Everything that has been said so far about gravity may or may not be entirely true. Particle physics is ‘determined’ to blow up all certainties
According to the theoretical physicist Erik Verlinde , from the University of Amsterdam, gravity is a complete illusion, it is just a mirage, the result of much more complex interactions that have not yet we are able to understand.
But let’s start with the basics. In the 16th century, Galileo Galilei discovered that objects move horizontally thanks to inertia, in such a way that, if there are no other forces affecting them, such as friction, they could continue to advance infinitely. From this point of view, he wanted to find out what happened to objects in free fall and intuited that they had a constant acceleration involved.
To analyze whether the intensity of the acceleration depended on the mass of the object, he rolled cannon balls of different alloys down an inclined plane and found that the acceleration was the same in all cases. Galileo’s problem in obtaining a completely reliable result was the friction offered by the ramp that he used as an inclined plane.
In 1581 he tried to solve it by launching two balls of different density from the top of the tower in his hometown, Pisa, but in this case, the friction would be provided by the earth’s atmosphere.
Unfortunately, Galileo could not be one of the thousands of spectators who saw the demonstration of his theory, televised in July 1971 from an optimal scope: the atmosphereless surface of the Moon. Astronaut David R. Scott stood before the lunar module camera with a hawk feather in one hand and a geologist’s hammer in the other. He dropped both objects at the same time and proved to the world that they both reached the lunar floor at the same time.
Does a hammer or a feather fall on the Moon first?
We attract the Earth just like she attracts us
The first scientist who, in the seventeenth century, gave mathematical solidity to the concept of gravity was Isaac Newton . From his famous Law of Universal Gravitation and his laws of motion it follows that two objects attract each other with the same force, but in opposite directions and with an acceleration inversely proportional to the square of the distance that separates them, which he wants To say that, although it seems incredible, we attract the Earth exactly as she attracts us.
The more matter an object has, the greater gravitational force it exerts on another
The secret that we are always the ones who fall, and not the other way around, lies in the mass: the more matter an object has, the greater gravitational force it exerts on another. Newton’s theory made it possible to explain a large number of natural phenomena that until then had been a mystery, such as the movements of the planets, the tides, produced by the gravitational action of the Moon, or the laws that govern the fall of bodies, and it remained in force until a new genius of science came to deal with this ubiquitous phenomenon.
Einstein and spacetime
At the beginning of the 20th century, Albert Einstein interpreted gravity within the parameters of his theory of relativity and defined it as a distortion of space-time caused by existing objects in it. The German scientist considered the existence of a kind of space-time fabric that massive bodies could deform, like a massive ball rolling on an extended sheet would. The curvature that occurs in space-time is what determines the trajectory of the bodies in that region. Or, to use the interpretation of scientists C. Misner, K. Thorne, and J. Wheeler, matter tells space how to bend and space tells matter how to move. Einstein predicted phenomena such as that a very powerful gravitational field can deflect a ray of light, a fact that has just been verified once again during the eclipse of the sun that could be seen last month from Africa.
In more recent times, particle physics has hypothesized the existence of gravitons, particles that surround bodies and determine their gravity, but which, for the moment, remain confined to the theoretical field, because no one has managed to verify its existence.
The theory of the Dutch physicist that has turned everything upside down
The truth is that gravity has never been fully explained. There have always been pieces that don’t fit. The theoretical physicist Erik Verlinde , from the University of Amsterdam, launched a theory that many considered out of the pot, however, it may be one of the greatest revolutions in our understanding of the forces of nature. According to Verlinde, in addition, his theory allows to explain some of the great enigmas of the cosmos, such as dark matter.
Verlinde focuses his explanation on thermodynamics. We review three fundamental laws of thermodynamics: the conservation of energy, the irreversibility of nature and something fascinating, and that is that everything tends to disorder, entropy. Verlinde claims that “gravity does not exist” and that science has been analyzing it incorrectly.
The idea that gravity is related to entropy and that it might not be a fundamental force has generated quite a bit of controversy in the scientific world and many try to show whether it is true, or whether it is incorrect.
Margot Brouwer of the Leiden Observatory has put theoretical physicist Erik Verlinde’s new theory of gravity to the test, for the first time through the lensing effect of gravity. Brouwer and his team measured the distribution of gravity around more than 33,000 galaxies to test the prediction of Verlinde, a scientist at the University of Amsterdam. He concluded that Verlinde’s theory agrees with the measured gravity distribution. Brouwer concluded that Verlinde’s theory agrees with the measured gravity distribution. The results have been published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
Thus, the basic manuals for understanding the world still have pages to fill.