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mogila
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Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2011 9:30 am
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:03 pm 
 

OK, so a universe can create itself from nothing but I've never really been able to really wrap my head around it. If my very limited understanding is correct, it's got something to do with gravity being negative energy and matter being positive energy and therefore cancelling each other out making something? Is this evidenced by the universe expanding away from each other at a more rapid rate? I don't really know much about this topic other than watching some videos and reading some articles. If anyone could explain it in lay man's terms it would be much appreciated (if that is possible).

Which brings me onto my second point, the big bang, I recently learnt that it wasn't actually an explosion but rather a singularity which expanded, now this is where everything started from but what caused the expansion? In other words, why did it expansion of the universe occur?

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Xlxlx
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 10:40 pm 
 

Not that I'm an erudite regarding this particular subject but, from what I understand, considering that matter cannot be destroyed nor created, well..... That should imply that the matter which composes the known universe has always existed in some form or another.

Now, as for why the Big Bang happened..... We don't really have a way to be sure about that. At most, more or less accurate theories can be formulated, but I doubt we'll ever reach a conclusive answer.

Sorry to be unable to help. Perhaps some of the more knowledgeable forum members can shed more light on this complicated (and fascinating) issue.
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John_Sunlight
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 10:51 pm 
 

The big bang: busted.

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Subrick
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 10:55 pm 
 

The thing about the question "What caused the Big Bang?" is that it's an impossible question to answer. What makes it impossible is that there was no such thing as cause until the Big Bang. The Big Bang doesn't even really indicate the beginning of reality; it just indicates the furthest possible point we can go back in measurable time.
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Against Such Things
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2013 11:01 pm 
 

Yeah, I've seen a few people attempt to explain the creation of the universe under the laws of physics. It just doesn't seem possible for the universe to exist without those laws being in place until after. This makes me wonder what would cause them to exist and just :???:
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mogila
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 12:34 am 
 

Subrick wrote:
The thing about the question "What caused the Big Bang?" is that it's an impossible question to answer. What makes it impossible is that there was no such thing as cause until the Big Bang. The Big Bang doesn't even really indicate the beginning of reality; it just indicates the furthest possible point we can go back in measurable time.


I thought that the big bang was the start of everything, time included. In addition time is not infinite right? It will end?

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Nochielo
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 2:04 am 
 

As far as I know, the Big Bang is indeed the beginning of time, in a sense, because time is how we perceive the position and movement of matter, all of which was caused by the Big Bang. Essentially, time is a concept which we created out of convenience but with no real bearings on nature (like economics for example). So if time is the consequence of the Big Bang, there can be no time before it, thus no causation. Basically what Subrick wrote. I'm not an expert, but this the gist of it, assuming I wasn't lied to and/or that didn't misinterpret anything.
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Nahsil
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 2:13 am 
 

I like the big bang/big crunch theory

But that's just because I like cycles
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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 5:24 am 
 

An explanation why/how the universe came into being would require knowledge of what is "outside" the universe, which we cannot have for we can only measure what's inside.
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baron samedi
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 6:17 am 
 

just to set the record straight, the official theory is that gravity did not become a force until some crazy fraction of a second AFTER the big bang. So I would say that no "gravity" did not cause the big bang. At least according to this goofy astronomy prof I had in university.

here's a link to some technical shit that basically ratifies what I said.
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hb ... fy.html#c1

Image



as to how or why, well... yeah. I think the real mystery is how I even remembered this.

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mogila
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 8:20 am 
 

The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?

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Atrocious_Mutilation
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 8:22 am 
 

I've seen some physicists do the mathematics that say that it is possible to create something from nothing. It gets very complex so I can't explain it, but I recommend the writings of Lawrence Krauss on cosmology.
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drterror666
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 9:14 am 
 

I heard that our Universe is expanding inside the Void (as I've heard Astrophysicists call it), which is the infinite space outside the Universe. This opens a whole can of worms. Firstly, there must be the possibility of other universes out there and, secondly, the Void itself must be timeless, which cannot be explained by the laws of physics as we hold them.

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Xlxlx
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:48 am 
 

mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?

Oh, don't worry. Our species will be extinct long before that happens.
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Metallumz
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 4:57 pm 
 

I don't believe in a singularity event, but rather we are immersed in a plethora of 'other' multiverses that are 'bubble-like' in dimension and have no physical definition other than laws of physics and perhaps energy differs from one to the other. It was just by co-incidence that two of these multiverses overlapped one another and created what we know here today. Perhaps in another trillion years this overlapping will cease and our universal properties are replaced by something else yet to be discovered as our universe reverts back to its original form. Add in the effect of fractal universes and the possibilities are literally endless of how many overlapping universes can be created aswell as destroyed.

A universe full of pink elephants in one room, a universe made of guitars, a universe where electromagnetism replaces gravity, a universe where black metal makes the charts and pop is underground music, anything you want to image is a probability using this theosis.

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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 5:26 pm 
 

mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?

The speed of life, eh? So what you're saying is the universe will outrun Usain Bolt? In case you meant the speed of light, what you describe breaks several laws of physics, so no, probably not.

The expansion of the universe, which means the increase of distance between galaxies, which cannot go faster than light, is analogous to entropy, which means the cold death of the universe.

Only if the universe collapses and implodes into a reverse big bang, it will die a hot death.
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Last edited by inhumanist on Tue Jun 04, 2013 5:57 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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analog_winter
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 5:28 pm 
 

mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?


This is one of the interesting questions discussed in astrophysics, and depends on the strength of dark energy, the force causing the universe to expand at an ever-increasing rate. If dark energy is strong enough, this will continue, and the universe will expand until everything is ripped apart, which is the Big Rip theory. However, if dark energy is weaker, than gravity could theoretically overpower it and cause the universe to collapse.
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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 9:34 pm 
 

Well, I tried to be brief.

mogila wrote:
OK, so a universe can create itself from nothing but I've never really been able to really wrap my head around it. If my very limited understanding is correct, it's got something to do with gravity being negative energy and matter being positive energy and therefore cancelling each other out making something? Is this evidenced by the universe expanding away from each other at a more rapid rate? I don't really know much about this topic other than watching some videos and reading some articles. If anyone could explain it in lay man's terms it would be much appreciated (if that is possible).

Which brings me onto my second point, the big bang, I recently learnt that it wasn't actually an explosion but rather a singularity which expanded, now this is where everything started from but what caused the expansion? In other words, why did it expansion of the universe occur?


The zero energy universe hypothesis gives you two things. One, it makes it easier to understand that a fluctuation creating everything is an actual possibility without assuming too much about the creation itself, and two, in some formulations of general relativity it gives a geometry of space time quite close to what we do experience (at least in the observable universe). But, as I understand it, it has nothing to do with the acceleration of the expansion. That is something that happens in our universe, so to speak. (Then again, cosmologists can't actually agree on whether it makes sense to define the total energy for an open universe in general relativity or not, so I think it's fair to say that the whole hypothesis should be clarified.)

Xlxlx wrote:
Not that I'm an erudite regarding this particular subject but, from what I understand, considering that matter cannot be destroyed nor created, well..... That should imply that the matter which composes the known universe has always existed in some form or another.

Now, as for why the Big Bang happened..... We don't really have a way to be sure about that. At most, more or less accurate theories can be formulated, but I doubt we'll ever reach a conclusive answer.

Sorry to be unable to help. Perhaps some of the more knowledgeable forum members can shed more light on this complicated (and fascinating) issue.


What makes you think that?! Sure, it's true in most everyday contexts, but not always. Matter in contact with anti-matter will annihilate, forming two light rays instead. And in regions with high energy density, matter and anti-matter can be (and routinely are) created. That's what that famous E=mc^2 equation means, basically. So one can imagine that a huge amount of concentrated energy gave rise to the entire universe and the Big Bang. The problem with that, is that one would expect equal amounts of matter and anti-matter, and our universe seemingly consists of mainly matter. That imbalance has not been explained satisfactorily yet.

Subrick wrote:
The thing about the question "What caused the Big Bang?" is that it's an impossible question to answer. What makes it impossible is that there was no such thing as cause until the Big Bang. The Big Bang doesn't even really indicate the beginning of reality; it just indicates the furthest possible point we can go back in measurable time.


Indeed.

mogila wrote:
Subrick wrote:
The thing about the question "What caused the Big Bang?" is that it's an impossible question to answer. What makes it impossible is that there was no such thing as cause until the Big Bang. The Big Bang doesn't even really indicate the beginning of reality; it just indicates the furthest possible point we can go back in measurable time.


I thought that the big bang was the start of everything, time included. In addition time is not infinite right? It will end?


The acceleratingly expanding universe in a heat death scenario suggests that there will be no end to time. If there is a big rip scenario instead, then time is definitively infinite.

Nochielo wrote:
As far as I know, the Big Bang is indeed the beginning of time, in a sense, because time is how we perceive the position and movement of matter, all of which was caused by the Big Bang. Essentially, time is a concept which we created out of convenience but with no real bearings on nature (like economics for example). So if time is the consequence of the Big Bang, there can be no time before it, thus no causation. Basically what Subrick wrote. I'm not an expert, but this the gist of it, assuming I wasn't lied to and/or that didn't misinterpret anything.


I'm OK with most of what you said, but I do think time has real bearings on nature. Or at least, it's on the same footing as spatial position. If it wasn't, Einstein probably wouldn't have been as famous.

Nahsil wrote:
I like the big bang/big crunch theory

But that's just because I like cycles


Unfortunately, that scenario doesn't seem very likely.

baron samedi wrote:
just to set the record straight, the official theory is that gravity did not become a force until some crazy fraction of a second AFTER the big bang. So I would say that no "gravity" did not cause the big bang. At least according to this goofy astronomy prof I had in university.

here's a link to some technical shit that basically ratifies what I said.
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hb ... fy.html#c1

Image



as to how or why, well... yeah. I think the real mystery is how I even remembered this.


Note though, that besides electromagnetism, the only unification of two forces we have seen experimentally is the electroweak one. Then it turns out that we have mathematical models for how to unite it with the strong force, though they do have some working out to do still. It would be nice (at least aesthetically) if we could incorporate gravity into the same picture, but do be aware that things are getting quite speculative at this point.

mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?


Would it be less eerie if the ultimate future was a closed universe, contracting back onti itself, leading to a "big crunch"?

drterror666 wrote:
I heard that our Universe is expanding inside the Void (as I've heard Astrophysicists call it), which is the infinite space outside the Universe. This opens a whole can of worms. Firstly, there must be the possibility of other universes out there and, secondly, the Void itself must be timeless, which cannot be explained by the laws of physics as we hold them.


Well, first the term 'void' in astronomy and astrophysics is usually reserved for relatively empty regions between galaxies (hence in the universe). Second, one doesn't really have to postulate anything about what our universe is "in", if that "in" even makes sense. This makes me think that you may have been talking to people that know too much about cosmology.

inhumanist wrote:
mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?

The speed of life, eh? So what you're saying is the universe will outrun Usain Bolt? In case you meant the speed of light, what you describe breaks several laws of physics, so no, probably not.

The expansion of the universe, which means the increase of distance between galaxies, which cannot go faster than light, is analogous to entropy, which means the cold death of the universe.

Only if the universe collapses and implodes into a reverse big bang, it will die a hot death.


Actually, the universe expanding faster than light would not break "several laws of physics". In fact, several galaxies are already observed to move away from us faster than the speed of light! Some reading on this:
http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/questi ... number=575
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faster-tha ... _expansion
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Xlxlx
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 10:03 pm 
 

Corimngul wrote:
Xlxlx wrote:
Not that I'm an erudite regarding this particular subject but, from what I understand, considering that matter cannot be destroyed nor created, well..... That should imply that the matter which composes the known universe has always existed in some form or another.

What makes you think that?! Sure, it's true in most everyday contexts, but not always. Matter in contact with anti-matter will annihilate, forming two light rays instead. And in regions with high energy density, matter and anti-matter can be (and routinely are) created. That's what that famous E=mc^2 equation means, basically. So one can imagine that a huge amount of concentrated energy gave rise to the entire universe and the Big Bang. The problem with that, is that one would expect equal amounts of matter and anti-matter, and our universe seemingly consists of mainly matter. That imbalance has not been explained satisfactorily yet.

Oh bollocks, how could I forget about anti-matter?! Crucial high school stuff right there :durr:

Sorry for the aneurysm, and thanks for clarifying that, Corimngul. It certainly gives one a wider picture, of not a complete one.
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Evil_Johnny_666
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 10:59 pm 
 

Corimngul wrote:

Actually, the universe expanding faster than light would not break "several laws of physics". In fact, several galaxies are already observed to move away from us faster than the speed of light! Some reading on this:
http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/questi ... number=575
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faster-tha ... _expansion

But isn't this the ''fake'' faster than speed of light? In the sense that it doesn't break causality?

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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:34 pm 
 

Xlxlx wrote:
Oh bollocks, how could I forget about anti-matter?! Crucial high school stuff right there :durr:

Sorry for the aneurysm, and thanks for clarifying that, Corimngul. It certainly gives one a wider picture, of not a complete one.


No worries.

Evil_Johnny_666 wrote:
Corimngul wrote:

Actually, the universe expanding faster than light would not break "several laws of physics". In fact, several galaxies are already observed to move away from us faster than the speed of light! Some reading on this:
http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/questi ... number=575
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faster-tha ... _expansion

But isn't this the ''fake'' faster than speed of light? In the sense that it doesn't break causality?


I guess you could call it that... Sure, it doesn't allow superluminal communication or breaches of causality. However, the distance between galaxies (which is what inhumanist was talking about) can indeed increase faster than c. Generally, that would mean that there will be some point in time beyond which signals from such a galaxy cannot reach us anymore. In effect, this quickly increasing distance implies a future breakdown of communication rather than faster than light communication...
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Evil_Johnny_666
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:44 pm 
 

Pretty damn interesting stuff... Kinda eager to follow my advanced Astrophysics (and cosmology) course to know some more about all this. Already did a research about the big bang and stuff (the different kind of universes and futures) but it's been a while and there was a lot of things I didn't know much about.

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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:18 am 
 

Corimngul wrote:
I guess you could call it that... Sure, it doesn't allow superluminal communication or breaches of causality. However, the distance between galaxies (which is what inhumanist was talking about) can indeed increase faster than c. Generally, that would mean that there will be some point in time beyond which signals from such a galaxy cannot reach us anymore. In effect, this quickly increasing distance implies a future breakdown of communication rather than faster than light communication...

Okay, got me there. But we need to assume a hypothetical frame of reference which is not given in relative spacetime (such as an absolute cosmic time, I believe), correct?

The other law mogila's scenario seems to break is conservation of energy, since he was talking about a hot death of the universe.
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Acidgobblin
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:30 am 
 

inhumanist wrote:
The other law mogila's scenario seems to break is conservation of energy, since he was talking about a hot death of the universe.


You may be misreading what he wrote there. Heat death does not refer to some sort of fiery termination point but a state of maximum entropy whereby no transfer of energy will occur due to the even dispersal of matter throughout the universe(thermodynamic equilibrium). This will mean that no new processes requiring energy can occur; this is similar to the death of organic lifeforms.
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mogila
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:46 am 
 

Acidgobblin wrote:
inhumanist wrote:
The other law mogila's scenario seems to break is conservation of energy, since he was talking about a hot death of the universe.


You may be misreading what he wrote there. Heat death does not refer to some sort of fiery termination point but a state of maximum entropy whereby no transfer of energy will occur due to the even dispersal of matter throughout the universe(thermodynamic equilibrium). This will mean that no new processes requiring energy can occur; this is similar to the death of organic lifeforms.


Yes exactly, I was about to respond to that.

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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:11 pm 
 

Odd term then.
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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 1:15 pm 
 

inhumanist wrote:
Okay, got me there. But we need to assume a hypothetical frame of reference which is not given in relative spacetime (such as an absolute cosmic time, I believe), correct?


Well no, this is just looking at the sky from a frame of reference on earth. The subtle point though, is that we aren't talking about inertial frames of reference as in special relativity (in which speeds faster than light are impossible), but something more general (hence the name general relativity) allowing acceleration and, in this case, the expansion of space itself.

You may have seen the common analogy of a balloon with dots on the surface (or the one with raisins in a loaf of bread). As the balloon expands, each dot moves away from all adjacent dots, say be 1 cm per second. But then a dot at a larger distance (say 7 units) would seem to move away at 7 cm/s, and if the balloon is big enough, some dots would appear to move faster than the speed of light with respect to some faraway dots. Relative to the closest dots, they may still be receding slower than the speed of light though.

If you can imagine the same scenario in four dimensions, you'll get pretty close to what happens in the universe. The distances to other galaxies can increase faster than c, even if the galaxies are locally at rest. In cosmology, one often uses something called comoving coordinates to describe this. They are coordinates which scale with the expansion of space. The distance to a given galaxy is expressed as L(t)=a(t) L, where t is the time, L is the distance when a(t)=1, a(t) is the scaling factor and we've assumed that the other galaxy is actually at rest relative to us, in these coordinates. As a(t) grows, so does the actual distance L(t), but in these coordinates the galaxy stays at the same coordinate, L.


inhumanist wrote:
Odd term then.


Perhaps. Though in physics, heat is defined as energy being transported (through thermal interactions). It has nothing to do with something actually being hot or not, only that there is a difference in levels of "hotness" so that the energy will tend to spread out and equilibrate. So the death part just means that there is an end to this transfer of energy, hence the "death of heat".

This is just another case of physics and general language/intuition not agreeing. The concept of work is another example, and so is weight. In the context of cosmology, there is the statement that the spacetime is flat, etc.
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Acidgobblin
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:15 am 
 

inhumanist wrote:
Odd term then.


Not really. With thermodynamic equilibrium, there is no area 'hotter' or 'cooler' then another; heat ceases to be measurable (it is measured relatively). This doesn't imply that the universe is cold or hot; it becomes neither, no energy is able to be transmitted and the concept of both hot and cold become meaningless and non-existent. You could also call it 'cold death'.

edit: Corimngul explained it better. :)
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mogila
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 3:34 am 
 

Universe's moving away from us at the speed of light, I want to be clear on this is that because as we move away from them and they move away from us the combined speed is greater than that of c or is the other universes just moving away greater than c? Also I do believe there are some physicists who now believe it's possible to move faster than c.

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inhumanist
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:19 am 
 

If I've understood Corimngul correctly, Galaxies that are far away are indeed moving faster than the speed of light relative to us. The result is that we cannot observe them, because the farther away the object we observe, the further back in time is what we observe. This means that at a certain distance from us we receive light from the beginning of the universe and no light from any point farther than that. This edge of the observable universe is getting bigger at the speed of light, but beyond that edge must be, according to calculations, galaxies that move away from us faster than light.

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mogila
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 8:58 pm 
 

The amount of energy in the universe is infinite, which makes sense because everything comes from the singularity at the big bang.

Now, we know the universe isn't infinitely old because of the thermodynamics, basically, if it was, everything would be as hot as stars. Which makes me wonder, if there was only 1 star in the universe and it died so it was no longer heating the universe, would the universe cool to 0 Calvin or would there always be some heat in the universe?

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JT Rager
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:09 am 
 

mogila wrote:
The amount of energy in the universe is infinite, which makes sense because everything comes from the singularity at the big bang.

Now, we know the universe isn't infinitely old because of the thermodynamics, basically, if it was, everything would be as hot as stars. Which makes me wonder, if there was only 1 star in the universe and it died so it was no longer heating the universe, would the universe cool to 0 Calvin or would there always be some heat in the universe?


Basically, all the energy in the universe will become uniform throughout all space and all matter. Because the average temperature throughout the universe with respect to matter remains constant due to the 1st law of thermodynamics (conservation of mass and energy), the universe will reach a state where everything is the average temperature.

There will be no heat. In case anyone is confused, temperature is not the same as heat. Heat is the transfer of energy due to a difference in temperatures. You can have two high-temperature systems in contact with each other, and if they're in thermal equilibrium there is no heat, because their temperatures are the same. So when everything in the universe is the same temperature, there will be no heat by definition, even if the temperature isn't 0 Kelvin (hint, it won't be 0 K).
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mogila
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 16, 2013 9:17 pm 
 

What is nothing? Is nothing just an empty eternal space vacuum where particles were just created or did everything, even the empty space vacuum along with the laws of physics just start existing?

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mindshadow
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 6:36 am 
 

mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?


Unless the universe is finite, and space is curved (like a torus).
If you started at any point on earth and travelled in a straight line as possible you would eventually return to the same point (or close to it), maybe it's the same in space?


Does Olbers' paradox point towards a finite universe, or is it that there just isn't enough (observable - 13 billion light years) space and time to explain why we see a mostly dark night sky?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olbers%27_paradox
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Corimngul
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:24 pm 
 

mogila wrote:
The amount of energy in the universe is infinite, which makes sense because everything comes from the singularity at the big bang.


That seems like an unfounded conclusion. You really have to assume that the universe is infinite, and that it is homogeneous on some level, in order to arrive at an infinite energy. Of course, the universe may be infinite, which means that it must have been infinite in size already at the big bang! In that case, and probably also the finite case, the traditional view of a singularity is a bit simplified, so your argument isn't that convincing.

mogila wrote:
What is nothing? Is nothing just an empty eternal space vacuum where particles were just created or did everything, even the empty space vacuum along with the laws of physics just start existing?


We don't know. There are speculations to both options, but there isn't any good way to observe anything that is not in our own universe. We do know, however, that the vacuum in our universe has particles being created and annihilated all the time, so it is reasonable to assume that the "nothing" this universe was created from also had this property.

mindshadow wrote:
mogila wrote:
The universe will continue to expand forever at an increasing fast rate, eventually even faster than the speed of life, so says Krauss. So we live in an open universe. This will cause the heat death of the universe. Kind of eerie how that's the ultimate future isn't it?


Unless the universe is finite, and space is curved (like a torus).
If you started at any point on earth and travelled in a straight line as possible you would eventually return to the same point (or close to it), maybe it's the same in space?


Does Olbers' paradox point towards a finite universe, or is it that there just isn't enough (observable - 13 billion light years) space and time to explain why we see a mostly dark night sky?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olbers%27_paradox


Well, all observation points towards spacetime (and space) having zero or at least very close to zero curvature. If it is a torus, it is certainly a very, very big one.

As for Olbers' paradox, you do link to a page with the mainstream explanation yourself. The paradox is mainly an argument against a static universe, which we know from observation that we can't have anyway. To fully explain what we see, you need to remember that the universe has a finite age, light travels at a finite speed (thus not all stars have reached us yet) and that there is an expansion of space, leading to a redshift of the light coming towards us, meaning that a lot of the radiation abound in the early universe should now form some low-energy background. And indeed there is the cosmic microwave background radiation, which is one of the best pieces of evidence for the big bang theory.
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Earthcubed
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 9:28 pm 
 

What I find most fascinating about space expanding at an ever-increasing rate is that it means at some point there won't be any way for future societies to surmise that the Big Bang ever happened. Space will eventually expand at a rate faster than light can cross it, meaning future societies won't be able to see distant galaxies (or in the really long run, other stars). If you can't see distant points of light, then you can't measure their movement. If you can't measure the movement of distant points of light because you can't see them, then you won't know that everything in the universe is moving away from you. If you don't know that, then you can't reason backwards that at the beginning everything was much more compact. Meanwhile, the cosmic microwave background radiation left over from the Big Bang will eventually fade and redshift to the point where it is indistinguishable from every other background source of radiation. Without those two pieces of observational evidence (microwave background and galaxies receding in all directions), there will be no reason to have a Big Bang theory. We're basically living in the only time period where it is even possible to know how it all started.


It also means future societies---no matter how technologically advanced they become---will never be able to have a working knowledge of the size and scope of the universe beyond ours circa 1750 or so. That was when astronomers and philosophers first theorized that some of the nebulae in the sky were in fact other Milky Way's (and I don't think there was any consensus in favor of this theory until the 1930's).
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hunglikemouse
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:48 pm 
 

Earthcubed wrote:
What I find most fascinating about space expanding at an ever-increasing rate is that it means at some point there won't be any way for future societies to surmise that the Big Bang ever happened. Space will eventually expand at a rate faster than light can cross it, meaning future societies won't be able to see distant galaxies (or in the really long run, other stars). If you can't see distant points of light, then you can't measure their movement. If you can't measure the movement of distant points of light because you can't see them, then you won't know that everything in the universe is moving away from you. If you don't know that, then you can't reason backwards that at the beginning everything was much more compact. Meanwhile, the cosmic microwave background radiation left over from the Big Bang will eventually fade and redshift to the point where it is indistinguishable from every other background source of radiation. Without those two pieces of observational evidence (microwave background and galaxies receding in all directions), there will be no reason to have a Big Bang theory. We're basically living in the only time period where it is even possible to know how it all started.


It also means future societies---no matter how technologically advanced they become---will never be able to have a working knowledge of the size and scope of the universe beyond ours circa 1750 or so. That was when astronomers and philosophers first theorized that some of the nebulae in the sky were in fact other Milky Way's (and I don't think there was any consensus in favor of this theory until the 1930's).

Future societies are doooomed!

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Oblarg
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:27 am 
 

People talking about physics when they don't actually know physics is always fun.

The Big Bang does not explain the "origin of the universe." It makes no attempt to explain the origin of the universe. It explains the early state of the universe, and its subsequent development.

Science as a whole offers no explanations as to where everything came from, because we have never observed the spontaneous creation of a universe, and observation is the very foundation of science.
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mogila
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 10:15 pm 
 

Earthcubed wrote:
What I find most fascinating about space expanding at an ever-increasing rate is that it means at some point there won't be any way for future societies to surmise that the Big Bang ever happened. Space will eventually expand at a rate faster than light can cross it, meaning future societies won't be able to see distant galaxies (or in the really long run, other stars). If you can't see distant points of light, then you can't measure their movement. If you can't measure the movement of distant points of light because you can't see them, then you won't know that everything in the universe is moving away from you. If you don't know that, then you can't reason backwards that at the beginning everything was much more compact. Meanwhile, the cosmic microwave background radiation left over from the Big Bang will eventually fade and redshift to the point where it is indistinguishable from every other background source of radiation. Without those two pieces of observational evidence (microwave background and galaxies receding in all directions), there will be no reason to have a Big Bang theory. We're basically living in the only time period where it is even possible to know how it all started.


It also means future societies---no matter how technologically advanced they become---will never be able to have a working knowledge of the size and scope of the universe beyond ours circa 1750 or so. That was when astronomers and philosophers first theorized that some of the nebulae in the sky were in fact other Milky Way's (and I don't think there was any consensus in favor of this theory until the 1930's).


I don't think this will happen. I think all societies will have died out (due to heat death) by the time we cannot see other stars and galaxies. However some galaxies aren't moving away from us the Andromenda Galaxy is heading for us and it will collide with the milky way in 5 billion years.

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Cursarion
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 7:08 pm 
 

Earthcubed wrote:
Space will eventually expand at a rate faster than light can cross it, meaning future societies won't be able to see distant galaxies (or in the really long run, other stars).

I've understood that gravity will hold certain things together, and it's the distance between these things which grows. I remember seeing something like that on a very large scale, matter (galaxy groups / clusters) forms thin strings, and that the strings are surrounded by vast bubbles of expanding void.


Earthcubed wrote:
Without those two pieces of observational evidence (microwave background and galaxies receding in all directions), there will be no reason to have a Big Bang theory. We're basically living in the only time period where it is even possible to know how it all started.

It also means future societies---no matter how technologically advanced they become---will never be able to have a working knowledge of the size and scope of the universe beyond ours circa 1750 or so. That was when astronomers and philosophers first theorized that some of the nebulae in the sky were in fact other Milky Way's (and I don't think there was any consensus in favor of this theory until the 1930's).


Absurd on so many levels. :P "The only time period" = one pretty long time period.
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