Big Bang Abandoned in New Model of the Universe


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This is getting a bit off from the Big Bang, but maybe it's time for a Shakespearean adaptation with a thinly disguised, feckless modern president as either villain or ineffectual intellectual again? Instead of "Macbird", maybe "Hambama". Maybe I'll start a new thread...

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Big Bang Abandoned in New Model of the Universe

http://www.technolog...5492/?nlid=3299

Ghs

This is misleading.

The current origin theory which includes an initial superluminal expansion of short duration and a subsequent acceleration of expansion in a later era is still generally accepted in the cosmology community. Several alternate theories have been proposed where in the Big Bang (so-called) is an intermediate event in the infinite history of the cosmos. For example the Steinhardt-Turok ekpyrotic model proposes that the Big Bang is not the start of everything but an intermediate event.

The proposal of alternate origin theories have to be examined carefully to see that they are in conformance to observation and in cases where the alternative and the current theory are different but make similar predictions differential observations must be undertaken to see which of several alternatives best fits the the known facts.

Theories that have been as successful as the Big Bang are not tossed out overnight. The current BB correctly predicted the CMB (cosmic background radiation -- which Hoyle's steady state hypothesis did not predict) and the correct proportion of elements Hydrogen and Helium prior to the formation of stars. As you know or should know the heavy elements (heavier than berylium) were not initially formed, but came about by the explosion of first and second generation stars. Most of the natural elements were cooked up in stars and required the crush of gravitation to create.

The last word on the origin of the cosmos has not yet been said, but the current theory is still well accepted an in conformance with observation. Observation is the main figure of merit for any scientific theory. It is not beauty, simplicity, elegance or even philosophical "purity". It is conformance to observed fact that weighs the heaviest.

As more facts become known (this is mostly a matter of technological advance) modifications and or replacements to the current theory will be made.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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I can't see where something can come from nothing.

Big Bang theory doesn't posit something coming from nothing. It posits an expansion the cause(s) of which we don't know from an initial state the nature of which we don't know.

Ellen

PS: Ted, I'm with you in disdaining Gulch's wondering "Who worries about this stuff?" when there's tyranny to worry about. My husband and I have been having a delightful break from tyranny (for short) concerns the last few days while gamboling about together on a cosmology holiday. Not to mention, though I am mentioning, practical pay-offs of cosmological theories -- including major ones in Gulch's own field, medicine. And what of the sheer joy of learning, of seeking answers to questions? Is that of no importance?

Ellen

Ellen,

I agree with you entirely! You might be amused to learn that I give long lists of books and authors to patients whom I meet in the correctional setting where I work. Many have long stretches of time to serve and come to realize that one way to keep it from being a complete waste of time is to expand their horizons by reading. I can see where my comment about the tyranny thing might lead one to conclude that is all I am preoccupied with. Admittedly it is a concern especially since I have a child who will have to cope with what is up ahead.

By the way my son and daughter in law were visiting recently. They met in college and work in NYC. She waited until I got home as I do at ten in the evening last Friday. She had a gift for my wife. It was wrapped in a little box with a bow and inside was a fresh lemon upon which were attached two little paper strips with the following words: "About two inches long" and "But not for long."

I knew at once what that meant but my wife was baffled. I suggested it meant that our daughter in law is pregnant! That seemed to be unbelievable because we have been urging them for years and years and had about given up all hope of a grandchild. Turns out to be true and they had the ultrasound pictures to prove it. A little boy due in January. My wife became almost hysterical with joy. Me too.

But of course in addition to my interests in my work each day as well as gardening, home and pool maintenance, investing, economics, philosophy, history, evolution, embryology, paleontology, astronomy, history of science, literature, drama, art, current affairs, foreign affairs, reading, political activism, etcetera, I don't want my grandson nor anyone elses to have to endure totalitarian dictatorship and tyranny.

Cosmology is also a hobby of mine.

I enjoy the chatter here whatever the subject.

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