September 17, 1954
Dear Professor Einstein:
May I renew our discussion? At our last long conversation on July 21, you have acceded that the cause of the global catastrophes of the past could have been extra-terrestrial.
You have found the behavior of Lexells comet almost unbelievable.
The next step in my strategy is to show that the comets do not revolve as neutral bodies around a neutral sun. I quote from H. Spencer Jones:
The presence of bright lines in the spectra [of comets] can only be due to a self-luminous body. . . . the electrical phenomena obtained by discharge through a Gesslers vacuum tube enable the assertion to be made with a high degree of probability that the comets self-luminosity is due not to an actual combustion, but to an electrical phenomenon.
More facts point to a charged state of the comets. The envelope (coma) of a comet contracts with the approach to the sun and expands with recession, though in the heat of the sun the reverse could be expected.
There is good evidence that all particles in the comet influence the motion of each other. The configuration of the streamers in the tails . . . strongly indicates a mutual repulsion. (N. Bobrovnikoff, Comets in Astrophysics, ed. Hynek, 1951, p. 328).
As to the sun: Certainly the formation of coronals over centers of attraction and sunspots can be caused by the extended electrical fields of these areas of the sun; just so, coronals can be formed by the electrical fields about the end of a moving prominence. (E. Pettit, The Sun and Solar Radiation, ibid., p. 296).
When prominences on the sun were observed to run one into another, both prominences participating in the action recoiled violently . . . Strong electrical fields of the same sign might explain the phenomenon. (Ibid., p. 297).
As to the spherical shape of the sun, the measurements were carried to one hundredth part of a second of an arc, and no departure from spherical shape was observed ibid., p. 260); the admitted error of observation could not exceed a tenth of a second.
Should we now assume that a comet moves in perihelion without experiencing an electromagnetic effect between itself and the sun?