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Author Topic: What is space made of?  (Read 64631 times)

Offline time-cop

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What is space made of?
« on: 09/10/2008 20:30:16 »
Is space full of different elements, or are there gaps all over the place, and what the heck is dark matter, and can its exsistence be proven ?
« Last Edit: 13/10/2008 08:53:59 by chris »


 

Offline JP

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #1 on: 10/10/2008 04:49:55 »
What do you mean by elements?  If by elements, you mean things on the periodic table: hydrogen, helium, lithium, or even more complicated matter made up of these things, then the answer is "no."  Space is mostly empty.  However, even this "empty space" is a sea of quantum fluctuations that can (over very short times) spit out particles (there's a bit about that here: http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=17355.0). 

Dark matter is another topic.  The basic idea is that we know matter has mass and therefore causes gravity.  By looking at how galaxies behave, we can deduce how much mass they must contain.  However, when we then count all the matter we can see (either visually or through other parts of the spectrum), it doesn't add up to nearly enough mass.  Therefore, there must be some matter we can't see, and since we can't see it we call it "dark matter."  There's theories out there about what it might be, but until someone manages to find some evidence in an experiment, it's mostly speculation.
 

Offline LeeE

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #2 on: 12/10/2008 15:39:43 »
Space, and the universe, is full of  the Cosmic Background Microwave Radiation from the Big-Bang.  In addition to this, space would also seem to be full of a lot of other wavelengths of EM radiation, from low RF to gamma.  This can be shown by the fact that we are able to observe this radiation across the gaps between galaxies and even across the 'voids' that have been identified.

In fact, and because the universe is regarded as being the same everywhere, it follows that any point in space will have radiation passing through it from every direction, bearing in mind Olber's paradox about infinite quantities etc.
 

Offline stevewillie

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What is space made of?
« Reply #3 on: 15/10/2008 22:05:47 »
Space, and the universe, is full of  the Cosmic Background Microwave Radiation from the Big-Bang.  In addition to this, space would also seem to be full of a lot of other wavelengths of EM radiation, from low RF to gamma.  This can be shown by the fact that we are able to observe this radiation across the gaps between galaxies and even across the 'voids' that have been identified.

In fact, and because the universe is regarded as being the same everywhere, it follows that any point in space will have radiation passing through it from every direction, bearing in mind Olber's paradox about infinite quantities etc.

I agree that "empty space" is full of radiation and other forms of energy. I understand the vacuum is filled with virtual particles and every point in the vacuum is can be considered to be a location in the overall gravitational and electromagnetic fields. These fields have their local characteristics of field strength and curvature everywhere. In other words, spacetime is "something". 

My question is about "rips" in spacetime that Feynman and others have written about. If you "rip" spacetime, what do you rip into? Is such a rip an open communication of spacetime with absolutely "nothing"? Spacetime has properties. What are the properties of "nothing"? Can physics actually talk about "nothing"?


 
 

Offline ...lets split up...

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What is space made of?
« Reply #4 on: 16/10/2008 09:39:35 »
Is it possible to rip spacetime or does it sound unlikely? I haven't read it.
 

Offline LeeE

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What is space made of?
« Reply #5 on: 16/10/2008 16:03:09 »
The 'rips' in space-time that Feynman and others may have written about are not currently a scientifically defined phenomenon - they aren't something that has been observed and known to exist - they are, for the time being, just a hypothetical concept.

I believe that the basis for them is that if space-time is regarded as a continuum then a hypothetical discontinuity in that continuum could be termed 'Rip'.  This isn't to say that it's all just a bit of pointless mind-fun though because, if you consider how the rate of time slows to zero at the Event Horizon of a Black Hole, you then seem to have such a discontinuity in the time dimension, at least, across the diameter of the EH.  In terms of unified space-time, where you can't separate space and time from each other (the existence of space with no time doesn't permit any change in that space), this would seem to represent such a discontinuity in space-time.

Black Holes may therefore, be 'rips' in space-time, but until we've been able to devise suitable experiments with one we won't know for sure.
 

Offline Elmer

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What is space made of?
« Reply #6 on: 20/10/2008 00:52:50 »
What is space made of is the wrong question. Obviously, space is a lack of matter. Therefore it is not "Made" of anything. The point of asking the question, is to question the commonly held beliefs of the universe's origins. Attributing the known universe to the Big Bang, begs the point. How came there to be a place in which the Big Bang could occur? The Big Bang is just an event in an endless cycle of expansion and contraction. Somehow, matter had to occur. Somehow, there had to be space in which the matter could occur. Our knowledge isn't even that of an ant walking across a computer screen. At least the ant can get to the other side and return. We don't even know the extent of the universe of matter let alone the extent of space. My point is to encourage those who think that they have the answers to also have the courtesy not to laugh at those of us who believe that some sort of supreme being has a hand in it. When discussing such matters, for one to say the "There is" instead of I "Believe there is" constitutes an act of ignorance and bigotry.

Now that I gotten that off my chest; I really would like to hear opinions on the subject of space. When surfing the net in search of information, I find that there is almost nothing available on the subject from the scientific community. If anyone knows of a good site, please let me know.

Elmer the confused
 

Offline LeeE

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What is space made of?
« Reply #7 on: 20/10/2008 20:21:00 »
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How came there to be a place in which the Big Bang could occur?

The Big Bang doesn't appear to have occurred in a place but rather created a place (our universe) as a consequence of it's occurrence.

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The Big Bang is just an event in an endless cycle of expansion and contraction

The universe currently seems to be expanding and there are neither theories or evidence to suggest it will contract.

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Our knowledge isn't even that of an ant walking across a computer screen

When compared with an ant, we have a much better understanding of our environment.  The ant has no understanding of the screen it is walking across - it knows nothing of it's composition, design or purpose.  I think we do quite a bit better than that regarding the universe.

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My point is to encourage those who think that they have the answers to also have the courtesy not to laugh at those of us who believe that some sort of supreme being has a hand in it

People who already try not to ridicule ignorance don't need encouragement, which will be ineffective to those people who do.  People are just like that.

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...for one to say the "There is" instead of I "Believe there is" constitutes an act of ignorance and bigotry

Knowledge and belief are mutually exclusive.  Belief requires a lack of knowledge - it is the trust that something is true when there is no proof of it.  You have knowledge when there is proof that something is true or false.  Trying to compel people to accept that there is no knowledge, on the basis that the universe was created to be beyond our understanding by a supreme being, seems to be both ignorant and bigoted to me.

That's just my personal view, of course.
 

Offline Elmer

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What is space made of?
« Reply #8 on: 21/10/2008 07:27:53 »
"Trying to compel people to accept that there is no knowledge..."
I was hoping to find a site where there was some interesting conversation. Unfortunately, you seem to have a problem with anyone who mentions religion. I will leave you to be a "Hero Member" and look elsewhere for intellectual company.
 

Offline AnotherWayOfThinking

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What is space made of?
« Reply #9 on: 14/11/2008 18:01:45 »
What is space made of???

In times past, eons ago... it was thought that our atmosphere was composed of nothingness. I believe that when the time is right, we too will have to ability to detect matter on a much smaller scale than we can currently which will allow us to see the matter, which is largely considered void of matter. This space which does contain matter, I believe does account for the unseen matter that is theorized as Dark Matter.
 

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What is space made of?
« Reply #10 on: 15/11/2008 19:06:36 »
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The Big Bang doesn't appear to have occurred in a place but rather created a place (our universe) as a consequence of it's occurrence.
What a cracker of an answer. Can I use it in future, please?
 

lyner

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What is space made of?
« Reply #11 on: 15/11/2008 19:08:42 »
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When compared with an ant, we have a much better understanding of our environment.
You do realise that we could be completely and utterly wrong. We could be the mite on the ant's leg.
 

Offline Madidus_Scientia

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What is space made of?
« Reply #12 on: 16/11/2008 13:52:52 »
"Trying to compel people to accept that there is no knowledge..."
I was hoping to find a site where there was some interesting conversation. Unfortunately, you seem to have a problem with anyone who mentions religion. I will leave you to be a "Hero Member" and look elsewhere for intellectual company.

Or perhaps it is you who has the problem with him mentioning science.
 

Offline LeeE

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What is space made of?
« Reply #13 on: 17/11/2008 17:23:24 »
Quote
When compared with an ant, we have a much better understanding of our environment.
You do realise that we could be completely and utterly wrong. We could be the mite on the ant's leg.

We could be, but it just doesn't look like the best-fit solution.

And yes, of course you can.
 

Offline DojiSan

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What is space made of?
« Reply #14 on: 19/02/2009 19:25:18 »
Quote
The Big Bang doesn't appear to have occurred in a place but rather created a place (our universe) as a consequence of it's occurrence.
What a cracker of an answer. Can I use it in future, please?

The big bang occured inside a giant atom! Some "GIANT" physicist created a "SUPER GIANT" particle accelerator and shot an electron into that atom and thus our big bang occured :) and matter was created...now our super giant physicist are puzzled of where the other matters came from...maybe they are calling them "qeerks" or some weird words :)

 

Offline itisus

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What is space made of?
« Reply #15 on: 20/02/2009 00:42:42 »
Attributing the known universe to the Big Bang, begs the point. How came there to be a place in which the Big Bang could occur? The Big Bang is just an event in an endless cycle of expansion and contraction. Somehow, matter had to occur. Somehow, there had to be space in which the matter could occur. Our knowledge isn't even that of an ant walking across a computer screen. At least the ant can get to the other side and return. We don't even know the extent of the universe of matter let alone the extent of space. My point is to encourage those who think that they have the answers to also have the courtesy not to laugh at those of us who believe that some sort of supreme being has a hand in it. When discussing such matters, for one to say the "There is" instead of I "Believe there is" constitutes an act of ignorance and bigotry.
You left out the "might" before "have had a hand in it," which means you are saying "there is."  That is fine if you change it to "supreme principle" or something else that is not anthropomorphic.  To assert that it began with an unexplained invisible "Being" is, imho, an act of hubris and bigotry.  We undifferentiated clumps of dark matter resent it.
 

Offline yor_on

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What is space made of?
« Reply #16 on: 21/02/2009 11:40:09 »
Is space full of different elements, or are there gaps all over the place, and what the heck is dark matter, and can its exsistence be proven ?
Yep, depending on where you look space is filled with different elements, in so called outer space we will have more 'matter', like dust from Earth perhaps "Contrary to popular understanding, outer space is not completely empty (i.e. a perfect vacuum), but contains a low density of particles, predominantly hydrogen plasma, as well as electromagnetic radiation. Hypothetically, it also contains dark matter and dark energy...Intergalactic space is the physical space between galaxies. Generally free of dust and debris, intergalactic space is very close to a total vacuum. Some theories put the average density of the universe as the equivalent of one hydrogen atom per cubic meter." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outer_space

As for what space itself may 'consist' of, we don't know. To us it is a 'absence' of matter that defines it.
The concept of a "perfect vacuum with a gaseous pressure of absolute zero is a philosophical concept that is never observed in practice. Physicists often discuss ideal test results that would occur in a perfect vacuum, which they simply call "vacuum" or "free space" in this context, and use the term partial vacuum to refer to real vacuum."

And dark matter is definitely another matter:)
It's a theory trying to explain why the universe seems to have more mass than we can account for.
"Only about 4% of the total energy density in the universe (as inferred from gravitational effects) can be seen directly. About 22% is thought to be composed of dark matter. The remaining 74% is thought to consist of dark energy, an even stranger component, distributed diffusely in space." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_Matter
 

Offline syhprum

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What is space made of?
« Reply #17 on: 21/02/2009 21:29:21 »
It is worth noting Hydrogen atoms as opposed to molecules are a very energetic form of matter the single obiting electron produces a field of 40T and two atoms combing to produce a molecule liberate vastly more energy than one Hydrogen molecule combining with an Oxygen atom.
 

Offline yor_on

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What is space made of?
« Reply #18 on: 23/02/2009 15:12:12 »
Elmer, we don't know what 'space' consists of.
We define it as something being empty of 'matter', that is defining by excluding.
It doesn't really define it as being anything, although it seem to have an enormous potential for energy.
As for God, nobody should tell you that it is wrong to have faith, but you need to see the difference between having faith, and building up ideas to theorys by logical deductions and experiments.

We are only humans, not all knowing beings, and we need to define our universe from what we can observe.
Faith is another 'matter':)It can move mountains, and give hope and solace in the most terrible circumstances.
So whether God exist or not I don't know, but it is up to each one to believe.

Let us first try to define by what experiments we can make:)
 

Offline incgi

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #19 on: 20/07/2014 10:42:02 »
Elmer, we don't know what 'space' consists of.
We define it as something being empty of 'matter', that is defining by excluding.
It doesn't really define it as being anything, although it seem to have an enormous potential for energy.
As for God, nobody should tell you that it is wrong to have faith, but you need to see the difference between having faith, and building up ideas to theorys by logical deductions and experiments.

We are only humans, not all knowing beings, and we need to define our universe from what we can observe.
Faith is another 'matter':)It can move mountains, and give hope and solace in the most terrible circumstances.
So whether God exist or not I don't know, but it is up to each one to believe.

Let us first try to define by what experiments we can make:)

What I like to put space into theory as.
We are in a positive liquid ion right now.
We are entering into a ginormous negative liquid ion when we go into space. With fluxuations within the seismic "waves". I just dont feel like we dont have the technology yet to measure this
 

Offline chiralSPO

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #20 on: 20/07/2014 13:27:38 »
two [hydrogen] atoms combining to produce a molecule liberate vastly more energy than one Hydrogen molecule combining with an Oxygen atom.

That is simply not true.

Energy released when two hydrogen atoms react to form H2 is 104 kcal/mol.
Energy released when H2 reacts with an oxygen atom to form water is 117 kcal/mol.

If you meant reaction of hydrogen molecules with oxygen molecules to make water, then the statement would be correct, as the energy released per molecule of water is 58 kcal/mol.
 

Offline Bill S

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #21 on: 20/07/2014 15:55:55 »
Hi Elmer, 

Your last post was nearly 6 years ago, so I guess you are long gone.  If you happen to see this, it might be worth giving TNS another go.  E.g. you might look at:

http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=50418.0
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #22 on: 20/07/2014 22:26:59 »
Quote
We are in a positive liquid ion right now.
We are entering into a ginormous negative liquid ion when we go into space.
The Earth is approximately neutral when it comes to electrical charge.

Space satellite designers must be careful to avoid the buildup of static charges on the satellite. Ultraviolet and X-Ray photons from the Sun can kick electrons off the satellite surface; particles in space can also cause charges to built up on the satellite. When an electrical discharge occurs, it can damage satellite electronics.

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I just dont feel like we dont have the technology yet to measure this
We have pretty good technology for detecting electrical charge.
What we lack is good technology to detect neutrinos, gravitational waves and the (theorised) particles which may make up Dark Matter.

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With fluxuations within the seismic "waves".
The Solar Wind certainly has gusts and outbursts, which can affect Earth's magnetosphere & atmosphere, and also affects satellites.

Please keep unconventional use of terminology like this in the "New Theories" section.
 

Offline jccc

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #23 on: 21/07/2014 04:36:30 »
Space is made of whatever the big bang leftover. Matter, particles, dark matter etc., we don't know all yet.

The fact EM wave has same speed in all directions and sources and other things suggest me that the space is filled with negative charged medium. Something similar to ether but it is charged.

How to proof it? In a highly vacuum tube rotate a fan, it should produce EM field, or even electrical wind/thrust.

Can I try it? No way. Can you try it? If you have the means, why not?
 

Offline jccc

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #24 on: 21/07/2014 08:27:05 »
Space is made of whatever the big bang leftover. Matter, particles, dark matter etc., we don't know all yet.

The fact EM wave has same speed in all directions and sources and other things suggest me that the space is filled with negative charged medium. Something similar to ether but it is charged.

How to proof it? In a highly vacuum tube rotate a fan, it should produce EM field, or even electrical wind/thrust.

Can I try it? No way. Can you try it? If you have the means, why not?

Spiral galaxy should produce a magnet field across its center. If the space is filled with such charged medium.
 

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Re: What is space made of?
« Reply #24 on: 21/07/2014 08:27:05 »

 

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