James Clerk Maxwell's original EM work and theory
Date: Sunday, December 11, 2005 @ 18:42:37 GMT
Posted by Leslie R. Pastor in the NEC forum: Leslie,
I'm terrible with exact facts and need my personal library which was destroyed, so pardon me if I don't have this exactly correct. I remember that James Clerk Maxwell had developed 5 postulates or theories. After his death 3 of the leading scientists of the time published Maxwell's findings but only 3 of the 5 were published.
Somebody said that had the missing 2 been published that we would have
had anti gravity 50 years after his death! We only know of the current
and voltage in a wire and the magnetic and electrical fields resulting;
but Maxwell discovered two other essential fields surrounding current
moving in a wire. I have always wanted to find those original papers
(even a bad copy would do); and find out for myself instead of relying
on all these rumors and half-truths.
Philip N. Ledoux
Good Morning Tom [Bearden],
Since you are one of the most knowledgeable sources regarding James Clerk Maxwell, may I defer Mr. Philip N. Ledoux's question to you?
All the Best,
Leslie R. Pastor
Maxwell's original theory was published
James Clerk Maxwell, "A Dynamical Theory of the
Electromagnetic Field," Royal Society Transactions, Vol. CLV, 1865, p 459. The
paper was orally read Dec. 8, 1864.
It is also published in The
Scientific Papers of James Clerk Maxwell, 2 vols. bound as one, edited by W. D.
Niven, Dover, New York, 1952, Vol. 1, p. 526-597. Two errata are given on the
unnumbered page prior to page 1 of Vol. 1.
In this paper
Maxwell presented his seminal theory of electromagnetism, containing 20
equations in 20 unknowns. His equations of the electromagnetic field are given
in Part III, General Equations of the Electromagnetic Field, p. 554-564. On p.
561, he lists his 20 variables. On p. 562, he summarizes the different subjects
of the 20 equations, being three equations each for magnetic force, electric
currents, electromotive force, electric elasticity, electric resistance, total
currents; and one equation each for free electricity and continuity. In the
paper, Maxwell adopts the approach of first arriving at the laws of induction
and then deducing the mechanical attractions and repulsions.
copy of the original Maxwell paper can easily be obtained for about $15 from
Amazon etc. It is:
James Clerk Maxwell, The Dynamical Theory of
the Electromagnetic Field, edited by Thomas F. Torrance, Wipf and Stock
Publishers, Eugene, Oregon, 1996. This booklet, which sells for about $15,
contains Maxwell's original 1865 dynamical theory paper and some additional
Here's what Barrett - a nationally known
electrodynamicist and one of the co-founders of ultrawideband radar - has to say
about Maxwell's theory:
"In the case of electromagnetism, the
theory was first simplified before being frozen. Maxwell expressed
electromagnetism in the algebra of quaternions and made the electromagnetic
potential the centerpiece of his theory. In 1881 Heaviside replaced the
electromagnetic potential field by force fields as the centerpiece of
electromagnetic theory. According to him, the electromagnetic potential field
was arbitrary and needed to be "assassinated" (sic). A few years later there was
a great debate between Heaviside and Tate about the relative merits of vector
analysis and quaternions. The result was the realization that there was no need
for the greater physical insights provided by quaternions if the theory was
purely local, and vector analysis became commonplace.
vast applications of electromagnetic theory since then were made using vector
analysis. Although generations of very effective students were trained using
vector analysis, more might be learned physically by returning, if not to
quaternions, to other mathematical formulations in certain well-defined
circumstances. As examples, since the time when the theoretical design of
electromagnetism was frozen, gauge theory has been invented and brought to
maturity and topology and geometry have been introduced to field theory.
Although most persons view their subject matter through the filter of the
mathematical tools in which they are trained, the best mathematical techniques
for a specific analysis depend upon the best match between the algebraic logic
and the underpinning physical dynamics of a theoretical system." [Terence W.
Barrett and Dale M. Grimes, Preface, p. vii-viii, in Advanced Electromagnetism:
Foundations, Theory and Applications, Terence W. Barrett and Dale M. Grimes
(eds.), World Scientific, Singapore, 1995.]
Maxwell died in 1879
of stomach cancer.
In the 1880s, several scientists - Heaviside,
Gibbs, Hertz etc. - strongly assaulted the Maxwellian theory and dramatically
reduced it, creating vector algebra in the process. Then circa 1892 Lorentz
arbitrarily symmetrized the already seriously constrained Heaviside-Maxwell
equations, just to get simpler equations easier to solve algebraically, and thus
to dramatically reduce the need for numerical methods (which were a "real bear"
before the computer). But that symmetrization also arbitrarily discarded all
asymmetrical Maxwellian systems - the very ones of interest to us today if we
are seriously interested in usable EM energy from the
So anyone seriously interested in potential systems that
accept and use additional EM energy from the vacuum, must first violate the
Lorentz symmetry condition, else all his efforts are doomed to failure a
We point out that quaternion algebra has a higher group
symmetry than either vector algebra or tensor algebra, and hence it reveals much
more EM phenomenology and dynamics than does EM in vector or tensor
Today, the tremendously crippled Maxwell-Heaviside
equations - symmetrized by Lorentz - are taught in all our universities in the
electrical engineering (EE) department. Note that the EE professors still
dutifully symmetrize the equations, following Lorentz, and thus they continue to
arbitrarily discard all asymmetrical Maxwellian systems. Hence none of them has
the foggiest notion of how to go about developing an "energy from the vacuum"
system, which is asymmetrical a priori.
The resulting classical
electromagnetics and electrical engineering (CEM/EE) model taught in all our
university EE departments also contains very serious falsities. Most of modern
physics, such as special and general relativity, quantum field theory, etc., has
been developed since the 1880s and 1890s fixating of the symmetrized
Maxwell-Heaviside equations. A paper gathering together a listing these serious
flaws and giving proper citations, is T. E. Bearden, "Errors and Omissions in
the CEM/EE Model," available for free downloading at http://www.cheniere.org/techpapers/CEM%20Errors%20-%20final%20paper%20complete%20w%20longer%20abstract4.doc
This paper also shows a magnetic Wankel engine (suppressed
from the world market) that can be built by any electrical engineering
department or physics department, and then tested at COP>1.0 to one's heart's
content. The magnetic Wankel system is also easily close-looped for
self-powering (where all its input energy is freely furnished by the vacuum, and
the operator need furnish none of the input energy at all - thus providing fuel
free, continuous use of the energy from the vacuum, at will.
the hard physics literature, rigorous proof that eliminating the arbitrary
Lorentz condition provides systems having free additional energy currents from
the vacuum is given by M. W. Evans et al., "Classical Electrodynamics without
the Lorentz Condition: Extracting Energy from the Vacuum," Physica Scripta, Vol.
61, 2000, p. 513-517. Evans' own O(3) model is very advanced, and it also
directly specifies mechanisms for an EM system receiving and using excess energy
freely from the vacuum.
Fortunately, today some scientists have
turned again to higher group symmetry algebras in which EM is expressed. These
higher group symmetry electrodynamics theories then show far more EM
phenomenology than the standard CEM/EE model used in electrical power
Anyway, that gives you a brief overview of the
Maxwell theory, and the rather sharp curtailment of it that has become the
accepted but very crippled model for electrical engineering. Specifically, it is
that crippled model and its continued propagation and use that is directly
responsible for the increasing energy crisis worldwide, and our dependence on
conventional fuels etc.
We do point out that the original
Maxwell quaternion and quaternion-like theory of 1865 also contained errors, by
the physics that has been learned since then. One of those errors was Maxwell's
assumption of the material ether, an ether which was falsified experimentally in
1887 after Maxwell was already dead. But the present CEM/EE model still assumes
that same old material ether, more than a century later.
after Maxwell published the first edition of his famous "Treatise.", not much
happened. He was soundly criticized for using the quaternion approach, and even
his own editor chastised him rather unmercifully for it. His attachment to the
potentials as primary was also roundly criticized, since almost all theorists of
the day believed that the potentials were simply mathematical conveniences
having no physical reality whatsoever. To them, the force fields were the only
physical reality in Maxwell's theory. Today, of course, we know in the quantum
theory that it is the potentials that are primary, and the fields are derived
from changes in the potentials.
The history of Maxwell's famous
treatise is as follows: The publications are James Clerk Maxwell, A Treatise on
Electricity and Magnetism, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1873, Second Edition
1881 (Maxwell was already dead), Third Edition, Volumes 1 and 2, 1891. Foreword
to the second edition was by Niven, who finished the work as Maxwell had
dramatically rewritten the first nine chapters, much new matter added and the
former contents rearranged and simplified. Maxwell died before finishing the
rest of the second edition. The rest of the second edition is therefore largely
a reprint from the first edition. The third edition edited by J. J. Thomson was
published in 1892, by Oxford University Press, and later was published
unabridged, Dover Publications, New York, 1954. J. J. Thomson finished the
publication of the third edition, and wrote a "Supplementary Volume" with his
notes. A summary of Maxwell's equations is given in Vol. II, Chapter IX of the
third edition. However, Maxwell had gone (in his second edition) to some pains
to reduce the quaternion expressions himself, and not require the students to
know the calculus of quaternions (so stated on p. 257). We note that Maxwell did
not finish the second edition, but died before that. He actually had no hand at
all in the third edition as to any further changes. The Second edition
(unfinished by Maxwell) was later finished by Niven by simply adding the
remaining material from the previous first edition approved by Maxwell to that
part that Maxwell had revised. The printing of the first nine chapters of the
third edition was already underway when J. J. Thomson was assigned to finish the
editing of the manuscript.
Indeed, as an example of a major
error in the present CEM/EE model, we know today that matter is a component of
force, and therefore the EM force fields prescribed in matter-free space by
Maxwell and his followers (and by all our electrical engineering departments
today), do not exist. The EM field in massless space is force-free, and is a
"condition of space" itself, as pointed out by Feynman in his three volumes of
sophomore physics. Specifically, speaking of the electric field Feynman
".the existence of the positive charge, in some sense,
distorts, or creates a "condition" in space, so that when we put the negative
charge in, it feels a force. This potentiality for producing a force is called
an electric field." [Richard P. Feynman, Robert B. Leighton, and Matthew Sands,
The Feynman Lectures on Physics, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA, Vol. 1, 1964, p.
He further states:
"We may think of E(x,
y, z, t) and B(x, y, z, t) as giving the forces that would be experienced at the
time t by a charge located at (x, y, z), with the condition that placing the
charge there did not disturb the positions or motion of all the other charges
responsible for the fields." [ibid, vol. II, p. 1-3.]
CEM/EE texts still teach that old force field in empty space. However, Jackson -
a superb classical electrodynamicist of international renown - at least points
out that this dramatic error in the model is just ignored. Jackson
"Most classical electrodynamicists continue to adhere to
the notion that the EM force field exists as such in the vacuum, but do admit
that physically measurable quantities such as force somehow involve the product
of charge and field." [J. D. Jackson, Classical Electrodynamics, Second Edition,
Wiley, 1975, p. 249].
Jackson does admit it and point out that
this logical problem is just ignored, for which he is to be highly commended.
Most textbooks simply do not even discuss it.
So at his death in
1879, Maxwell had already laboriously simplified some 80% of his "Treatise"
himself, to comply with the severe demands of the publisher. The second edition
of his book thus has the first 80% considerably changed by Maxwell himself. The
third edition contained the same theory as the second edition essentially, but
just with additional commentary. It is this third edition that is widely
available and usually referred to as "Maxwell's theory".
there is still a widespread belief that the third edition represents Maxwell's
original EM work and theory, in pristine form just as created originally by