Relativity and Cosmology


Einstein Beyond Relativity

Authors: Rodney Bartlett

A little over 4 centuries ago, Galileo concluded - and possibly confirmed by experiment - that different weights hit the ground at the same time when dropped from a height (discounting air resistance). This agrees with Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity; which proposes that gravity is the curvature of space-time pushing objects towards, say, the surface of a planet. It says this curvature acts equally on all bodies, making massive and less massive ones fall at equal rates. However, Einstein published a paper in 1919 (four years after General Relativity) asking if gravitation plays an essential role in formation of matter's particles. If it does, there would be more gravity acting on a massive body and it would fall slightly faster. The rate at which different objects fall is the subject of a French-backed space experiment called Microscope. Einstein's 1919 paper did more than suggest limitations of his general relativity. It seems to have been the launching pad for his Unified Field Theory; which occupied the last 30 years of his life, sought to unite gravitation with electromagnetism, and proposed that this unified field connected all parts of time and space. While the unified field theory is generally considered a failure, my own conviction is that it could transform into a world-changing success through the application of quantum mechanics, something Einstein didn't approve of because he regarded it as incomplete.

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[v1] 2017-10-15 00:16:04

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