There are five forces of nature known so far:
- Gravity (a universal force that pulls and pushes on energy and momentum [according to Einstein, who generalized Newton’s notion that gravity pulls on mass], and which holds planets, stars, planetary systems and galaxies together). Gravity is associated with the gravitational field and a not-yet-observed particle called the “graviton”.
- Electromagnetism (including both electric and magnetic forces, which pull and push on particles that carry electric charge, and holds atoms together). Electromagnetism is associated with electric and magnetic fields and with the particle of light, the “photon”.
- The Strong Nuclear Force (a force that pulls and pushes on quarks, anti-quarks and gluons, and holds protons and neutrons together; a residual version of this force holds atomic nuclei together). This force is associated with the fields and particles called “gluons”.
- The Weak Nuclear Force (a force which affects most known particles but is too weak to hold any known thing together; its main effect is to cause many types of particles to decay to other particles, and to allow production and observation of neutrinos.) This force is associated with the fields and particles called “W” and “Z”.
- The Higgs Force (an extremely weak force, not yet observed, which we expect to be present, now that a [and perhaps the] Higgs particle has been discovered and the existence of the Higgs field thereby confirmed.) The Higgs force is of course associated with the Higgs field and particle.
So here are some relevant links:
- The strengths of the forces — what do “strong” and “weak” really mean to particle physicists?
- Why is there a particle and a field associated with each force? (Coming soon)
11 thoughts on “The Known Forces of Nature”
Great site. You explain things well. I have a very rudimentary understanding of physics and no qualified science background. Hoping you can help with questions about gravity. In thinking about General Relativity and how energy and mass curve/shape space-time I am curious if you could explain/clarify why gravity is considered a fundamental force and not just a result of curved space-time. My understanding is that objects are moving in straight lines and “fall into” or follow paths along curved space-time making gravity something of an illusion. How does the graviton fit in, why is it needed?
This is important because if the tensor is the source of gravitation, you can show that the graviton must be a particle with a quantum mechanical spin of two. Another nice fallout of this correspondence is that the graviton is the only possible massless, spin two particle.
Honestly, all observable particles, are on a microcosmic level, are constantly manufacturing gravity particles a of harmonies that maintain matter.
Is the gravitational field the function of space-time? Hence, no iterating particles (gravitons or anything else) is required to describe the effects of the topography of the universe.
Rational (layman’s): Mass (matter) is created by the effects of other fields like the Higgs and these massive particles propagate with a frequency dependent on their mass (energy). The bigger the mass the slower they move, so, the reason they move slower is because they curve the local space-time region hence their linear (tangential) velocities are lower and they will move on an arc. Because of this circular motion and lower velocities they have a higher probability of smashing into other massive particles. This iterations of slower massive particles will eventually compete for the same ‘local” space-time trajectory. The “escape velocities” of these particle or system of particles (molecules, etc) are due to the fact that they require an input of energy to jump from one contour to a higher (from a smaller arc to a larger one). Note also, that the bigger the massive build up (the huge traffic jam like the planet earth) the radial the escape trajectory will become w.r.t. to the geometric centre of the massive system. Hence, as the “planets” involve the escape of these particles become less probable thus creating a balance within the local region of space-time, including the parent sun and other planets and comets, etc. Hence, there is no need for an attractive force, like the electrical force (which, btw, has a similar formulation because relativistically the effects are similar, i.e. the escape velocities are radial).
Hence, there is no intrinsic gravitational field unless you accept the space-time domain as the “gravitational field” created by the combinational interactions of all other fields.
So, by this conjecture, the curvature of space-time is created by the massive particles
Boyd Bushman credited with the discovery of anti gravity said that Newton’s Series expansion math or binomial expansion basically allowed him to formulate that there are 7 fundamental forces of nature. One of them he postulated was the energy we see that is creating the expansion in the universe, anybody heard of this yet?
Other than symmetry, why does Gravity have to have a particle to transmit it as a force?
Everything “we” know is crap. The most basic law of physics is gravity. And it’s the only one we don’t understand. The smartest minds that have ever lived can’t explain “why” it’s a thing. That is fantastically awesome to me
How force work ?