March, 2004 Newsletter

  • Blue Band Around Jupiter
  • Mercury & the Magnetic Field of Mars
  • 'Grassroots Movement' on Mars?
  • Cosmogony (Origin) of the Solar System
  • Saturn X-Ray Reflections

New Blue Band Around Jupiter

Astronomer David Reneke told Australian Broadcasting Company:
"The first hint that something unusual was taking place in the cloudy Jovian atmosphere came from a Spanish amateur (astronomer) when he reported that a small, bi-colored feature was forming in the Southern Hemisphere a little over two weeks ago. Now, this disturbance has stretched what looks like right around the planet. ...The wide band could quite easily measure three to four times the diameter of the Earth. Although Jupiter has, in the past, produced some unusual upper cloud features, nothing like this has ever been seen before!"

Exciting things are happening in the solar system. As shown in the first figure, a thin trail of blue material began to spread into the southern equatorial belt of Jupiter. In two weeks it has spread out to fill a band several Earth diameters wide in latitude, which completely encircles the giant planet. As of the post, there has been no ‘official’ explanation from the planetary science community. Given the current notion that Jupiter is a hot gaseous planet with a concentration of elements similar to that of the Sun, i.e. overwhelmingly dominated by hydrogen and secondly by helium, the sudden proliferation of such a huge mass of other elements is difficult to explain.

Velikovsky/Ackerman Hypothesis

Consistent with the V/A paradigm, the origin of this material is obviously the Great Red Spot, which I claim drives every visible feature on Jupiter. It is formed by hot gases rising from an impact crater made 6,000 years ago. The reason for its great energy output and longevity is that the impact broke down the methane gas hydrates which comprise the solid body of the planet, releasing hydrogen, oxygen and methane which have been burning ever since. The burning breaks down more of the gas hydrate, releasing more of the same fuel-oxygen mixture so that the burning is self propagating. The presence of large amounts of methane on Jupiter is already well established. In fact, the Cassini probe photographed Jupiter through a methane filter in order to make the cloud features stand out.

The first figure shows the blue material streaming from the southern edge of the GRS, where its counter-clockwise circulation flows to the east, in the same direction as the rotation of the planet. The vast blue band is indicative of methane (CH4,) and the gas hydrate structures that enclose it are formed by water molecules (H2O.) The large amount of hydrogen implied by the blue bandue band is consistent with the conventional view that Jupiter comprises vast amounts of hydrogen, but it is not in gaseous form. It also implies the presence of vast amounts of carbon and oxygen, which do not fit into the current notion that Jupiter comprises the same elemental proportions as the Sun, completely dominated by hydrogen and to a lesser degree, helium.

The question is: What has suddenly increased the amount of methane reaching the cloud tops? One possibility is that there was more methane present in the earlier stages of Jupiter’s accretion, and that the burning has only reached that deeper level after over 6,000 years. A more exciting possibility is that the temperature in the crater to date was sufficient to release oxygen (from H2O) along with the methane so that burning of some of the methane, to form CO2 and H2O, could take place. The possibility exists, that after 6,000 years, the temperature has decreased to the point that the breakdown of the water molecules has suddenly stopped but is still high enough to break down the gas hydrate structure, which requires low temperature, so that the methane is still being released but not burning and is rising in from the crater and being swept into the south equatorial band. If this is the case, the entire planet will probably turn methane blue, as the gas spreads from one band to the next. This would be a dramatic confirmation of the V/A hypothesis of the gas hydrate makeup of the giant planets.

Mercury & the Magnetic Field of Mars

A recent article "Crustal magnetic field of Mars," by B. Langlais, M.E. Purucker, and M. Mandea in the AGU Planetary Journal, Feb. 19, 2004, is one of several attempts to calculate the strength, location and orientation of the Martian magnetic field from orbital measurements. Their study indicates that the source of the field is in the lithosphere, perhaps only in the top 10 km and does not have the shape of a central dipole. However the magnetization of some rocks may be as much as ten times that of Earth rocks and must have been originally generated by a relatively strong source.

The Velikovsky/Ackerman Hypothesis

I maintain that the present condition of its magnetic field is revealed in ancient myth. It is part of an amazing story of 3,000 years of chaos in the solar system. Mars is one part of an ancient planet which I call priori-Mars, the orbit of which was similar to that of Venus up until about 6,000 years ago. It had a large solid core, a strong magnetic field, a thick atmosphere, ample water and fostered abundant life. It was ejected from that orbit by the more massive proto-Venus, which had just rebounded from a high energy impact on Jupiter. These close interactions distorted priori-Mars into a ‘dog-faced’ planet, which, because of its relative rigidity, still carries a clear record of this distortion. The Tharsis Bulge and its associated global fault system are residual evidence of this distortion. This distortion was a pivotal event which influenced subsequent interactions between it and the Earth.

The interactions with proto-Venus ejected priori-Mars into an earth-crossing orbit and resulted in a three planet resonance being established between proto-Venus, priori-Mars and the Earth, which lasted over 3,000 years, ending in 687 BC. This resonance was manifested by priori-Mars being captured in and released from a geosynchronous earth orbit for 14 or 15 years then entering a planetary orbit for an equal amount of time. Because of the presence of the distended Tharsis Bulge on its equator, priori-Mars’ spin axis was torqued toward the earth for the entire time that it orbited. The precessing motion made it appear like a wobbling wheel stationary in the sky, and this was the enormous cosmic stage on which the myths of all cultures were visualized. This orientation explains why the northern plains of Mars were decimated by volcanism, why some 7 km of rock was lost to space in tens of thousands of convulsions, why there is no magnetism in the surface rocks of the northern plains. The surface to surface distance between the two planets was only 34,100 km, therefore each convulsion resulted in the expulsion of innumerable meteorites along with a portion of its remaining atmospheric gases and water to Earth The water lost from Mars is all here, a part of every creature on Earth.

Exit Mercury

One hundred such captures and releases occurred. Each 'dance encounter' was terminated by the close approach of proto-Venus when its aphelion and inferior conjunction corresponded. At these times the solid core of priori-Mars was drawn out into space through the Valles Marineris and dropped into a lower orbit, moving rapidly to the west while the shell drifted to the East. In this way each encounter ended with the solid core reentering the shell of priori-Mars. Once outside the tidal influence of Earth in its planetary orbit, the planet reformed. The solid core was named Hermes in Greek myth and Mercury in Roman myth. Its rapid motion, as compared to the intact priori-Mars, which remained stationary in the sky for some14 years, was the reason for the ancient description of Mercury as ‘moving like the wind’ and its swooping down caused its reputation as a messenger or avenger sent by Zeus, which was the primary lava-fountain figure on priori-Mars. The large numbers of nickel-iron meteorites comprise a portion of the liquid, outer core of priori-Mars which leaked out at the time of these termination events.

The wide range of magnetic orientations that are found today in the lithosphere rocks are the result of the disruptions of the interior of priori-Mars that occurred during its encounters with the Earth. These include the repeated ejections and reentries of its solid iron core and the continuous mars-quakes accompanying tens of thousands of violent convulsions of its interior, which occurred during the encounters. Each time the solid core reentered the lithosphere upon leaving the vicinity of the Earth, its orientation, and therefore its magnetization of the surface rocks was randomly oriented and the frequent, often continuous quaking undoubtedly fractured the lithospheric rocks, further complicating the orientations of the magnetic fields. Assuming the magnetized lithosphere is only 18 km thick, as can be inferred from the demagnetization around impact craters, the authors state:

"...there would need to be a high content of magnetic materials, magnetized in a coherent and large scale fashion, in the Martian lithosphere ... Given the Martian ellipticity, the real distance between the surface and the top of our equivalent source layer would range between 5 and 10 km between ±30 latitude. Given this, and the possible demagnetization depth, the magnetic crust could be as thin as 10 km, leading to even larger magnetization values. This magnetization is one order of magnitude larger than that found on the Earth."
Mercury supports my hypothesis that the global magnetic fields of all planets are generated by super-currents in their solid cores. If a dynamo effect were the cause of priori-Mars magnetic field, i.e. the swirling of liquid iron between the solid core and the lithosphere, no magnetic field would have been present after its first encounter with proto-Venus, because once the ponderously slow circulation was disrupted, it would have taken thousands of years for it to be re-established. The absence of the dynamo would have resulted in the retention of the global dipole field in the crustal rocks of the southern highlands to this day.

The 3,000 year series of ‘dance encounters’ ceased in 687 BC when the solid core exited priori-Mars at the end of the hundredth encounter. It was first deflected by the Moon (the month changed from 36 to 28 days at that time) and then interacted with Venus for several centuries until the solid core, still called Mercury, and Venus settled into their current orbits.

The birth of proto-Venus 6,000 years ago implies that all terrestrial planets are created by catastrophic impacts on the great planets and consequently each has a unique age. Since the oldest Martian meteorites are 600 million years older than the oldest rocks on Earth, the logical conclusion is that priori-Mars is that much older than Earth. The ratio of solid core to planetary diameter for Earth is ~0.55 while for priori-Mars it was ~0.65. This is consistent with the stronger magnetization of the crustal rocks implied in the paper mentioned above. Its stronger magnetic field is consistent with its greater age and smaller size, both leading to a larger core today.

Mercury's dipole field strength, measured by Mariner 10, is only about one percent of the Earths field. I maintain that this decline is due to the fact that the superconducting (FeH?) crystal structure, which generates the field, can only exist at very high pressures. The high pressure, which was previously supplied by the overburden of priori-Mars’ outer core and lithosphere, is no longer present and as a result FeH can only exist much deeper inside Mercury. An additional decline is possible, but hopefully the field will remain intact until the next space probe reaches the planet. I predict that it will find that Mercury has a perfect dipole field. If the proper equipment is present, it might also be possible to determine whether Mercury is completely solid. If so, the dynamo hypothesis will be dealt a harsh blow.

The pristine surface of Mercury described in ancient myth (like glowing mother-of-pearl) has been sullied by the infall of clouds of dust and rock expelled into solar orbits by convulsions of priori-Mars during the entire Vedic period. It is the same regolith that covers the near side of the Moon to a depth of several kilometers. This is the reason for their superficial similarity. However, Their average densities, 5.4 (Mercury) and 3.9 (Mars) betray the profound differences in their interiors. Also, the flat bottoms of the craters (left) reveal that the solid iron surface of the ‘planet’ lies just below the very shallow layer of regolith. The craters were formed in the last 2,500 years by large rocks also ejected from priori-Mars - just more regolith.

Once ejected from the interior of priori-Mars the glowing solid core cooled quickly by radiation. The image above also shows one of many enormous thrust faults where part of the Mercurian crust was pushed slightly over an adjacent part by compressional forces. The abundance and length of the thrust faults indicate that the radius of Mercury has decreased by 1-2 kilometers (0.6 - 1.2 miles) due to its rapid cooling, while the impact cratering of the surface was taking place.

Mars has since collapsed in on itself and all that remains in its core is liquid iron. As a result it has no global field. The current paradigm cannot explain its lack of such a magnetic field, since it spins at a rate comparable to the earth, and should therefore have a ‘dynamo.’ The current paradigm suggests that Venus’ lack of a global magnetic field is due to its extremely slow rotation, which is not rapid enough to generate a ‘dynamo.’ I maintain that Venus has no magnetic field because it is a hot new planet, the interior of which is completely molten, with a tenuous crust floating on top.

The comparison of Mars’ small size, low average density, lack of a magnetic field and orbit well outside that of the Earth, with Mercury’s high density, dipole magnetic field, compression faults, and orbit well inside that of the Earth, reinforces the notion that they are the collapsed shell and the solid core, respectively, of an ancient planet that was intact in the vicinity of the Earth only 2,500 years ago.

‘Grass Roots’ movement on Mars?

A article, dated Feb 22, 2004: "Sharp-eyed Mars Rover (MER) scientists are puzzling over very fine, thread-like features spotted in the soil at Opportunity’s landing site within Meridiani Planum."

For some unknown reason, this report has not been followed up, at least in the subsequent three weeks.

The scientists are so shocked that they are trying to explain these individual thread-like features as part of the fabric from the bouncing lander balloons, and are already comiserating about contaminating the Martian environment. It is doubtful that individual threads would be from the earth-made balloon fabrics, which would probably still be interwoven, as in the case of the ‘bunny’ spotted a later.

The hydrogen being detected just below much of the Martian surface by the Mars Odyssey orbiter's neutron spectrometer, a component of the gamma ray spectrometer suite, has already been declared as indicating water. But hydrogen may or may not mean water. Hydrogen is one component of water, but also is incorporated in a number of molecules or more complex structures. If water were close to the surface, it would have sublimed into the atmosphere when the sun shown directly down on it and when the parcel of ‘air’ containing it subsequently came in contact with a cold surface it would freeze out on that surface, not several inches below the surface. Along these lines, it is strange that there has been no mention of the rovers incorporating similar hydrogen detectors to follow up on this data at close range.

The Velikovsky/Ackerman Hypothesis

I have previously suggested that this wide spread near-surface hydrogen signal might be from the roots of plants or trees, which proliferated on priori-Mars up to some four millennia BP (before the present). Fortunately, the Meridiani Planum turned out to be an area which has not been covered with as much volcanic dust and rocks as the other lander locations, as evidenced by the exposed bedrock. As a result, the probability of finding roots there is much higher, particularly in depressions where water might tend to have remained longer as priori-Mars became more and more dessicated - like the small crater in which the Opportunity rover landed.

The V/A scenario reveals that priori-Mars was closer to the Sun than the earth before 4000 BC and as it approached the Earth after innumerable encounters with proto-Venus, it was seen to be covered with vegetation. Even though most of its water was lost to Earth during the period 4000 to 2700 BC, some vegetation would still have been present well into that period. When Mars slid out to its current orbit, due to the loss of its solid core, now called Mercury, some 2,700 years ago, it no longer had its magnetic and atmospheric shields, so whatever exposed vegetation remained in areas not covered with volcanic dust and rock (Viking 1 and 2 and Spirit landing sites), was destroyed by 2700 years of intense solar ultraviolet radiation. However, the possibility exists that many root systems are still present, preserved, as opposed to being petrified, by the freezing cold.

Evidence of recent ubiquitous vegetation comes from the descriptions of several mythological deities. One is the dual Vedic deity Yama-Yami:

According to the popular ideas now prevailing, Yama is represented as a green man, clothed in red garments.
The dual nature of Yama-Yami was a representation of the two dichotomous regions visible on Mars when it orbited the Earth. The southern highlands were still covered with vegetation, while the northern plains were covered with lava flows. Further confirmation that Yama represented Mars when close to the earth comes from the statement in the Rig Veda:
He is said to have two insatiable dogs, with four eyes and wide nostrils, which guard the road to his abode.
This is a reference to the two satellites of priori-Mars, which could only have been seen if the planet was close to the Earth. The repeated visits of priori-Mars to the earth are indicated in the Puranas:
Yama fulfills the office of the judge of dead...all that die appearing before him...The virtuous are then conveyed to Swarga (Indra's heaven).
This is another characteristic of Yama which links him to the deity Indra. The duty of carrying souls of the deceased 'to heaven' implies that priori-Mars repeatedly remained close to the Earth, to pick up the souls of the deceased and then moved away until it became a point of light just like the other stars, or deities, which resided in ‘heaven.’

Another mythological reference indicating that vegetation still covered part of priori-Mars, was the depiction of the Egyptian deity Anubis (left), a dog-headed figure with a black snout, representing the volcanic northern plains, while the rest of his head was green.

NASA’s Steve Squyres’ suggestion that the threads in the Martian soil may have separated from the landing balloons, will be negated if the thread-like features are ubiquitous, i.e. found farther from the landing site. If this is the case, the scientists will be left with the tough job of explaining how evidence of ‘grass roots’ could have survived for 3.5 billion years. This is an on-going mystery, and should be fun to watch it unfold. Unfortunately, there may be a tendency on their part to just ‘clam up,’ if the only answer seems to require discarding the uniformitarian paradigm.

Cosmogony of the Solar System

by John Ackerman

Abstract submitted to Spring AGU meeting, Planetary Science section, May 2004, Montreal:

The early solar system accreted from ice crystals, which encapsulated all the refractory elements. Since ice was needed to bind the smallest particles, accretion only occurred in the outer solar system. The same solar wind impelled refractory grains from the inner to the outer solar system, where they became ice-encapsulated and accreted into the giant planets. Thus, the original solar system comprised the four giant planets, accreted from ice and dust. Their initial accretion, perhaps from localized concentrations, was rapid enough to form rocky iron cores from the refractory elements present. But due to their great orbital radii, the completion of the process required more than 50 million years, and the bulk of their accretion was cold. Studies of young Sun-like stars show that hydrogen gas is expelled from the nebula before this process had hardly begun. As a result these are all solid bodies and not gas giants.

The recognition that Jupiter is solid has been obfuscated by a high energy impact which occurred 6,000 years BP. The hot gases streaming from the impact crater heat the atmosphere while the planet remains frozen. This temperature excess was an important factor leading to the notion of gas giants. The GRS marks the location at which the material rising from the crater reaches the cloud-tops and the crystals formed from the gases color the impenetrable cloud layers.

Scientists have come close to recognizing the true nature of these bodies in recent years, primarily as a result of the study of methane hydrates (clathrates), which are ubiquitous in the high pressure environment beneath the ocean beds. These strong, low density structures of water molecules form naturally at low temperature and high pressure, exactly the conditions in the large bodies of the outer solar system. Their properties are responsible for the low average density of the giant planets. Clathrates form ‘cages’ in which foreign molecules, such as methane, are enclosed. One expert has already proposed that gas hydrates are the most abundant form of matter in the outer solar system, i.e. in the Galilean moons, Pluto, Charon and the KBOs. However, no one has, until now, suggested that the giant planets themselves are so composed, moreover that these bodies alone comprised the original solar system.

The terrestrial planets are the result of subsequent high energy impacts on the solid giant planets. Fortunately, the birth of a new terrestrial planet, Venus, occurred within proto-historical time and the entire process is documented in ancient writings. It formed as a result of the impact (>1042 ergs) on Jupiter 6,000 years BP. It bored deep into the solid surface, expelling a plasma cloud several times the mass of Venus and thousands of times the volume of Jupiter. Most of the cloud escaped Jupiter and entered an eccentric planetary orbit. It quickly contracted, forming a star-like proto-Venus, with a temperature well above 10,000 K.

Its perihelion was close to the ancient interior orbit of Mars and its aphelion close to Jupiter’s orbit, gave it a period of some five years. But its great orbital energy was rapidly converted to heat, due to repeated interactions with Mars and the Sun at perihelion. The tidal force of the Sun distorted its shape and caused chaotic motions in its fluid interior as did the solar magnetic field, interacting with its completely ionized body. Each interaction reheated it, consequently reducing its aphelion and increasing the frequency of the interactions.

Its repeated heating caused the out-gassing of most lighter elements to space by Jeans escape. Thus the loss of orbital energy resulted in the increasing of its average density from 1.3 gm/cm3, the density of Jupiter, to over 5.5 g/cm3, the density of Venus. This is how all terrestrial planets were formed.

This catastrophic birth ensures the concentration of iron in the core, the rising of the hot radioactive elements thorium, uranium, potassium and the less dense materials to the surface. Although the volatiles, H2, C, N, O2, which comprised the vast majority of the rebounded cloud, were initially lost, they remained in the inner solar system, to be captured later by the proto-planet as it cooled or by extant planets, thereby rapidly providing the elements necessary for life. A corollary of this process is that each terrestrial has a unique age.

Saturn X-Ray Reflections

In April 2003, NASAs Chandra probe took X-ray images of Saturn, and planetary scientists are puzzled by the results, to be published soon, that defy the current hypothesis that it and Jupiter are gas giants. The X-ray image, on the left, purportedly shows that the X-rays are concentrated near Saturn's equator. It seems to me that they are concentrated in the anti-solar direction well below the rings, which surround the planet’s equator. The visible image on the right is to aid in orienting the viewer.

The 90 megawatts of Saturn’s X-radiation, concentrated at the ‘center’ of the planet, is believed to be similar to the intensity obtained from Jupiter. The spectrum, or distribution of the wavelengths of the X-rays from Saturn, was found to be very similar to that of X-rays from the Sun.

"This indicates that Saturn's X-ray emission is due to the scattering of solar X-rays by Saturn's atmosphere," said Jan-Uwe Ness, of the University of Hamburg in Germany. "It's a puzzle, since the intensity of Saturn's X-rays requires that Saturn reflects X-rays fifty times more efficiently than the Moon."

This suggests that both giant, gaseous planets reflect solar X-rays at unbelievably high rates. Further observations of Jupiter will be needed to verify this similarity.

"Another interesting result of the observation is that Saturn's rings were not detected in X-rays, ... This requires Saturn's rings to be less efficient at scattering X-rays than the planet itself." said co-author Scott Wolk of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, MA."

Ness and Wolk are authors of a paper that will discuss the results an upcoming issue of the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics.

The Velikovsky/Ackerman Hypothesis

I maintain that the giant planets are solid gas hydrate bodies with atmospheric clouds obscuring their surfaces. This is a common theme throughout this website. The intensity of the X-rays reflected from Saturn and Jupiter could not possibly result from scattering in a purely gaseous planet It is highly likely that they are reflecting from the solid ice/gas-hydrate surface of these giants planets. It may be that the gas hydrates have enhanced X-ray reflection crossections. It will be interesting how scientists explain this reflection in terms of the old gas giant paradigm.

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  © John Ackerman