more from Jim Baggott

Single Idea 24163

[catalogued under 27. Natural Reality / B. Modern Physics / 2. Electrodynamics / c. Electrons]

Full Idea

A free electron doesn't simply persist as a point particle travelling along a predetermined, classical path; it is surrounded by a swarm of virtual particles arsising from self-interactions with its own magnetic field.

Gist of Idea

Free electrons have clouds of virtual particles, arising from field interaction


Jim Baggott (The Quantum Story: 40 moments [2011], 19)

Book Reference

Baggott,Jim: 'The Quantum Story' [OUP 2016], p.186

A Reaction

It seems to me important for amateurs and mere philosophers to hang on to this idea of virtual particles, because they undermine any attempt to impose a macro picture on sub-atomic events.