Journal of Theoretics

Absolute Time Theory

 Author:  Jones, BD

 

Abstract:  The theory briefly described herein differs from other space-time theories in that it leads to absolute universal time without any need for the notion of absolute motion.  Both simple and direct proofs are included. 

Keywords:  special relativity, absolute time, Einstein.

 

Known Fallacies of Special Relativity Theory (SRT)

Below are the six major SRT-proponent fallacies, stated in their corrected formulations:

[1] The Lorentz viewpoint does not require an absolute frame. (That is, the fallacy here is the false belief by many SRT-proponents that Lorentz's theory needs the absolute frame.)

[2] SRT has not passed the only experimental test that matters, viz., and the timed one-way light speed experiment.

[3] Maxwell's equations were never related to the rods and clocks of an inertial reference frame, and are therefore not required to take on the same form in any or all frames of reference. (These equations relate electrical and magnetic fields to each other, not to some reference frame's clocks and rods.  Indeed, Maxwell himself, albeit unnecessarily, assumed an absolute rest frame for light's supposedly needed medium. Maxwell never measured either the round-trip, one-clock speed of light, or the one way/two-clock speed of light. His equations have nothing directly to do or say about either speed.)

[4] Unlike light's round-trip speed, there is not any unique measured value for light's one-way speed.  In other words, whereas it would proper to say, "the round-trip light speed law," we now should say only, "a one-way light speed law," because the latter depends upon the way the two clocks have been calibrated.  In addition, there is more than one way to do this.

[5] There is, however, only one physically correct value for light's one-way speed, and that is the value that has been measured by correctly calibrated clocks.

[6] Einstein's method for calibrating clocks (based upon his definition of simultaneity which shall further discussed below) does not take into account the simple fact that the frames have different velocities; therefore, his clocks are incorrectly calibrated.

[7] SRT does not explicitly explain the physical results of any experiment.

 

Proof that Einstein's Clocks are Individually Calibrated Incorrectly

Given: A room in space with two adjacent light sources on the left-hand wall aimed at two adjacent clocks located opposite the sources on the right-hand wall.

Setup: Light rays are simultaneously emitted from sources on the left-hand wall and move toward the two adjacent clocks on the right-hand wall. 

Facts:  Firstly, due to light's source independent nature, the two rays will remain side by side. Second critical fact:  If one of these clocks moves away from the wall before the ray arrives, it will be hit by the rays before the rays reach the wall, but the other clock will not be hit by the rays until the rays reaches the wall.

Proposition:  Since this temporal difference will occur no matter when the ray was emitted, we can say that the rays were emitted when the clocks were at the wall (even though there is no way to prove this).  To be more specific, we can place each clock at point (x,0,0) in an inertial reference frame.  Let each frame have a light source at its origin. This setup is pictured below:

(> = light ray)

>---------------------------- clock A

>---------------------------- clock B

|<------x in each frame----->|

Per our allowable assumption above, the two light rays start when the two clocks are adjacent and equidistant from the light rays.

Thought Experiments:  As before, the two light rays will move side-by-side regardless of their sources' different velocities.  The following diagram shows what would happen next:

---------------------> clock A

--------------------->------- clock B

As in our room example, the clocks separate before the light rays arrive, so the always-adjacent rays will reach one clock before the other.

We will apply Einstein's definition of  "synchronization."  If we let the light emission time (at the adjacent origins) be zero in each frame, then Einstein's definition has both clocks reading the same time x/c (c is the speed of light) even though they are in fact started at different times.

The first step of Einstein's "synchronization" process is pictured below:

---------------------> clock A starts & made to read x/c

--------------------->------- clock B not yet started

As we said, Einstein's definition has clock B read this same time x/c when it is started at a different time by the light rays. These times are absolutely different because it is impossible for the adjacent light rays to be in two places at the same time (all observers in all frames seeing one clock being started by the rays when the other clock is not at that specific location).

Analysis:  Clearly, Einstein's method for calibrating clocks does not take into account the simple fact that the frames have different velocities, which of course means that the frames move differently relative to any passing entity, including a light ray. We shall see later that Einstein chose to set his clocks in a manner to cancel all frame motion relative to the light because he believed that nature would otherwise never let us set them. For example, when we try to use a simple clock transport to synchronize clocks, nature steps in and sets then just asynchronously enough to produce one-way light speed invariance and isotropy.

Conclusion: Any theory whose clocks are in various frames are started at different times, but then made to read the same time, is a theory whose clocks cannot be individually calibrated accurately.

 

Comments on Einstein's Definition Simultaneity

(a) Einstein's clocks can't measure any one-way speed correctly

(b) Einstein's clocks are not synchronous

Further explanation of (a):  In our prior example, all observers in all frames agree that the two clocks were started at different times, which we can label Ta and Tb without knowing their actual values, but knowing only that they differ. Since both origin clocks read zero at the start of the light rays' one-way trips, the times Ta and Tb qualitatively represent the rays' different one-way travel times with respect to the frames.  Of course, each ray traveled the same frame distance x.  Therefore, the correct value of light's one-way speed with respect to frame A is x/Ta, and the correct value of light's one-way speed with respect to frame B is x/Tb. Additionally we know that Einstein's theory incorrectly has all frames getting the same value with respect to light's one-way speed.

Further explanation of (b):  Clocks can be set per Einstein's definition by simply starting them at zero by light rays that are simultaneously emitted midway between the clocks.  It is easy to prove that the above-mentioned (cancelled-by-Einstein) frame movement relative to light prevents Einstein's clocks from being synchronized in all frames but one.  The proof of this is shown in the diagram below that shows three random frames A, B, and C using Einstein's definition to calibrate their clocks (note:  <> represents two light rays moving in opposite directions):

clock A1 O---------------Xa---------------<>---------------Xa---------------O clock A2 (frame A)

              clock B1 O----------Xb----------<>----------Xb----------O clock B2 (frame B)

                        clock C1 O-------Xc-------<>------Xc--------O clock C2 (frame C)

When the six light rays are simultaneously emitted, clock pairs A1 & A2, B1 & B2, and C1 & C2, are each equidistant from the point of emission.  We will assume that this point is attached to frame A. We will also assume that the light ray pairs move symmetrically about this A-frame emission point. Clearly, due to their different velocities, all of the other frames' clock pairs cannot move symmetrically about this emission point, and of course clock pairs symmetry is synonymous with clock pair synchronization because the clock-starting signal pairs are symmetrical.  Obviously, a clock that moves toward its signal will be started before a clock that is moving away from its signal.

Additional Conclusion:  Einstein's definition sets clocks asynchronously in all of the frames but one.

Explanation:  Of course, the physical uniqueness of the one frame in which Einstein's clocks are synchronous cannot be detected by using his clocks because they are set to cancel out all differences in frame velocity such that all of the frames get the same value for light's one-way speed.  However, if synchronous clocks were used, light's one-way speed would be c only in that one unique frame which does not move with respect to light.

It is only in this unique frame that Maxwell's equations can apply.  In other words, contrary to the standard relativistic view, these equations are not meant to have the same form in all frames, but rather only one frame, the frame that is at rest with respect to light. Maxwell believed this frame to be the undetectable absolute aether frame, but I have found that it is not necessary to assume an absolute rest frame.

The solution is to assume that the unique frame is the one that is at rest relative to the center of mass of the universe (UCM).  However, it must quickly be added that there is no need to assume an absolute motion state for the UCM.

The reason that we can get by without having an absolute frame is simple; the three intrinsic distortions of the full Lorentz theory (which must be taken into account when making any attempt to synchronize clocks) are not related to some absolute frame but rather to light's speed relative to the UCM, regardless of the latter's state of motion.

As promised earlier, I will now expound on Einstein's view of time. Specifically, we will show that Einstein chose to set the clocks in a manner to cancel all frame motion relative to light because he believed that nature would never let us set them otherwise.

Einstein in Chapter VIII of his book Relativity states, "It has been suggested that we could absolutely determine the temporal separation of two spatially separated events by simply using light rays from the events. At first glance, it does seem that this would work because why shouldn't an observer who is located midway between two events, and who sees the light rays from them reach his eyes absolutely simultaneously, not be able to conclude that the events themselves occurred absolutely simultaneously? However, upon closer inspection, we uncover the following very serious problem: How we can be sure that the light rays from the events traveled at truly equal speeds along their equal paths? Clearly, we cannot do this unless we already had at our disposal the means of measuring time, and since we do not have the means of measuring time, but are in fact now looking for it, we are merely moving in a logical circle! And the only way to break out of this circle is to merely stipulate 'equal' one-way light 'speeds' in both directions. This definition can be applied to actual clocks by sending out light rays (absolutely) simultaneously from the point midway between the clocks, and then letting the clocks be started on zero by the arriving light rays. Then, by definition, the occurrence times of two distant events is to be judged by light rays from the events with the stipulation that these light rays took a 'time' x/c to travel the frame distance x. Going back to that logical circle, we were unable to simply assume truly equal one-way light travel speeds relative to the observer because different frames move differently with respect to any passing light ray.  As my train/lightning flashes example showed, when my definition of 'simultaneity' is applied, frame movement relative to the light rays from the observed events causes observers in different frames to see these 'messenger' light rays arrive differently. Therefore, one observer may see the rays arrive absolutely simultaneously, whereas the other observer may see them arrive at absolutely different times. This is known as 'the relativity of simultaneity.' It clearly says nothing about the actual occurrence times of the events, but it does give us a consistent system, and it is probably the best we can do without having the means of actually measuring time.”

Einstein explicitly admitted that he did not possess the means for measuring time. He also explicitly stated that frames move differently relative to approaching light rays which come from distant events. He also said that this frame movement causes the relativity of simultaneity. It's not that an event actually occurs at an infinite number of different times or that two spatially separated events actually have an infinite number of different temporal separations, but it is a fact that each frame moves differently with respect to the light rays from events, and it's the fact that Einstein's observers use the arrival times of these rays to be "the times of the events with respect to my frame."

There can be no doubt that Einstein believed that light actually moves at different one-way speeds in different directions. There can therefore be no doubt that he believed that we could measure these different speeds "if we ... had at our disposal the means of measuring time" (his words). There can be no doubt that Einstein never had at his disposal the means for measuring time.

Later in his book, Einstein declared that "the special theory of relativity revealed the physical equivalence of all inertial systems." However, this cannot be true because a theory whose clocks cannot correctly measure time cannot yield correct results regarding space-time physics.  What an amazing revelation this is when much of science is time related.  Even in SRT, each frame is physically unique.  For example, there's only one frame that does not move relative to light. Returning to Einstein's roadblock (that "logical circle"), if Einstein had had at his disposal the means of measuring time, then he would then measure light's one-way speed in this particular frame to be the same in both directions.  Moreover, the fact that Einstein did not have at his disposal the means of measuring time did not do away with the physical uniqueness of this frame. This unique frame exists today, as well as all of the other unique frames for whom light's one-way speed is not only different in different directions (in any given frame), but for whom light's one-way speed differs from frame to frame (just as we saw above).  Clocks can be started "The Einstein way" (i.e., in accordance with his stipulation that light's two-clock, one-way "speed" be "c" in all frames) by absolutely simultaneously sending out light signals from the point midway between the clocks, then letting the clocks start on zero.  As we know, the only way that these rays' actual one-way travel times can be equal is if the frame (and its clocks) has no motion with respect to these clock-starting light signals.  In other words, there is only one frame whose clocks will be started by absolute simultaneity of the Einstein's clock-starting procedure.  In other words, Einstein's clocks, in all frames but one, are asynchronous.

Going back once more to Einstein's explicit admission that he did not have at his disposal the means of measuring time, we might ask him why he did not use the simple method of very slow clock transport to acquire the missing means for measuring time. Unless a clock's atomic rhythm varies with clock speed, two touching clocks which have been started at absolutely the same time must remain (absolutely) synchronous even when one is moved away (as long as there is negligible acceleration). In fact, all acceleration can be eliminated by starting two clocks when they meet in passing while one of them is moving inertially (with respect to the other) and then letting this moving clock start a third clock in passing to match it, and with this third clock always being at rest relative to the first.

This proves that Einstein believed in physical clock slowing, where a clock's intrinsic or internal atomic rhythm varies with the clock's speed.  But what does the word "speed" mean here?  Remember that a clock can have only one intrinsic atomic rhythm at a time, and yet it at the same time can be moving at many different speeds relative to the other frames. Therefore, the word "speed" in this context cannot mean "speed relative to an inertial reference frame" (unless of course that frame happened to be the only one which has no motion with respect to light, and whose clocks are therefore synchronous even if they were started by Einstein's process).

Therefore, the best way to define the word "speed" as it was used above is to say that it is the clock's speed relative to the universe's center of mass.  That said, leaves open the question as to whether the UCM is at absolute rest or not.  Additionally, we shall see in more detail below that this is a question we need not answer in order to have what we want… which is that elusive creature known as the "means of measuring time."  Since we do not need to assume that the UCM is at absolute rest, there is nothing wrong with using the UCM as a background reference frame in this theory.

As we know, light rays traveling through "empty" interstellar space can neither be slowed down nor speeded up (i.e., they cannot be accelerated), and source movement through space does not affect light's speed though space. Contrary to popular belief, the second postulate of relativity theory says simply that light's propagation speed (i.e., its speed relative to the UCM) is constant and should not be confused with invariant or isotropic speed.

In his 1905 relativity paper, Einstein did not use the word "postulate" when referring to light's one-way invariance and isotropy. He instead called this statement, "a principle based upon a definition, which was based upon a stipulation and that was based on past experience."

 

Here are the only current predictions of SRT:

[1] Clocks cannot be synchronized.

[2] Whenever we try to synchronize clocks, nature will always be able to not only prevent synchronization, but will also be able to cause the clocks to be set in such a way that light's one-way speed, per these clocks, is invariant and isotropic.

The phrase "past experience" above refers to the fact that so far all clock synchronization proposals have not only failed, but have also ended with clocks that yield one-way light speed invariance and isotropy. A good example of this would be in the clock transport case.

At this point, it is necessary to show that Einstein misunderstood the first postulate (the principle of relativity). This principle, contrary to Einstein's opinion, neither calls for one-way light speed invariance nor precludes one-way light speed variance with frame velocity. Yes, the principle of relativity (PR) does call for the laws of physics to be frame independent, but only experimentation can say what the laws are. Therefore, the PR cannot be applied until at least one frame has obtained an experimental result.

The problem with light's one-way speed is that there are many different one-way light speed experiments. Contrastingly, there is only one-way round-trip light speed experiment.  This is where a round-trip experiment uses only one clock and two rods. In any given frame, this single clock can have only one intrinsic atomic rhythm, and each rod can have only one physical length. No other physical configuration is possible. Therefore, light's round-trip speed can have only one value in any given frame. However, the two-clock, one-way determination of the speed of light involves the added ingredient of clock calibration.

Since there are many different ways to calibrate clocks, the clock calibration process must be specified for any one-way light speed determination. Of course, since no one has ever made any one-way, two-clock measurement of light's speed {using comoving clocks), we are talking theoretically. For example, if one were to specify the clock transport calibration procedure, then we can all agree that light's one-way speed will be isotropic per the clocks set by clock transport. However, clocks started by light signals could have yielded a different result because there is no known connection between these two clock calibration processes. In other words, just because clocks slow with their increasing speed through space, this does not necessarily mean that light signals could not yield synchronized clocks; indeed, we can all agree that source-dependent light signals would synchronize clocks.

To show how we can have absolute universal time without first detecting the absolute motion, we could begin by simply specifying synchronous clocks. Here is a theoretical description of such clocks: 

In space, imagine unstarted clocks at the ends of a rod, which are moving to the right at speed s with respect to the UCM, where s is less than c. To the left of the rod's midpoint, there is an object moving toward the right-hand clock. This object's speed relative to the UCM is to be s + r, where 0<r< s and where s + r is less than c. From the other direction, we have an object moving toward the left-hand clock, and its speed with respect to the UCM, is s - r.  This means of course that each object has the same speed r relative to its clock, and because the distances are also equal, the travel times must also be equal. Therefore, the clocks will be started simultaneously, unlike clocks, which are started with light signals, and will move at different speeds with respect to the clocks, given any rod speed greater than zero (with respect to the UCM).  Assuming that the Michelson-Morley experiment is correct (that moving rods physically contract when they move through space), this is the only possible physical explanation for the observed null result. For the same reason, we know that either an additional general length contraction (i.e., one affecting both rods equally) or intrinsic clock slowing can physically explain the Kennedy-Thorndike experiment null result, with the latter being a reasonable explanation.

We know that intrinsic mass must vary with an object's speed through space or else we could have long ago used identically-propelled inertial objects to synchronize clocks.  Therefore, given two synchronous clocks attached to the ends of a horizontally-moving rod whose ruler-measured length is z, light's one-way speed in one direction will be c2/(c-s) = max, and in the other direction it will be c2/(c+s) = min, where s is the rod's speed relative to the UCM. Since these formulas take into account both intrinsic clock slowing and intrinsic rod length variance, we do not have to use un-slowed clocks attached to an un-shrunken rod in order to find our speed with respect to the UCM, which of course is either (c2/min)-c or c-(c2/max), either of which yields the value of s. After a frame's speed with respect to the UCM has been determined, the frame's clocks can be corrected for slowing and being perched atop a shrunken rod (because these physical distortions are proportional to frame speed with respect to the UCM, and we know exactly how they are proportional to frame speed, thanks to the round-trip experiments).

 

Discussion

Neither Einstein nor anyone else can prove that clocks cannot be synchronized, and yet we live as though the case for absolute time were closed.  This is obviously bad science. Given all of the above, it should now be clear that the most urgent and most ignored problem in space-time physics is the question of how to synchronize clocks. I have found a method for producing synchronous clocks that works in thought experiment.  This experiment properly takes into account the intrinsic distortions of mass, length, and clock rhythm, and moreover, it does not ignore the fact that there is no test for absolute perpendicularity (when one rod moves relative to another).  It is hoped that the concept of “absolute time” presented here can be further delineated and proven by physical experiment. 

 

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