You are here:

Astrophysics/Computer program


Hello Mr.Stahl,

Would you  please help me to find preferably  a computer program that calculates the Gravitational, Tidal and Electromagnetic forces of the  planets including Chiron and the major Asteroids on Earth, or at least a way to do it manually?

I am in Barbados where these programs are not available, and I have asked several members of the Barbados Astronomical society , but was unable to get any help there.

What factors affect the gravitational and electromagnetic strength of a planet? Maybe you are familiar with the work of John Nelson who worked for RCA and then left and went to NASA to do “gravitational vectoring”. This is close to what I am researching.

Your father-in-law Mr. Johnson was instrumental in helping me along the Spiritual path with the teachings of the Ascended Masters according to the author ADK. Luk, and now I have developed  an interest in the stars and planets.

Thanking you in advance for whatever help you can provide.

Van Linton

Multipole sunspot
Multipole sunspot  

Cavity resonator
Cavity resonator  
Hello, Van,

Thanks for refreshing my memory! My father-in-law was instrumental in helping many people (including my sister-in-law) strike out on their own spiritual paths.

Re: your questions, let's take them one at a time.

First, it's not surprising that you haven't been able to dredge up any responses from the BAS as the society appears to have been defunct for several years now. Even the Observatory, the only one in the Caribbean so far as I know, appears to have fallen into total disuse and last I heard (last May when I was there) they even moved the telescope out! This was after several break-ins.

No one appears to have stepped forward, and there was to have been an AGM several years back but that never transpired. Ricky Small was the last known President, but that's all I can tell you.

Re: Nelson's theory, it sounds interesting to be sure, but the cold hard fact is that when one looks at the magnitudes of the gravitational forces exerted by any of the planets (including in tandem), they simply aren't large enough to excite any kind of solar storms or Earth magnetic substorms.

My own investigations point to the 'culprits' being multi-pole sunspots such as depicted in one of the images shown, from my book, Selected Analyses in Solar Flare Plasma Dynamics'. In these complex systems magnetic helicity plays a major role (see, e.g. previous answers in astrophysics that I have given to do with magnetic helicity in the solar context.)

Typical intense radiofrequency events are also more likely to be excited by disturbances in solar coronal loops which imitate the action of cavity resonators (see sketch of a model of one loop attached.).

These solar physical agents then can fully account for high frequency radio events, in the form of sudden ionospheric disturbances, SWFs (short wave fadeouts) and related phenomena. To encompass the scope of these and how they operate is beyond the scope of this answer format, but my book is available online and a simple Google ought to bring it up.

All my working, computations, including the strengths of E, H intensities, current densities, Q-values, plasma frequencies were done using Mathcad 14. I basically translated the relevant equations needed into the Mathcad format. Thus, for Active Region 2776, one of those I looked at along with its associated events, I gathered all the known indices, including plasma number density, equilibrium magnetic field, temperatures, etc. and used these to compute others, including Q-value, Alfven speed, wave number vector and fraction of beam energy injected into the corona.

Unfortunately, I know of no computer programs that can simply model any of these or allow inputs or computations. So far as I know, each person has to get hold of his own computational software and 'crank it out' himself.

Anyway, I wish you best of luck in Barbados in pursuing your project. I think the person to try to get hold of to find out anything about the society is Bill Sutherland.  


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Philip A. Stahl


I specialize in stellar and solar astrophysics. Can answer questions pertaining to these areas, including: stellar structure and evolution, HR diagrams, binary systems, collapsars (black holes, neutron stars) stellar atmospheres and the spectroscopic analysis of stars – as well as the magnetohydrodynamics of sunspots and solar flares. Sorry – No homework problems done or research projects! I will provide hints on solutions. No nonsense questions accepted, i.e. pertaining to astrology, or 'UFOs' or overly speculative questions: 'traveling through or near black holes, worm holes, time travel etc. Absolutely NO questions based on the twaddle at this Canadian site: purporting to show a "new physics". Do not waste my time or yours by wasting bandwidith with reference to such bunkum.


Have constructed computerized stellar models; MHD research. Gave workshops in astrophysics (stellar spectroscopy, analysis) at Harry Bayley Observatory, Barbados. More than twenty years spent in solar physics research, including discovery of SID flares. Developed first ever consistent magnetic arcade model for solar flares incorporating energy dissipation and accumulation. Developed first ever loop-based solar flare model using double layers and incorporating cavity resonators. (Paper presented at Joint AGU/AAS Meeting in Baltimore, MD, May 1994)

American Astronomical Society (Solar physics and Dynamical astronomy divisions), American Geophysical Union, American Mathematical Society, Intertel.

Papers appearing in Solar Physics, Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Journal of the Barbados Astronomical Society, Meudon Solar Flare Proceedings (Meudon, France). Books: 'Fundamentals of Solar Physics', 'Selected Analyses in Solar Flare Plasma Dynamics', 'Physics Notes for Advanced Level', 'Astronomy & Astrophysics: Notes, Problems and Solutions', 'Modern Physics: Notes, Problems and Solutions'

B.A. degree in Astronomy; M.Phil. degree in Physics - specializing in solar physics.

Awards and Honors
Postgraduate research award- Barbados government; Studentship Award in Solar Physics - American Astronomical Society. Barbados Astronomical Society award for service (1977-91) as Journal editor.

Past/Present Clients
Caribbean Examinations Council (as advisor, examiner), Barbados Astronomical Society (as Journal Editor 1977-91), Trinidad & Tobago Astronomical Society (as consultant on courses, methods of instruction, and guest speaker).

©2016 All rights reserved.