Sunday, October 28, 2007

big bang cosmology

i was just reading about the big bang theory of how our particular universe began and thinking about how well this cosmology explains our universe.

the most successful test of the theory is the measurement of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation (see nobel prize in physics, 2006). The CMB is the very first light we know how to "see" after the big bang, and it only became visible 300,000 years after the big bang happened. it's fantastically exciting that the big bang theory matches so well to the experiment we performed (remember: science it works, bitches!), but there remain many unanswered (and currently unanswerable) issues to understand!

what existed before the big bang? what is dark energy? immediately after the big bang, why were there 10,000,000,000 (ten billion) anti-particles for every 10,000,000,001 (ten billion AND ONE) particles? i keep reading and learning more, trying to understand life, the universe, and everything, but i'm left with unsatisfactory justifications to explain away problems.

the WMAP cosmology tutorial states,

It is beyond the realm of the Big Bang Model to say what gave rise to the Big Bang. There are a number of speculative theories about this topic, but none of them make realistically testable predictions as of yet.

well, that sucks!! i mean, maybe there are other universes, just as there are surely life forms elsewhere in our universe... we just can't prove it (yet?). we dont know how to prove it because we havent developed the ability to find it.

creating "speculative theories" about these lingering questions over a few beers is quite fun, but in my mind it always comes back to the question of "how do we test the theories?" in order to know whether the big bang model of the universe is completely correct, we must develop ways to detect other remnants from the earliest parts of the universe.

but i got nothing.

what are the tests? how can we "see" anything earlier than 300,000 years after the big bang? will dark energy give us a clue? what the hell is dark energy? it's the stuff that is 70% of all the stuff that is our universe, but how does it manage to accelerate the expansion of the universe? (... if it does?) we're currently developing the technology for experiments that will potentially be able to detect the bizzaro entity called dark energy... but are there any other tests we can perform?

i still feel somewhat unsatisfied about the finer points of big bang theory (the answer 42 seems way easier to just accept, doesnt it? but it's ultimately way less satisfying).

first art work by vista arts.


Nemo said...

Wasn't the the desity of the universe at the start of the "Big Bang" greater then that of a black hole? How did any matter or energy escape? Do we exist inside an event horizon? (I was musing that perhaps c was not set until expansion pushed past the Schwarzchild radius, but I've seen no math to suggest this to be true).

The Fishmonger said...

Oh my gosh! Have you heard? Just by studying dark energy, we've collapsed a wave function, thereby ensuring it's existence, and the early end of the universe! This time, science isn't just destroying the world, it's destroying the UNIVERSE! AUUUGH! knowledge will surely kill us all! Quick, let's bury our heads in the sand! What we don't know can't hurt us! DESPAIR! DESPAIR AND REPENT!


Nemo said...

What's with the dearth (dearth I tells you!) of Awesomeness? It's been over 6 months subjective since a new topic was added. Is there anybody out there? Have all the Scientists given up and become a taxi service for fully kroisened babes at the end of micro-beer festivals?

Anonymous said...

A mathematical why of the Big Bang

Let Ui be a set of locations of particles of the universe.
U1xU2x ...... xUix ..... a set of infinite paths
(Cartesian product).
this set is equal to the void set by the
negation of the axiom of choice.

So there is no more space containing the particles.
The particles collapse on themselves: Big Crunch.
Then Big Bang.

The Big Bang has taken place thus the negation of the axiom
the choice is likely to considered as a good axiom.
Adib Ben Jebara.

Watch It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia Online said...

This is the funniest and smartest thing that television has shown in decades. The irony used in the show is so brilliant and so well written between smart jokes and scientifically facts that the average American is curse never to get it (and probably hates the show) but this is an original, intelligent and fascinating series that watch The Big Bang Theory Online.I can't not wait to see every week. Let's just hope CBS does not compromise to keep the era of "The OC" and "Reality TV CRAP" let's them get this wonderful show of the air