Cosmology and Genesis 1:1 – Part 2

Category Cosmology

Ok then… the expanding universe.

Back in the late 1920’s and early 30’s astronomers began to find that other galaxies were moving away from our own galaxy, the Milky Way. As telescopes improved and deeper surveys of inter-galactic space accumulated more data, it was also found that whole clusters and superclusters of galaxies were all streaming away from us. No matter where they looked and no matter in what direction, the situation was always the same. Everything in deep space appeared to be receding from us.

It was quickly realized that if all the other galaxies were moving away from us today, then they’ll be further away tomorrow and must have been closer to us yesterday. Extrapolating backwards thru time the scientists concluded that billions of years ago all of the galaxies in the universe must have been crowded into a very small volume of space indeed. Running the clock back further and further meant that density of stars and galaxies must have increased exponentially!

Compressing the mass of trillions of stars into a smaller and smaller volume like this increased the temperature too. Can you see where this is going, men? Eventually the heat and density become so great that all matter dissolves, atoms break down into protons, neutrons and electrons and then even these get split up into quarks and gluons. The details can be found here… http://en.wikipedia….rk–gluon_plasma Anyway, eventually the heat and density become infinitely high.

Whammo!!! We’ve just arrived at the Big Bang!

Yep! We’ve just run the film of the universe’s history backwards – to Time Zero / Space Zero.

This is what mega-brains like Stephen Hawking mean when they say that there was no time or space before the Big Bang. There is no “before”. All of space and time are theorized to have burst out of “nothing”, about 13.8 billion years ago.

Now let’s jump forward to today.

It’s 2013 and astronomers have umpteen terabytes of data about the expanding universe. The galaxies, galactic clusters and superclusters all seem to be racing away from us. But is that really so… or is it just another visual effect, much like Bob and Jim’s horizon not being a real edge of anything? Or our galaxy, the Milky Way, not really being at the center of everything? Could it be that it just looks as if all the galaxies are rushing way from us, when something else is happening?

The answers are… Yes, this is just a visual effect.

All those galaxies aren’t just moving away from us – they’re also moving away from each other too. So it only looks as if we’re in the plumb center. To explain I’ll use three things. The Milky Way (our home galaxy), the Andromeda galaxy (our closest neighbor) and the Virgo Supercluster (the nearest mega-group of galaxies).

Most people think that an expanding universe means this. (Btw, the colors don’t mean anything.)

Ten million years ago.

<------ Virgo <------ Milky Way ------> Andromeda ——>

Today.

<---------- Virgo <---------- Milky Way ----------> Andromeda ———->

Ten million years in the future.

<--------------- Virgo <--------------- Milky Way ---------------> Andromeda —————>

We stay fixed and unmoving in the center of everything, while everything else expands away from us. Wrong!

This is what’s actually happening.

Ten million years ago.

<------> Virgo <------> Milky Way <------> Andromeda <------>

Today.

<----------> Virgo <----------> Milky Way <----------> Andromeda <---------->

Ten million years in the future.

<---------------> Virgo <---------------> Milky Way <---------------> Andromeda <--------------->

Everything is moving away from everything else.

It’s the the space between galaxies that’s expanding, carrying along each galaxy with it. Even though it looks like it’s all expanding from us outward, that’s not so. I’ve placed us into center, but there’s no real need for me to do that. Why? Because as I wrote in my earlier message, the universe has no center and no edge. Therefore, I could just as easily do this…

Ten million years ago.

<------> Milky Way <------> Virgo <------> Andromeda <------>

Today.

<----------> Milky Way <----------> Virgo <----------> Andromeda <---------->

Ten million years in the future.

<---------------> Milky Way<---------------> Virgo <---------------> Andromeda <--------------->

…and still be correct.

We are moving away from the Virgo supercluster, just as much as it is moving away from us and from Andromeda. Nothing is fixed and nothing is absolute. Everything is relative. There is no ultimate frame of reference which all things can be mapped out against. This explains why astronomers have no choice but to map out the universe from our p.o.v. The Earth is the only place we can observe from, so every other galaxy just seems to be moving away from where we’re looking from.

In reality, every square inch and square light-year of the universe is expanding.

We are NOT in the center. That’s just a trick of perspective.


Btw, here’s a nice pic for you.

It’s from that atom-smasher over in Europe, the Large Hadron Collider. They’ve succeeded in re-create the heat and density of the Big Bang – this being a mini-version of the Quark-Gluon plasma (fireball) that theory says should have existed when everything burst into existence out of nothing.

So, theory and experiment seem to agree!

quark-gluon-plasma2

Part 3 is coming soon! Glory!