Figure 1. (Left) A solar flare showing the twisting motion characteristic of a Birkeland current.
(Right) An X-ray image of the sun showing the active lower corona.
But, there are many reasons to doubt this presently accepted theory of how our Sun (and every other star) generates its radiant energy. In almost every article written for the popular press, the very first sentence usually contains some reference to the "fact" that the Sun is, at its core, a thermonuclear fusion reactor. The heat (energy) produced in this core then "rises to the Sun's surface by convection (a laminar fluid flow) and is there radiated out into space". The granulations we see on the photosphere are supposedly the tops of these convection columns. The fusion model was first proposed by Eddington, a "great expert", who simply rejected out of hand the idea that the Sun could be getting its energy from outside. He just could not conceive of such a thing happening. Therefore, if the energy was coming from inside, and the Sun hasn't burned up in a few billion years, the source had to be nuclear fusion.
There are at least five major things wrong with this scenario. The first and most important is the "Missing Neutrino Problem".
Mainstream science has consciously turned a blind eye to the possibility of any energy producing mechanism in the Sun other than nuclear fusion. Instead, presently there is great activity trying to explain how most of the flood of neutrinos that "must be there" remains unobserved. It is suggested that neutrinos must come in various "flavors", some of which are invisible. And that neutrinos oscillate back and forth from one "flavor" to another.
A detailed description of the "Missing Neutrino Problem" is available at:
A Quote from Astronomy Magazine Jun 1999
Some solar neutrinos have indeed been observed - but less than half the number required if the fusion reaction really is there in the Sun's core. So, the negative results from the neutrino experiments have resulted not in any re-examination of solar models, but rather, an intense theoretical discussion of new magical properties that solar neutrinos "must have" because we cannot see them.
In the Electric Sun model there is no energy produced in the core - energy is produced at the surface and not by nuclear fusion, but by electric arc discharge. There is no "missing neutrino" problem in the Electric Sun model.
Again, to quote Juergens:"Many facile assertions to the contrary, it becomes increasingly obvious that photospheric granulation is explainable in terms of convection only if we disregard what we know about convection. Surely the cellular structure is not to be expected."
In the Electric Sun model there is no transporting of energy from the core
up to the surface - power is produced at the surface. There
is no need for magical "non-stationary convection." The "granules" are
really anode tufts (electric plasma arc discharges).
Figure 2. Temperature profile as a function of radial
distance from the Sun's surface.
Image Credit: Big Bear Solar Observatory
The standard fusion
model is completely incapable of explaining (let alone predicting) this
behavior. One noted astronomer actually told the author that the
minimum was due to the fact that the temperature sensor "couldn't see the
entire sun when it was too close to the surface". I then asked him
if a mosquito hovering right next to a blazing wood stove would find it
cooler there than farther out because he "couldn't see the whole stove
if he was close enough to it"! Other mainstream astronomers invoke
the idea that "magnetic loops" somehow throw heat out into the lower corona.
(See the discussion of solar prominences below.) The Electric
Sun model predicts the temperature minimum and shows why it occurs.
A cross-section taken through a granule is shown in the three plots below. The horizontal axis of each of the three plots is distance, measured radially outward, starting at at a point near the bottom of the photosphere (the true surface of the Sun - which we can only observe in the umbra of sunspots). The first plot shows the energy per unit (positive) charge of an ion as a function of its radial distance out from the solar surface. The second plot, the E-field, shows the outward radial force (toward the right) experienced by such a positive ion. The third plot shows the locations of the charge densities that will produce the first two plots.
Figure 3. Energy, Electric field strength, and Charge density
as a function of radial distance from the Sun's surface.
All three of these plots are related mathematically. By the laws of physics: E = - dV/dr, and Chg density = dE/dr. In words: The value of the E-field, at every point r, is the (negative of) the slope of the energy plot at that point. The value of the charge density at each point, r, is the slope of the E-field plot at that point. The charge density plot necessary to produce the compound energy curve between points c and e used to be called a "double sheath". Modern nomenclature calls it a "double layer"(DL). It is a typical and well known phenomenon in a plasma discharge. Because of the DL being there between points c and e, a +ion to the right of point e sees no electrical force from +ions to the left of point c.
The energy plot (above) is for positively charged particles. Because the E-field represents the force (toward the right) per unit charge on a positively charged particle, the region wherein the E-field is negative (a to b) is a region where positively charged particles will be accelerated toward the left - inward, toward the Sun's surface. One can visualize them falling down the energy hill from point b to a. Any +ions attempting to escape outward from within the body of the Sun must have enough energy to surmount this energy barrier.
In order to visualize the effect this energy diagram has on electrons (negative charges) coming in toward the Sun from cosmic space (from the right), turn the energy plot upside down. Doing this enables us to visualize the "trap" that these photospheric tufts are for incoming electrons. As the trap fills, the energy level between b and c (inverted for electrons) rises, and so the tuft shrinks, and eventually disappears. This is consistent with the observed random movement and shrinkage of photospheric granules.
Charged particles do not experience electrical forces in the range b to c. Only random "thermal" movement occurs due to diffusion. At a point just to the left of point c, any such random movement toward the right (radially outward) that carries it even slightly to the right of point c will result in a + ion being swept away, down the energy hill, toward the right. Such movement of charged particles due to an E-field is called "drift". This drift of positive ions is the source of the solar "wind" (which is a serious misnomer).
As positive ions accelerate down the potential energy hill from point c through e, they gain extremely high radial velocity and lose random motion. Thus, they become "dethermalized". In this region, the movement of these ions becomes extremely organized (parallel). The pinch effect of parallel current filaments in a plasma should be very strong. If any fusion is taking place on the Sun it is likely occurring here (not deep in the core).
When these rapidly traveling + ions pass point e they lose most of the radially directed E-field force that has been accelerating them. Because of their high velocity, any collisions they have at this point (with other ions or with neutral atoms) are violent and create high amplitude random motions, thereby "re-thermalizing" the plasma to a much greater degree than it was in the photospheric tufts (in the range b to c). This is what is responsible for the high temperature we observe in the lower corona. The photosphere has temperatures reported to be from 4000 K to 6000 K. Ions in the lower corona (just to the right of point e) are reported to be at temperatures of 1 to 2 million K. Nothing else but exactly this kind of behavior could be expected from the electric sun (anode tuft - double layer) model. The "re-thermalization" takes place in a turbulent region analogous to the "white water" boiling at the bottom of a smooth waterfall. In the fusion model no such "waterfall" exists - and so neither does an explanation of the temperature minimum.
The particles in our solar wind eventually join with the spent solar �winds� of all the other stars in our galaxy to make up the total cosmic ray flow.
Astrophysicists tell us that the Sun is a rather mediocre star as far as radiating energy goes. If it is electrically powered, perhaps its mediocrity is attributable to a relatively unimpressive driving potential. This would mean that hotter, more luminous stars should have driving potentials greater than that of the Sun and should consequently expell cosmic rays of greater energies than solar cosmic rays. A star with a driving potential of 20 billion volts would expell protons energetic enough to reach the Sun�s surface, arriving with 10 billion electron volts of energy to spare.
It is interesting to note in passing that the three plots shown in figure 3 are analogous to the plots of energy, E-field, and charge distribution found in a pnp transistor. Of course in that (solid-state) device there are different things going on at different energy levels ("valence band" and "conduction band"). In the solar case there are no fixed atomic centers and so there is only one energy band where "the action is". In a transistor, the amplitude of the collector current (analogous to the drift of +ions in the solar "wind" toward the right) is easily controlled by raising and lowering the difference between the energy levels at points a and b (base-emitter voltage). Is the same mechanism (a voltage fluctuation between the anode-Sun and its photosphere) at work in the Sun? e.g., If the Sun's voltage were to decrease slightly - say because of an excessive flow of incoming electrons - the voltage rise from point a to b in the energy diagram of figure 3 would quickly reduce the solar wind (both the inward electron flow and the outward +ion flow). In May of 1999 the solar wind completely stopped for about two days. The mechanism proposed above explains it. The fusion model is at a complete loss in doing so.
The volt-ampere characteristic of a laboratory plasma discharge has the general shape shown in figure 4.
Figure 4. The volt-ampere plot of a plasma discharge.
This plot is for a plasma
contained in a column - a cylindrical glass tube with the anode at one
end and the cathode at the other. These two terminals are connected into
an electrical circuit whereby the current through the tube can be controlled.
In such an experiment, the plasma has a constant cross-sectional area from
one end of the tube to the other. The vertical axis of the plot in
figure 4 is the voltage rise from the cathode up to the anode (across the
entire plasma) as a function of the current passing through the plasma.
When we consider the Sun, of course, a spherical geometry exists - with the sun at the center. Assume a constant total electron drift moving from all directions toward the Sun and a constant flow of +ions outward. As we approach the Sun from deep space, the spherical boundary through which this total current passes has an ever decreasing area. Therefore, for a fixed total current, the current density (A/m^2) increases as we move toward the Sun.
It should be well understood (certainly by anyone who has had a basic physics course) that the magnetic field "lines"2 that are drawn to describe a magnetic field, have no beginning nor end. They are closed paths. In fact one of Maxwell's famous equations is: "div B = 0". Which says precisely that (in the language of vector differential calculus). So when magnetic fields collapse due to the interruption of the currents that produce them, they do not "break" and "recombine" (as some uninformed astronomers have claimed). The field simply collapses (very fast!). On the Sun this collapse releases a tremendous amount of energy and matter is thrown out away from the surface - as with any explosively rapid reaction. This release is consistent with and predicted by the Electric Sun model as is shown above.
1. Double layers can be destroyed
by at least two different mechanisms: a) Zener Breakdown - The electric
field gradient becomes strong enough to rip all charges away from an area,
thus breaking the discharge path; b) Avalanche Breakdown - A literal avalanche
occurs wherein all charges are swept away and no conducting charges are
left - thus the conducting path is opened.
2. A magnetic field is a continuum. It is not a set of discrete "lines". Lines are drawn in the classroom to describe the magnetic field (its direction and magnitude). But the lines themselves do not actually exist. They are simply a pedagogical device. Proposing that these lines "break" and "recombine" is an error (violation of Maxwell's equations) compounded on another error (the lines do not exist in the first place). Magnetic field lines are analogous to lines of latitude and longitude. They are not discrete entities with nothing in between them - you can draw as many of them as close together as you'd like. And they certainly do not "break".
"The solar constant, defined as the total radiant energy at all wavelengths
reaching an area of one square centimeter at the Earth's distance from
the Sun, is about 0.137 watts per square centimeter (see R.C.Wilson, Journal
of Geophysical Research, 83,4003-4007 1978). It works out, then, that the
Sun must be emitting about 6.5x10^7 watts per square meter of solar "surface",
and the total power output of the Sun is a (very nearly) constant 4x10^26
The hypothetical electric discharge must then have a power input of 4x10^26 watts.......suppose that the Sun's cathode drop may be of the order of 10^10 volts, ...then..the total power input divided by the cathode drop [is] 4x10^16 amperes.....
Let us suppose that the effective velocity of a typical interstellar electron would be about 105 m/s, corresponding to a kinetic temperature of a few hundred Kelvin. From current estimates of the state of ionization of the interstellar gas, we might conclude that there should be as many as 50,000 free electrons per cubic m.(S.A. Kaplan, Interstellar Gas Dynamics - Pergamon 1966). The random electric current of these electrons then would be Ir = NeC/4 where N is the electron density per cubic meter, e is the
electron charge in coulombs, and C is the average velocity of the electrons. Using the given values, we find that the random electric current density should be about 2x10^-10 amperes per square meter through a surface oriented in any manner.
The total electron current that can be drawn by the discharge is the product of the random current density and the surface area of the sphere occupied by the cathode drop. There is little to indicate how large this sphere might be, but in view of the enormity of the cathode drop it seems likely that the radius of the sphere would be large in terms of solar system dimensions. The mean distance of Pluto's orbit is 39.5 AU, or about 6x10^12 meters. We might guess that the cathode drop would reach to at least 10^13
meters from the Sun, so that its spherical boundary would have a collecting surface area of somewhat more than 10^27 square meters.
Such a surface could collect a current of interstellar electrons amounting to practically 10^18 amperes - twenty five times greater than the total current that seems proper. And of course a larger sphere could collect an even greater current."
So there are enough electrons out there to power the Electric Sun.
Note that although astronomers ought to be aware that magnetic fields require electrical currents to make them, currents and E-fields are never mentioned in standard models. Nor do they seem to be included in astrophysics curricula.
The answer is best stated
by Wal Thornhill:
"The electric star model makes the simplest assumption that nothing is going on inside the Sun. ..... So for most of the volume of a star where the gravity is strongest, atoms and molecules will predominate. (In the electric model that applies to the entire star). The nucleus of each atom, which is thousands of times heavier than the electrons, will be gravitationally offset from the centre of the atom. The result is that each atom becomes a small electric dipole. These dipoles align to form a radial electric field that causes electrons to diffuse outwards in enormously greater numbers than simple gravitational sorting allows. That leaves positively charged ions behind which repel one another. That electrical repulsion balances the compressive force of gravity without the need for a central heat source in the star. An electric star will be roughly the same density throughout, or isodense."
We should also remember,
considering a pair of similar particles (say protons) that the strength
of the electrostatic repulsion force between them is something like 35
orders of magnitude greater than the strength of gravitational attraction!
(Not 35 TIMES, but 35 Orders Of Magnitude). So the offset
of the electron from the nucleus can be absolutely miniscule and yet produce
extremely strong force to counteract gravitational collapse.
The Sun does not require internally generated heat in order to avoid collapse.
3. The same question ("Why doesn't it collapse due to gravity?") should be asked about globular clusters of stars or even galaxies. The real answer in these cases is also electrical in nature.
The scientific community now ought to at least begin to re-examine the assumptions of today's orthodox thermonuclear models which fail to explain the most basic, observed, solar phenomena. Juergens' Electric Sun model does predict the existence of the temperature minimum. It doesn't require convection to occur where it cannot. It does predict both the existence and the acceleration of the solar wind. The neutrinos are not "missing" they just aren't there.
All of the above are failures of the "generally accepted" thermonuclear model that are easily understood from the point of view of the Electric Sun.
Ralph Juergens had the genius to develop the Electric Sun model after reading the works of Alfven, Birkeland, Langmuir and other giants of electrical/plasma science. His model uniquely passes the harsh tests of observed reality. His seminal work may eventually get the recognition it deserves. Or, of course, others may try to claim it, or parts of it, and hope the world forgets who came up with it first.
If you are interested in learning more about the Electric/Plasma Universe, the Electric Star model, and more topics such as these, there will be a conference in July called - INTERSECT 2001 - Electricity, Cosmology, and Human History - for details click here.
1. The Physics of the Sun and the Gateway to the Stars - Eugene N. Parker, Physics Today June 2000 p26-31.
2. Guest Editorial - Anthony L. Peratt IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.613.
3. Double Layers and Circuits in Astrophysics - Hannes Alfven (Nobel Prize) IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.779.
4. Model of the Plasma Universe - Hannes Alfven (Nobel Prize) IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.629.
5. The Persistent Problem of Spiral Galaxies - Halton Arp, IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.748
6. Evolution of the Plasma Universe: I
Double Radio Galaxies, Quasars, and Extragalactic Jets - Anthony L. Peratt
IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics,
Dec 1986 p.639.
7. Evolution of the Plasma Universe: II The Formation of Systems of Galaxies - Anthony L. Peratt IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.763.
8. Intergalactic Plasma - Grote Reber IEEE Transactions on Plasma Physics, Dec 1986. p.678.
9. STELLAR THERMONUCLEAR ENERGY: A FALSE TRAIL? - Ralph Juergens, KRONOS A Journal of Interdisciplinary Synthesis, Vol. IV, No. 4 Summer 1979, pp. 16-27.
10. THE PHOTOSPHERE: IS IT THE TOP OR THE BOTTOM OF THE PHENOMENON WE CALL THE SUN? - Ralph Juergens, KRONOS A Journal of Interdisciplinary Synthesis, Vol. IV, No. 4 Summer 1979, pp. 28-54.
11. THE NOT SO STABLE SUN - Earl R. Milton,
KRONOS A Journal of Interdisciplinary Synthesis, Vol. V, No. 1 Fall 1979.