In formulating his General Theory of Relativity, Einstein described its fundamental postulate, the principle of equivalence, using as an example a physicist closed in a box (size not relevant). He insisted that a physicist inside could not tell the difference between gravity and acceleration. This writer analyzes this prediction and the equivalence principle by reviewing Einstein's original thought experiment.
Force measured between permanent magnets or solenoid coils shows without exception repulsion weaker than attraction. This became the subject of our interest for some time (since its repeated appearance from 1973). In correspondence with Galilean Electrodynamics in 2001 we suggested that if the attractive force between equal and unlike electric charges slightly exceeded the repulsive forces between equal and like electric charges, the difference could account for gravity.
Assuming that the field of force between two magnets is related and in proportion to the density and geometry of the flux of magnetic field, to test further the asymmetry (mentioned above) we decided to perform precise measurements of B?density of the flux between two neodymium disc magnets. It was done in attractive and repulsive mode.
The writer brings back to light the well-known fact that vectors of attractive forces of magnets and electrostatic charges are linear and repulsive forces are tangential. The writer asserted that as the consequence of this fact, the attraction between opposite polarities (of magnets and electrostatic charges) and repulsion between same polarities is not equal due to the different geometry of the field, and therefore different density of the field between two (or more) charges (magnets). This asymmetry actually can account for gravitation. That would bring gravitation to the family of electromagnetic forces. The writer also elaborates on the idea of possibility of electromagnetic origin of inertia, brought in by late Prof. William (Bill) Hughes from the University of South Dakota. The consequence here would be an inherence and independence of inertia, in accordance with Newton's views.
"Yet we cannot rest satisfied until the deeper unity between the gravitation and electrical properties of the world is apparent" - Sir Arthur Eddington.
"Universal gravitation is merely a residual phenomenon of electrical attraction and repulsion" - Michael Faraday.
Any idea that attractive and repulsive forces are of even slightly different magnitude flies in the face of Coulomb's law. But experiments with magnets have tended to support such an idea. This paper reports on an ongoing research program in which a past GED author has been joined by his then-reviewers to carry on with the idea and really explore its ramifications.
* Portions also printed in Proceedings of the NPA, V1, N1, pp. 49-56 (2004).
Gravitation's property of attraction only makes it appear different from electrical or magnetic force. The observations and reasoning in this paper attempt to find an explanation for the gravity as the difference between vectors of attractive and repulsive forces of the total energy ?content? in favor of attraction. This difference is supposed to be related to the gravitational constant.