Each of these, being the exact complement and counterpart of the other, when applied together to any planet of any size or mass or density, at any distance, fails to affect the distance of that planet in its relation to the sun, but simply establishes it in that distance, subject to certain regulations dependent upon other motions of the sun, and the aetherial medium in which they exist. Thus we learn, that if, in the beginning, Mercury were formed at a distance of 36,000,000 miles, it would for ever remain at that distance; and the same is true of the other planets at their mean distances, no matter what their mass or density may be; and that, according to the first law of motion, the planet would remain in a state of rest until compelled by other forces or motions to change that state, when it would continue moving with uniform motion so long as the motive power applied was uniform.
If, however, the motive power applied was not uniform, then the result would be an increase or decrease of the planet's motion, just in proportion to the increase or decrease of the motive power. This result is in perfect harmony with our statement in Art. 15, and is in accordance with observation and experience.
ART. 99. Second Law of Motion.—According to Newton's Second Law of Motion, "Change of motion is proportional to the impressed force, and takes place in the direction in which the force is impressed."
From a consideration of this Law (Art. 15) we saw that the impressed force was a compound quantity, being regulated by the mass of the moving body which exerted the impressed force, and that it was also proportionate to the velocity of the moving body; so that if either of these quantities are changed, the total impressed force would be changed also.
We have now to show that our aetherial medium agrees with this second law of motion in so far as the second law of motion agrees with experience and experiments. To do this, we must review our conception of the universal Aether, and remember that Aether is matter, and being matter, it is atomic and gravitative, possessing density, elasticity, inertia, and kinetic energy, the same as any other moving matter.
In this Aether medium we have, according to this conception, something that can both push and pull, or exert force upon any body with which it comes into contact. Further, the inertia and kinetic energy of the Aether at any part of space will be regulated by its mass in that particular part, and if its mass is denser in some parts than others, that part of the aetherial medium possessing the greatest mass will also possess the greatest capacity for impressing force upon any body that exists in the medium. Now we have learned from Art. 45 that Aether being gravitative, it is denser nearer to the sun, getting gradually less and less dense, the further it recedes from the central body, except where it is bound or associated to some other planet or satellite, and there it gradually gets denser, for the same reason that it is denser nearer to the sun. As, therefore, the Aether gets gradually less dense as it recedes from the sun, the density of the Aether at the mean distance of Mercury, 35,900,000 miles, would not be so great as near the sun's surface; while the density of the aetherial medium at the distance of Venus, 67,000,000 miles, would be less than the density of the aetherial medium at the distance of Mercury. This principle may be applied right through the sun's aetherial electro-magnetic field, until we come to the mean distance of Neptune, which is 2,780,000,000 miles, and there the density of the Aether would be less than at any other part of the aetherial electro-magnetic field around the sun.
So that the mass of the Aether at Mercury, which is equal to the number of aetherial atoms per unit volume, is greater than the mass at Venus. Thus the impressed force which the aetherial medium at the mean distance of Mercury can exert upon any body in its neighbourhood, is greater than the impressed force which the Aether can exert upon any body at the distance of Venus, because of its decreased mass at that distance. In the same way it can be proved that the impressed force which the electro-magnetic Aether exerts on any body at the distance of Venus, is greater than the impressed force which the Aether exerts upon a body at the mean distance of the Earth. So that at the respective mean distances of Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, the electro-magnetic Aether, if in motion, would exert less force at each of the mean distances of these planets exactly proportionate to the decreased mass and decreased velocity of the Aether.
Now what is the motion which the Aether possesses, so far as the sun is concerned? because, upon the particular kind of motion which it possesses will depend the direction in which the impressed force will be exerted according to the second law of motion.
In Art. 98 we supposed the sun and planets to be stationary in the solar system, each planet being at its respective mean distance, from which it cannot move owing to the equality of the two forces. Now give to the central sun from whence the electro-magnetic Aether waves flow, a rotatory motion on its own axis, which it really possesses, as it rotates on its axis once in every twenty-six days nearly, and this will give to the Aether medium a circular or rotatory motion. This circular or rotatory motion the Aether has already been proved to possess (Art. 91, where we learned that all solar magnets were caused by electro-magnetic aetherial currents constantly circulating round them). So that the Aether will actually possess two motions: 1st, a radial motion due to the Aether waves generated by the sun, which are radiated out into space with the velocity of light; and 2nd, a circular or rotatory motion. This result is in perfect harmony with our hypothesis as to the cause of the electro-magnetism of the sun (Art. 91, where we saw that solar magnetism was due to electric currents circulating round the various planets), and we have proved that the Aether has an electro-magnetic basis; thus the rotatory Aether currents and the rotatory electro-magnetic currents are due to one and the same medium.
Now what will be the effect of these circular or rotatory Aether currents on the bodies situated within their field? It must be remembered that we are no longer dealing with a frictionless medium, but with a medium which possesses inertia and kinetic energy the same as any other moving matter. Therefore, as soon as it is set in motion, it will impress its motions upon all planets that come under its control and influence, with the result that as the impressed force is ever directed in a circular form, the planet will be pushed along through space by the moving Aether, and the path it describes will be circular also.
Thus the actual result of the rotatory electro-magnetic Aether currents will be, that all dependent and associated planets under their influence will be carried by them around the central body which generates the Aether currents. So that they will literally and truly have an orbit, and the circle they describe will be, in its size and circumference, regulated by the mean distance of each planet, which mean distance will form the radius of the circular orbit.
Further, as we shall see later, if the sun were always stationary, and had no orbital motion of its own, then the orbit of each planet would always be circular, each planet always occupying its mean distance from the sun, because at that mean distance the centripetal and centrifugal forces are equal.
That the actual path of any planet is a circle has been proved by Sir W. R. Hamilton. Tait, in his Natural Philosophy, on this point writes (Art. 38): "The Hodograph for the motion of a planet or comet is always a circle, whatever be the form and dimensions of the orbit." This path has been termed the Hodograph. So that we have in the circling electro-magnetic Aether currents a physical explanation for the Hodograph of any planet.
In applying the rotatory Aether currents to the various planets, and in endeavouring to find out the quantity of the force impressed upon the various planets at their mean distances, by those currents, we have to take into consideration, as we have already seen, two facts, viz. the mass of the Aether at any point in space, and the velocity of the Aether at the same point. We will first take the effect of the difference in mass. We have seen that at the distance of Mercury from the sun the density of the Aether is greater than at the distance of Venus, and that the density at Mars is greater than the aetherial density at the Earth, the aetherial density decreasing the further the Aether recedes from the sun.
What, therefore, is the effect of the decreased density of the Aether on each planet? Even supposing the velocity of the moving Aether is the same at the respective mean planetary distances, which it is not, the total impressed force at the respective mean planetary distances will gradually be decreased upon the various planets, proportionate to the decrease in the mass and density of the Aether.
So that on Mercury, which is pushed along by a denser electro-magnetic Aether than Venus, the impressed force, according to Newton's Second Law of Motion, will be greater than the impressed force exerted by the moving electro-magnetic Aether on Venus; and, consequently, Mercury should have a greater velocity through space than Venus, due partly to the difference of the aetherial mass and density, by which the impressed force or motive power that acts upon Mercury is produced.
In the same way, Venus should have a greater velocity through space than Mars, and Mars a greater velocity than the Earth. The same principle, when applied to the outer planets, equally holds good; with the result, that the greater the mean distance, the less the orbital velocity of each planet, due partly to the decreased aetherial density at the increased distance from the sun. But this is only part of the cause. Not only is there a decrease in density of the Aether, as the distance from the sun is increased, but there is also a decrease in the velocity of the moving Aether, with the result that the Aether at the distance of Mercury, possesses a greater angular velocity than at the distance of Venus.
It may be at once asked, How do we know that? Well, Philosophy alone can give us the key, and Philosophy tells us to base our theories and hypotheses on experience and experiment. Now what does experiment and experience teach us as to the effect of a body revolving in any medium upon that medium? If experience teaches us anything at all, it teaches us that the further away any medium is from the revolving body, the less is the angular velocity of that medium at that distance, while the nearer the medium is to the revolving body, the greater is the angular velocity.
This applies in each and every case, whether the medium is either fluid or gaseous, and I will challenge the reader to perform any experiment on any solid body rotating in a fluid or gaseous medium, and prove by that experiment that the angular velocity of the outermost part of the fluid or gaseous medium is equal to the angular velocity of the medium directly associated with the body, or even at a short distance from it.
But we have most conclusive evidence of the fact that a solid body does not communicate all its rotational surface motion to the medium directly in contact with that body in the case of the earth revolving on its axis, surrounded by an atmosphere. If the principle held good anywhere in relation to a revolving body, viz. that the whole of the rotational velocity is communicated to the medium surrounding the body, it should certainly hold good at the surface of the body where the two media, the solid and gaseous media, meet.
If a solid body fails to impart all its rotational velocity to the medium there, then it will certainly fail to impart its full rotational velocity to the enveloping medium 100 miles away, and fail still more at a distance of 1000, and still more at a distance of 100,000,000, and so on proportionate to the distance.
What, then, is the effect of the rotational velocity of the surface of the earth on the atmosphere near to it? We know that the velocity of the surface of the earth is greatest at the equator, as at that place the circumference of the earth is about 25,000 miles, but the further we get away from the equator, and the nearer we get to the North and South poles, the velocity of the surface decreases, simply because the circumference of the earth decreases.
Or, to reverse the statement, the velocity of the surface of the earth is least at the poles, but increases the nearer we get to the equator. It is also familiar knowledge that there are currents of cold air ever moving from the North and South poles to the equatorial regions near the surface of the earth. Thus the cold air currents, in passing from the North and South poles, are ever passing over surfaces which are increasing in velocity as they journey on their way to the equator. This of course occurs all round the earth, so that the earth is continually revolving in these currents, and if the rotational velocity of the surface of the earth were wholly imparted to the air directly over its surface, then the currents would be always flowing due North and South.
If, however, the earth fails to impart all its rotational velocity to the atmosphere, or the atmosphere fails to pick up the whole of the rotational velocity at once, then the result will be that the atmosphere as it passes over the surfaces of greatest velocity will lag behind, because its rotational velocity will be less than the velocity of the earth's surface.
Now this is exactly what does happen in regard to the atmosphere, with the result, that instead of getting winds blowing due north and south, we get what are known as Trade Winds, which blow north-east in the northern hemisphere and south-east in the southern hemisphere. Here then we have direct experimental proof on a large scale of the very principle I have stated, viz, that a medium surrounding any rotating body does not move through the whole of its extent with the same velocity as its does at the surface. Thus it can be seen that the velocity of the rotating Aether will be greatest at the surface of the sun, but its angular velocity will decrease the further the medium recedes from the sun.
The same principle can easily be proved from an electrical standpoint; for if we consider the Aether currents as electric currents, no one would think of suggesting that the intensity of the currents was the same at a distance of several million miles away, as it is near the source of the currents, which in this case may be looked upon as the sun, because at its surface we have the greatest electric potential (Art. 80).
So that we see from this reasoning, that not only is there a decreased mass of the Aether at the distance of Venus, compared with Mercury, but there is also a decreased velocity in the rotatory electro-magnetic Aether currents, with the result that the impressed force exerted upon Venus is less than the impressed force exerted upon Mercury, and therefore Venus should move slower through space than Mercury, which is exactly what happens, as Mercury has an orbital velocity of 29 miles per second, while Venus has an orbital velocity of 22 miles per second.
As the angular velocity decreases in proportion as the distance increases, it follows that at the respective mean distances not only of Venus, but also of Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, the capacity of the Aether to exert its impressed force upon the various planets will decrease as the distance increases, with the result that the farther a planet is from the sun, the less force will the Aether currents exert upon that planet, with the result that its orbital velocity should decrease as the distance increases, and this is perfectly in accordance with planetary phenomena.
Here, then, we have at once a physical basis for Newton's Second Law of Motion, the results of which are entirely in harmony with observation and experiment, and whose conception fully satisfies all the Rules of Philosophy; as it is simple in conception, fully agrees with observation and experiment, and satisfactorily explains the Second Law of Motion sought to be explained.
Thus we find that from the physical standpoint, as well as from the mathematical standpoint, "Change of motion is proportional to the impressed force, and takes place in the direction in which the force is impressed," that is, in a circular direction.
We have therefore arrived at exactly the same result that Newton arrived at, except that he had to introduce a third factor, viz. the Parallelogram of Forces, while we have produced the result by a simpler method, which, according to his own rules, is more philosophical, as all effects are produced by the simplest causes, as Newton himself stated in Rule 1. Thus it is the rotatory electro-magnetic Aether currents that urge the planets round the sun; and, as will be shown later, it is the same Aether currents in combination with the other motions that give rise to the physical cause of Kepler's Laws. It is the electro-magnetic Aether currents that produce the regular decrease in the velocity of the planets in their orbits, because of the regular decrease of the mass and velocity of the Aether currents themselves.
We have now a physical cause as well as a mathematical explanation of the decrease of the velocity of a planet in its orbit, which physical cause is in perfect harmony with all philosophical rules. The following table shows the gradual decrease in the velocity of each planet as the various planets recede from the sun—
MEAN PERIOD OF VELOCITY IN DISTANCE. REVOLUTION. ORBIT PER HOUR.
Mercury 35,900,000 87.9 days
Venus 67,000,000 224.7 77.000
Earth 92,700,000 365.2 66.500
Mars 141,000,000 686.9 53.000
Jupiter 482,000,000 4,332.6 28.744
Saturn 884,000,000 10,759. 21.221
Uranus 1,780,000,000 30,687. 14.963
Neptune 2,780,000,000 60,127. 11.958
ART. 100. Aether and Third Law of Motion.—We have seen (Art. 16) that action and reaction are equal and opposite, and that it is true of the centripetal force in its application to all matter throughout the universe. If, therefore, the centrifugal force is the exact opposite of the centripetal force, then the Third Law of Motion should equally hold good in relation to that force also.
We have, therefore, to form a physical conception of the application of the third law of motion, as it relates to the centrifugal force. As we have already learned, this force is due to the universal electro-magnetic Aether, which being gravitative, surrounds all atoms and molecules that may exist throughout the whole universe. It can readily be seen, therefore, that if the Aether surrounds every atom and molecule, then each atom repels another atom or molecule when the two forces are in equilibrium with exactly the same intensity with which the atom and molecule attract each other.
But the centrifugal force in each case is due to the pressure of the Aether, which presses always proportionately to the density of the Aether surrounding the atom or molecules, as suggested by Professor Challis.
The mean density, however, of each atomic or molecular atmosphere is regulated solely by the mass of the atom or planet, therefore the pressure exerted by one atom on another is proportionate to the mass of each atom, and to that extent is strictly in accordance with the law which governs the proportion of the forces between the two atoms or molecules. If, therefore, we have two atoms, A and B, of different masses, then it is true that while A exerts a pressure on B, which pressure takes the form of a repulsion, at the same time B exerts a pressure on A which is equal and opposite in its character and intensity, and in each case the pressure is due to the aetherial medium which surrounds each atom or molecule.
When the atoms are equal in mass, then the resultant motion produced on each atom would be exactly equal, but when the masses vary, the resultant motion produced on each atom would vary also, though the momentum in each case would be exactly equal and opposite, as momentum is a compound term dependent partly upon the mass of the body concerned.
In Art. 16 we saw that when this third law was applied to planetary phenomena, not only did the sun attract all the planets, but all the planets attracted the sun with equal and opposite forces, and the planets also attracted each other with equal and opposite forces. In the same way it can be proved, that as the sun repels all the planets by the pressure exerted by the aetherial centrifugal force on those planets, the planets repel the sun with an exactly equal and opposite force at their mean distances. In Newton's conception, however, of the third law of motion, there was simply mathematical data to deal with, by which the law was shown to apply to the planetary and stellar world. In the case, however, of the centrifugal motion, we have a definite physical medium, which by its motions produces the pressure on the planets or suns that exist in space, which pressure forms the physical centrifugal force that forms the counterpart of Gravitation Attraction.
Let us look at this phase of the case in detail, and by so doing help to establish and confirm the physical existence of the force or motion referred to. We have learned from Chapter IV. that as Aether is gravitative, it surrounds all satellites and planets, suns and stars that exist in the universe.
We have also learned from Art. 86 that Aether has an electro-magnetic basis, as mathematically proved by Maxwell and experimentally proved by Hertz. Thus we came to the conclusion that each satellite and planet, sun and star, was an electrified body (Art. 81), or an electro-magnet (Art. 88), possessing its own electric or electro-magnetic field.
We also learned that in every electro-magnetic field there was a pressure which was ever directed away from the body that generated the electro-magnetic waves. Now, as every satellite and planet, sun and star, is a generator of these waves according to our theory, it follows that every satellite and planet, sun and star, is the centre of a centrifugal force, which centrifugal force is regulated by the mass of the satellite, planet, sun or star which gives rise to the centrifugal force or motion.
Now, in relation to all electro-magnetic action, it can be experimentally demonstrated, that action and reaction are equal and opposite, so that if we have two electrified or magnetized bodies, then the joint forces of attraction or repulsion between them are equal and opposite. This being so, when we apply the same law of action and reaction to the planets' influence on each other, it follows that the same law must hold good in relation to them.
So that if we compare the repulsive powers of two planets on each other in the solar system, say the Earth and Jupiter, then, according to the third law of motion, the repulsive action of Jupiter on the Earth is exactly equal and opposite to the repulsive action of the Earth on Jupiter. If we compare the Earth and the sun, the repulsive action of the sun on the Earth is exactly equal and opposite to the repulsive action of the Earth on the sun, that action or force being caused directly by the electro-magnetic Aether waves, which are generated by each electric, or electro-magnetic body.
Thus, as the third law of motion is true of the centripetal force, whether in relation to the atomic world, or in relation to the solar system, or even to the universe at large, seeing that the centrifugal force is the exact counterpart in every way of the centripetal force, exactly fulfilling all the laws which govern it, it follows as a matter of absolute necessity that the third law is also applicable to its complement or counterpart also, or else it would cease to be the complement and counterpart of the centripetal force.
ART. 101. Why Planets revolve from West to East.—In Art. 99 we have seen that the revolution of the planets around the sun is produced and maintained by the electro-magnetic Aether currents, which are generated by the axial motion of that electro-magnetic body. There is, however, another effect produced, and another scientific fact which can be accounted for by the circulating motions of the Aether medium, viz. that the orbital direction of each and all the planets would not only be in the same direction, but they would also be in the same direction as the sun's rotation on its axis.
So that, whichever way the sun turns upon its axis, that way, and that alone, should be the orbital direction of all the planets in which they are circled round the sun by the circulating electro-magnetic Aether currents. It is the sun's axial motion that partly gives to the Aether currents their circling motion, and it is the circling motion of the Aether currents that gives rise to the orbital motion of the planets, literally carrying them round the sun by their kinetic energy and power.
Therefore, if this be true, whichever way the sun turns upon its axis, that will be the direction in which the Aether currents must circle round the sun, and in that direction the planets should travel in their orbits. As must readily be seen, it is the inevitable result of the established working of the electro-magnetic Aether currents. If the sun rotated on its axis from east to west, then the electro-magnetic Aether currents would also travel in the same direction, from east to west, and the planets would then revolve round the sun from east to west.
If the sun, however, rotates on its axis from west to east, then, if there are such electro-magnetic Aether currents in existence, as those we have already proved to exist, they, too, would travel from west to east, and as a natural result the planets, which are carried round the sun by the currents, would also possess the same orbital motion, that is from west to east.
As is well known, the sun rotates on its axis from west to east, therefore the Aether currents also rotate from west to east, with the result that the orbital directions of all the planets should also be in the same direction, from west to east. Now, as is well known, all the planets without exception, Mercury, Venus, the Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, all travel round the sun from west to east.
Here, then, we have indisputable evidence of the existence and mode of working of the electro-magnetic aetherial currents, whose action alone can produce the phenomena with which we are so familiar, and for which there must be some physical cause. I am not aware that any reason or explanation either mathematical or otherwise has ever been given, or even suggested, as to the cause of the phenomena which we have just endeavoured to explain.
Indeed, there can be no other physical explanation of the fact, that all the planets revolve round the sun in the same direction that the sun rotates on its axis, than the one here given, viz. that the cause is to be found, and alone found, in the circulating electro-magnetic Aether currents which are generated in the Aether by the electro-magnetic body, the sun. Again, in order to confirm the existence of these Aether currents that exist in space, not only those generated by the sun, but also by all the other electro-magnetic bodies, as all the planets (Art. 88), we will consider the working of the same upon the satellites of those planets which possess them.
The Earth we know has one satellite, the moon, Mars has two satellites, Phobos and Deimos, Jupiter has five satellites, Saturn has eight satellites, while up to the present Uranus has been found to possess four, and Neptune one. There is, however, little doubt but that both Uranus and Neptune possess more than those already discovered, as it is inconceivable that Jupiter and Saturn, which are nearer to the sun, should possess a greater number of satellites by which the nights of the respective planets are illuminated, while the further planets, which need the increased lighting, because of the decreased intensity of the aetherial light waves at the increased distance, possess apparently a less number of satellites, and therefore less illumination for their respective nights.
But what have these satellites to teach us as to the existence of the electro-magnetic aetherial currents that circulate round the planets? We have to apply a similar course of reasoning to the planets, as we have done in the case of the sun. If the sun is an electro-magnetic body, by its axial rotation it generates rotating Aether currents, and those Aether currents partake of the same rotation as the revolving body, that is, from west to east. In a like manner each planet, being an electro-magnet, generates electro-magnetic aetherial currents which also possess the same rotation as the planetary body which gives rise to them.
So that if the planets rotate on their axes from east to west, the Aether currents will also rotate from east to west, but if the rotation of each planet is from west to east, then the rotation of the Aether currents associated with each planet will also be from west to east, with the result that each satellite will be carried round its primary planet by the circulating Aether currents in exactly the same way as the planet rotates on its axis.
Now if this is the case, then we have further evidence of the existence of the circulating electro-magnetic Aether currents, not only those associated with the sun, but those also associated with each of the planets, as explained in Art. 91. It might have been urged in the case of the planet's revolution round the sun being in the same direction as the sun's axial action, that such a fact was merely a coincidence, but such an objection loses its force if it is proved that the same principle or truth when applied to other bodies equally holds good. When we come to analyze the direction of the satellites round their primary planets, we find that each satellite has an orbital motion, or is carried round its central and controlling planet by that planet's Aether currents in exactly the same direction that the planet rotates on its axis, viz. from west to east. So that we have in the orbital direction of the satellites, as we have also in the orbital direction of the planets, conclusive evidence of the existence and mode of working of the Aether and of the electro-magnetic currents generated in that aetherial medium by the electro-magnetic bodies which rotate in it.
AETHER AND KEPLER'S LAWS
ART. 102. Aether and Kepler's First Law.—In Art. 26 we learned that according to the First Law of Kepler, each planet revolves round the sun in an elliptic orbit, with the sun occupying one of the foci.
We also saw that that elliptic orbit was produced according to Newton by the conjoint working of the centripetal and centrifugal forces in association with the three Laws of Motion, to which laws had to be added a corollary, which is termed the Parallelogram of Forces, before the First Law of Kepler could be fulfilled.
In making any hypothesis as to the physical cause of Kepler's Laws, if it can be shown that the same aetherial medium that gives rise to the centrifugal force, also gives rise to the centripetal force, and that the same medium by its rotatory motions also fulfils the three laws of motion, and gives a satisfactory physical explanation of all Kepler's Laws; then, according to our three Rules of Philosophy, we shall have found a physical medium which, by its motions and pressures and tensions, can give rise to all the phenomena exhibited in the celestial mechanism. Such a physical explanation will be philosophically correct, in that it is simple in its conception, is entirely in harmony with observation and experiment, and satisfactorily accounts for, and that on a physical basis, all the phenomena associated with the whole of the celestial mechanism.
We have therefore to apply the motions of the Aether medium to the solar system, and by so doing reveal the physical explanation of all Kepler's Laws, in the same way that Newton revealed their correctness from the mathematical standpoint. Let us review the conception of the solar system as given in Art. 99, so that we may be able to proceed from that physical conception of a stationary solar system to a moving system.
Thus we see the sun in a stationary system occupying exactly the centre of that system. The solar energies are in full play, generating electro-magnetic Aether waves which are radiated forth into space with the velocity of light. Then, as there is given to the sun a rotatory motion on its axis, that rotatory motion imparts to the gravitating aetherial medium a circulatory or rotatory motion which spreads out through space with ever-increasing intensity.
By their radiating motion the Aether waves would repel all planets from their central body, the sun, if they were not counterbalanced by the centripetal force; and the two forces, the centrifugal and the centripetal forces, find their equilibrium at the mean distance of each planet, thus fixing and regulating permanently the distance and orbit of each planetary world.
At the same time, the rotatory motion of the electro-magnetic Aether currents, according to the second law of motion, would act on the planets by their kinetic or moving energy, and so circle them round the sun, their controlling centre. As long as the sun was quite stationary, while still possessing a rotation on its axis, if such a thing were possible, so long would the conception of the ancients be fulfilled, and the rotation of all the planets would be strictly circular in form, and their orbits would be that of a circle only, as proved by Sir W. R. Hamilton (Art. 99).
But, as is well known, the sun itself possesses an orbital motion of its own, so that, while all the associated planetary system is revolving round it, the sun with all that system is being carried along through space in an orbit which is also elliptic in form, as we shall see later on.
According to Herschel, the sun is moving towards the constellation of Hercules with a velocity of about 18,000 miles per hour, and the problem to be faced is, what is the effect of the sun's orbital velocity upon the circular motion of the planets? By solving that problem, we shall arrive at a physical conception for the first time of Kepler's Laws, and shall see that the first of Kepler's Laws is solved simply by giving an orbital velocity to any central body, the result of which will be that the circular form of any planet's orbit will be changed from the circular into one of elliptic form.
Let me ask the reader to perform a very simple experiment to confirm this fact. Take a piece of string and a lead pencil, and start to draw a circle on a piece of paper (Fig. 24). When, however, one quarter of the circle has been drawn, viz. D F, move the end of the piece of string representing the centre of the circle along the paper, as represented in the diagram, from A to B. The result will be that the pencil will now travel parallel with the moving centre for a time from F to G, and then, when the centre is brought to rest again, the other part of the half ellipse G H may be completed. In the same way, by reversing the motion, the other half of the ellipse may be completed. So that it is possible for an ellipse to be formed simply by moving the central point of a circle, and the motion of that central point will change the form of a circle into an ellipse. It is something like this that takes place in the planetary world, with this difference, that the central point which represents the sun does not return from one focus to another, but continues to journey on through space, with the result that the orbit of any planet is not strictly an ellipse, as we shall see later on. We have, then, the sun occupying the centre of the solar system, with all the planets revolving round it. We will take the sun and the Earth as examples. Let S in the diagram represent the sun, and E the Earth at its mean distance of 92,000,000 miles away (Fig. 25).
The Earth we know is moving with a velocity of about 64,800 miles per hour around the sun, or an average velocity of 18 miles per second, so that while the Earth is moving 64,800 miles through space to perform the half-circle, E D C, the sun is also travelling 18,000 miles towards the point D.
What, therefore, is the effect of this onward movement of the sun towards the Earth as it tries to complete the half-circle E D C? We have seen that the centrifugal force due to the pressure of the electro-magnetic Aether waves is exactly equal to the centripetal force exerted by the sun on any planet, and if that be so, it can be readily seen that as the sun journeys towards the point D of the Earth's orbit, it tends to approach nearer and nearer the Earth. Thus the intensity of the aetherial pressure owing to the decreased distance will be greatly increased, and the effect of the increased pressure of the Aether upon the planet will be to push it away from the sun, so that the two forces may be equalized, and its mean distance, which is definitely fixed, be maintained as far as possible.
The result will be that, instead of the Earth describing the half-circle E D C, it actually describes the part of the ellipse E F C. Thus it can be seen that while the sun is travelling through space, it is at the same time giving rise to the electro-magnetic Aether waves, which, by their repelling power, repel the Earth from the sun in the direction that the sun is travelling, and hence the half-circle is elongated into that part of the elliptic orbit known as the perihelion, which is that part of the orbit where the distance of any planet from the sun is the least.
The repelling power of the Aether waves is not, however, sufficient to overcome altogether the centripetal force in conjunction with the Earth's motion, with the result that when the Earth arrives at F, its distance is only 91 million miles, that being the least distance between the sun and the Earth. We shall see the result of this decreased distance when we deal with Kepler's Second Law.
We will now proceed to notice the effect of the sun's orbital velocity upon that part of the Earth's orbit which includes the aphelion, or that part in which the Earth occupies a position of the greatest distance from the sun. Proceeding on the same method of reasoning, if the sun were stationary, with the Earth being circled round it by the electro-magnetic Aether currents, then the path described by the Earth would be that of a circle, being represented by the half-circle C G E (Fig. 26).
But it has to be remembered that while the Earth is being circled round the sun by the rotatory electro-magnetic Aether currents, the sun is still travelling on towards S F at the rate of 18,000 miles per hour, while the Earth is travelling in almost an opposite direction towards C G, so that by the time the Earth has got to G, which we will suppose is one quarter of its ellipse, the sun has travelled millions of miles in that time.
Thus it can readily be seen, that by the time the Earth has got to its aphelion, it is at its furthest distance from the sun, simply because the sun has been travelling onwards through space all the time, while the Earth has been receding from it; and as the motion of the Earth has been in an opposite direction, the mean distance has been exceeded, and instead of the Earth being now at its mean distance from the sun, its distance is now 94,500,000 miles. At that part of its orbit, its orbital velocity is at a minimum, because the rotating Aether currents have there a decreased flow and a decreased mass and density, and therefore possess a decreased kinetic energy or motive power.
Thus by the rotating Aether currents working in conjunction with the centrifugal and centripetal forces, can be accounted on a physical basis the first of Kepler's Laws in a manner which is strictly philosophical, as the explanation is simple in conception, does not violate experience or experiment, and satisfactorily accounts for, on a physical basis, the law which it is required to explain.
If we consider the rotating Aether currents as purely currents of electricity, then exactly the same results follow. For, as we shall see later, Professor Lodge in his Modern Views of Electricity proves that electricity possesses both inertia and momentum, and if electricity possesses these properties, then it also possesses the requisite properties to enable the currents to propel or push any planet around its central body, or a satellite round its primary planet. Therefore the same course of reasoning that applies to the rotating Aether currents, equally applies to the currents of electricity that circulate round each satellite, planet, and sun and star, and by that circulation gives rise to the electro-magnetism associated with each body, while at the same time they supply the kinetic energy which enables any dependent or associated body to be propelled round their controlling centre.
ART. 103. Second Law of Kepler.—According to Kepler's Second Law (Art. 27), we learn that the radius vector, which is the imaginary straight line joining any planet to the sun, describes, or sweeps over, equal areas in equal times. So that, while Kelper's First Law describes the path which a planet takes in revolving round the sun, the Second Law shows how the velocity of that planet varies in different parts of its orbit.
While, however, there is a difference in the velocity of any planet at various points in the orbit, there is still a proportion existing between its various velocities, in that equal areas are covered in equal times. We have now to apply the hypothesis of our rotatory Aether currents, in conjunction with the centripetal and centrifugal forces, in order to see whether the Second Law of Kepler can be explained on a physical basis, in the same way that Newton explained it from the mathematical standpoint.
We have again to conceive the sun as the centre of two equal but exactly opposite forces, and also possessing a rotatory motion on its axis, with the electro-magnetic Aether currents ever circulating round it. If the sun were stationary, it will be manifest at once that Kepler's Second Law would be literally and strictly fulfilled, for in that case the orbit of all the planets would be perfect circles, and the motion of planets in their orbits would be perfectly uniform, and therefore equal areas would be covered by the radius vector in equal times. Thus any quarter of the orbit would be described in exactly a 1/4 of a year, 1/12 in 1/12 of a year, 1/40 in 1/40 of a year, and so on, the time being exactly proportional to the proportion of the area covered by the radius vector.
The area covered would always be uniform, because the radius vector would always be uniform in length. But, as we have seen in the previous article, the distance of a planet from the sun, that is, the length of the radius vector, is not uniform, as the Earth is nearer to the sun at perihelion, and further away at aphelion, its distance gradually changing as it passes from each of these points to the other.
Now what is the effect of the decreased distance upon the circulating or rotatory Aether currents? We have already seen (Art. 99) that the closer these Aether currents are to the central body, the sun, the greater is their velocity and the greater their mass, so that the total impressed force which they exert over any planet is greater the nearer that planet is to the sun. This is proved by the fact that Mercury has a greater orbital velocity than Venus, Venus than the Earth, the Earth than Mars, and so on right through the whole of the planetary system. In view of these facts, let us again consider the effect of the sun not being stationary, but having an orbital velocity of its own through space. Thus let the sun be at S and the Earth be at point D of its orbit (Fig. 25).
The circulating Aether currents are ever acting upon the Earth, carrying it round the sun with them, while at the same time the centripetal force is pulling it towards the sun with a certain intensity, but the centrifugal force is repelling the Earth with exactly the same intensity, and if the sun remained motionless the two forces would exactly balance each other, while the Earth would describe the half-circle E D C. But while the Earth is moving towards the point D with a velocity of 64,000 miles per hour, the sun is also moving at the velocity of about 18,000 miles per hour towards that point.
Thus the repelling power of the radiating electro-magnetic Aether waves has to overcome, not only its exact counterpart, the centripetal force, but also the onward motion of the sun as it rushes on its course through space. This the centrifugal force is unable to do, with the result that the distance is gradually lessened, and instead of the Earth describing the arc E D, it describes the arc E F, at which point its distance is at the minimum, or about 91 millions of miles.
Or, to put the same fact in another way. When the Earth is at E, the centripetal force and the orbital velocity of the Earth and the sun are acting conjointly, with the result that they overcome the centrifugal force, and the distance is gradually decreased. This decreased distance means an increased aetherial density and an increased velocity of the aetherial currents, with the result, that as the distance is decreased, the orbital velocity of the Earth is gradually increased, so that by the time the Earth gets to F, at its perihelion, it has now acquired its greatest orbital velocity, and is carried round the sun by the electro-magnetic Aether currents at its maximum velocity.
Now let us look at the Earth being circled round the sun by the electro-magnetic Aether currents as it goes on to perform the other half of the orbit. In this case we have the orbital motion of the sun and the centrifugal force working conjointly, with the result that together they overcome the centripetal force, and the Earth is repelled and carried beyond its mean distance. Let S represent the sun, the Earth being at point C of its orbit, after passing round its perihelion, and at this decreased distance it is carried along by the circulating and denser Aether with its maximum velocity (Fig. 26).
Now while the Earth is going on to describe the half-circle C G E, the sun is still pursuing its journey at the rate of about 18,000 miles per hour, only this time in a direction away from the Earth. As, however, the Earth has not yet regained its mean distance of 92,000,000 miles, the centrifugal force is still greater than the centripetal force, so that the centrifugal force is urging the planet away from the sun with greater intensity than the centripetal force is attracting it, as the two forces are only in equilibrium at the mean distance of the Earth.
Thus, as stated, the orbital motion of the sun and the centrifugal forces are now working conjointly together, with the result that the Earth is repelled gradually further and further from its central body, until it reaches its maximum distance of 94,500,000 miles. While, however, the distance is gradually being increased, it is passing into a part of the Aether possessing not only a decreased mass, but also a decreased velocity, with the result that the motive power or kinetic energy of the aetherial currents at the increased distance is gradually lessened, and as a natural result the velocity of the Earth is also decreased; so that by the time the Earth has got to its furthest distance from the sun, its orbital velocity is slowest, because of the decreased momentum of the aetherial currents.
Thus we can account for the difference of velocity of a planet in its orbit by the same electro-magnetic Aether currents working in conjunction with the sun's orbital motion, and that upon a strictly physical basis. This result is in perfect harmony with Kepler's Second Law, which states that equal areas are described by the radius vector in equal times. Newton proved that by the Law of Gravitation Attraction he could account for this second law, as well as all the others, and as we have not destroyed that law, but perfected it by giving it its exact complement and counterpart, the same mathematical reasoning that applies to the centripetal force must equally apply to the centrifugal force, and if it is true that the centripetal force works harmoniously with the second of Kepler's Laws, then it is equally true that the centrifugal force does also, as the two are inseparably and indisputably united together in the atomic Aether. We have, however, a physical basis for this centrifugal force, and we have an equal physical basis for the centripetal force, as we shall see later, and therefore, by the conjoint working of these two forces taken in conjunction with the orbital motion of the sun, we have now a physical conception for the first time of Kepler's Laws, as well as a mathematical conception, that physical conception being derived from the pressure and motions of the universal Aether.
ART. 104. Aether and Kepler's Third Law.—In Art. 28 we saw that according to the Third Law of Kepler, the square of the periodic time was proportionate to the cube of the mean distance of that planet from its controlling centre. Newton proved that this Third Law was mathematically correct, and that it could be mathematically accounted for by the existence and operation of the universal Law of Gravitation. As the centrifugal force is the exact opposite of that force in intensity, proportion and mode of operation, it follows that mathematically the centrifugal force also bears the same relation to the Third Law that the centripetal force does.
We have, however, a physical basis for the centrifugal force, and it is with the physical conception of this Third Law rather than with its mathematical character that we are now dealing. Kepler by his Third Law showed that the chief regulating factor in the orbital velocity of a planet was its mean distance from the sun.
The great regulator of the velocity of any planet in its orbit is simply planetary distance, and planetary distance alone. If there were no other law which operated in the solar system than the centripetal force, or the attractive force due to gravity, then such factors as mass and density of a planet ought to play a most important part in the orbital velocity of a planet, as the centripetal force directly recognizes the influence of mass, that is, volume and density, but says nothing about mean distances. This fact unmistakably points to the existence, and demands the operation, of another force, which shall explain, and that on a physical as well as a mathematical basis, how it is that the mean distance of a planet from any centre regulates the orbital velocity of that planet.
The only real and true conception of such a force is to be found in the radiating waves and circulating motions of the aetherial medium, which waves, like water waves, increase in their radial outflow and extent with a regular decreasing intensity, and at the same time decrease in their angular velocity as they recede from the sun. With such a regular decrease of kinetic energy, there must necessarily be imparted to the planets, as their mean distance is increased, a decreased velocity of motion, with the natural result, that the further a planet is from the sun, the less will be its orbital velocity, and that in a regular and uniform proportion as the distance is increased.
Now let us view the matter for a moment in its application to the solar system, and by so doing show the simplicity of the explanation, and at the same time give added proof to the existence and operation of the circulating aetherial currents that exist in space. Let us again picture the solar fires burning in all their fierceness and intensity, every atom and particle of the sun being thrown thereby into the most intense state of activity, and by their energy of motion creating electro-magnetic Aether waves in their myriads, which speed away from the sun on every side.
Under their influence, all subordinate worlds would be carried away into space, were it not for the complementary Law of Gravitation Attraction, that is, the centripetal force. But to every planet, by the operation of some governing and determining principle, a mean distance has been given, and at that mean distance the two forces find their equilibrium; and by their conjoint and co-equal working hold each planet at that mean distance with a power that cannot be broken. Each power or force may be modified under certain conditions, as shown in the two preceding articles; but, whether the planet be repelled further away, or attracted nearer to the sun, through the onward motion of the sun, the two forces ever seek to maintain their equilibrium, and to place the planet at its mean position assigned to it in the solar system.
The nearer that mean position is to the sun, the greater is the velocity of the aetherial currents which circulate round the sun; and the greater their mass, volume for volume, on account of the increasing density of the Aether, the nearer it is to the sun. The effect of this increased velocity, and the increased mass of the circulating Aether currents, is to impart to planets nearest to the sun the greatest orbital velocity; while, the greater the distance, the less will be the orbital velocity of the planet. That this is exactly in accordance with observation and experience may be proved by considering the respective mean distances and orbital velocities of the various planets.
Mercury, with a mean distance of 35,900,000 miles, is circled round the sun at the enormous rate of about 108,000 miles per hour, accomplishing its entire journey in the short period of 88 days. Venus, whose mean distance is about 67,000,000 miles, is carried round the sun at the reduced rate of 78,000 miles per hour, completing her orbit in the increased time of 224 days. Our own Earth, at the still further increased mean distance of 92,000,000 miles, performs her journey at the reduced velocity of 64,000 miles per hour, accomplishing the journey round the sun in a period of 365 days.
Thus, the further we get from the sun, the slower becomes the movement of a planet in its orbit, and the longer it takes to complete its revolution round its controlling centre. Mars, at the increased distance of 141,000,000 miles, possesses a reduced velocity of 54,000 miles per hour, and completes its orbit in the increased duration of 686 days. So the decrease of velocity goes on, as the planets increase their mean distance from the sun, as the following figures show—
MEAN DISTANCE. PERIOD OF ORBITAL VELOCITY REVOLUTION. PER HOUR.
Jupiter 482 millions 4,332 days 28,000 miles Saturn 884 " 10,759 " 21,600 " Uranus 1,780 " 30,687 " 1,800 " Neptune 2,780 " 60.127 " 900 "
The relation of this decrease of velocity to the mean distance is exactly determined by Kepler's Third Law, in which he states that the square of the periodic time is proportionate to the cube of the mean distance. That this is true has already been proved in Art. 28.
In conclusion on this point, let me ask the reader to try to conceive any other physical explanation for this decrease of orbital velocity as the mean distance is increased, than the one given here, namely, the decrease in the velocity and mass of the radiating and circulating Aether currents, and if such attempt is made, I premise that its only result will be utter failure. No other physical conception to account on a physical basis for all Kepler's Laws can be given or conceived, than that which finds its origin in the universal electro-magnetic Aether, which by its pressures, tensions and motions gives rise to all the phenomena incidental to, and associated with, planetary and stellar phenomena.
Therefore, inasmuch as all the laws of motion, and all Kepler's Laws can be accounted for by a gravitating and rotatory Aether medium, those facts alone, apart from the explanation of other phenomena associated with light and heat, would stamp the circulating Aether medium as the physical cause of all the motions and phenomena associated with the whole of the celestial mechanism.
ART. 105. Orbital Motions of Satellites and Planets.—According to Kepler's First Law, the Earth and all the other planets move round the sun in orbits which are in the shape of an ellipse. Not only, however, is the first law true of planetary motion, it is equally true of the motions of all satellites moving round their primary planets. I wish, however, to point out, and prove in an indisputable manner, that Kepler's First Law does not sufficiently explain and determine the exact orbit of any satellite as it revolves around its primary planet, or even of any planet as it revolves around the sun.
Simply because, if any satellite or planet is to perform a perfect ellipse as it revolves around its central body, that central body must only move for a time and must then come to rest, or partly return in its journey in order for a perfect ellipse to be formed, as shown in a previous figure. Now we know from observation that such a thing as rest in space by any planet, or by the sun, is absolutely unknown in the celestial mechanism.
From Art. 92 we learned that the electro-magnetic Aether currents not only circulate round the sun, but they also circulate round each planet. Thus we found there were electro-magnetic Aether currents circulating round each planet, while those planets themselves were circled round the sun by the Aether currents generated by the sun; the planetary Aether currents in their turn propel the satellites round their primary planets. It can easily be seen, therefore, that such phenomena as rest and return of a planet in its journey are physical impossibilities, for either the circulating Aether currents would have to cease circulating, or would have to return upon themselves in some inconceivable manner.
Thus there is ever going on this conjoint motion, so to speak, of the sun's aetherial currents which circle all the planets round that body, and the planetary aetherial currents which circle all the satellites round their central body, and it is the effect of the conjoint working of these currents on the planets and satellites to which I wish to call the reader's attention.
Let us in starting represent the earth's orbit by a perfect ellipse A B C D, with the sun occupying one of the foci S (Fig. 27). We will suppose that the earth is at point A of its orbit and is being circled round the sun with uniform velocity. As it is circled round the sun by the sun's aetherial currents, at the same time its satellite the moon is being circled round the earth by the electro-magnetic Aether currents which circulate round that planet. We will represent the orbit of the moon by part of a smaller circle D E F, and suppose the moon to be at point D of that orbit. The mean distance of the moon from the earth is about 240,000 miles, so that the diameter of the orbit is 480,000 miles, therefore the circumference of the orbit is 480,000 x 3.1416, which gives us about 1,500,000 miles.
That distance is traversed in about 28 days, so that the moon's average velocity in its orbit, as it is circled or pushed round the earth, is about 2200 miles per hour. While, therefore, the moon is travelling 2200 miles, the earth in its journey round the sun has travelled about 64,800 miles in the same time. So that by the time the moon has travelled half its orbit, that is, from D to F, which would take about 14 days, the earth has also travelled in its orbit 64,800 x 24 x 14 = 21,772,800 miles, with the result, that instead of the moon arriving at point F, which it would do if the earth were stationary, it really arrives at a point about 21,772,800 miles in front of that point.
In a similar way, while the moon goes on to describe the other half of the orbit, the earth still proceeds on its journey, so that at the end of 14 days it is again 21,772,800 miles further on, with the result, that the centripetal force (by which the moon is attracted to the earth) keeps it at the distance of 240,000 miles according to Kepler's Second Law as explained in Art. 103.
The moon, therefore, completes its orbit about 21,772,800 miles further on than it would do if the earth were stationary. The effect of this continual progress of the earth on the moon's orbit as it describes its orbit round the sun is seen in the diagram. As the moon revolves round the earth thirteen times in one year, it performs thirteen revolutions round that planet; but it cannot be said that these orbits are perfect ellipses, as the earth is ever being circled round its central body, the sun. Even this diagram does not accurately represent the orbital motion of the moon through space, as it assumes that the earth returns to the same point in space from whence it started. This, however, is incorrect, as we have to remember that the sun has also an orbital velocity of 18,000 miles per hour, so that while the earth has performed one revolution in its orbit, the sun has actually progressed through space to the extent of 18,000 x 24 x 365 = 157,680,000 miles.
When we come to deal with the sun's motion through space, we shall see that this distance only represents a fraction of the sun's orbit, as it can be philosophically proved, that if the sun moves at all, it, too, obeys Kepler's Laws; and therefore, according to his First Law, it also describes and possesses an orbit of its own. So that by the time the earth has made its annual revolution round the sun, the whole system has been carried 157,680,000 miles through space, and therefore the earth does not complete a perfect ellipse, but its orbital motion round the sun will be represented by a similar kind of diagram to the one which represents the orbital motions of the moon, or any other satellite round its central body.
ART. 106. Eccentricity of Orbit of Moon.—From astronomical observation we learn, that all the satellites and planets do not possess uniformity of motion, as they are carried round their controlling centres by the circulating aetherial currents, because the respective controlling centres themselves move through space. The result is, that the orbit of any satellite or planet is not always of the same size, but constantly varies, sometimes having a larger circumference than at other times, and sometimes a smaller circumference.
This change in the size of the orbit of a satellite or planet is known as the eccentricity of the orbit, which eccentricity is constantly changing, being sometimes greater and sometimes less. We will look at this truth in its relation to the moon first, and then consider the same principle in its relation to the earth and other planets later on. For the purpose of illustration, we will consider the earth as being circled round the sun by the electro-magnetic Aether currents in a closed orbit, A B C D, which forms a perfect ellipse, the sun occupying one of the foci S (Fig. 28), the earth occupying a position in the orbit represented by point C, with the moon being circled round the earth by that planet's aetherial currents. As we have already seen in Art. 103, according to Kepler's Second Law, at this point the earth is furthest from the sun, being now at a distance of 94-1/2 millions of miles, and therefore its orbital velocity will be slowest at that part of its orbit.
If it were absolutely at rest in space, and simply revolving on its own axis, then the result would be that the moon would be circled round the earth in an orbit M C F which is perfectly circular in form; but, as the earth is being carried along slowly through space by the circulating Aether currents, this onward movement changes the circular orbit into an orbit of elliptic form.
The eccentricity of the moon's orbit when the earth is at its aphelion, or furthest from the sun, is now at a minimum, for the simple reason that the earth is proceeding slowly through space, owing to the decreased kinetic energy of the aetherial currents at the increased distance.
So that, at this point of the earth's orbit, the difference between the two axes of the moon's orbit will be the least, and its orbit at that point will be the nearest approach to that of a circle. But, as we have already seen, as soon as the earth leaves this part of its orbit, and begins to get nearer to the sun, it passes into a part of the aetherial medium possessing greater kinetic energy, with the result that its own velocity is accelerated. Now what is the effect of this increased acceleration of the earth on the eccentricity of the orbit of the moon?
The earth's rotation on its axis remains unaltered during this increasing orbital velocity, consequently the aetherial currents generated by the earth will remain uniform, and the moon will still be circled round the earth in the same period of about 28 days. But while the time of the moon's revolution remains unaltered, the orbit that she has to describe is now increased owing to the increased orbital velocity of its central body, with the result, that by the time the earth gets to that part of its orbit represented by point D, it is then two millions of miles nearer to the sun than at point C, and will be circled round the sun by the aetherial currents at a much greater rate. Therefore, the eccentricity of the moon's orbit is increased just in proportion to the increased velocity of the earth in its orbit round the sun. By the time the earth has arrived at point A, when it is only a distance of about 91 millions of miles from the sun, it reaches the minimum distance, and is circled round at the decreased distance with its maximum velocity.
At this point, therefore, the eccentricity of the orbit of the moon will be at its greatest, and, if one revolution could be represented by an ellipse E G H, then that ellipse would be more elongated, and the difference between the two axes of the moon's orbit would be greater than at any other point of the earth's orbit.
Thus it can readily be seen that the eccentricity of the moon's orbit is primarily due to the different velocities of the central body, in this case the earth, as that body is carried round its central body, the sun. Where the earth's motion is slowest, there the eccentricity of the moon's orbit will be at a minimum; but where the earth's velocity is greatest, there the eccentricity of the moon's orbit will be at a maximum.
Between this minimum and maximum velocity of the earth in its orbit there is the constant increase or decrease in the eccentricity of the orbit of the moon; the eccentricity increasing as the orbital velocity of the central body increases, and decreasing as the orbital velocity of the earth decreases. A further fact has, however, to be taken into consideration, which is that the primary body about which the moon revolves is itself subject to the same eccentricity of its orbit, and for similar reasons, as we shall see later on. So that when the eccentricity of the earth's orbit is at its greatest, then the moon's orbit will possess its greatest possible eccentricity, and as the eccentricity of the earth's orbit is dependent upon the orbital velocity of the sun, so the greatest possible eccentricity of the moon's orbit is indirectly connected and associated with the sun's motion through space, which motion will now be considered.
ART. 107. The Sun and Kepler's First Law.—We have learned in the previous articles that Kepler's Laws not only apply to planetary motion, but are equally applicable to the motion of all satellites as they revolve round their respective planets.
The question now confronts us, as to whether Kepler's Laws are equally true in their application to the sun? Now the sun is one of the host of stars that move in the vast infinity of space, and if it can be proved that Kepler's Laws hold good in relation to one star, as they do in relation to all planets and satellites, then such a result will have a most important bearing upon the motions of other stars, and we shall be able to determine with some degree of exactness what are the motions and orbits by which all the stars in the universe are governed.
Sir Wm. Herschel first attacked the question as to whether the sun, like all the other stars, was in motion, and if in motion, what was the shape of its orbit, and the laws which governed its orbital velocity.
We know that the sun is the centre of the solar system, and the question to be considered is, whether that system is circled round a controlling centre while the sun is at rest in space, simply possessing its one axial rotation, or whether, like every planet and satellite, it is subject to two motions, an axial rotation and an orbital velocity through space. Further, if it possesses an orbital velocity through space, what is the cause of that orbital velocity?
It was due to the genius of Sir Wm. Herschel to first solve this problem, and by careful research he was able to determine that the sun, with all its attendant planets, was indeed moving through space.
Not only did he discover this fact, but he also found out the direction in which the whole of our solar system was moving, as well as the velocity with which the general movement was performed. Herschel proved that the onward march of the solar system was in the direction of the constellation of Hercules, and that the velocity of the march of this system exceeds five miles per second, or 500,000 miles per day.
Thus we learn that the whole of our solar system, comprising the sun, with all its planets with their attendant satellites which circle round each planet, and the asteroids or minor planets, are bound together by the two forces, the centripetal and the centrifugal, while the system as a whole is urged on its way by some force or power through the realms of space.
What that power is we shall try to find out as we consider the application of Kepler's Laws to this onward movement of the sun. If, then, the sun is moving through space with this enormous velocity, the question arises as to what is the shape of the path or orbit which it describes? Sir Wm. Herschel attacked this question from a mathematical standpoint, and came to a certain conclusion, as we shall see. We will, however, attack the problem solely from the philosophical standpoint, by applying to it the Rules of Philosophy given in our first chapter, and we will then see whether our result is in harmony with the conclusions arrived at by Sir Wm. Herschel.
Now what has experience and observation to tell us regarding the orbit which any body moving in space assumes? Take, for example, our moon as illustrating the movement of all satellites, and our earth as illustrating all planetary motion.
What does observation teach us as to the orbits which these bodies describe? If it teaches us anything at all, it teaches us that every satellite and planet moves with varying velocity in a varying orbit around some central body. So far as our observation goes, then, in relation to planetary motion, or the motion of satellites, we learn that every body which moves in space fulfils Kepler's First Law, and describes an orbit round a central body, that body occupying one of the foci.
Thus, wherever we get any body moving in space, if there be any truth in philosophy which is based on experiment and observation, that body ought also to move in similar elliptic orbits, and be subject to exactly similar conditions governing those orbits. But we have learned that the sun moves through space with a velocity of about five miles per second, therefore it follows, philosophically, that the sun must also move around some other central body, and the path of such movement is that of an elliptic orbit, with the central body around which it moves occupying one of the foci.
In other words, the sun obeys the first of Kepler's Laws, the same as all the planets and satellites do. Suppose, for a moment, that it is denied that the sun moves in an elliptic orbit! What path would it pursue in place of that? Would the path be that of a straight line towards the constellation of Hercules? Such an assumption would be altogether unphilosophical, as it is contrary to all experience and observation, and is therefore untenable.
Before such an assumption can be made, it must be proved that every planet and satellite moves in a straight line, and not till that has been done can it be assumed that the sun moves in a straight line, or indeed in any other path than that stated in the first of Kepler's Laws.
This conclusion is in perfect harmony with the conclusion arrived at by Herschel, for in his work on Astronomy, in Arts. 292, 295 and 297, he points out that the sun's path is elliptic in form, and that Kepler also showed the sun fulfilled the first of his laws, and described an orbit which was in the shape of an ellipse. We have therefore philosophically arrived at the conclusion that the sun moves in an elliptic orbit, and to do so it must move round some central body, which is to the sun what the sun is to the planets, and what the planets are to the satellites.
It is impossible to conceive of the sun moving in an elliptic orbit, and yet not moving around some central body, as we should have a celestial phenomenon altogether opposed to all experience and observation. For we have already seen that the central body is just as important a factor to the elliptic orbit as the planet itself, because, without the central body there cannot possibly be any elliptic orbit. Where then in the universe is the central body around which the sun revolves? What is its distance away from the sun? What is its size? These are questions that philosophy alone cannot answer, as there is no law, so far as I can see, that regulates the size and distance of the central body in proportion to the size and distance of the planets or satellites.
If there were, then it would be possible for philosophy to apply such a law or rule. That there is a central body around which the sun revolves is as true as the fact that there is a central body about which each planet revolves, or each satellite revolves, and it remains for the practical astronomer, or the mathematician, to endeavour to discover the exact part of the heavens in which it is situated, and ascertain its distance and possibly its size. What will be the effect of the existence of this central body of the sun upon the solar system? One effect will be to do away with that isolation that up to the present has apparently existed with regard to our solar system and stellar space.
Instead of the solar system being a solitary system that moves through space subject to apparently no law, and moved by apparently no physical power, that system, through the influence and effect of the aetherial currents originated by that central body, will be linked to other parts of the universe, and will become a part of one harmonious whole, its physical connection being made manifest and plain in the self-same electro-magnetic Aether medium that forms the connecting medium between the satellites and planets, or the planets and the sun.
Another result will be, that as the sun is a star, we shall be able to apply the self-same principles and laws of Kepler to the stellar world in exactly the same way that we have done to the solar system. Thus, by bringing all stellar phenomena under the influence of Kepler's Laws, we shall be able to philosophically give an unity to the universe, and show, within rational limits, how such unity may be physically conceived, which result will be an advance upon any physical conception of the universe hitherto manifested or revealed. Further, by accepting the first of Kepler's Laws in relation to the sun, and admitting the existence of a central body, we shall be able then to apply the second of Kepler's Laws, and by so doing shall be able to give a physical explanation of two scientific facts which up to the present have never been physically explained, viz. the physical conception of the plane of the ecliptic, and a physical explanation of the eccentricity of the earth's orbit, which is but the result of the application of Kepler's Second Law to the sun's orbital motion around its central body.
ART. 108. The Sun and Kepler's Second Law.—We will now proceed to apply the second of Kepler's Laws to the orbital motion of the sun, and, in so doing, shall find we are able to give at the same time a physical explanation of the eccentricity of the earth's orbit.
In order to obtain a physical conception of the sun's orbital motion according to Kepler's First Law, it is essential that we should consider the effect of the existence of a central body around which the sun revolves; or, to put the matter into another form, we will ask the question as to what is the physical cause of the sun revolving round that central body?
Let us look at the case for a moment. Here, according to astronomical observation, we find a certain phenomenon which takes the form of a huge body 865,000 miles in diameter moving through space with a velocity of nearly 500,000 miles per day. What then is the physical cause of the movement of this large sphere?
Certainly there must be some physical cause, or else we have a violation of all experience, which indisputably teaches us that no body moves unless it is either pushed or pulled. We have, however, done away with a pulling power so far as the cause of the actual revolution of bodies around a central body is concerned, and in its place have substituted a medium that pushes or carries them round each central body. For over 200 years the scientific world has accepted a pulling power, that is, an attractive power, solely as the cause of the movements of celestial bodies, with the result that the physical cause of all the motions of planets and satellites has been outstanding and undiscovered.
It would, therefore, be unphilosophical to revert to the old conception of a gravitating attractive power as the sole cause of the sun's orbital motion through space. If we desire to know what is the cause of its revolution round that central body, then we must seek to find the same from the result of observation and experience in other directions.
We have learned from Art. 102 that the orbital motion of the moon is caused by the electro-magnetic Aether currents that circulate round its central body, the earth. By the same means every satellite is circled round its central body also. We have also learned from Art. 99 that the earth is carried round the sun by the circulating and rotating electro-magnetic Aether currents, and that these same currents also form the physical cause of the revolution of all the other planets round their central body, the sun.
Thus we arrive at the fact that wherever there is a body moving in space, it is moving solely because it is pushed along, or carried round its controlling centre by the rotating Aether currents. But we have just learned that the sun is moving through space, and that it describes an elliptic orbit around some central body in accordance with Kepler's First Law. So that the only philosophical conclusion that we can possibly arrive at in relation to the orbital motion of the sun is, that such motion is caused by similar electro-magnetic Aether currents whose circulating motion is partly caused by the rotation of that central body.
Thus we are led up to the philosophical conclusion, that it is the aetherial currents of the central body around which the sun revolves, that produce, and alone produce, the onward motion of the sun through space. Any other conclusion must be unphilosophical, and therefore untenable. We have, therefore, to conceive of the sun's central body generating and giving rise to electro-magnetic aetherial currents that extend through space to the limits at least of the solar system, and these aetherial currents, acting upon the sun's huge form by their kinetic energy, carry it with all its associated worlds through infinite space.
There is nothing extravagant in this conception, when we remember that the solar system has been moving on and on through infinite space year after year, and yet it never seems to get appreciably nearer to the other stars, but I hope to show the reason of this by strictly philosophical reasoning later on. With this conception of the sun in its relation to its central body we are now in a position to consider the application of Kepler's Second Law upon the sun's orbital motion, and its resultant effect upon the orbit of our earth and all the other planets.
From Kepler's Second Law we know that equal areas are described by the radius vector in equal times, and if the first law of Kepler is at all applicable to the sun, then it must follow that if the sun has an orbit, and moreover an elliptic orbit as stated by Kepler himself, then, as a natural result, the radius vector of the sun must move over equal areas in equal times.
The physical explanation of Kepler's Second Law was given in Art. 103, and there is no need to traverse the same ground again. It is, therefore, true that the sun moves faster in certain parts of its orbit than in others, being urged through space at its greatest velocity when it is nearest its controlling centre, and slowest when farthest away from that controlling centre.
Herschel, in his work on Astronomy, states: "The motion of the sun will be such that equal areas are thus swept over by the revolving radius vector in equal times in whatever part of the circumference of the ellipse the sun may be moving." He, however, suggested that the earth forms a focus of the sun's ellipse, a suggestion which is unphilosophical, it seems to me, as we might equally suggest that the earth revolves round the moon, which is contrary to all observation. Thus the sun is not carried uniformly through space by the aetherial currents of its central body, because it is nearer to that central body at certain times; its velocity being regulated by its distance from that body, the same being increased as the distance is decreased, and decreased as the distance increases.
Now if this reasoning be correct, and if the sun really moves round a central body and is subject to Kepler's Second Law, then that increase and decrease of distance will be made manifest in the increase and decrease of the eccentricity of the earth's orbit.
So that if the eccentricity of the earth's orbit should vary from century to century, then we have conclusive evidence that the sun obeys the first and second of Kepler's Laws, and therefore that it revolves around a controlling centre of its own. From observation we find that this is exactly what is happening, and that at the present time the eccentricity of the earth's orbit is gradually diminishing, and in about 24,000 years the orbit will be very nearly a circle.
Now, from what was stated in Art. 106, we know that the moon's orbit will be nearly a circular orbit when the earth is farthest from the sun, and that then its orbital velocity is at a minimum.
In order for this result to be produced, the earth must reach that part of its orbit known as aphelion, where the distance from its controlling centre is greatest, so that the eccentricity of the moon's orbit is always an indication of the position of the earth in its relation to the sun. When the eccentricity of the moon's orbit is decreasing, the earth's distance from the sun is increasing, but when the eccentricity of the moon's orbit is increasing, then the earth's distance from the sun is decreasing.
Now if we apply this analogy to the eccentricity of the earth's orbit, we shall be able to obtain some idea of the relation of the sun to its central body. We find then that the eccentricity of the earth's orbit is decreasing, therefore, arguing from analogy, we arrive at the conclusion that the sun's distance from its controlling centre is increasing, and that its orbital velocity is decreasing.
If it be true that in 24,000 years the earth's orbit will be nearly circular, then it follows that in 24,000 years the sun will be at that part of its orbit corresponding to the aphelion of the orbit of the earth, that is, its distance from its controlling centre will then be at a maximum. After that the eccentricity of the earth's orbit will begin to increase, and will continue to increase for about 40,000 years, according to some scientists, which implies that the sun will then have started from its aphelion point, so to speak, and will begin its return journey towards its central body, gradually getting nearer and nearer. As it gets nearer its orbital velocity will be proportionately increased, with the result that the eccentricity of the earth's orbit will increase also. From a consideration of the movement of the major axis of the earth's orbit, which is moving forward at the rate of 11 deg. per year, we are told that a whole revolution will be made in 108,000 years.
We have here, then, an indication of the time that the sun takes to revolve round its central body, because the time of the whole revolution of the eccentricity of the orbit should correspond with one complete revolution of the sun around its central body. So that from a consideration of the eccentricity of the earth's orbit, we are not only able to demonstrate that the sun satisfactorily fulfils the first and second of Kepler's Laws, but, conversely, we are able to give a satisfactory physical explanation of the cause of the eccentricity of the earth's orbit, which explanation is again primarily to be found in the universal Aether medium.
ART. 109. Plane of the Ecliptic and Zodiacal Light.—As already pointed out, another phenomenon which can be physically accounted for by the sun's orbital motion through space around its central body, is that celestial plane known as the Plane of the Ecliptic.
What then is the Plane of the Ecliptic whose physical explanation we are to attempt? We know that the moon revolves round the earth as the earth revolves round the sun, while the sun is pursuing its way through space. It has been found also, that all these motions of these different bodies take place on one level, so to speak; that is to say, they do not go up or down in space, but straight on.
So straight do they move, that their path has been likened to the level of the ocean, on which a ship may sail for thousands of miles, always keeping the same level and even course. On some such ocean as this in space all the planetary systems and solar systems seem to move, ever moving on and on with the same uniformity of level through infinite space. Further, this plane of the ecliptic is to the celestial sphere what the sea-level is to the earth. The height of a mountain on the earth is stated to be so much above the sea-level.
In a similar way astronomers say that a star is a certain height above the plane of the ecliptic. What then is the physical explanation of this scientific term? We will lead up to it by first considering the effect that rotation has upon a liquid body.
It has been demonstrated that if a mass of oil is placed in a transparent liquid of the same density, so long as the oil is perfectly at rest, its shape will be that of a sphere which will float about in the liquid, but as soon as the oil is made to rotate by means of a piece of wire, then the spherical shape is changed into that of an oblate spheroid.
Further, the faster it is made to rotate, the more it will bulge out, so that its equatorial diameter will greatly exceed its polar diameter. The same principle may be illustrated by making a hoop to revolve rapidly on its axis, when a similar effect of bulging out will be produced.
Now let us apply this principle to the earth with its electro-magnetic Aether currents circulating round it, and ask what is the effect of the rotation first upon the earth, and then upon the rotating Aether currents?
It is a matter of common knowledge that the effect of rotation upon the earth when it was in a fluid state was to make its equatorial parts bulge out as it rotated, with the result that as it solidified the equatorial diameter exceeded the polar diameter by 26 miles.
If, therefore, the result of rotation upon the earth when in its fluid state was to make it spread out greater in the equatorial regions than in any other part of its surface, what must be the effect of a similar rotation upon the rotatory Aether currents? It can easily be seen that the rotation of these currents will be to make them spread out into space in a region which corresponds to the equatorial regions of the earth, so that the rotating Aether currents will be congregated more in the equatorial regions of the earth than in any other part of the earth's surface. The further also they extend into space the less depth they will have, gradually tapering off, as shown in the illustration, where E represents the earth and B C the Aether currents (Fig. 29).
Any body, therefore, situated within the sphere of their influence would be carried round the earth by the currents, and the currents would be to them their governing and controlling level.
So that the moon, which is held bound to the earth by the two opposite and equal forces, would always be carried around the earth by those electro-magnetic Aether currents, and outside of those currents it could not pass. But the earth is only 8000 miles in diameter, therefore if the currents gradually tapered off as suggested, by the time the aetherial currents reached the distance of the moon, their depth would not exceed 2000 or 3000 miles.
The diameter of the moon is, however, only 2160 miles, so that the rotating Aether currents would practically form an ocean in which the moon would swim, and one constant level on which it revolves in space. Wherever the earth was carried by the aetherial currents of the sun, there the aetherial currents of the earth would carry the moon, its mean distance by the conjoint working of the two co-equal forces having been permanently fixed.
So that it can be readily seen, as regards the moon, that the earth's aetherial currents form the plane on which it revolves around the earth. Now in exactly the same way it can be proved that it is the sun's aetherial currents which form the plane or level on which all the planets revolve or are carried around their central body. We have only to enlarge our conception and the same result follows. Instead of dealing with a body 8000 miles in diameter, we are now dealing with a body 865,000 miles in diameter, and as this huge body is more or less in an incandescent state, the aetherial currents will therefore be proportionate in intensity and flow to its size and atomic activity.
Instead, therefore, of the aetherial currents which circulate round the sun only extending a quarter of a million of miles, their energy and flow extend far away into space, even beyond the greatest distance of Neptune, a distance of 2,800,000,000 miles. The same truths apply here, however, as in the case of the earth and the moon. The aetherial currents which circulate round the sun congregate together, and possess their greatest depth nearest to the equator, while the further away they recede, the less and less depth they possess, with a decreased intensity and decreased kinetic energy. These Aether currents will be to all the planets, therefore, what the earth's aetherial currents will be to the moon, being to them the ocean level on which they alone can move, and by which they are carried round their central body.
Thus these currents will form for all the planets the level in infinite space upon which they float, and from which they cannot pass. Let us further consider the movements of these currents in space, and we shall find further confirmation of this fact by so doing. Astronomers tell us that it takes light about three and a half years to reach us from the nearest star. By calculation, therefore, we find that the nearest star to our system is about 205,000,000,000,000 miles away, that being about the distance that light travels in three and a half years.
The diameter of the sun is about 865,000 miles, so that the distance of the nearest star is 240,000,000 times the diameter of the sun. We could therefore put 240,000,000 of our solar systems in the space that exists between us and the nearest star. How is it, then, that all the planets as they revolve round the sun do not float up and down in the space that extends between us and the nearest star?
I can give no other answer, and can see no other possible physical explanation than the one already given, which is, that they are bound to the sun by the two co-equal forces, the centrifugal and centripetal forces, and while so bound are carried round the sun by the electro-magnetic aetherial currents which extend out into space. It has to be remembered that the aetherial electro-magnetic currents circulating round the earth are situated within the aetherial currents which circulate round the sun, therefore the plane of the moon's orbit will coincide more or less with the plane of the earth's orbit. We have now only to go one step further to get our complete conception of the plane of the ecliptic.
In Arts. 107 and 108 we learned that the sun was subject to Kepler's 1st and 2nd laws, and as a natural result we came to the conclusion that it, too, was circled round some central body. We have only to apply a similar course of reasoning to the sun and its central body as we have to the moon and the earth, and the earth and the sun, and then we arrive at our physical conception of the plane of the ecliptic, which is due to the aetherial currents that circle round the sun, while that body is carried round some other central body.
Thus by the circulating Aether currents, originated and outflowing from their respective sources, each source being immutably fixed and bound to each other by the two equal and complementary forces, can be accounted for, the uniformity of position and plane of the various orbits of the various satellites, planets, and the sun, as they move in one great plane, termed the Plane of the Ecliptic.
It could not be otherwise than it is, and thus another celestial phenomenon can be accounted for on a real tangible basis by accepting the existence of those aetherial currents which form the physical basis of all the celestial mechanism.
If further evidence were required of the existence of these rotating Aether currents round the sun, such evidence is found in that phenomenon of the solar system known as the Zodiacal Light, of which up to the present no physical explanation has been forthcoming. In the conception of the atomic and gravitating Aether which rotates round the sun, I venture to premise will be found the physical solution of this phenomenon also.