Dark Energy

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by ShoeshineBoy, Feb 21, 2004.

  1. It is definitely an amazing time to be alive to see the progression of cosmetology and astrology. When I was in NYC last year, they were running an Einstein exhibit at one of the museums (Natural History, I believe). It was a very in-depth exhibit that showed a lot of his personal letters, scientific paper and pictures.

    What is most amazing in my mind is how Einstein's biggest blunder is now unfolding as not a blunder, but one of the most profound observations in modern physics and cosmetology.

    I remember in elementary school back in the early 80's, it was assumed that the universe was anywhere between 15-20 billion years old. Today we know that it is 13.7 billion, give or take a 100 million years. Dark matter and Dark energy weren't even mentioned, and the universe was thought to be slowing its expansion. The biggest question at that time was whether or not there was enough matter in the universe to cause the universe to collapse back onto itself (which follows a lot of eastern philosophy's such as Buddhism).

    Interestingly, whatever is happening in the universe is also happening right here in our world. If you hold your hands parallel to one another and separate them with a foot of space, whatever is occurring during the expansion of the universe is also occurring right between your very hands -- you just can't see it.

    I'm not sure if they've narrowed down exactly what dark energy is, but I do wonder if it has any relation to the Casimir effect and virtual particles.

    If the universe is indeed accelerating, I am also curious as to where this energy is coming from. Objects in motion do not require additional energy to remain at their respective speeds in a perfect vacuum (which really doesn't exist anyhow), but to make something accelerate requires energy.

    The fact that the universe is accelerating its expansion makes me wonder if our theories on the geometry of space are incorrect, since looking at it from an "inside-out" view would show that the universe is not accelerating outward, but accelerating inward in a different system of coordinates.

    Every system that I can think of eventually decays and dies -- whether you are talking about a cell, a human, a society, a planetary orbit, a star, a galaxy, etc ...

    Could the universe die, so to speak?
  2. When you consider vastly different scales (such as the quantum and the universal), there are realities to these scales that we aren't used to from our vantage point.

    Quantum mechanics does allow for you to bounce a ball against a wall and, given enough time, sooner or later the ball will not bounce against the wall but go right through it. It happens all the time with individual particles. Scientists have even observed things as large as a 100 carbon-atom "bucky-ball" be in two separate places at once.

    On the larger scale, time becomes more and more relative. It is easy to wonder what you may have been doing when I just snapped my fingers, but the true reality is that simultaneous events are merely relative based on a number of factors.

    For our everyday world, we exist at a scale in between the two extremes where balls bounce off walls, marbles don't jump away after coming close to the edge of a table and simultaneous events seem like a natural occurrence, so who is to say that physicals on a universal scale are much different than what we have been measuring for centuries on a very local scale.
  3. Indeed, the daily breakthroughs being made at the research centers of Max Factor and the Psychic Hotline are constantly pushing the boundaries of cosmetology and astrology.
    :) :) :) :)
  4. nitro



    I noticed the same thing and I was wondering if I was missing a joke or something.

    nitro :D :D :D
  5. I wish I had finished grammar school ...
  6. aphie, I love your posts but that one almost took me out of commission.

    One thing about Einstein's original cosmological constant: he did not like the idea of an exploding universe so he proposed his cosmoligcal constant in 1917 to make the universe static, i.e. a repulsive force to "combat" the explosive "force".

    But in 1929, Hubble of course made his famous Hubble constant calculations and showed that the universe has increased velocity at increased distances, i.e. expanding. It was then that Einstein grudginly accepted the idea of a "beginning" and an exploding universe.

    So, of necessity, Einstein's original cosmological constant would have been a much larger value than the cosmological constant that they are discovering today...
  7. Spell check is a real bitch sometimes.
  8. Wow, I got two words wrong. Oh man, what a day.
  9. Cosmology and Astronomy ...

    #10     Feb 22, 2004