Mass bends spacetime. It's generally accepted that the photons have no mass, but they do
have momentum and energy and can cause pressure, so they have equivalent mass of p/c.
The electromagnetic radiation appears in General relativity with stress tensor, and can cause bending. But, can this be prescribed to the individual photon?
If so, how would you measure this effect if your equipment is based on interference?
Simpler question would be if there is equivalence between energy and mass, and mass causes spacetime bending, does energy cause spacetime bending?
P.S. If your answer is: No, because photons can't emit gravitons, you better elaborate.
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Having researched topics relating to your questions over several years I arrived at a theory of Physics in 5 Dimensions where all particles have an inherent mass; including photons. The mass of a particle (or larger body), as measured in our world of classical physics, varies with velocity and is in agreement with Einstein’s mass equation from the perspective of classical physics in 4 dimensions. But it is different from the perspective of Physics in 5 Dimensions, where the observed mass of any particle or body goes to zero as it reaches the speed of light. You can switch between 4- and 5-dimensional spaces and follow the effect on the fundamentals of physics.
You may find the following website of interest where the topic of Physics in 5 Dimensions (Pi5D) is described in a selection of short papers at:
Each short paper is complete in itself and so the papers can be read in any order. These papers are also available in book form as a PDF file with the title “What’s the Matter?” at:
My answers to your questions are:
Yes, from the perspective of Pi5D photons do have mass in the same way as any other particle or body.
All bodies have an inherent and constant angular momentum which determines the shape of space. In the case of an electron the angular momentum is Plank’s constant. In Pi5D the constant angular momentum replaces the forces of attraction (Coulomb and gravitational) of classical physics.
In Pi5D the relationships between mass, momentum and energy are the same for all particles and bodies; including photons.
de Broglie Matter Waves and Groups of Waves are an inherent part of Pi5D and the part played by waves and particles are clearly defined.
The “bending” of space is covered in part by some of the above comments (shape of space, constant angular momentum).
The Graviton does not play any part in Pi5D because the fields of physics and fundamentals of physics I covered didn’t need the Graviton.
I wish you an interesting time with the perspective of Physics in 5 Dimensions. My approach to looking at new theories of physics in general is also addressed in one of the short papers of “What’s the Matter?
I will follow the answers to your question with great interest.
Your question requires models of gravity and photons. So, the answers are going to be relative to a particular model the person uses.
My model is the STOE. It takes the photon as a matter particle which (as matter does) warp the plenum (an ether like component of the universe). The waves thus created direct the photon - familiar with General Relativity - matter warps space and space directs matter. Thus, diffraction and interference experiments are observable effects of such action.
Yes of course, photons have no REST mass, but they have a mass associated to its energy, and therefore interacts gravitationally.
This has been discussed in many papers, as for example:
1) P. C. AICHELBURG AND R. U. SEXL, On the Gravitational Field of a Massless Particle? Gen. Rel. Grav.2,203,(1971).
2) Tolman, R. C. (1934). Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology, Oxford.
4)Peres, A. (1960). Phys. Rev., 118, 1105.
5) Bonnor, W. B. (1969). Comm. Math. Phys., 13, 163.
6) Bonnor, W. B. (1970). lnt. Jour. Theor. Phys., 3, No. 1, p. 57.
7) Bonnor, W. B. (1970). Int. Jour. Theor. Phys., 3, No. 4, p. 257.
Photons fly in the space-time of GR along trajectories describing by isotropic (null) geodesic equations, Solving these equations in concrete space-time we obtain expressions for frequency of photons and theirs trajectories in 3-space. These values depend on the structure of the curved space-time where they fly. Thus 3-dimensional trajectories of photons are curved and this effect is caused by concrete properties of space-time (rotations, deformation and accelleration of 3-space). Besides the frequencies of photons depend on deformation and acceleration of 3-space. It means that the space -time curves -dimensional trajectories of photons and changes theirs frequencies.
According to the Daon theory;
Photons don't act as sources of gravitation but they are affected by gravitational fields.
You all know that the idea of curvature for spacetime is originated from equivalence principle (EP). EP is principally a conditional equivalence which makes EP a very weak argument. For example, we all have heard of tidal force/effect issue and the way this criticism has been dealt with.
Now I think I have found a similar EP to what Einstein has proposed. It is based on the equivalence of uniform gravity and uniform deceleration in empty space. This new equivalence results in a different curvature.
If my counter-example is correct then I am afraid we need to search for a completely different foundation for GR.
Preprint A New Equivalence Principle with a Different Curvature of Light
Based on this document, I have started a new discussion about the validity of EP in RG.