The Human Body is Mostly Empty Space

“On April 7, 2011, the CDF collaboration at the Tevatron reported an excess in proton-antiproton collision events that produce a W boson accompanied by two hadronic jets. This could possibly be interpreted in terms of a Z’ boson.[4][5]” -wikipedia
What the f does that mean? Let’s try to find out and then we’re gonna count the protons in your body. (Skip ahead if you don’t wanna know about the bosons.”
“The atom is a basic unit of matter that consists of a dense central nucleus surrounded by a cloud of negatively charged electrons. The atomic nucleus contains a mix of positively charged protons and electrically neutral neutrons (except in the case of hydrogen-1, which is the only stable nuclide with no neutrons). The electrons of an atom are bound to the nucleus by the electromagnetic force. Likewise, a group of atoms can remain bound to each other, forming a molecule.”
“Neutrons and protons have comparable dimensions—on the order of 2.5×10-15 m—although the ‘surface’ of these particles is not sharply defined.[48]'”
“In the Standard Model of physics, both protons and neutrons are composed of elementary particles called quarks. The quark belongs to the fermion group of particles, and is one of the two basic constituents of matter—the other being the lepton, of which the electron is an example. There are six types of quarks, each having a fractional electric charge of either +2⁄3 or −1⁄3. Protons are composed of two up quarks and one down quark, while a neutron consists of one up quark and two down quarks. This distinction accounts for the difference in mass and charge between the two particles. The quarks are held together by the strong nuclear force, which is mediated by gluons. The gluon is a member of the family of gauge bosons, which are elementary particles that mediate physical forces.[49][50]””The Standard Model of particle physics recognizes three kinds of gauge bosons: Photons, which carry the electromagnetic interaction; W and Z bosons, which carry the weak interaction; and gluons, which carry the strong interaction.[3]”

“Beyond the Standard Model

Grand unification theories

A grand unified theory predicts additional gauge bosons named X and Y bosons. The hypothetical X and Y bosons direct interactions between quarks and leptons, hence violating conservation of baryon number and causing proton decay. Such bosons would be even more massive than W and Z bosons due to symmetry breaking. Analysis of data collected from such sources as the Super-Kamiokandeneutrino detector has yielded no evidence of X and Y bosons.[citation needed]


The fourth fundamental interaction, gravity, may also be carried by a boson, called the graviton. In the absence of experimental evidence and a mathematically coherent theory of quantum gravity, it is unknown whether this would be a gauge boson or not. The role of gauge invariance in general relativity is played by a similar symmetry: diffeomorphism invariance.”

Types of W’ bosons

W’ bosons often arise in models with an extra SU(2)gauge group. SU(2) × SU(2) is spontaneously broken to the diagonal subgroup SU(2)W which corresponds to the electroweak SU(2). More generally, we might have n copies of SU(2), which are then broken down to a diagonal SU(2)W. This gives rise to n−1 W+‘, W‘ and Z’ bosons. Such models might arise from quiver diagram, for example. In order for the W’ bosons to couple to isospin, the extra SU(2) and the Standard Model SU(2) must mix; one copy of SU(2) must break around the TeV scale (to get W’ bosons with a TeV mass) leaving a second SU(2) for the Standard Model. This happens in Little Higgs models that contain more than one copy of SU(2). Because the W’ comes from the breaking of an SU(2), it is generically accompanied by a Z’ boson of (almost) the same mass and with couplings related to the W’ couplings.

Another model with W’ bosons but without an additional SU(2) factor is the so-called 331 model with β = ± 1/√3. The symmetry breaking chain SU(3)L × U(1)W → SU(2)W × U(1)Y leads to a pair of W’± bosons and three Z’ bosons.

W’ bosons also arise in Kaluza-Klein theories with SU(2) in the bulk.


so I’m a bit lost now. Let’s try counting protons instead.

“Question: What Are the Elements in the Human Body?

Answer: Most of the human body is made up of water, H2O, with cells consisting of 65-90% water by weight. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that most of a human body’s mass is oxygen. Carbon, the basic unit for organic molecules, comes in second. 99% of the mass of the human body is made up of just six elements: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphorus.

  1. Oxygen (65%)
  2. Carbon (18%)
  3. Hydrogen (10%)
  4. Nitrogen (3%)
  5. Calcium (1.5%)
  6. Phosphorus (1.0%)
  7. Potassium (0.35%)
  8. Sulfur (0.25%)
  9. Sodium (0.15%)
  10. Magnesium (0.05%)
  11. Copper, Zinc, Selenium, Molybdenum, Fluorine, Chlorine, Iodine, Manganese, Cobalt, Iron (0.70%)
  12. Lithium, Strontium, Aluminum, Silicon, Lead, Vanadium, Arsenic, Bromine (trace amounts)

Reference: H. A. Harper, V. W. Rodwell, P. A. Mayes, Review of Physiological Chemistry, 16th ed., Lange Medical Publications, Los Altos, California 1977.”

96% of the atoms in the body are Hydrogen, Oxygen, Carbon and Nitrogen; which make up the four base-pairs Adenine, Guanine, Cytosine and Thymine that make up the DNA strain in each of our cells. The total number of protons, neutrons and electrons in each of these four atoms in a human weighing 70 pounds is about:

Protons                                 Neutrons                                    Electrons
Hydrogen    4.7*10^27                                     0                                           4.7*10^27
Oxygen         1.4*10^28                            1.4*10^28                                 1.4*10^28
Carbon          4.2*10^27                           4.2*10^27                                 4.2*10^27
Total               2.3*10^28                          1.8*10^28                                   2.3*10^28

2.3*10^28 is 230 00 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000, that’s 23 octillions, 23 thousand quadrillions or 23 quadrilliards protons in you.

Hydrogen is just a proton and an electron, it has no neutron in its nucleus. And every atom is mostly empty space, like the solar system or a galaxy, but the electromagnetic force that keeps the electrons circling the nucleus is different from the gravitational force keeping the sun and the planets together, they might both originate from different bosons, but then, where do bosons originate from, will our search for the smallest things in the universe never end? We might never find out, because whenever we find an answer you can always say “But what if there’s more?” We don’t even know if gravity is a force or something completely different and on yet another level of a much lower magnitude that when combined produce what we describe as gravity. Is this in itself proof that the universe is infinite? No. And even if the universe is infinite, how are we supposed to understand what this means? Anything between 1 and infinity seems easy to understand (well, one octillion isn’t very easy to fathom) but 0, 1 and infinity makes little sense in between microcosmos and macrocosmos, down here on the surface where 1 thing, such as a 2 metres tall tree, consists of billions of molecules. How can we be 1 human and 1 octillion protons at the same time? Are the cosmic rays evidence that all matter is really a wave and the particles and the dust (planets et cetera) around the galaxies are just local maxima of an infinite wave with no starting point, no outside to relate its size of level of total energy to, no end point? Was the Big Bang 1 wave and everywhere and everywhen? Physicists say time and space originated with the Big Bang, so with the wave comes it’s frequency, tempo, melody, everything at the same time, at the same place, which is everywhere and forever. 1 = infinity.

But 1 = infinity is bullshit in math. We might have a problem translating math into english, and even if we did, do we know how to translate electrochemical signals into english? No, we’re stupid, we see things from 1 arbitrary view point being individuals, we don’t have room for all the information in the universe in our brains, which are necessarily smaller than the universe. But with math at least we have internal consistency. Sure, the premise of 1 is a problem, but beyond that everything is internally coherent, i.e. logical.  So, we have to trust our own systems, not because they’re accurate, but because they’re relatively accurate since we have only ourselves to relate it to, just like the wave.

“Free neutrons are able to cause many nuclear reactions in a variety of substances no matter their energy, because in many substances they give rise to high-energy nuclear reactions, and these (or their products) liberate enough energy to cause ionization. For this reason, free neutrons are normally considered effectively ionizing radiation, at any energy (see neutron radiation). Examples of other ionizing particles are alpha particles, beta particles, and cosmic rays. The radiations cause ionization due to the kinetic energy involved in the production of the individual particles, which inevitably exceed 10 eV, and commonly exceed thousands or even millions of eV of energy.

The ability of an electromagnetic wave (photons) to ionize an atom or molecule depends on its frequency, which determines the energy of its associated particle, the photon. Radiation on the high-frequency and short-wavelength end of the electromagnetic spectrum—high-frequency ultraviolet, X-rays, and gamma rays—is ionizing due to the energy of such photons exceeding 10 eV. Lower-energy radiation, such as visible light, infrared, microwaves, and radio waves, are not ionizing.[1] The latter types of low-energy non-ionizing radiation may damage molecules, but the effect is generally indistinguishable from the effects of simple heating. Such heating does not produce free radicals until higher temperatures (for example, flame temperatures or “browning” temperatures, and above) are attained. In contrast, ionizing radiation may produce free radicals, such as reactive oxygen species, even at room temperatures and below. Free radical production is also a primary basis for the particular danger to biological systems of relatively small amounts of ionizing radiation that are far smaller than needed to produce significant heating. Free radicals easily damage DNA, and thus ionizing radiation may also directly damage DNA by ionizing or breaking DNA molecules.”

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are chemically reactive molecules containing oxygen. Examples include oxygenions and peroxides. Reactive oxygen species are highly reactive due to the presence of unpaired valence shell electrons. ROS form as a natural byproduct of the normal metabolism of oxygen and have important roles in cell signaling and homeostasis.[1] However, during times of environmental stress (e.g., UV or heat exposure), ROS levels can increase dramatically.[1] This may result in significant damage to cell structures. Cumulatively, this is known as oxidative stress. ROS are also generated by exogenous sources such as ionizing radiation.”

My brain is melting. Go here if you havn’t had enough yet:


2 Responses to “The Human Body is Mostly Empty Space”

  1. Erik Says:

    Tack för en aktuell sammanfattning av läget inom den teoretiska fysiken. Ser ut som om uppfattningen varit ungefär densamma de senaste 10 åren?

  2. enleuk Says:

    Jag tror uppfattningen varit ganska stabil de senaste 50 åren, det som har hänt sedan dess är att man hittat fysiska bevis för de subatomära partiklarna varje årtioende sedan dess, men själva teorierna har inte ändrats. Och det trots att ingen lyckats få ihop Einstein och kvantmekaniken än. Sen är detta knappast en heltäckande bild, jag fokuserade på protoner, neutroner och elektroner för att ge just det perspektivet på oss själva och världen. Dessutom är jag en amatör när det gäller fysik. Jag fokuserar mer på epistemologi och t.ex. hur den mikroskopiska världen är kopplad till oss själva, som hur ett paket elektromagnetisk strålning från solen reagerar med elektroner och på molekylstrukturnivå med allt vi ser och de cellmolekyler som evolutionen byggt åt oss under 4500 miljoner år, ganska säker på att jag skrivit om ögat men hittade inget vid en snabb sökning, men det finns i min hjärna åtminstone så har det inte kommit i tryck än så kommer det komma nån gång 🙂

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