Volume 5, Issue 4, pages 165-185
Dan Shanahan is an independent researcher with a passion for foundational issues in quantum theory and relativity. Born in Perth, Western Australia, he studied physics at the Universities of NSW and Sydney.
Various attempts at a thoroughly wave-theoretic explanation of matter have taken as their fundamental ingredient the de Broglie or matter wave. But that wave is superluminal whereas it is implicit in the Lorentz transformation that influences propagate ultimately at the velocity c of light. It is shown that if the de Broglie wave is understood, not as a wave in its own right, but as the relativistically induced modulation of an underlying standing wave comprising counter-propagating influences of velocity c, the energy, momentum, mass and inertia of a massive particle can be explained from the manner in which the modulated wave structure must adapt to a change of inertial frame. With those properties of the particle explained entirely from wave structure, nothing then remains to be apportioned to anything discrete or “solid” within the wave. Consideration may thus be given to the possibility of wave-theoretic explanations of particle trajectories, and to a deeper understanding of the Klein-Gordon, Schroedinger and Dirac equations, all of which were conceived as equations for the de Broglie wave. It is argued that this wave-theoretic interpretation of matter favours a physically realistic, rather than inherently probabilistic, interpretation of quantum mechanics.