Cosmic voids and galaxy clusters could upend Einstein

June 5, 2018 by Elin Bäckström, Uppsala University
Cosmic voids and galaxy clusters could upend Einstein
New mappings of hundreds of thousands of voids and galaxy clusters are providing an opportunity to test Einstein’s theory of relativity. Credit: Uppsala University

It will be possible to use new astronomical mappings of hundreds of thousands of cosmic voids and galaxy clusters to test Einstein's theory of relativity by looking for small deviations in gravity at vast distances – a possible explanation for the dark energy that is accelerating the expansion of the universe. This is shown in a new study from Uppsala University published in Physical Review D, a scientific journal.

Cosmic voids are spaces millions of light years across that contain fewer and more sparsely distributed galaxies than the average. Found between voids are , the largest known structures formed in the universe, as heavy as one million billion solar masses. Gravity controls how quickly voids and galaxy clusters grow, as well as their density.

As far as we know, works according to Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, but the theory has not yet been precision-tested at very great distances and in sparse areas.

Researchers Martin Sahlén at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Uppsala University and Joseph Silk at Johns Hopkins University, Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris, Université Paris Diderot and the University of Oxford, have calculated how small deviations from Einstein's theory of relativity at large distances might affect the number, size and density of cosmic voids and galaxy clusters.

"The results show that by counting voids and clusters using next-generation satellites and telescopes, we may detect deviations from Einstein's as small as a few percent. This would improve our knowledge, by several hundred times over, about how gravity works at large distances in the universe and might even explain ," says Martin Sahlén.

Large mappings provide new opportunities

The authors have previously shown that the simultaneous existence of the largest known void and the largest known are predicated upon the existence of dark energy in the universe.

It is only in recent years that astronomical mappings of the cosmos have become so large and detailed that scientists have begun to be able to compile large catalogues of cosmic voids. The discovery is providing new opportunities to study dark energy and gravity using the future large-scale mappings planned for next-generation satellites and telescopes.

Major projects like the Euclid satellite, the 4MOST telescope, the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and the gigantic Square Kilometre Array radio will be able to map millions of voids and clusters in the next decade, up to ten billion years into the past. Researchers at Uppsala University are involved in the work with 4MOST, Square Kilometre Array and Euclid.

Explore further: Cosmology: Lore of lonely regions

More information: Martin Sahlén et al. Cluster-void degeneracy breaking: Modified gravity in the balance, Physical Review D (2018). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.97.103504

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NoStrings
5 / 5 (6) Jun 05, 2018
It is quite a leap of faith from saying: "The results show that by counting voids and clusters using next-generation satellites and telescopes, we may detect deviations from Einstein's theory as small as a few percent. This would improve our knowledge, by several hundred times over, about how gravity works at large distances in the universe and might even explain dark energy," --- to that it upends Einstein!
If anything, it would add precision, or extend. Only crackpots set up on a quest to upend Einstein, before having anything going for them. With pHd or otherwise..
ZoeBell
Jun 05, 2018
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Surveillance_Egg_Unit
4 / 5 (5) Jun 06, 2018
So far, Einstein's Theory is well proven, but still falsifiable depending on the latest discoveries. Nothing, or very little, is set in stone.
antialias_physorg
3.8 / 5 (4) Jun 06, 2018
to that it upends Einstein!

Well, it would be interesting to have a place to pick at. E.g. if Relativity were only an edge case for certain sizes (just like Newtonian Gravity is only an edge case for low speeds).

That Relativity has withstood every test so far is both awesome and vexing. To find something deeper (which is needed for a reconciliation with QM) we need to find places where it juuuuust misses the mark.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (3) Jun 06, 2018
" Gravity controls how quickly voids and galaxy clusters grow, as well as their density."

If this is what Einstein said then he's got it precisely bass ackwards. The force of expanding spacetime (or the density of the dark energy) is what controls gravity. Actually it's the gradients in this force. This is why it usually appears that there's a dark matter halo around galaxies. Galaxies fall (actually are forced) into regions where there is less expansion going on.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (4) Jun 06, 2018
"Are displaced dark matter and curved spacetime same thing? created 13 hours ago"

Would love to join your discussion but have been banned for repeated crackpottery. Situation doesn't seem to be getting any better. Ignorance is bliss, I guess.
ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
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ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
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torbjorn_b_g_larsson
5 / 5 (3) Jun 06, 2018
So, preparing for the use of large radio telescope arrays, a specialty of Uppsala University.

I would ask crackpot "own" theorists from polluting the science site with crap, the only reasonable response is down voting hard. If there would be - a *very* low likelihood - something that could be responded to, it would take too much time away from reading actual science.

But you do you.

@NS:
It is quite a leap


To be fair to Elin (who I believe I have met), Martin's research is about constraining such leaps (well, deviations), and Elin puts an exciting spin on it as due a media person authoring a press release (with Martin's approval, I'm sure). The leap claim of "could" (fact, but not enough evidence in one data series to be likely) is the Phys.org title editor's.

@Seeker2: Einstein did not say that, re "crackpottery". They did not even know of galaxy clusters and voids when he developed general relativity theory and some basic cosmological models following from it.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2018
@Seeker2: Einstein did not say that, re "crackpottery". They did not even know of galaxy clusters and voids when he developed general relativity theory and some basic cosmological models following from it.
Thanks. So as far as they knew in that era the big "G" was constant everywhere. Time to move on, let's hope.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2018
So as far as they knew in that era the big "G" was constant everywhere.
Reminds me of the hullabalo about the variation in the Hubble constant. Who in the great hereafter would dictate that it has to be identical everywhere?
ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
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Seeker2
1 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2018
cont
Shouldn't get me started. Anyway now we know dark energy comprises 70 or 75% of the energy in the U. Energy seems to involve turbulence. For example the winds on Jupiter. Solar flares. Anyway energy seems to come with a considerable amount of turbulence. Maybe even the big bang. The fact that we observe some relatively mild variations in the throws of this turbulence seems remarkable if you think about it.
ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
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ZoeBell
Jun 06, 2018
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
milnik
1 / 5 (4) Jun 07, 2018
Einstein seems to have cursed all of today's science and scientists, with his contaminating fatamorgans. Does any one of you understand that science has not yet established what is the basis for understanding and making conclusions, which are; the real path of the movement of celestial bodies, the understanding of what matter is and how and from what it forms, what gravity and magnetism are and who causes them to act in such a way. From these ignorance, it is illusory to try to "prove" anything related to phenomena of which science knows nothing. Einstein has engulfed scientific generations and the big problem is what type of pills can bring them back to their level of awareness. They follow Einstein's theory as a needle in a magnetic field.
milnik
1 / 5 (5) Jun 07, 2018
Here is a simple question, which can explain many unknowns:
Why our Moon always has its same side facing the Earth. ?
If she does not know how to explain and prove it, then she does not understand anything about the phenomena in the universe. If you do not know the laws of moving celestial bodies, from two bodies to clusters of galaxies, then the "new" theories on which tycoons are rich are "born".
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Jun 07, 2018
@Seeker: If the https://www.futur...erse/...
Per your reference,
In the next 10 years or so, the large astronomical surveys that are just beginning to plot the expansion of the universe by measuring the brightness of the most distant supernovas should be able to detect the slowdown in the expansion rate that the model predicts.
So the U expansion rate has been accelerating for how many billion years and it's going to reverse acceleration in the next 10 years? Wow.

JIMBO
not rated yet Jun 07, 2018
In 2010, Vikhilin showed that f(R) theories are shot down by Gen.Rel. predix when applied to galaxy clusters at cosmological distances. Earlier this yr., another group did likewise to 90% of the existing chameleon theories attempting to challenge GR. Then, the det. of grav waves from a collision of a neutron star w/a black hole was spot-on with GR predix, & has opened up a new field,`multi-messenger' astronomy.
When will these people do their background research properly ? GR has no competition, except in QG, where it is inapplicable.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2018
Here is a simple question, which can explain many unknowns:
Why our Moon always has its same side facing the Earth. ?
How about this one: why a pendulum always has one side facing earth?
milnik
1 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2018
@ Seeker2,
You're smart enough not to ask such stupid questions. Moon and Earth are two celestial bodies rotating around the sun in an ellipse, which is their common center of mass (pericenter). It looks like you see that our moon is hung on a tower, and the tower is built on Earth. This phenomenon would be like a pendulum hanging at some end on a high ceiling of a cathedral.
Seeker2
1 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2018
@ Seeker2,
You're smart enough not to ask such stupid questions.
Really now. Physical librations of the moon detectable by lasers are discussed at ps://www-spof.gsfc.nasa.gov/stargaze/Smoon4.htm but seems to be over NASA's heads so no doubt over yours too.
milnik
1 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2018
The Moon is about 1l.sec away from Earth.
The earth revolves around its axis and for one second of time it turns around 15 arcs. sec, which has a shift of about 27 km per month. What then do the scientists see on the moon and what is the accuracy of this measurement. It is not taken into account the change in the movement around the sun, the rotation, and the earth and the months around the center of mass, which travels along the ellipse and around the sun and around the moon. Does science think that its data is correct? "What is the fault of observing heavenly bodies at distances and hundreds of millions of ly? Think!
granville583762
4 / 5 (4) Jun 10, 2018
Sir Isaac's Newton's law of gravity and the empty voids

Isaac's law of gravitation states that a particle attracts every other particle in the universe with a force which is directly proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between their centres

Sir Isaac's Newton's law of gravity is totally responsible for creating the empty voids in the vacuum of space
ZoeBell
Jun 10, 2018
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
granville583762
5 / 5 (2) Jun 10, 2018
Sir Isaac's Newton's and his empty voids in the vacuum of space

ZoeBell a little word in your Bell like!
Voids in the vacuum of space are literally regions of the vacuum of space that contain nothing or almost nothing as absolute zero of nothing is almost impossible to attain!
phys.org> Cosmic voids are spaces millions of light years across that contain fewer and more sparsely distributed galaxies than the average

granville583762> Sir Isaac's Newton's law of gravity is totally responsible for creating the empty voids in the vacuum of space

ZoeBell> Gravitational law can explain neither rotational curves of stars withing galaxies, neither the lensing of voids - which is what this article is about.

As far as I can see this article is discussing empty voids in the vacuum of space, hardly material necessary for the gravitational lensing, in point of fact the reverse as voids lack the necessary requisite matter for gravitational lensing
milnik
not rated yet Jun 10, 2018
empty voids ???
who believes that there is something like this in the universe, he lost every opportunity to find out the structure of the universe. All those who think that there are empty voids, they will never be able to normally think of knowing how the matter forms and from which it forms. The whole infinite universe is filled with Aether substance from which matter is formed, and all matter is transformed into Aether and these are closed cycles of the origin and disappearance of matter.

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