Earliest spiral galaxy ever seen: a shocking discovery

Jul 18, 2012
The Hubble Space Telescope. Astronomers said Wednesday they had stumbled upon an astonishing spiral galaxy that was born nearly 11 billion years ago, a finding that could spur a rethink of how galaxies formed after the Big Bang.

(Phys.org) -- Astronomers have witnessed for the first time a spiral galaxy in the early universe, billions of years before many other spiral galaxies formed. In findings reported July 19 in the journal Nature, the astronomers said they discovered it while using the Hubble Space Telescope to take pictures of about 300 very distant galaxies in the early universe and to study their properties. This distant spiral galaxy is being observed as it existed roughly three billion years after the Big Bang, and light from this part of the universe has been traveling to Earth for about 10.7 billion years.

"As you go back in time to the early universe, look really strange, clumpy and irregular, not symmetric," said Alice Shapley, a UCLA associate professor of physics and astronomy, and co-author of the study. "The vast majority of old galaxies look like train wrecks. Our first thought was, why is this one so different, and so beautiful?"

Galaxies in today's universe divide into various types, including spiral galaxies like our own , which are rotating disks of stars and gas in which form, and , which include older, redder stars moving in random directions. The mix of galaxy structures in the early universe is quite different, with a much greater diversity and larger fraction of irregular galaxies, Shapley said.

"The fact that this galaxy exists is astounding," said David Law, lead author of the study and Dunlap Institute postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto's Dunlap Institute for Astronomy & Astrophysics. "Current wisdom holds that such 'grand-design' spiral galaxies simply didn't exist at such an early time in the history of the universe." A 'grand design' galaxy has prominent, well-formed spiral arms.

The galaxy, which goes by the not very glamorous name of BX442, is quite large compared with other galaxies from this early time in the universe; only about 30 of the galaxies that Law and Shapley analyzed are as massive as this galaxy.

Earliest spiral galaxy ever seen: a shocking discovery
HST/Keck false colour composite image of galaxy BX442. Credit: David Law; Dunlap Insitute for Astronomy & Astrophysics

To gain deeper insight into their unique image of BX442, Law and Shapley went to the W.M. Keck Observatory atop Hawaii's dormant Mauna Kea volcano and used a unique state-of-the-science instrument called the OSIRIS spectrograph, which was built by James Larkin, a UCLA professor of physics and astronomy. They studied spectra from some 3,600 locations in and around BX442, which provided valuable information that enabled them to determine that it actually is a rotating — and not, for example, two galaxies that happened to line up in the image.

"We first thought this could just be an illusion, and that perhaps we were being led astray by the picture," Shapley said. "What we found when we took the spectral image of this galaxy is that the spiral arms do belong to this galaxy. It wasn't an illusion. We were blown away." Law and Shapley also see some evidence of an enormous black hole at the center of the galaxy, which may play a role in the evolution of BX442.

Why does BX442 look like galaxies that are so common today but were so rare back then?

Law and Shapley think the answer may have to do with a companion dwarf galaxy, which the OSIRIS spectrograph reveals as a blob in the upper left portion of the image, and the gravitational interaction between them. Support for this idea is provided by a numerical simulation conducted by Charlotte Christensen, a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Arizona and a co-author of the research in Nature. Eventually the small galaxy is likely to merge into BX442, Shapley said.

"BX442 looks like a nearby galaxy, but in the , galaxies were colliding together much more frequently," she said. "Gas was raining in from the intergalactic medium and feeding stars that were being formed at a much more rapid rate than they are today; black holes grew at a much more rapid rate as well. The universe today is boring compared to this early time."

Law, a former Hubble postdoctoral fellow at UCLA, and Shapley will continue to study BX442.

"We want to take pictures of this galaxy at other wavelengths," Shapley said. "That will tell us what type of stars are in every location in the galaxy. We want to map the mixture of stars and gas in BX442."

Shapley said that BX442 represents a link between early galaxies that are much more turbulent and the rotating spiral galaxies that we see around us. "Indeed, this galaxy may highlight the importance of merger interactions at any cosmic epoch in creating grand design spiral structure," she said.

Studying BX442 is likely to help astronomers understand how spiral galaxies like the Milky Way form, Shapley said.

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Telekinetic
1 / 5 (32) Jul 18, 2012
The following is a summary by its author, Eric D. Andrulis, who was mocked and ridiculed for introducing his paper. Was he completely wrong?

"In the theory proposed herein, I use the heterodox yet simple gyrea spiral, vortex, whorl, or similar circular patternas a core model for understanding life. Because many elements of the gyre model (gyromodel) are alien, I introduce neologisms and important terms in bold italics to identify them; a theoretical lexicon is presented in Table 1. The central idea of this theory is that all physical reality, stretching from the so-called inanimate into the animate realm and from micro- to meso- to macrocosmic scales, can be interpreted and modeled as manifestations of a single geometric entity, the gyre.

Andrulis concludes:

this catholic theory provides an innovative and elegant solution to the origin, evolution, and nature of life in the cosmos. I humbly proffer my theory as a viable system for knowing life."
R2Bacca
5 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
@Telekinetic

I don't see what this has to do with the article.
Bewia
1.9 / 5 (17) Jul 18, 2012
This article apparently lacks the picture of BX442, so I'm linking one. Could it falsify the Big Bang model?
antialias_physorg
4.2 / 5 (11) Jul 18, 2012
I don't think this could falsify the Big Bang. To get such structured galaxies you have to have interaction with other, massive bodies. In the early universe we're still dealing with a situation where stuff is 'close' together: huge stars that burn out very fast, galactic clusters that whizz around each other in close proximity (and probably the odd supermassive black hole)
So while not very likely it's not really all that impossible to get a disturbance in a galactic formation.

jsdarkdestruction
3.9 / 5 (9) Jul 18, 2012
This article apparently lacks the picture of BX442, so I'm linking http://news.disco...225.jpg. Could it falsify the Big Bang model?

i doubt it. at best it could show our current theory of galaxy formation early on after the big bang is a bit off in the time needed. which isnt all that surprising. jwst should really help our understanding of early galaxy formation. their are alot of other things going for the big bang that this observation doesnt effect in any way.
Tuxford
2.1 / 5 (29) Jul 18, 2012
"Why does BX442 look like galaxies that are so common today but were so rare back then?"

Because the Big Bang is a fantasy model. Think about the fantasy. Too many theoretical contortions are needed to make it fit the observations. And it is only getting worse.

You deniers are in denial. Embarrassment is coming. Can you admit your mistake? The mass consensus is wrong. And the mass is powerful. Be brave. Think for yourself. If you have a logical mind, use it.
Caliban
3.8 / 5 (8) Jul 18, 2012
Considering how turbulent and chaotic the very early universe must have been, it is entirely probable that the conditions would arise on at least a very localized basis favoring the formation of a spiral galaxy at least once.
jsdarkdestruction
4.3 / 5 (12) Jul 18, 2012
ugh, you want to talk fantasy tuxford?
here are some works from tuxfords idol laviolette, it illustrates how based in reality his worldview really is.this is a book he wrote.First time proof of the existence of interstellar radio signals of intelligent origin being sent to us.Evidence that pulsars are part of a vast network of ETI communication beacons.This exhaustive study presents first time proof that astronomers have been receiving radio signals of intelligent origin. As early as 1967 and continuing to the present, radio astronomers have been carefully studying and cataloging unusual interstellar beacons called pulsars thinking them to be stars of natural origin.Dr. LaViolette, who has been researching pulsars for 27 years, shows that, up to now, the nature of these radio sources has been grossly

jsdarkdestruction
3.9 / 5 (8) Jul 18, 2012
misunderstood. He has discovered that a number of very unique pulsars are nonrandomly distributed in the sky and mark key Galactic locatations that have particular significance from an ETI communication standpoint. He also presents evidence of unusual geometric alignments among pulsars and intriguing pulse period relationships. Equally compelling is the message they are sending-a warning about a past Galactic core explosion disaster that should help us avert a future global tragedy. Contains extensive analysis of pulsar data, revealing new ideas about the origins and functions of pulsars Provides proof of an extraterrestrial communication network Includes information about the formation of crop circles and force-field-beaming technolgy.
jsdarkdestruction
4.1 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
see, this is what i mean about science fiction fantasy based worldview that laviolette employs in his cosmological theories. and all the others fields of science he's claimed to make breakthroughs in. tuxford, can you not see how nutty he is? et communicating with us through pulsars about laviolettes theory of new matter being created in "black holes" and ejected, sometimes explosively? where do you guys get your acid(lsd)from? it must be some killer stuff.
yyz
4.6 / 5 (12) Jul 18, 2012
I have to agree with others here, this "grand design" star-forming spiral galaxy at z=2.18, while a rare beast, is not ruled out by the current LCDM cosmology. Of the tens of thousands of field and cluster galaxies known with z>2, an appreciable number of disk galaxies have already been observed: http://arxiv.org/abs/1002.2149

The paper in Nature (High velocity dispersion in a rare grand-design spiral galaxy at redshift z = 2.18: http://www.nature...256.html ) is still behind a paywall, but actual HST images of BX442 are available: http://www.nature...f1.2.jpg

[Bewia's link above is to an artist's conception of BX442]

@jsdd - Tuxford seems more interested in promoting science fiction than science fact. :^)
Ober
2.1 / 5 (7) Jul 18, 2012
I believe there was also a theory that stated that as you reach the edge of the universe, that it circles back around to the other side of the universe, much like the old Asteroids video game. It was stated that if such a situation existed, then if you look far enough into space, you should see repeats of galaxies that already exist. So could this spiral galaxy be such an example?? Probably not, but I thought it worth mentioning!!
A2G
2.1 / 5 (14) Jul 18, 2012
Forget religious views and crazy ET stuff. Let's stick to the pure science. There does seem to be a lot of evidence pointing to the big bang idea being incorrect. This spiral galaxy appearing where the "experts" thought no galaxy so mature would be.

Maybe there is another explanation that makes more sense, because the big bang scenario has to be modified continually to fit new discoveries. Including this one.
jsdarkdestruction
4 / 5 (13) Jul 18, 2012
A2G, until you are willing to divulge your info it's pretty crappy to come here and claim that. I would love to look over your info but you say it's secret. thats not good science. as you often try to point out to hannes you are just hurting yourself right now by making claims and then saying the info is a secret. ive seen you say that it would be out in a certain time period yet that time period did come to pass and your still keeping it secret and claiming in time you will release it....
so your theory has had no modifications since its first conception? really? you had all the answers right away? seems unscientific to claim the other theory is wrong because of something not being fully understood right away when yours is the same. you are doing new research and clarifying/improving your theory, are you not?
RorySpalpeen
5 / 5 (5) Jul 18, 2012
The following is a summary by its author, Eric D. Andrulis, who was mocked and ridiculed for introducing his paper. Was he completely wrong?


Teleguy, Who was wrong? The guys doing the ridiculing? Or the guy who wrote the jibberish? I vote for the author of the jibberish as being completely wrong.
Benni
2.1 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
Forget religious views and crazy ET stuff. Let's stick to the pure science. There does seem to be a lot of evidence pointing to the big bang idea being incorrect. This spiral galaxy appearing where the "experts" thought no galaxy so mature would be.


Type HUDF-JD2 into any search engine & you'll get another one located at z=6-7 and is at least as big as this one & maybe even larger than Andromeda. It sits out there at about 13.2 light years distance, making this one look paltry by comparison. IMO the best explanation for such galaxies is that the universe is a lot bigger & a lot older than we think, we probably see only about 5% of it presently, basing this on the relatively flat imaging we've been able to map for a spherically shaped universe as described in Einstein's GR.
Telekinetic
1.4 / 5 (21) Jul 18, 2012
The following is a summary by its author, Eric D. Andrulis, who was mocked and ridiculed for introducing his paper. Was he completely wrong?


Teleguy, Who was wrong? The guys doing the ridiculing? Or the guy who wrote the jibberish? I vote for the author of the jibberish as being completely wrong.

@RorySpalpeen-
By your profile, I see that this is your first post on physorg, and have been registered here for less than a month. That makes you a newbie or a sockpuppet. Which one are you? Those who have read my posts for nearly two years know that I don't suffer fools lightly, and I have a knack for humiliating the uneducated. For the rest of you who find strength in numbers like prepubescent boys are only humiliating yourselves.
Torbjorn_Larsson_OM
5 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
It's nice when our understanding of early star and galaxy formation gets a boost.

@ Telekinesis:

It isn't even wrong, it is gibberish.

@ Bewia, A2G:

How could it stress the current cosmology? Nothing about early star or galaxy formation contradicts the current cosmology as of yet.

A2G, generally when you change parameters technically you reject the old theory and institute a new. More specifically, the standard cosmology is pretty constrained, that is why it is newer than the old rejected one - we know more.
Torbjorn_Larsson_OM
5 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
@ Tuxford:

Your cosmology science denial and its basis in crackpot tomfoolery is what is based on fantasy. The standard cosmology has that name because it is, well, the standard.

@ Ober:

There is no specific "edge" or "center" of the universe (though there is a so called horizon set by our limits of observation).

There was a solution to general relativity (GR) where a universe could have a rotation, even without reference in the same way you can feel yourself spinning with closed eyes as your arms get dragged out if you spin fast enough. That rotation has global solutions that looked like time travel.

But 1) it isn't what we observe, 2) time travel in GR is now known to destabilize the universe, and 3) I think standard cosmology did away with those solutions, you can't have them anymore.
RorySpalpeen
4.7 / 5 (12) Jul 18, 2012
@Telekinetic

Well, I'm not a sock puppet. I am new (to posting on this forum.) As to suffering fools? Well you must just suffer, lightly or otherwise, doesn't matter to me.

Feel free to try to humiliate me. (But I have no pride, no dignity, and no feelings, that's why they call me Spalpeen.)

So what is your claim to fame?

P.S. As uneducated as I am, I still know gibberish and gobbledygook when I see it.
Torbjorn_Larsson_OM
5 / 5 (9) Jul 18, 2012
@ Benni:

GR describes essentially 3 possibilities, spheric, flat or hyperbolic. The topology of our universe is still undecided, but the simplest consistent with standard cosmology would be completely flat space.

And no, the age of the universe is tightly constrained in the standard cosmology. (Check the WMAP data on its site.) You would have to replace it with a better theory to change the age. You are simply confusing the distance of an expanding universe with a redshift "age". The visible universe is much larger spacewise than its lightwise age, ~ 46 billion years radius. http://en.wikiped...universe

Go insert your redshift in a redshift calculator (many on the web) and you will derive an age.
Torbjorn_Larsson_OM
5 / 5 (10) Jul 18, 2012
@ RorySpalpeen:

Good for you! I remember that the publication of Andrulis paper raised quite a row at the time. Partly because it was gibberish that shouldn't have been published, partly because some were concerned about his health as apparently he had done some good results inside his own field (biology IIRC, not physics).

It was subsequently retracted I think, I remember now, so what Telekinetic holds up as a reference shouldn't be a reference. D'oh! You can google this.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (8) Jul 18, 2012
"Now a new study of astronomical data only recently available hints at a possible answer: The universe is finite and bears a rough resemblance to a soccer ball or, more accurately, a dodecahedron, a 12-sided volume bounded by pentagons. "
http://news.natio...rse.html

Maybe this galaxy is not as young as they presume.

Or, as suggested in Stalking the Wild Pendulum, the universe is shaped like the Greek letter theta.
HannesAlfven
2.1 / 5 (15) Jul 18, 2012
Re: "As you go back in time to the early universe, galaxies look really strange, clumpy and irregular, not symmetric," said Alice Shapley, a UCLA associate professor of physics and astronomy, and co-author of the study."

In other words: As we approach the limits of our technology, our image clarity decreases.

Re: "The vast majority of old galaxies look like train wrecks. Our first thought was, why is this one so different, and so beautiful?"

Because redshift does not consistently correlate with distance. This is closer than you are estimating.

Re: "The galaxy ... is quite large compared with other galaxies from this early time in the universe"

Yes, because it is closer than you are estimating.

Note to those trying to keep an open mind on this stuff: Parallax stops working at 1% of the diameter of the Milky Way. All further distances are inferred. It is possible that redshift correlates with age instead of distance. This would appear somewhat similar.
Benni
2.3 / 5 (6) Jul 18, 2012
@Tor Lar

Albert Einstein: Relativity - Section 30
Written 1916 (this revised edition 1924)
Part III : Considerations on the Universe as a Whole

The Structure of Space according to the General Theory of Relativity

If we are to have in the universe an average density of matter which differs from zero, however small may be that difference, then the universe cannot be quasi-Euclidean. On the contrary, the results of calculation indicate that if matter be distributed uniformly, the universe would necessarily be spherical (or elliptical). Since in reality the detailed distribution of matter is not uniform, the real universe will deviate in individual parts from the spherical, that is the universe will be quasi-spherical, bit it will be necessarily finite. In fact the theory supplies us with a simple connection between the space expanse of the universe & the average density of matter in it.

(Tor Lar: Einstein is not describing your flat universe here)

Benni
2.1 / 5 (7) Jul 18, 2012
@Tor Lar

If you believe in a "flat universe", then you believe in a universe that is infinite in size, that is according to Einstein. The problem with anyone who believes in a universe other than spherically finite is Conservation of Energy. The stellar masses of the universe need a "closed system" in which to generate energy (work), this is why Einstein realized the universe must be spherically finite because that is the shape energy generating masses create.

I know this stuff Tor, be careful when trying to give me lectures about the laws of thermodynamics.
Telekinetic
1 / 5 (13) Jul 18, 2012
@T. Larsson:
Smith S. B., Kiss D. L., Turk E., Tartakoff, A. M., E.D. Andrulis (2011) Pronounced and extensive microtubule defects in a Saccharomyces cerevisiae DIS3 mutant. Yeast, 28(11):755-69. [PubMed]
Kiss, D. L. and E. D. Andrulis (2011) The exozyme model: a continuum of functionally distinct complexes. RNA, 17(1):1-13. [PubMed]
Mamolen, M., Davis, S. M., and E. D. Andrulis (2010) Drosophila melanogaster Dis3 N-terminal domains are required for ribonuclease activities, nuclear localization, and exosome interactions. Nucleic Acids Research, 38(16):5507-17. [PubMed]
Kiss, D.L. and E. D. Andrulis (2010) Genome-wide analysis reveals distinct substrate specificities of Rrp6, Dis3, and core exosome subunits. RNA, 16(4):781-91. [PubMed]
Mamolen, M. and E. D. Andrulis (2009) Characterization of the Drosophila melanogaster Dis3 ribonuclease. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 390: 529-34. [PubMed]
Graham, A. C., Kiss, D. L., and E. D. Andrulis (2009)
Continued...
Ober
3 / 5 (3) Jul 18, 2012
I thought spacetime was saddle shaped??? (or the most likely shape anway)
Telekinetic
1.4 / 5 (11) Jul 18, 2012
These are some of the very impressive papers that Erik D. Andrulis has co-authored. Einstein wrote some of the most poetic descriptions of life and the universe but he wasn't a poet. Should we dismiss Einstein's work outside of his field of physics? One day you'll realize the connections between all fields of science and biology. Where can I find what you've published, Larsson?
RorySpalpeen
4.5 / 5 (8) Jul 18, 2012
Einstein had to admit to Friedmann that he was in fact correct when he found three equally valid solutions to the GR field equations. He dismissed Friedmann's work the year before. One flat, one closed and one open. All finite.

Einstein tweaked things for a static universe. He called it his greatest blunder. By all measurements made up to today, the Euclid geometry holds true on cosmic scales, no non-euclidean observations have been found.

So far the only theory that has passed every test is a flat universe (on cosmic scales). The matter/energy density models have met every prediction.

Laws of physics allow a flat, open or closed universe. It's what we see and measure. Our observations that determine which the real universe. What we see and measure are a flat and finite universe.

On the redshift may be age rather than distance dependent. Are you trying to resurrect Hubble's tired light hypothesis? How can age shift the E-M spectrum? Basic dopplershift calc, age isn't in there.
Ojorf
2.3 / 5 (3) Jul 19, 2012
@Benni, Oh grief, you still seem not to get the basics at all, I've tried.
Although still undecided data indicates that the universe is indeed flat or verrrrry close to (so either infinite or simply giganticly huge). The age is not oin doubt at all and for very good reasons.
Satene
2.3 / 5 (6) Jul 19, 2012
How could it stress the current cosmology? Nothing about early star or galaxy formation contradicts the current cosmology as of yet.
Nothing do you say? There are many similar observations already (1,2,3,4,5,6,..)
Benni
1.7 / 5 (6) Jul 19, 2012
@Benni, Oh grief, you still seem not to get the basics at all, I've tried.
Although still undecided data indicates that the universe is indeed flat or verrrrry close to (so either infinite or simply giganticly huge). The age is not oin doubt at all and for very good reasons.


Anyone who believes in a "flat universe" has no concept of Einstein's GR. It is as Einstein states in his GR, and which I've posted above, that a "flat universe" must inherently have infinite parameters, therefore the universe must take the shape with associated boundaries that is spherical in shape for Conservation of Energy & all the associated laws of Thermodynamics to function.

The problem with your above assertion is that the math associated with Einstein's GR is beyond you, as is the calculus of thermodynamics. I work with energy systems everyday, I do the math as a design engineer everyday, the math of Einstein's GR is not beyond me.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Jul 19, 2012
What GR may or may not indicate plays no part in this. Current observation indicates a close to flat universe (0.5% margin of error). Even GR must bow to experiment.

http://map.gsfc.n...ape.html
Benni
2.3 / 5 (9) Jul 19, 2012
@ Benni:

You are simply confusing the distance of an expanding universe with a redshift "age". The visible universe is much larger spacewise than its lightwise age, ~ 46 billion years radius. http://en.wikiped...universe

Go insert your redshift in a redshift calculator (many on the web) and you will derive an age.


You understand nothing about what red-shift tells us. A long time ago I tore into the integral calculus all those red-shift calculators on the internet use to measure red-shift. Beyond z=10, they are useless for equating distance in light years as a measurement for age of the universe. Do you understand why? Just give me a yes or no answer, if you give me a "no" then I'll simply understand your background in calculus is not sufficient for you to follow the math all those calculators use to measure red-shift, and I'll explain it to you. I'm way beyond Wiki-pedia, so stop generating links to it because you are too lazy to sit down & do the math.
RorySpalpeen
4.6 / 5 (5) Jul 19, 2012
I'm thinking the confusion over Einstein's GR and flat vs "spherical" (closed is a better term) is in the imagining "spherical" means, on the surface of a ball. Which would be non-euclidean. The over-all shape of the universe can be as a ball and still be operational with euclidean geometry, the lines of observation are "flat" in three planes. In using the term "flat" is not the same as saying the universe is like a thin sheet or two dimensional. There is nothing in the flat models that precludes a finite universe, quite the opposite is the case.

Maybe it's the use of "flat" you are having with. Replace that with euclidean and the universe can have any solid shape, as long as you don't restrict yourself to only two dimensions,,,,, from any point WITHIN a solid object, there IS a straight line to any other point as long as you are NOT restricting yourself to the surface. Flat means having straight lines, parallel lines and triangles with 180 degrees, not shaped like a pancake.
Satene
1 / 5 (5) Jul 19, 2012
Current observation indicates a close to flat universe
I'd say, that the latest Nobel price was given for finding, that the Universe "expands" with increasing speed. In addition, your source says:
This suggests that the Universe is infinite in extent; however, since the Universe has a finite age, we can only observe a finite volume of the Universe
Infinite object of finite speed is required to expand with infinite speed. Is it possible physically?
antialias_physorg
4.9 / 5 (7) Jul 19, 2012
Maybe it's the use of "flat" you are having with.

'flat' in GR has a very differnt meaning fom the everyday use of the term. In the GR concept of curved spacetime a cylinder shape is not warped but 'flat' (as you can unroll it onto a flat surface, all the angles on it check out with euclidian geometry, etc. )

We can tell from the WMAP data that our universe appears to be close to flat in this regard.

as for infinities: Infinities in physics aren't a good argument for (or against) anything in real life. The universe is finite in all aspects as far as we can tell. Infinities are only ever useful as mathematical approximations - not as predictors of what is and isn't real (mostyl if you have an infinity in your calculatons it just means there is something you haven't included, yet).
Benni
2.1 / 5 (10) Jul 19, 2012
What GR may or may not indicate plays no part in this. Current observation indicates a close to flat universe (0.5% margin of error). Even GR must bow to experiment.


You are only correct with regard to the 0.5% of flatness as can be measured along the "observable arc-length" of the universe with present day technology, THAT WILL CHANGE. It will change as new technology creates the ability for us to more clearly focus new optics deeper into the universe. When Hubble came up with the cosmological constant, he thought the edge of the universe was only a couple of billion light years from earth, my, how technology has changed, but not Einstein's GR.

In the time of Hubble the upper-limit on the red-shift integral would have been 2 Gyrs, it is now 13.66. When a lot more galaxies like the one in this discussion & HUDF-JD2 are discovered with new observational technology the upper limit on that red-shift integral will tumble as we discover the universe is bigger than we imagined.
antialias_physorg
4.4 / 5 (7) Jul 19, 2012
THAT WILL CHANGE.

Maybe. But it's currently the best measurement we have. Just saying that stuff WILL be different because we haven't measured it yet is not a supportable position. Unmeasured stuff is just unknown. so there's no sense arguing about it.

As with all other areas of science: "Work with the data you have until you have more data."
And that data we have just says: flat
Benni
2.7 / 5 (9) Jul 19, 2012
THAT WILL CHANGE.

As with all other areas of science: "Work with the data you have until you have more data."
And that data we have just says: flat


Yes, and we're continually getting better data, that is what this news release is all about, it is supporting data for discoveries like HUDF-JD2 a fully matured galaxy that sits right at the edge of the so-called primordial gas cloud where such galaxies were predicted not to exist, this is supporting observational evidence the red-shift calculators presently in use will necessarily be revised with regard to age & size.

The size of the universe we can presently observe is so short an arc-length of Einstein's spherically shaped universe in his GR, that we can only observe a very slight "rise over run" along the arc of the sphere.
wiyosaya
4.1 / 5 (9) Jul 19, 2012
I just love how phys.org has turned into a pissing contest on almost every article that has comments.

The comments from those who follow established science are no more indicative of intelligence when they degrade into pissing on those who do not follow established science.

I am all in favor of established science, repeatable experiments, and all the scientific establishment fosters in the name of acquisition of knowledge. but really, you guys who "know established science," is it not time to move forward into adult behavior rather than staying rooted firmly in childish and/or adolescent pissing?

So, try something like "@ you who are seeking to understand - the established and accepted science says that is works this way" or is that too difficult for those of you who "know it all" to understand?

Trust me, you are not educating anyone by pissing on them; those who were pissed on will simply ignore those who are the pissers. If you find that you cannot say anything polite, say zip.
Bewia
1.5 / 5 (8) Jul 19, 2012
"Work with the data you have until you have more data." and that data we have just says: flat..
The WMAP data doesn't indicate flatness of Universe, but hyperbolic geometry because of dipole anisotropy of CMBR. In accordance with it the Universe "expands" with increasing rate ("dark energy"), which is what the 2011 Nobel price was about. If the Universe would be really flat, it would expand with constant rate. If it would expand with decreasing rate, it would be spherical instead. Of course, if we subtract the dipole anisotropy from WMAP data, we can get into impression, that the Universe is homogeneous and flat - but this is simply not true.
Bewia
1.7 / 5 (6) Jul 19, 2012
The downvoters like yyz or RorySpalpeen may read something about it for reference - what I love most is the fact, even the proponents of mainstream models don't understand/know about them:

"A closed universe is one where the space-time curvature is positive, somewhat like the surface of a sphere. It will first expand, then reverse the expansion and contract back to a singularity."
"A flat universe has zero curvature, somewhat like a tabletop. It will expand forever, but at a rate that eventually approaches zero."
"An open universe is one with negative space-time curvature, which can be more or less described by the form of a saddle (in three dimensions, where space-time has four). Such a universe will expand forever with a rate that will eventually approach some positive constant value."

Our universe is expanding with increasing speed - so it cannot be flat or even spherical.
Argiod
1.8 / 5 (5) Jul 19, 2012
Considering how turbulent and chaotic the very early universe must have been, it is entirely probable that the conditions would arise on at least a very localized basis favoring the formation of a spiral galaxy at least once.


In fact, in an infinite universe one would expect all galaxy types to occur anywhere the conditions are right. There is no reason to stick to an outdated theory in the face of two basic facts:
If black holes have so strong a gravitational pull that nothing can get out, not even light (which is essentially massless) can get out; then the Big Bang could never have happened... all of what we can perceive occupying an infinitesimal point in space, would have been the Godfather of All Black Holes. It would have been impossible for it to go 'Bang'.

The 'Big Bang' violates the most basic law of Physics: Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, it merely changes form.
So, pick Black Holes or Big Bang. The two are totally incompatible theories.
Bewia
1.7 / 5 (6) Jul 19, 2012
So, pick Black Holes or Big Bang. The two are totally incompatible theories.
On the contrary, black holes are consistent with Big Bang theory (they even do share similar metric like the Universe in general relativity theory). The existence of black holes would violate the Steady state model instead: if the black holes would be real (and really black), then all matter would already reside inside of them in eternal Steady state Universe. But we never observed black hole as such and actually most of black hole-like objects observed so far were quite radiative. Inside of old large galaxies the black holes are rather quiet and insignificant: they're the smaller, the older galaxy is. So I tend to perceive Steady state model more valid, than the black hole and Big Bang models and relativity theory at the cosmological scales, where the relativity will get violated with quantum mechanics heavily.
RorySpalpeen
5 / 5 (8) Jul 19, 2012
The downvoters like yyz or RorySpalpeen


Just for the record, I'm a not voter if must know. Now you know.

If I'm wrong, I'm willing to learn. But your link agrees with me. The observational data agrees with me. The observational data, the empirical data all show that the universe is euclidean. The only place a non-euclidean universe can be shown is in theory. A non-euclidean universe is a theory that has not been shown by any experimental test.

When you find an observation in the real world that proves a non-euclidean universe or falsifies an euclidean universe, please get back to us.

By the By: Are most people posting on this forum in constant need of telling everyone just how completely they know something. Instead crowing about how much you know, it would be much nicer if everyone just stopped at explaining what they think they know.
Bewia
1.5 / 5 (8) Jul 19, 2012
..the observational data, the empirical data all show that the universe is euclidean..
The dipole anisotropy of CMBR indicates it isn't - the Euclidean space doesn't support something like the motion or acceleration of reference frame. This hyperbolic geometry of this anisotropy points rather to Friedman model of open Universe, which is expanding with positive speed (which is what we are really observing). And if we consider the higher harmonics of CMBR anisotropy ("hyperbolic deform of hyperbolic space"), then it's consistent even with the accelerated expansion of Universe ("dark energy"). I know about the stance of mainstream cosmology in which the universe appears flat, but I do consider it schizophrenic: it defies its own models and concepts.
Just for the record, I'm a not voter if must know
The PO voting logs say the opposite. So you're (down)voter and liar (is it called so - or not?) in addition.
Bewia
2 / 5 (8) Jul 19, 2012
Instead crowing about how much you know, it would be much nicer if everyone just stopped at explaining what they think they know.
I can agree with it in full depth - but the whole philosophy of mainstream science is not designed so. It avoids the explanations and answering the "WHY" questions systematically. As the result, the physics is based on pile of ad-hoced schematic concepts, which no-one understands logically. Therefore it's not so surprising, the proponents of mainstream avoid the explanation of their stance as a single man. In most cases they're simply parroting the textbooks like the Bible. It has no deeper meaning to criticize them for it - they're the same victims of the contemporary educational system, like the laymans. If you want to change it, you should change the gnoseologic system first. We should say clearly, the facts itself aren't so important in multiverse - the logical connections (implications) are.
HannesAlfven
2.8 / 5 (11) Jul 19, 2012
@wiyosaya nails it.

Re: "Trust me, you are not educating anyone by pissing on them; those who were pissed on will simply ignore those who are the pissers. If you find that you cannot say anything polite, say zip."

Effective dialogue is the key to the future of science education. Dialogue is not defined as being able to talk to people who agree with you. It's an ability to have a civil, intellectual conversation with those who specifically disagree with you, and to actually try to learn from the repetition of this experience.

This becomes increasingly apparent once one witnesses what is happening to higher education. All eyes are on Eric Mazur's peer instruction technique, which actually uses dialogue between peers on scientific *CONCEPTS* as a foundation, upon which a SCALABLE virtual university system will emerge.

Those who can't hold a civil, intellectual conversation with people they disagree with are destined to look like old men to these younger generations of physicists.
Bewia
3.5 / 5 (8) Jul 19, 2012
Those who can't hold a civil, intellectual conversation with people
Intellectual conversation considers the logical reasoning, based on reproducible chain of implications. Everything outside of it is just a religious speculation. The mechanical referencing of the Plasma Universe is not such a reasoning and it cannot replace the logical arguments in the same way, like the verbal aggression. It even gets annoying in the same way like the name calling, no matter how civil it may appear at the first look. Such a blind brainwashing is intellectually dishonest if not offensive as well.
RorySpalpeen
3.2 / 5 (9) Jul 19, 2012
@Bewia

Well thank you pointing how that works, now I can vote away. Your charm and demeanor requires it. (Did you acquire your charm in the same way you acquired your "knowledge"? You may want to request at least a partial refund.)

When a person reads something and comprehends it to mean the opposite are some of the most humorous people around. Especially when they get the jargon confused. (Sort of like little kids playing pretend. Kids are pretty boring to watch doing it, but when adults go about posing and pontificating, that's when it becomes a hoot.)

Maybe you should go down and try it at the coffee house where the audience doesn't have the background to notice you posing.

How's that for charm?
Telekinetic
1 / 5 (5) Jul 19, 2012
"Just for the record, I'm a not voter if must know"-RorySpalpeen The PO voting logs say the opposite. So you're (down)voter and liar (is it called so - or not?) in addition.

Good for you, Bewia, you nailed him for lying. But he's a self-professed sociopath, and lying is just a way of life for him.
Rohitasch
1 / 5 (2) Jul 21, 2012
"Why does BX442 look like galaxies that are so common today but were so rare back then?"

Because the Big Bang ... have a logical mind, use it.


This one just grew up fast. That's it.
Husky
1 / 5 (1) Jul 21, 2012
they mention the presence of a dwarf galaxy companion, i can easily imagine passing by dwarf galaxy to skew and shape the larger irregular galaxy like a spoon stirring the milkfoam in your coffee.
Egleton
1 / 5 (5) Jul 22, 2012
I used to believe in the Big Bang model. Now I am persuaded by the explination of Dr. Paul Marmet.
http://www.newton...ml#Lilly
The red shift is explained by loss of energy due to light's interaction with matter.
This galaxy is not old, it is just far away.
Dark Matter is not weird. It is plain old vanilla H2.

The Great Attractor is an artefact.(There is an empty hole between us and the galaxies on the other side, causing us to misinterpret the supposed loss of redshift)
Time for a re-think.
SteveL
1 / 5 (1) Jul 22, 2012
Could the evidence of an "enormous black hole" detected in the center of this galaxy have forced spiral order onto the surrounding stellar media? I'm supposing the possibility that several back holes could have merged early on bringing their stellar masses in tow.

If this were the case then it would seem that it takes either a smaller black hole with less gravity more time, or a larger black hole with more gravity less time to create a spiral galaxy via a coriolis-like effect.
extinct
1 / 5 (1) Jul 22, 2012
This article apparently lacks the picture of BX442, so I'm linking http://news.disco...225.jpg. Could it falsify the Big Bang model?


what you linked to is an artist's rendering, not a photograph
Lurker2358
1 / 5 (6) Jul 23, 2012
Benni:

Assume the Sun started as 100% hydrogen, and averaged plus or minus 10% of it's present day rate of burning, how old would it need to be to obtain it's present day composition?

Answer: 27.4 billion years, giver or take.

Alleged age of the CMB: 13.7 billion years.

13.7 * 2 = 27.4 = diameter of the CMB sphere OBSERVABLE to Earth.

This is not a coincidence.

1, It points to everything in the universe being about the same age (adjusted for new materials created through fusion, fission, or annihilation events).

2, It points to the "observable light radius" method of dating the universe to be wrong in any case.

3, The laws of the universe may in fact not be the same for all space and time. This seems more likely than not, regardless of the exact manner of creation of the universe.

Universal Entropy should be an absolute measure of time, for the whole cosmos, not just what we can observe.

IF you plot a curve of the sum of all entropy and examine it's first derivitive...cont.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Jul 23, 2012
It points to..

It points to your assumption being dead wrong.

After that it's just what we call in software: GIGO (garbage in - garbage out)
Satene
3 / 5 (2) Jul 23, 2012
Assume the Sun started as 100% hydrogen, and averaged plus or minus 10% of it's present day rate of burning, how old would it need to be to obtain it's present day composition? Answer: 27.4 billion years, giver or take.
How did you get into this number? The Sun is supposed to be roughly of the same age, like the rest of solar system, i.e. five billions of years.
Benni
1 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2012
Benni:

3, The laws of the universe may in fact not be the same for all space and time. This seems more likely than not, regardless of the exact manner of creation of the universe.


And how do you know any of this?

You are having a serious failure for understanding the concept of Conservation of Energy as being the reason Einstein proscribed a "spherical" & "finite" universe in his GR.

Do you actually understand why galaxies, stars, & planets are spherical and not cube shaped? And for the same reason Einstein declared the same shape for the universe. Let me clue you in again, "Conservation of Energy", the laws of thermodynamics that govern energy generating systems anywhere (and I mean "anywhere") in the universe.

If you so naively believe there are energy generating bodies that just sort of pick & choose the manner of their existence exclusive of everything else encompassing them, then I can only surmise you've never passed a course in Thermodynamics.
SteveL
3 / 5 (2) Jul 23, 2012
@GhostofOtto_clone at least do me the favor when you 1 vote me for asking an on-topic question to explain why you think I was wrong to ask it.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (5) Jul 23, 2012
That's not the Ghost of Otto.
That's Pussycat and his innumerable sockpuppets (various Ottos, various Ritchies, Pluton, Ruskycreampuff, whatever)

He's just a very immature little kid.
SteveL
5 / 5 (1) Jul 24, 2012
That's not the Ghost of Otto.
That's Pussycat and his innumerable sockpuppets (various Ottos, various Ritchies, Pluton, Ruskycreampuff, whatever)

He's just a very immature little kid.
Ah, thanks. I had expected better of the real Ghost of Otto as he's not usually at a loss for words. I was supprised when I saw the unexpected vulgar names that appeared to be clone variants. I use several computers daily but only one screen name as I don't see a valid reason to trick others with the impression that I am other than or more than I actually am.

So, back to the topic: Does anyone know if the size of the black hole in a galaxy can effect the rate at which a galaxy "matures" (becomes a spiral)?
Lurker2358
1 / 5 (2) Jul 25, 2012
Benni:

Spherical obviously, and therein lies the problem.

If the light coming from the most distant galaxies are 11 billion light years away in every direction, and the CMB is 13.7 billion light years in every direction, then the diameter is 27.4 billion light years in every direction.

So what happens when potential observers from galaxies on opposite edges of our light sphere look back towards the opposite side of our light sphere?

Clearly, "they," if they exist, can see beyond the Earth just as we can see beyond their galaxy. How old do "they" date the universe, since they can likely see another 11 billion or more light years out in the same direction, not to mention looking back at the earth and quite a ways beyond?

It's precisely because of thermodynamics that most everything must be about the same cosmic age due to the limitations imposed by entropy.

Self organization of relatively small systems, such as life, is offset by the entropy of the Sun...continues...
Lurker2358
1 / 5 (2) Jul 25, 2012
Large systems should be hard to self organize due to entropy, and as such the creation of these systems should have reached an equilibrium whereby entropy slowed or stopped the process at about the same time for the entire universe.

Further, regarding the aliens in said galaxy, if "they" can see a further 11 billion, or 13.7 billion years, or whatever the number is, in that direction, then your assumptions of the age of the universe must be dead wrong, as it would need to be as old as their light radius plus our light radius.

Not to mention that galaxy is 20 billion light years away from the farthest galaxy in the opposite direction in our light sphere, so are you saying those galaxies moved at least TWICE the speed of light relative to one another to get where they WERE when light left their stars?

p.s. I know what the mainstream theory of SS formation is, and it never gets updated even though many modern observations and computer models have already proven aspects of it dead wrong
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (2) Jul 25, 2012
So, back to the topic: Does anyone know if the size of the black hole in a galaxy can effect the rate at which a galaxy "matures" (becomes a spiral)?

No definite answer from me, But I'd hazard that the gravitational field of even the most supermassive of black holes is far too local to have any such effect. It's also a central efect - so I'm not sure how it could even be instrumental in creating spiral arms.
The process of drawing stuff into spirals seems to me to require an 'off-center' effect - such as a passing/colliding galaxy cluster or even a largish dust cloud.
SteveL
not rated yet Jul 25, 2012
Do black holes have a coriolis-like effect? The reason this comes to mind to me is that the arms of some mature galaxies like ours tend to have arms that curve in a similar arc.

Could an "off-center" effect be caused by the merging of black holes or the consumption of surrounding matter as it falls into the local gravatational well? Perhaps the graphics are misrepresentative but large gravitational wells are sometimes shown in a shape very similar to a vortex on a Cartesian plane.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Jul 25, 2012
'Large' is very relative here.
Supermassive black holes are locally 'large'. But consider that the event horizon of something with a billion solar masses is 'merely' as large as the orbit of Uranus.

But distances are massive and gravity drops off with the square of the distance.
If my quick calcs are correct then such a monster would have the same pull on an Earth size mass from half a light year away as our sun has on the Earth. Galaxies are tens of thousands of lightyears wide. The gravitational pull of central black holes further out than a few light years is minimal (and probably dominated over by the pull of the combination of closer stars in the vicinity)

(This is a neat fact to throw at astrologers who think that the positions of planets are important to your fate: The nurse standing next to your mother when you were born has a larger gravitational attraction on you than Jupiter)
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Jul 25, 2012
Actually, now that I think about it you can scratch the "Earth size mass" in my last post. It should read:

"...then such a monster would have the same pull half a light year away as our sun has on something at 1 AU (average distance earth-sun)"

...which is enough to make stuff orbit leisurly for a few light years out but not really all that threatenig. Black holes don't gobble stuff up from many light years away. Stuff has to come quite close, be slowed by interaction with other stuff (e.g. in the accretion disc) or be on a (near) collision course to begin with to be in danger of being eaten up by a black hole.

SteveL
not rated yet Jul 25, 2012
Perhaps my imagination is being a bit fanciful, but now I'm imagining that if it cannot be a direct effect between gravity and baryonic matter due to the inverse square for distance then possibly it's an effect between gravity and non-baryonic matter (DM), with non-baryonic matter's faint effect on large masses of baryonic matter. Or, do we know that non-baryonic matter behaves the same from gravitation as baryonic matter?

Seems like it just has to be something we cannot see or detect directly. Yet.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (3) Jul 25, 2012
After screwing around a bit more with Newton's formula I think I have to recant this statement:

Galaxies are tens of thousands of lightyears wide. The gravitational pull of central black holes further out than a few light years is minimal (and probably dominated over by the pull of the combination of closer stars in the vicinity)

At 30k light years (which is the approx. distance of the sun from galactic central) a 1 billion solar mass black hole would have the approximate pull on us as one solar mass that sits 1 light years away.

Which is an awesome and disappointing result at the same time. Awesome because the effect over such a large distance still would dominate over the effects of the 'local' neighborhood; disappointing because a sun 1 light year away from us wouldn't really have much of an effect
(to boot the central black hole in the Milky Way is not a billion solar masses but 'just' 4 million. So the actual effect is 250 times weaker than the calculation above)
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (2) Jul 25, 2012
possibly it's an effect between gravity and non-baryonic matter (DM), with non-baryonic matter's faint effect

What DM can and cannot do we really don't know. All we know is that there seem to be (spatially non-uniform) gravitational effects that we haven't been able to explain. The only thing we know that has a gravitational effect is matter. So the theory is that there has to be some form of matter.

But anything beyond that (what type it is, what properties it has, whether it even IS a form of matter and not something else, etc. etc. )- that's pretty much in the 'dark' for now. So I guess speculations on that are pretty moot until we have more data.
Benni
1 / 5 (1) Jul 25, 2012
Benni:

Spherical obviously, and therein lies the problem.

It's precisely because of thermodynamics that most everything must be about the same cosmic age due to the limitations imposed by entropy.


Sure, but only upon achieving maximum entropy. I just achieved maximum entropy while operating my chainsaw, I didn't realize it, but the exhaust port was riding directly directly on the ground with with no means to dissipate the waste heat, so the engine shut down due to heating equilibrium across the entire engine.

Thermodynamic properties require "heat sinks", I didn't have that with my chainsaw a few minutes ago, so it shut down. Apply that to the rest of the universe. Presently, the universe seems to have enough "heat sinking" capability that I haven't given much thought to it shutting down anytime soon. There are hot & cold sides to a lot of planets, depending on how many of them there are, maybe there is an adequate number of them acting as heat sinks, but probably not.
SteveL
not rated yet Jul 25, 2012
At 30k light years (which is the approx. distance of the sun from galactic central) a 1 billion solar mass black hole would have the approximate pull on us as one solar mass that sits 1 light years away.
Thanks for being patient with me.

Would not the galactic core's BH gravatational pull on solar systems be a far greater influnce than just on planets? If so then it gets back to my thought about gravitational influence over time effecting the shape of the galaxy. Of course the mass of the BH would have to be combined with the mass of the central core and even the mass of each arm should have an effect.

If I can take it a step further I'd suppose that the mutual attraction of the masses within each arm is what actually makes it take the shape of an arm.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Jul 25, 2012
Would not the galactic core's BH gravatational pull on solar systems be a far greater influnce than just on planets?

Force is proportional to the masses involved. Acceleration, however, is independent of mass (drop a hammer and a feather on the Moon from the same height and they will hit the ground after the same time)

So at the same distance to the BH the acceleration towards it is identical for small or large masses. Which is why I think we don't really get a differentiation in movement patterns due to a central black hole.

Now masses in galactic clusters aren't distributed totally homogeneously. Which means over time you will get some clumping effects going in the galaxy - which will eventually lead to some sort of structure (small clusters orbiting a central cluster or the development of arms). Simulations show that close passes between galaxies speed up such a process.
Example animation:
http://www.youtub...7Fod1Evg

DarkHorse66
1 / 5 (1) Jul 26, 2012
If the light coming from the most distant galaxies are 11 billion light years away in every direction, and the CMB is 13.7 billion light years in every direction, then the diameter is 27.4 billion light years in every direction.So what happens when potential observers from galaxies on opposite edges of our light sphere look back towards the opposite side of our light sphere?Clearly, "they," if they exist, can see beyond the Earth just as we can see beyond their galaxy.How old do "they" date the universe, since they can likely see another 11 billion or more light years out in the same direction, not to mention looking back at the earth and quite a ways beyond?
I understand what what is happening in relation to space expanding & determining the age of the universe from our perspective.But he does raise an interesting point wrt observing from a relative significantly different location & has me nonplussed in how it SHOULD be answered from a spatial point of view.Anyone willing?DH66
Benni
1.8 / 5 (5) Jul 26, 2012
@DH66:

Absolutely, I see your point. What is becoming less clear is what the CMB really is. Is it really "primordial", & where is it presently located 13.7 Gyrs later? Cosmologists tinkering around with Hubble's cosmological Constant are themselves not in lockstep agreement as to where the so-called "primordial gas cloud" is located today, or if it presently exists. Galaxies like BX442 & HUDF-JD2 throws a real monkey-wrench into what once was thought to be "settled cosmology", that these manner of galaxies should not exist so close to the primordial gas cloud.

Let's take BX422, & imagine we're viewing a line of direction opposite Earth & into the primordial gas cloud as we see it today & 13.7 Gyrs ago. What will we see? The same two things at either age? If we do, then the Universe is a lot bigger & older than present day cosmology portrays & entropy of the Universe is in its' infancy.



antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Jul 26, 2012
If the light coming from the most distant galaxies are 11 billion light years away in every direction, and the CMB is 13.7 billion light years in every direction, then the diameter is 27.4 billion light years in every direction.

Note quite - since you have inflation, not expansion. So while the light from a point may reaech you now after 13 billion years the actual DISTANCE to that object (now) can be very much larger.

So what happens when potential observers from galaxies on opposite edges of our light sphere look back towards the opposite side of our light sphere

Looking over distances is also looking back into time. When you get light that has travveled 13 billion years you are looking at a snapshot of the universe as it was 13 billion years ago (i.e. much smaller)

So looking from any other place in the universe to such distant places will give you the same picture as looking from Earth. You don't look 'past' Earth because Earth isn't there.
DarkHorse66
1 / 5 (1) Jul 26, 2012
@AP "Note quite - since you have inflation, not expansion" 'Inflating universe vs expansion of space..I always understood that if you inflated something eg a ballon, you have expansion. One arising out of the other.This is the first time that someone has made me aware that there even is a distinction when referring to the universe. What is the distinction in this context? I'm a little confused now. Best Regards, DH66.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (3) Jul 26, 2012
'Inflating universe vs expansion of space..I always understood that if you inflated something eg a ballon, you have expansion. One arising out of the other.

I probably sould have written 'inflating not exploding' (instead of 'inflating not expanding') to make it more clear.

The best indication that space is inflating rather than simply "stuff is moving away from one another with relative velocities" is that you can see the big bang in every direction you look (from everywhere in the universe) - The cosmic microwave background.

The notion of a big 'bang' has lead to a lot of confusion for laypeople in that respect, because most people associate a bang with an explosion (and also most people can't really wrap their heads around the notion of expanding space, since it isn't something we experience on a daily basis in our own microcosm).