his extreme self-confidence, his understanding of physics in general is woefully inadequate to the task of carrying on a meaningful conversation on the topic in the presence of people who actually do know what they are talking about.
That really hasn't been my experience Tim. I had no trouble pointing out to you the exact equations where Priest turned his electric, kinetic energy plasma/water into magnetic wine. You however simply don't CARE how that mathematical "trickery" actually works apparently.

Quote:
His mistakes don't happen at the tricky cutting-edge of active research, they happen at the foundation of knowledge. His mistakes are fundamental and broadly conceptual, not necessarily mistakes in handling this or that detail. One of his favorite complaints.......
Blah, blah, blah, attack the individual since you have nothing else to really argue with in that paper by Mann and Onel. How predictable I'm afraid.

Quote:
This preference for the "electric" over the "magnetic" is a major and fundamental failure by Mozina, which by itself is probably sufficient to permanently cripple any ability to understand what's really happening throughout the discipline of plasma physics.
That's really ironic since EU haters are simply the mathematical flipside of Alfven. He ONLY concerned himself with the E orientation to the utter EXCLUSION (almost) of the B orientation, particularly and specifically as they apply to events in space. It's only because I've personally LIBERATED MYSELF from one form of mathematical prejudice over another that I personally can "go both ways". It's only a "hater" of either a B or E orientation that has to have it ONE way, even though Maxwell's equations solve in BOTH directions.

Until and unless I see you pick out an actual flaw in Alfven's work on coronal loops, or better yet, Mann and Onel's mathematical presentations of coronal loops, you're just wallowing in your own personal math prejudices from my perspective.
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Old 11th February 2012, 12:50 PM   #6146
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Let me guess, you can't handle it, so you attack the messenger randomly?
Randomly? No, not at all. The inability to do any math is a consistent feature of internet crackpots. It's an easy and effective way of filtering them out, because they never get through the filter. You've been caught by the filter.
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Old 12th February 2012, 10:43 AM   #6147
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Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
In my previous post, Plasma Physics: "E Orientation" or "B Orientation"?, I presented the basic justification for the superiority of the "B" (magnetic field) orientation over the "E" (electric field) orientation when dealing with astrophysical plasmas.
Emphasis mine. I think that highlights the chasm that needs to be crossed in order for you to "see the light" Tim. It's not one *OR* the other. Maxwell's equations solve in both directions from the standpoint of mathematics as Onel and Mann (and Alfven and many others) have demonstrated.

There is no single "superior" was of viewing events in plasmas. Sometimes the E field is driving the parade. Sometimes the B field releases LOTS of stored energy. It's irrational IMO to be stuck on one side of that mathematical fence! Until you can embrace *BOTH* sides of the debate, it's going to remain difficult to communicate.

I'll tackle your "authority" figures/quotes one quote at a time. Note the Alfven is just as much of an "expert" on the topic of plasma physics and yet he utterly REJECTED MR theory. He was the flip side of you.

Originally Posted by Parker
It is here that a fundamental misunderstanding has become widely accepted, mistaking the electric current j and the electric current (sic) E (the E, j paradigm) (Parker 1996a) to be the fundamental physical entities. {Editors comment: clearly the second use of "current" for E is a typo where the word "field" is appropriate - TJT} Steady conditions often can be treated using the E, j paradigm, but the dynamics of time-dependent systems becomes difficult, if not impossible, because of the inability to express Newton's equation in terms of E and j in a tractable form. That is to say, E and j are proxies for B and v, but too remote from B and v to handle the momentum equation. So it is not possible to construct a workable set of dynamical field equations in terms of j and E from the equations of Newton and Maxwell. The generalized Ohm's law is often employed, but Ohm's law does not control the large scale dynamics. The tail does not wag the dog. This inadequacy has led to fantasy to complement the limited equations available in the E, j paradigm, attributing the leading dynamical role to an electric field E with unphysical properties. Magnetospheric physics has suffered severely from this misdirection, and we will come back to specific aspects of the misunderstanding at appropriate places in these conversations.
I guess Parker is essentially "whining" about the fact the the calculation of gravitational forces is "harder" from a *STRICTLY* E oriented perspective, therefore he intends to use that claim to justify a *STRICTLY* B orientation. Such an extreme position is equally flawed and equally filled with FALSE ASSUMPTIONS.

His claim about the "control" of the large scale dynamics is an EXCELLENT example of one such false assumption. Gravity is *NOT* the "be all end all" of forces as it relates to solar wind, and Magnetism isn't the be all end all either. Birkeland achieved consistent solar wind with CHARGE SEPARATION, not magnetism Tim. In terms of PHYSICS, the mainstream often tries to get the tail to wag the dog. That's also why Alfven rejected a B orientation as it relates to "reconnection" events.
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Old 12th February 2012, 12:05 PM   #6148
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Emphasis mine. I think that highlights the chasm that needs to be crossed in order for you to "see the light" Tim. It's not one *OR* the other. Maxwell's equations solve in both directions from the standpoint of mathematics as Onel and Mann (and Alfven and many others) have demonstrated.

Interestingly enough, no electric Sun proponent has ever been able to describe that alleged mathematical support. So maybe the time has come, after all these years of making the claim, to actually show it. Or lie and say it's already been shown.
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Old 12th February 2012, 12:38 PM   #6149
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Originally Posted by GeeMack View Post
Interestingly enough, no electric Sun proponent has ever been able to describe that alleged mathematical support.
This is, to me, one of the most astonishing things about this (Electric Sun) idea.

Proponents of it (the Electric Sun idea) have been all over internet fora, for many years, screaming, yelling, whining, spamming, posting links to youtube videos, posting long and wordy comments, etc, etc, etc (i.e. not just MM, not just in this forum).

And yet, among those tens of thousands (hundreds of thousands?) of posts, and millions of words, not even once has anyone posted anything remotely resembling mathematical (and that includes just plain quantitative) support for the core concept (i.e. that the Sun is - predominantly - powered by giant, interstellar (or intergalactic) Birkeland currents)!

Of course, this hasn't stopped the principals - Thornhill, Scott, Talbott, Tresman, and maybe one or two others - from making promises (of varying degrees of specificity) that exactly such support is being (furiously) worked on, and its publication is just around the corner (as in, a month or so).

In one sense this is quite remarkable: how have the principals been able to so successfully keep the con going for so long?

Last edited by DeiRenDopa; 12th February 2012 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 12th February 2012, 12:44 PM   #6150
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Originally Posted by DeiRenDopa View Post
In one sense this is quite remarkable: how have the principals been able to so successfully keep the con going for so long?

Maybe it's because their target market seems to be mostly each other and a tiny handful of other gullible rubes. No legitimate scientist seems to have taken any of their nonsense seriously. And without ever taking the time to do any math, the electric Sun adherents have plenty of time to jabber on the net.
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Old 12th February 2012, 04:07 PM   #6151
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Let's clear up your first misconception Tim. It's not me vs. the world of physics since folks like Mann and Onel, Somov, Alfven, Peratt and many others are fully capable of embracing the E orientation of plasma physics and treating magnetic ropes as "Bennett Pinches" of current carrying plasmas that act as part of a "circuit" of energy.
Let's clear up your first misconception MM.
That is just your continued misinterpretation of the authors. This has continued enough and been corrected enough to make the statement into a blatant lie.
  • Alfvén did not embrace your fantasy of an "E orientation of plasma physics".
  • Peratt did not embrace your fantasy of an "E orientation of plasma physics".
  • Somov did not embrace your fantasy of an "E orientation of plasma physics".
  • Mann and Onel did not embrace your fantasy of an "E orientation of plasma physics".
The Somov reference is especially insane since he uses standard MHD (i.e. as formulated by Alfvén) but this is expected since you are totally deluded about what he wrote:
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section VI
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section V
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section VI
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section III
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section II
Michael Mozina's delusions about Somov's 'Reconnection in a Vacuum' section
Your post also documents your usual ignorance
  • Energy does not have a "circuit" - it is a property of a system.
  • No one treats magnetic ropes as Bennett pinches. Bennett pinches are specific instabilities in plasma. In fact it is the other way around - Bennett pinches can be described as magnetic ropes that are unstable.
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Old 12th February 2012, 09:16 PM   #6152
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Originally Posted by DeiRenDopa View Post
This is, to me, one of the most astonishing things about this (Electric Sun) idea.

Proponents of it (the Electric Sun idea) have been all over internet fora, for many years, screaming, yelling, whining, spamming, posting links to youtube videos, posting long and wordy comments, etc, etc, etc (i.e. not just MM, not just in this forum).

And yet, among those tens of thousands (hundreds of thousands?) of posts, and millions of words, not even once has anyone posted anything remotely resembling mathematical (and that includes just plain quantitative) support for the core concept (i.e. that the Sun is - predominantly - powered by giant, interstellar (or intergalactic) Birkeland currents)!

Of course, this hasn't stopped the principals - Thornhill, Scott, Talbott, Tresman, and maybe one or two others - from making promises (of varying degrees of specificity) that exactly such support is being (furiously) worked on, and its publication is just around the corner (as in, a month or so).

In one sense this is quite remarkable: how have the principals been able to so successfully keep the con going for so long?
IMO the "con" is the part highlighted in yellow, and comes from your side of the aisle, the "haters" of electric sun (electric anything in space) theories. I don't personally know of any "electric sun" proponents that actually believe that the sun does NOT have an INTERNAL power source. You guys seem to have latched on to ONE MAN'S (can even recall his name of the top of my head but maybe Jergens?) concept of an "electric sun" and you refuse to acknowledge any OTHER concepts. When did Alfven claim the sun was EXTERNALLY powered? Birkeland? These are the two primary proponents of "electric sun" theories by the way, and both of them suggested that the sun was *INTERNALLY*, not externally powered.

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Old 12th February 2012, 09:22 PM   #6153
Michael Mozina
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Originally Posted by GeeMack View Post
Interestingly enough, no electric Sun proponent has ever been able to describe that alleged mathematical support. So maybe the time has come, after all these years of making the claim, to actually show it. Or lie and say it's already been shown.
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/np...2ca922c9c11568
http://arxiv.org/abs/0908.0813

Alfven provided the mathematical support, as have Onel and Mann. Your denial of historical fact is the only lie.
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Old 12th February 2012, 09:26 PM   #6154
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
Randomly? No, not at all. The inability to do any math is a consistent feature of internet crackpots. It's an easy and effective way of filtering them out, because they never get through the filter. You've been caught by the filter.
Well, you're right about one thing, it's not "random". I guess the rationalization in play is that if you can't find a flaw in the actual maths provided, such as the math's found in those last two papers in the previous post to GM, just attack the messenger and pretend that behavior is a rational excuse to ignore the materials actually being presented. Your derogatory label (crackpot) is just like a creationist labeling me "evil" for providing them with scientific evidence that refutes their beliefs, and that derogatory label somehow allows them to "filter" out the truth. How sad. The E orientation isn't something you can simply "filter out". You've been caught by your own math since Maxwell's equations don't solve for ONLY B or ONLY E.

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Old 12th February 2012, 10:01 PM   #6155
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
IMO the "con" is the part highlighted in yellow, and comes from your side of the aisle, the "haters" of electric sun (electric anything in space) theories. I don't personally know of any "electric sun" proponents that actually believe that the sun does NOT have an INTERNAL power source. You guys seem to have latched on to ONE MAN'S (can even recall his name of the top of my head but maybe Jergens?) concept of an "electric sun" and you refuse to acknowledge any OTHER concepts. When did Alfven claim the sun was EXTERNALLY powered? Birkeland? These are the two primary proponents of "electric sun" theories by the way, and both of them suggested that the sun was *INTERNALLY*, not externally powered.

The continued incivility in dishonestly referring to people as "haters" for simply pointing out the lack of legitimate science in any electric Sun conjecture is noted. The failure to to scientifically address any of the relevant scientific concerns others have brought in is also noted. Repeating the misunderstandings, misinterpretations, cherry picking words and phrases, dishonestly deflecting the burden of proof, and arguing from incredulity have also failed to support the conjectures. Rather than persist with those methods which seem certain to result in more failure, maybe a better approach would be to quantitatively, mathematically, and objectively demonstrate that the conjectures have some validity.

Also, those of us who have read Birkeland's writings understand he used a hollow brass ball to model the magnetic properties of the Earth. He occasionally used it to play with some notions he had about Saturn and the Sun. The "little Earth" was mounted on a pole with wires running to an electromagnet inside. The power came in through those wires from the outside. That is, by definition, with or without the shouting, "EXTERNALLY powered". So once again, attempting to use Birkeland as a source of support while demonstrating ignorance of what he actually did in his research is noted.
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Old 12th February 2012, 11:05 PM   #6156
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Lightbulb Plasma Physics: "E orientation" or "B orientation"? III

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
There is no single "superior" way of viewing events in plasmas.

Actually, yes there is. Furthermore, I have already explained exactly why. And in even further furthermore, you have yourself quoted the explanation, which either went over your head, or was deliberately ignored. Here is the very same passage you quoted, with my emphasis added:

Originally Posted by Parker
It is here that a fundamental misunderstanding has become widely accepted, mistaking the electric current j and the electric current (sic) E (the E, j paradigm) (Parker 1996a) to be the fundamental physical entities. {Editors comment: clearly the second use of "current" for E is a typo where the word "field" is appropriate - TJT} Steady conditions often can be treated using the E, j paradigm, but the dynamics of time-dependent systems becomes difficult, if not impossible, because of the inability to express Newton's equation in terms of E and j in a tractable form. That is to say, E and j are proxies for B and v, but too remote from B and v to handle the momentum equation. So it is not possible to construct a workable set of dynamical field equations in terms of j and E from the equations of Newton and Maxwell. The generalized Ohm's law is often employed, but Ohm's law does not control the large scale dynamics. The tail does not wag the dog. This inadequacy has led to fantasy to complement the limited equations available in the E, j paradigm, attributing the leading dynamical role to an electric field E with unphysical properties. Magnetospheric physics has suffered severely from this misdirection, and we will come back to specific aspects of the misunderstanding at appropriate places in these conversations.

Now, when you put this quote into your post, you chose to highlight the phrase "the tail does not wag the dog". Compare that to the phrases I have highlighted here, which include the words "inability", "not possible" and "unphysical". You chose to ignore them altogether, to your own detriment, because they are the heart of the argument. Nothing you have said in response even deserves to be called marginally relevant, because you choose to ignore the physics on virtually all occasions, this one included.

The letters MHD stand for the word magnetohydrodynamics. The "hydrodynamics" part brings with itself an absolute requirement to include the dynamics of the plasma as a fluid flow. All objects that have a non-zero rest mass are required to adhere to the laws of Newtonian mechanics, or special relativity if the objects are traveling close to the speed of light. Since most space plasmas are non-relativistic, we can under normal circumstances ignore Einstein and satisfy ourselves with Newton. This must be true, and absolutely is always true, even in the presence of electromagnetic fields and the application of Maxwell's equations.

The tail end of your post is an outstanding example of your complete failure to understand the argument and the physics behind it.

Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
I guess Parker is essentially "whining" about the fact the the calculation of gravitational forces is "harder" from a *STRICTLY* E oriented perspective, therefore he intends to use that claim to justify a *STRICTLY* B orientation. Such an extreme position is equally flawed and equally filled with FALSE ASSUMPTIONS.

His claim about the "control" of the large scale dynamics is an EXCELLENT example of one such false assumption. Gravity is *NOT* the "be all end all" of forces as it relates to solar wind, and Magnetism isn't the be all end all either.

Most of what you say here is just plain obviously wrong. To start with, gravity is irrelevant to the argument presented by Parker; it would be exactly the same in the total absence of all gravity, and just as valid, which you would have realized immediately had you understood the physics to the extent which you claim you do. Charged particles accelerated by electromagnetic fields in the complete absence of all gravity still face an absolute requirement to obey the Newtonian laws of motion. The E,j paradigm does not make them "harder" to calculate (with or without quotation marks); Rather, the E,j paradigm makes it impossible to calculate the particle dynamics, just as Parker explicitly said, and you explicitly ignored. This is a fatal flaw in the E,j paradigm, as a consequence of which one must compensate by assuming the existence of electric fields (which in reality do not exist at all) with unphysical properties, meaning properties which are not consistent with the physics of what is really happening, which explains why the "fantasy" fields do not exist in reality, but only in a model of the plasma.

But let's return to gravity. Indeed, it is not the "end all and be all" of anything. However, it is there and it is part of the mix. But in any case, including that of no-gravity, the only correct way to formulate the physics of a plasma is to simultaneously combine Maxwell's equations, required by the presence of electromagnetic fields, and the equations of Newtonian mechanics, usually in the form of the Navier-Stokes equations, because you cannot express mass and mass conservation, momentum, kinetic energy & etc. using Maxwell's equations alone. This is readily done in the B,v paradigm because the velocity is a dynamical variable shared across the board by both Maxwell's equations and the Navier-Stokes equations. This cannot be done at all in the E,j paradigm because there are no dynamical variables common to both Maxwell's equations and the Navier-Stokes equations in that paradigm.

For these reasons I can confidently claim that the E,j paradigm you favor is in fact inferior to the B,v paradigm because the E,j paradigm makes a correct and proper evaluation of the physics of the plasma impossible.
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Old 12th February 2012, 11:14 PM   #6157
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Originally Posted by Michael Mozina View Post
Well, you're right about one thing, it's not "random". I guess the rationalization in play is that if you can't find a flaw in the actual maths provided, such as the math's found in those last two papers in the previous post to GM, just attack the messenger and pretend that behavior is a rational excuse to ignore the materials actually being presented. Your derogatory label (crackpot) is just like a creationist labeling me "evil" for providing them with scientific evidence that refutes their beliefs, and that derogatory label somehow allows them to "filter" out the truth. How sad. The E orientation isn't something you can simply "filter out". You've been caught by your own math since Maxwell's equations don't solve for ONLY B or ONLY E.
I found fatal flaws in your personal theories years ago. You could have used math to address those flaws, but you never did. Why not? You don't like me insinuating that you're a crackpot, but you could have fixed that, years ago. You chose not to do so. I can only conclude that you mind being called a crackpot less than you mind actually doing any math to test your theories. I think you actually like playing the martyr so much that you'll refuse to subject your own ideas to scrutiny just so you can suffer.

And your protestations about E orientation are nonsense. You can't point to a single mainstream physics article which actually gets Maxwell's equations wrong, can you? No, of course you can't. You can only blab about "orientation", you can't show that any of the solutions are wrong. Because that would require math, and you can't do math.

You've been caught by the filter. You could have escaped the filter years ago, but you don't want to. You can't actually bring yourself to do that, because if you tried, you might discover that you're wrong. And you'd rather be wrong and not know it than have to change your mind. You're too emotionally invested in nonsense to let it go, ever. You will eventually die thinking that your ideas were suppressed by some grand conspiracy, but that revelation was just around the corner, and then we'll all be sorry. It's sad, actually.
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Old 13th February 2012, 08:55 AM   #6158
Michael Mozina
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Originally Posted by GeeMack View Post
The continued incivility in dishonestly referring to people as "haters" for simply pointing out the lack of legitimate science in any electric Sun conjecture is noted.
There's nothing uncivil about noting that there are less than a dozen hard core EU "pseudo-skeptics" that spend their time in cyberspace bashing EU concepts. Just as creationists simply DENY the existence of "evidence" that they simply can't deal with, EU "critics" act exactly the same as your next sentence demonstrates:

Quote:
The failure to to scientifically address any of the relevant scientific concerns others have brought in is also noted.
Both of the last two links I handed you 'address' the E orientation of coronal loop activity. The fact you RUN from that evidence is no skin off my personal nose. The DENIAL process however is exactly the same as one experiences with a typical conversation with a creationist. No amount of "evidence" ever actually "registers".

It doesn't matter how much of Mann's maths or Onel's maths or Alfven's maths I put before a "hater". They simply refuse to drink.

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Old 13th February 2012, 09:14 AM   #6159
Michael Mozina
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Originally Posted by Tim Thompson View Post
Actually, yes there is. Furthermore, I have already explained exactly why.
No there isn't Tim. You simply made another of your many HANDWAVES about why you personally (or some authority figure you personally WORSHIP) thinks one orientation has merit over another IN SOME circumstances. So what?

I can easily cite quotes from Alfven that are already posted in this very thread that take the EXACT OPPOSITE position, including his famous 'nails in the coffin' speech at the conference where he presented his Double Layer paper. It's just hero worship Tim, nothing more. I got over my hero worship of Alfven. I suggest you take Parker off that soapbox before you hurt yourself. There's no point in choosing one when you can have BOTH any time you want BOTH.

Let's take a look at the part of his quote you're so worried about:

Quote:
Steady conditions often can be treated using the E, j paradigm, but the dynamics of time-dependent systems becomes difficult, if not impossible, because of the inability to express Newton's equation in terms of E and j in a tractable form. That is to say, E and j are proxies for B and v, but too remote from B and v to handle the momentum equation. So it is not possible to construct a workable set of dynamical field equations in terms of j and E from the equations of Newton and Maxwell. The generalized Ohm's law is often employed, but Ohm's law does not control the large scale dynamics. The tail does not wag the dog. This inadequacy has led to fantasy to complement the limited equations available in the E, j paradigm, attributing the leading dynamical role to an electric field E with unphysical properties.
Then again B is an inadequate representation of the the CURRENT that flows through that filament Tim! You're trying to build a mountain out of a molehill! Why not incorporate BOTH approaches when possible Tim? Why do you feel it has to be "exclusive" in the first place?

Quote:
Now, when you put this quote into your post, you chose to highlight the phrase "the tail does not wag the dog". Compare that to the phrases I have highlighted here, which include the words "inability", "not possible" and "unphysical".
Charge separation is not "unphysical" Tim. CURRENT is not "unphysical". These are properties of a CIRCUIT orientation to plasma physics.

Quote:
You chose to ignore them altogether, to your own detriment, because they are the heart of the argument.
They are evidently the "heart" of your personally hero worship argument perhaps, but so what? Alfven already nailed that MR coffin shut in current carrying environments Tim according to Alfven himself.

Quote:
The letters MHD stand for the word magnetohydrodynamics. The "hydrodynamics" part brings with itself an absolute requirement to include the dynamics of the plasma as a fluid flow.
Do you think Alfven didn't know that when he wrote about coronal loops from the E orientation Tim?

Quote:
All objects that have a non-zero rest mass are required to adhere to the laws of Newtonian mechanics, or special relativity if the objects are traveling close to the speed of light. Since most space plasmas are non-relativistic, we can under normal circumstances ignore Einstein and satisfy ourselves with Newton. This must be true, and absolutely is always true, even in the presence of electromagnetic fields and the application of Maxwell's equations.
So? Nothing about accepting the legitimacy of the E orientation precludes us from INCORPORATING a B orientation as well Tim!

Quote:
The tail end of your post is an outstanding example of your complete failure to understand the argument and the physics behind it.
Wrong. The mainstreams REFUSAL to embrace CHARGE SEPARATION is why it continues to try to get the magnetic tail to wag the electric dog Tim. The mainstream still seems oblivious to the fact that there are TWO DISTINCT types of solar flares, not one, and that there is charge separation between the sun and the heliosphere. Until they accept that fact, even Birkeland knew more about he universe than so called 'modern' astronomers.

The rest of your post looks to be rehash because you're stuck in a fallacy rut. It's not an "either or" proposition Tim. That's a false dichotomy fallacy you're trying to stuff down my throat. It's not going to work. Unlike you, I'm not emotionally attached to ONE or the other.

Last edited by Michael Mozina; 13th February 2012 at 09:27 AM.
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Old 13th February 2012, 09:25 AM   #6160
Michael Mozina
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
I found fatal flaws in your personal theories years ago.
No you didn't. You ALLEGED many things based on STANDARD solar theory concepts, nothing more.

Quote:
You could have used math to address those flaws, but you never did. Why not?
Which "math" would *INSTANTLY* change your opinions Zig? Did you read any of Birkeland's many maths? Alfven's?

Quote:
You don't like me insinuating that you're a crackpot, but you could have fixed that, years ago. You chose not to do so. I can only conclude that you mind being called a crackpot less than you mind actually doing any math to test your theories. I think you actually like playing the martyr so much that you'll refuse to subject your own ideas to scrutiny just so you can suffer.
I've provided this crew with TONS of maths related to coronal loop activity from the E orientation and not a single one of you really cares. You're still in pure denial of the fact that it's USEFUL TOO! Birkeland's lab work doesn't even get you take a second look, not to mention CHAPTERS full of maths he presented. If math was all that mattered, none of you would be EU "critics" at this point.

Quote:
And your protestations about E orientation are nonsense. You can't point to a single mainstream physics article which actually gets Maxwell's equations wrong, can you?
You can't point to anything in that paper by Mann and Onel, or anything in Alfven's work that actually get's Maxwell's equations wrong, can you?

Quote:
No, of course you can't.
Ditto!

Quote:
You can only blab about "orientation", you can't show that any of the solutions are wrong. Because that would require math, and you can't do math.
Alfven did math. He rejected MR math till the day he died. Why? What then makes "math" so special in your mind?

Quote:
You've been caught by the filter. You could have escaped the filter years ago, but you don't want to.
I've presented maths for you. You're the one that cannot escape the FILTER you impose on any and all EU oriented ideas. It's a FILTER that prevents you from even seeing the obvious flaw in your own argument since you can't show where Alfven misused Maxwell's equations either! It's one big FILTER that filters out any math you don't want to look at *HONESTLY*.

Quote:
You can't actually bring yourself to do that, because if you tried, you might discover that you're wrong. And you'd rather be wrong and not know it than have to change your mind. You're too emotionally invested in nonsense to let it go, ever. You will eventually die thinking that your ideas were suppressed by some grand conspiracy, but that revelation was just around the corner, and then we'll all be sorry. It's sad, actually.
I'm actually less emotionally attached to being right than any of the "haters' that cannot and will not even attempt to find any mathematical flaw in Alfven's work, yet blatantly reject it anyway.

I can't make you read those maths Zig. I can't make you DEAL WITH THEM ON THEIR OWN MERIT. No amount of bashing my personal math skills will change the historical fact that those maths exist for you to read and address anytime you feel like doing so.
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