Abuse from other universes -- a second opinion

Oct 10, 2011 By Jon Voisey
Concentric circles interpreted as bruises from collisions with alternate universes. Credit: Feeney et al.

At the end of last year, there was a flurry of activity from astronomers Gurzadyan and Penrose that considered the evidence of alternate universes or the existence of a universe prior to the Big Bang and suggested that such evidence may be imprinted on the cosmic microwave background as bruises of concentric circles. Quickly, this was followed by an announcement claiming to find just such circles. Of course, with an announcement this big, the statistical significance would need to be confirmed. A recent paper in the October issue of the Astrophysical Journal provides a second opinion.

The review was conducted by Amir Hajian at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics. To conduct the study, Hajian selected a large number of circles, similar to the ones reported in the previous studies and asked what the was that, randomly, the “edge” of the circles would contain hot-spots, similar to the ones predicted. These were then compared to the bruises reported by the other teams by examining their “variance” which is how much the points on the perimeter were spread around the average temperature.

Hajian notes that, with the resolution considered it would be possible to consider some 5 million circles. The results of his comparison demonstrated that it would be expected that some 0.3% of those should have features similar to the ones reported previously. With so many possibilities, this would imply that some 15,000 potential circles could be flagged as candidates for these cosmic bruises. Even the “best” candidate proposed in the Gurzadyan and Penrose study should still exist statistically.

As such, Hajian concludes that the features Gurzadyan and Penrose reported were not statistically anomalous. Hajian does not comment directly on Feeney et al.’s detection, but given theirs were constructed in a similar manner, it should be expected that they are similarly statistically insignificant. It would appear that if the fingerprints of other universes are embedded in the sky, they have been lost in the noise.

Explore further: Quest for extraterrestrial life not over, experts say

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Scientists glimpse universe before the Big Bang

Nov 23, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- In general, asking what happened before the Big Bang is not really considered a science question. According to Big Bang theory, time did not even exist before this point roughly 13.7 billion ...

Cosmic thread that binds us revealed

Sep 29, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- Astronomers at The Australian National University have found evidence for the textile that forms the fabric of the Universe.

Seeing isn't believing

Sep 07, 2011

Pay attention! It's a universal warning, which implies that keeping close watch helps us perceive the world more accurately. But a new study by Yale University cognitive psychologists Brandon Liverence and Brian Scholl finds ...

First observational test of the 'multiverse'

Aug 03, 2011

The theory that our universe is contained inside a bubble, and that multiple alternative universes exist inside their own bubbles – making up the 'multiverse' – is, for the first time, being tested by physicists.

Recommended for you

Quest for extraterrestrial life not over, experts say

Apr 18, 2014

The discovery of an Earth-sized planet in the "habitable" zone of a distant star, though exciting, is still a long way from pointing to the existence of extraterrestrial life, experts said Friday. ...

Continents may be a key feature of Super-Earths

Apr 18, 2014

Huge Earth-like planets that have both continents and oceans may be better at harboring extraterrestrial life than those that are water-only worlds. A new study gives hope for the possibility that many super-Earth ...

Exoplanets soon to gleam in the eye of NESSI

Apr 18, 2014

(Phys.org) —The New Mexico Exoplanet Spectroscopic Survey Instrument (NESSI) will soon get its first "taste" of exoplanets, helping astronomers decipher their chemical composition. Exoplanets are planets ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

hard2grep
5 / 5 (3) Oct 10, 2011
considering most large objects in the universe are round who would suspect.
Pyle
5 / 5 (1) Oct 10, 2011
The concentric equilateral triangles was still the best: http://arxiv.org/...05v3.pdf

Perhaps other universes are cone shaped instead?

Funny that this article is out here again. I guess you get a second round of attention when a peer-reviewed journal publishes your work. Seemed more relevant a couple days after G and P's paper. (draft released December 9, 2010 http://arxiv.org/...6v1.pdf)
also for reference:
http://www.physor...big.html
http://www.physor...ses.html

More news stories

Another fireball explodes over Russia

Why does Russia seem to get so many bright meteors? Well at 6.6 million square miles it's by far the largest country in the world plus, with dashboard-mounted cameras being so commonplace (partly to help ...

ISEE-3 comes to visit Earth

(Phys.org) —It launched in 1978. It was the first satellite to study the constant flow of solar wind streaming toward Earth from a stable orbit point between our planet and the sun known as the Lagrangian ...

NASA's MMS observatories stacked for testing

(Phys.org) —Engineers at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., accomplished another first. Using a large overhead crane, they mated two Magnetospheric Multiscale, or MMS, observatories – ...

Easter morning delivery for space station

Space station astronauts got a special Easter treat: a cargo ship full of supplies. The shipment arrived Sunday morning via the SpaceX company's Dragon cargo capsule.

Teachers' scare tactics may lead to lower exam scores

As the school year winds down and final exams loom, teachers may want to avoid reminding students of the bad consequences of failing a test because doing so could lead to lower scores, according to new research published ...