Is the possible fine-structure constant drift also a test of a time-dependent Planck constant?

ÖZTAŞ A. M. , Smith M. L.

SCIENCE CHINA-PHYSICS MECHANICS & ASTRONOMY, vol.54, no.12, pp.2191-2195, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


The recent publication of spatial and distance variation of the fine-structure constant, alpha, derived from astronomical data of quasar emissions (QE) is exciting. The decreasing value of alpha over time, derived from data obtained from the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, encourages the search for other possible running constants. We surmise that emissions from distant supernovae, type Ia (SNe Ia), which are more blue than predictions are best explained by a decreasing Planck constant with increasing lookback time. We present some results from our theoretical work and comparison to the astronomical observations and suggest that both alpha and h might be running constants. More data are required to answer several questions about the origin of the "drifting" alpha and the possible time dependence of h. Astronomical tools such as SNe and QE may be the best means to secure the exacting data needed to confirm or deny these hypotheses.