Physicists analyze rotational dynamics of galaxies and influence of the photon mass

Physicists analyze rotational dynamics of galaxies and influence of the photon mass
The spiral structure of our galaxy, the Milky Way, in an artistic impression Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

The rotation of stars in galaxies such as the Milky Way is puzzling. The orbital speeds of stars should decrease with their distance from the center of the galaxy, but in fact, stars in the middle and outer regions of galaxies have the same rotational speed. This may be due to the gravitational effect of matter that we can't see. But although researchers have been seeking it for decades, the existence of dark matter has yet to be definitively proven and we still don't know what it might be made of. With this in mind, the physicists Dmitri Ryutov, Dmitry Budker and Victor Flambaum have suggested that the rotational dynamics of galaxies might be explained by other factors. They hypothesize that the mass of photons, which are particles of light, might be responsible.

Professor Dmitri Ryutov, who recently retired from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, U.S., is an expert in plasma physics. He was awarded the American Physical Society's (APS) 2017 Maxwell Prize for Plasma Physics for his achievements in the field. Physicists generally credit Ryutov with establishing the for the mass of the photon. As this mass is extremely small, even if it is nonzero, it is usually ignored when analyzing atomic and nuclear processes. But even a vanishingly tiny mass could, according to the collaborative proposal, have an effect on large-scale astrophysical phenomena.

While visiting Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU), Ryutov, his host Professor Dmitry Budker of the Helmholtz Institute Mainz (HIM), and Professor Victor Flambaum, fellow of the Gutenberg Research College of Mainz University, decided to take a closer look at the idea. They were interested in how the infinitesimally small mass of the photon could have an effect on massive . The mechanism at the core of the physicists' assumption is a consequence of what is known as Maxwell-Proca equations. These would allow additional centripetal forces to be generated as a result of the electromagnetic stresses in a galaxy.

Are the effects as strong as those exerted by dark matter?

"The hypothetical effect we are investigating is not the result of increased gravity," explained Dmitry Budker. This effect may occur concurrently with the assumed influence of dark . It may even—under certain circumstances—completely eliminate the need to evoke as a factor when it comes to explaining rotation curves. Rotation curves express the relationship between the orbital speeds of stars in a galaxy and their radial distance from the galaxy's center. "By assuming a certain photon mass, much smaller than the current upper limit, we can show that this mass would be sufficient to generate additional forces in a galaxy and that these forces would be roughly large enough to explain the rotation curves," said Budker. "This conclusion is extremely exciting."

The physicists even ventured a step further. They looked into how protostars form and discovered that their hypothesis has other implications. It predicts that long-lived, relatively lightweight stars, such as the sun, would have highly elliptical orbits. "Actual observations clearly don't agree with this prediction, meaning our theory can't explain everything." Proca-force effects can thus only be responsible for some of the anomalies in the rotation curves. "We don't currently consider photon mass to be the solution to the rotation-curve problem. But it could be part of the solution," concluded Budker. "However, we need to keep an open mind as long as we do not actually know what dark matter is."


Explore further

Astronomers find that dark matter dominates across cosmic time

More information: D. D. Ryutov et al, A Hypothetical Effect of the Maxwell–Proca Electromagnetic Stresses on Galaxy Rotation Curves, The Astrophysical Journal (2019). DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/aaf63a
Journal information: Astrophysical Journal

Provided by Universitaet Mainz
Citation: Physicists analyze rotational dynamics of galaxies and influence of the photon mass (2019, March 6) retrieved 19 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-03-physicists-rotational-dynamics-galaxies-photon.html
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Mar 06, 2019
This essay offers an alternative view:

Anomalous Rotation of Galaxies and the Addition of Masses
https://www.faceb...2216884/

Mar 06, 2019
Arxiv version of the paper here;

https://arxiv.org...9514.pdf

Mar 06, 2019
From the summary and conclusions.

This paper considers a possible role of the photon mass inthe rotational dynamics of galaxies. The basic mechanism is related to the additional centripetal force provided by the magnetic field stresses enhanced by the Proca mechanism. The effect is, therefore, not an effect of additional gravity force. It may act in parallel with the effect of the dark matter and, in some range of parameters, may completely eliminate the need for the dark matter for the explanation of the rotation curve (although this is not the case for our galaxy).


Mar 06, 2019
Binary Starry Orbital's
phys,org> The orbital speeds of stars should decrease with their distance from the center of the galaxy, but in fact, stars in the middle and outer regions of galaxies have the same rotational speed

The thing about binary orbital's
like gyroscopic orbital's
all
a binary orbital requires, is to make one complete orbital
it matters not
if the orbital moves sideways the distance of the galaxy
in 250millioyears
as long as it completes one binary orbit
in the same time
as the galaxy makes one orbit
because
the galaxy takes 250million years
as the average starry separation takes 250milion years in binary orbit
is why the galaxy has constant rotation
is due
to the average starry binary separation
The galaxy rotates at average binary separation orbital of its stars

Mar 06, 2019
Since Neutrinos have some mass, imagine EONS of Neutrino production/accumulating effects if Universe is infinite/eternal rather than just few billion years claimed by (increasingly falsified) bb-hypothesis. Add such a factor to all the other factors I already long pointed out and we can explain the rotation curves very well indeed without anymore bb-biased 'interpretation' of the observational data (eg, the claim that the observed CMB is 'relic radiation' (from alleged BB etc) has been falsified already; see my posts in thread...

https://phys.org/...html#jCp

...wherein BB-promulgators were given every chance to respond/refute the alternative explanation provided for CMB not dependent on (alleged) BB etc 'interpretations' observed data. Nothing has been forthcoming to date, hence they tacitly admit I was correct; that BB etc has been thus falsified by the simple expedient of applying objectivity and known science facts). :)

Mar 06, 2019
It WOULD be ironic... if dark matter turned out to be...

Mar 06, 2019
Dark matter is a sea of massive photons that fill 'empty' space and are displaced by ordinary matter. The state of displacement of the massive photons is the physical manifestion of curved spacetime. The state of displacement of the massive photons is the quantization of gravity.

Mar 06, 2019
Recently two papers have been published. The first one deals with the measurement of the speed of rotation of galaxies and, in our view, closes the issue of the existence of dark matter. The second one argues that the expansion of the universe is not accelerating. However, this fact does not answer the question as to what in general is the cause of the universe's expansion and does not address the widespread opinion that 70% of the universe consists of dark energy.
https://www.acade...k_Energy

Mar 10, 2019
Newton explained gravity as interaction between two bodies
in the flat Solar system
#
Einstein explained gravity when there is only one single body (Sun)
The gravity-masses distorted the flat continuum of the Universe
only in Its very small , local region
Not the all flat continuum of the Universe was curved, only a small,
local region was changed around the Sun
#
What is caused the photons to change their straight way
in the Universe: the gravity-masses or the hot atmosphere around Sun ?
( the cold light / photons automatically flow in a hot region,
like a cold air enters in your warm room when window is opened)
#
It is very possible that photons change their way by sum
of two factors ( the hot temperature + gravity-masses ) and this
one factor ( the hot temperature of accelerated gravity-masses )
keeps a gravity-Sun be our ''living-Sun''

Mar 11, 2019
But wait...
I though photon's were mass-less...

Mar 11, 2019
Meh. Big problem: photons having mass means they can't move at the speed of light. That throws relativity under the bus, along with a lot of very sensitive measurements of the speed of light.

I ain't buyin' this one.

Mar 11, 2019
But wait...
I though photon's were mass-less...

Do photons hold mass?
Nope. They are not even Catholic.

nomás....nomás....nomás...

[I know..I know...I'll show myself out.]

Mar 11, 2019
From the link;

They hypothesize that the mass of photons, which....

What are they talking about?
Even any third-rate quantum physicist should be able to tell you photons do NOT have mass!
I thought perhaps they have been misquoted but noticed they mentioned "photon mass" in their original report!

https://iopscienc...63a/meta

Mar 11, 2019
Perhaps when they said "photon mass", that was an edit mistake and they actually meant "photon energy" or "photon momentum" or "photon wavelength"? any of those other things would make a bit more sense but I still don't see how it would make a whole lot of sense given this context. Its a mystery what they meant. Anyone?

Mar 11, 2019
No, they mean photon mass. This appears to be Ryutov's pet hobby horse.

Mar 11, 2019
Arxiv version of the paper here;

https://arxiv.org...9514.pdf

Yes, this seems to be a bit of a fringe hypothesis. There is a lengthy paper on the subject, and its implications, here;

The mass of the photon
http://www.paper....TD0MxeQh

Mar 11, 2019
I found a couple citing papers but they were in pretty sketchy journals. I would say more than "a bit" fringe, though apparently not completely off the map.

Mar 11, 2019
"photon mass" can appear as "photon energy"
exactly as photon can be corpuscular and wave simultaneously.
=====

Mar 11, 2019
@rockart
dark matter consists of dark particles . . .
maybe of ''virtual particles'' . . .
Dirac's virtual particles . . .

Mar 11, 2019
@rockart
dark matter consists of dark particles . . .
maybe of ''virtual particles'' . . .
Dirac's virtual particles . . .

Obviously, satire is not your strong suit... :-)

Mar 11, 2019
RC,
Since Neutrinos have some mass, imagine EONS of Neutrino production/accumulating effects if Universe is infinite/eternal rather than just few billion years claimed by (increasingly falsified) bb-hypothesis.

I would imagine 13 billion years would produce more than a few neutrinos...

Mar 12, 2019
@rockart
dark matter consists of dark particles . . .
maybe of ''virtual particles'' . . .
Dirac's virtual particles . . .

Obviously, satire is not your strong suit... :-)


ha, ha, ha. . . Man, Mr.
we know as much about dark matter as
about virtual particles . . .
so, every assumption is welcome
===


Mar 12, 2019
@Whyde.
RC,
Since Neutrinos have some mass, imagine EONS of Neutrino production/accumulating effects if Universe is infinite/eternal rather than just few billion years claimed by (increasingly falsified) bb-hypothesis.

I would imagine 13 billion years would produce more than a few neutrinos...
Yes. Further imagine how many would have been produced and involved within our observable universal space if our observable universal space extent accumulated Neutrinos for Trillions of years plus.

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