Joint Eclipse meeting

von H.F. Newall   

Joint Eclipse meeting
[Diskussionsbeitrag]
Prof.   H.F. Newall
In: Joint eclipse meeting of the Royal Society  and the Royal Astronomical Society. – In: Observatory. 42. 1919, S. 389-397; S. 395-396.   

Die Forschungsgruppe G.O. Mueller nimmt im Kapitel 4 ihrer Dokumentation diesen Beitrag von H.F. Newall auf:

S. 396: „I do not yet feel that I can give up  my freedom of mind in favour of another  interpretation of the effects obtained. If Einstein  had not existed, or had not predicted a  deflection, we might have had a similar experiment made to test the presence of an extended  atmosphere round the Sun, and we could have argued from the result back to the hypothesis.    

Think for one moment of the fine prominence that was seen on the day of the  eclipse. It was followed by Evershed for a  rotation and a half. Matter was expelled outwards in the course of the movement, as  we know from the sequence of photographs  secured with the spectro-heliograph at  Cambridge on the day of the eclipse. And yet  this matter at different high levels goes round  the Sun, not with gravitational velocities, but  with the same velocities as hold at the lower  level of the spots. It is, I know, a cheap criticism to make a qualitative suggestion in opposition to a quantitative result, but I feel that I want to keep an open mind for the existence of matter in a field where gravitational and electric forces are acting simultaneously in unknown relation, under conditions which admit to the existence of an extended corona. It does not carry much  the deflection in terms of refractive index, a medium having a density 1/200 or 1/40 of that of the terrestrial atmosphere would be needed. For we have to do with a possible effective temperature, almost certainly in part controlled by electric as well as gravitational conditions existing in it. And who can say what its refractive properties may be? I prefer to keep an open mind about interpretation.“   

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