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Author Topic: Are we at the centre of the Universe?  (Read 6137 times)

Offline thedoc

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Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« on: 23/08/2012 11:30:01 »
Paul A Kurzdorfer III  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
I've been researching modern theories of space, and I've come across a discrepancy that seems biblically flawed in contradiction. It's theorised that space began with the "Big Bang". However, in the modern era it is also theorised that wherever you are within space, it will look as though you are at the centre, because space has no centre and is expanding equally.

The contradiction, it would seem, is how can you have a single event, an explosion of space, and at the same time, have no centre? Was the "Big Bang" a multiple event with several simultaneous explosions creating multiple centres, therefore negating a centre, or was it a singular event creating equal expansion therefore creating a singular centre that we simply have yet to identify?

It's perplexing that we can have two sound and upheld theory's that each negate the other, and yet no know seems to notice. Any insight would be welcomed!

Sincerely,
Paul A Kurzdorfer III

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 23/08/2012 11:30:01 by _system »


 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #1 on: 24/08/2012 11:59:24 »
A common analogy for the expansion of the universe is to draw dots on the surface of a balloon, representing galaxies. As you blow up the balloon, all of the dots move away from each other. There is no unique "center" of the expansion in this two-dimensional surface.

Now extend this to 3-dimensional space: All of the galaxies are moving away from each other as part of the expansion of the universe.

The discovery of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMBR) is used as evidence that the universe has expanded significantly from the time that this radiation was emitted: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_microwave_background_radiation#Relationship_to_the_Big_Bang

Recent precise measurements of the CMBR show that it is not exactly equal in all directions. Some cosmologists have interpreted this as indicating that we in our galaxy are moving in relation to the place where the CMBR was emitted. This may point towards the "center" of the Big Bang. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_microwave_background_radiation#CMBR_dipole_anisotropy
 
 

Offline imatfaal

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #2 on: 27/08/2012 00:12:56 »
Side debate from EMC2 on Eternal Universes and calling into doubt validity of the big bang moved to New theories

Please try to keep to the topic and keep speculation non-mainstream ideas to New Theories
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #3 on: 27/08/2012 08:14:09 »
There are a couple of different ways to consider the universe.

One definition would be that the Universe comprises of all that exists. 

A subset of the Universe would be the "Observable Universe" which consists of a sphere with a radius of approximately 13.2 billion lightyears, with the Earth at the center.  Of course, the most distant objects. would have changed significantly since the light was emitted shortly after the Big Bang.

Unfortunately many of our observations about the universe are confounded by the time it takes light to get here.

If the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation frame is the true rest frame, and the Milky Way is moving at approximately 552 km/s with respect to the CMBR, then we may in fact be some distance form the center of the total Universe.

Anyway, so, we are in the middle of the Observable Universe, but may not be able to determine where we are at with respect to the universe as a whole.
 

Offline imatfaal

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #4 on: 27/08/2012 14:31:18 »
There are a couple of different ways to consider the universe.

One definition would be that the Universe comprises of all that exists.
Personally any definition that isn't "all the exists" is deficient
 
Quote
A subset of the Universe would be the "Observable Universe" which consists of a sphere with a radius of approximately 13.2 billion lightyears, with the Earth at the center.  Of course, the most distant objects. would have changed significantly since the light was emitted shortly after the Big Bang.
No - the radius is about 46 billion light years

Quote
Unfortunately many of our observations about the universe are confounded by the time it takes light to get here.
  the distance / time to get here means that we can observe the stages of the universe since the era of last scattering. 

Quote
If the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation frame is the true rest frame, and the Milky Way is moving at approximately 552 km/s with respect to the CMBR, then we may in fact be some distance form the center of the total Universe.
  True rest frame - wash thou mouth out with soap!

Quote
Anyway, so, we are in the middle of the Observable Universe, but may not be able to determine where we are at with respect to the universe as a whole.
  Unless there is some lack of symmetry or anisotropy then we will always be at the centre of the ibserved universe.
 

Offline yamo

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #5 on: 31/08/2012 16:01:22 »
At any given time can we prove that the universe is greater than the observable universe?
 

Offline namaan

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #6 on: 31/08/2012 16:59:48 »
A common analogy for the expansion of the universe is to draw dots on the surface of a balloon, representing galaxies. As you blow up the balloon, all of the dots move away from each other. There is no unique "center" of the expansion in this two-dimensional surface.

In that case, couldn't you say that there is a center, but the center point just isn't where we are looking, which in the case of the balloon happens to be on its 2D surface? The center, instead, is a 3D point outside the balloon universe?

Though this analogy probably wouldn't apply too well to a spacetime continuum.
 

Offline yor_on

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #7 on: 31/08/2012 21:08:23 »
Well yes, maybe if we introduced some more 'dimensions', although I'm at a loss to see how that 'original point' then would be represented in side our SpaceTime. Most probably it would have to be defined as 'everywhere', just as it is today. What we see and what relativity and QM tells us are different things.
 

Offline Emc2

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #8 on: 01/09/2012 08:22:44 »
NO...there is no center.   no end, nor no beginning..
 

lean bean

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #9 on: 01/09/2012 10:49:11 »
"Are we at the centre of the Universe?"
If the universe is infinite in extent, you may wonder how there can be a 'centre'.
This link may help on this idea.

http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/infpoint.html
Every point in this infinite universe is at the centre of its own observable universe.
 

Offline old guy

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #10 on: 02/09/2012 00:52:52 »
Just cruising. An interesting forum in general and this thread in particular. Not a  “dogfight” here like in most “science forums.” Good.
Lean Bean:
“Every point in this infinite universe is at the centre of its own observable universe.”
True!
I just read the thread.
Question: What if cosmology took the metaphor of the Big Bang seriously? Is there not a center to every “bang?” Why call it a “Bang” and insist that it has no center, just because its all isotropic and homogeneous (on large scale) as far as we can now see? The “surface” of the famous “balloon” only “sees” through the surface... No vision of the whole balloon metaphor including its center from which “it all” began to expand. Blow up a balloon. It has a center. Not the 'center of the universe.' There may be many 'balloons.'

But what about multiple “epicenters” of “Big Bangs” beyond what we can ever see with our present technology?

Maybe space is simply three dimensional volume. “Time” accounts for movement. Non-Euclidean geometry and cosmology made it an imaginative enterprise full of various possibilities of “curved space,” way more complicated than the “natural world,” if you will excuse the expression. Now we have “extrinsic curvature” in imaginary forms of “space” as if “it” were malleable, without any ontology of "what it is" in the first place.
Just a little 'philosophy of science' perspective here.
 

lean bean

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #11 on: 02/09/2012 20:03:52 »
Just to quote from the link in my earlier post.
http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/infpoint.html

Quote
If we go to smaller and smaller times since the Big Bang, the green circle shrinks to a point, but the 78 billion light year box is always full, and it is always an infinitesimal fraction of the infinite Universe.

Remembering that singularity does not mean single point or centre.When  running time farther backwards the whole box (left side picture, my link) is in a state of singularity (infinite density).
 From this infinite density state came spacetime.
The thing which confuses is singularity does not have to mean single point. 


« Last Edit: 02/09/2012 20:05:31 by lean bean »
 

Offline CZARCAR

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #12 on: 03/09/2012 09:13:22 »
:-) if the edge of the universe is 2 dimensional ,and the interior is 3 dimensional,and a central point is 1 dimensional?
 

Offline yor_on

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #13 on: 03/09/2012 10:14:43 »
heh, what I like is the way you turn it upside down Cz :)
But to get the message in, you need to explain how too methinks.

The edge being 2D mean that there will be one room dimension missing, let's say length. And having a 1D 'point' makes it impossible to define experimentally at least, although it might be possible mathematically.

What I'm wondering is in what you mean by 'edge' there. A 'infinite' universe but closed in on itself? Or do you mean a 'edge' as in 'to here but no further'?
 

Offline old guy

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #14 on: 03/09/2012 21:25:37 »
As I understand geometry, a point is a locus with no volume, no "dimension" (which can not contain anything); A line is one dimensional; A plane is two dimensional; and volume (on whatever scale) is three dimensional.
Also if there were an "edge of the universe" what would be beyond that "edge" but more space, maybe with more stuff in it, beyond what we can now see?
 

Offline CZARCAR

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #15 on: 04/09/2012 10:28:17 »
the edge would be the skin of the expanding balloon universe. I skin which consists of 2 dimensions, length and width. Inside the skin of the bAloon length width and depth comprised 3 dimensions until do very center of the baloon where aCentral Point exiSts dimensionless.so what is the difference between the point that has no dimensions and the exterior of the bAloon which is supposedly nothing?I'm steins twins,elroy is sitting dead still in the central axis of the universe while elmer is in his space ship traveling at the speed of light  as universe expands
« Last Edit: 04/09/2012 11:44:17 by CZARCAR »
 

Offline stu

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #16 on: 05/09/2012 19:56:39 »
Yes new style. Agree with evan. Sick of balloon with dots. Try a 3 dimensional bowtie with dots. Or 3d  two cones end to end big bang in centre. Eminating outwards with time is us looking around seeing it all expand but not equally, zooming out to entrophy from the singularity untill the mass / gravity is so weak either we collapse and go back towards the knot or simply disolve to nothingness in the direction we are heading

the knot is the singularity the other side of the bow is a collapsing universe on a reciprical course

like a crowd leaving the football stadium thru a gate and going to respective homes
 

Offline Emc2

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #17 on: 06/09/2012 08:00:01 »
infinity does not have a center, nor a beginning, nor an end...
 

Offline stu

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #18 on: 06/09/2012 10:10:19 »
So your cetain its infinite? Justify reasoning please
 

Offline Emc2

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #19 on: 06/09/2012 10:39:23 »
I will justify my position,  This is all only theory, but does have some possible evidence to support it.


  First of all, everything that exists today, came into existence only one of two ways.

  1) it was created  ( two most popular )
       A)  self created sub atomic particle as in the Big Bang theory
       B)  created by something or some being

  2) It has all always existed.

  Position 1A leads to for example, if a particle could "self Create", then logic dictates that it has so in the past, and could do so again in the future.  If in the past, then you are into infinite regress, hence it always has been here anyways.

  Position 1B  leads to , what created the being or thing that created everything, and so on again into a infinite regress.

  So logic dictates Position 2,  infinity is the only logical conclusion.


Links that support ( some are also just theories ) infinity in one form or another and/or go against the standard "big bang" model, and current rules.

   http://www.space.com/17217-big-bang-phase-change-theory.html

   http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48863290/ns/technology_and_science-science/#.UEHZK6PNltM

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_flow

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Attractor

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galaxy_rotation_curves

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/String_theory

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loop_quantum_gravity

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Event_horizon

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M-theory

  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supersymmetry


 


 

 
 

Offline stu

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #20 on: 06/09/2012 11:06:39 »
I acutually agree with you reasoning ,however if not the centre then the singularity ocilates between universes.

Or expands away frim point of origon. Behind which is what?
 

Offline Emc2

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #21 on: 06/09/2012 11:15:12 »
There is no "behind", or on top of, or below, because there is no beginning or end.

  each "mega" nova ( my theory of massive novas ) that explodes creates one more "big bang" upon trillions of others, that go back and forward for infinity, only the amount matter is finite, and needs to be constantly "recycled".

the "super verse"

http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=45451.0
« Last Edit: 06/09/2012 11:18:44 by Emc2 »
 

Offline stu

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #22 on: 06/09/2012 13:42:31 »
Exactly my point. How is the matter being recycled afte expansion

uni directional. Or bidirectional. Using gravitational compresion
 explain how it goes from big bang to another if the matter is dissapated over time


 

Offline stu

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #23 on: 06/09/2012 13:47:26 »
Old guy.  You seem reasonable please explain one dimension as a line. Draw a line.  It has both width and length no matter how thin the pencil.   The first dimenson musy be time as is truley one dimension.  Check carl sagans representaion of flat land.  Not arguing but semantics over the order of dimensions
 

Offline old guy

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
« Reply #24 on: 06/09/2012 17:08:47 »
Old guy.  You seem reasonable please explain one dimension as a line. Draw a line.  It has both width and length no matter how thin the pencil.   The first dimenson musy be time as is truley one dimension.  Check carl sagans representaion of flat land.  Not arguing but semantics over the order of dimensions
Just as a point is a virtual locus with no area (a dot from a pencil has area), a line has no width, being one dimensional. If it had width it would be a two dimensional plane. Forget literally drawing with pencil on paper.

Also, three dimensional volume is a good description of "space." It can be limited, with three finite axes, or infinite, space with no "walls." What would such a wall be conceived as anyway as an "end" or "edge" of space? What would be beyond that but... more space... with whatever unseen content?
As for a center, lets not call it a Bang if we deny its origin as a center. And that center could not be just a point (no volume to contain anything.) It would have to be a ball or glob "all there is" in its pre-bang form.
If we find enough matter (finding more all the time) it will all eventually reverse into a Big Crunch and then Bang again in an ongoing cycle with no "beginning" or "end."
I love cosmology.
Btw, thanks for the compliment.
« Last Edit: 06/09/2012 17:14:13 by old guy »
 

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Re: Are we at the centre of the Universe?
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