"There Was No Big Bang" - We Live in a Universe that Endlessly Expands and Contracts (VIDEO)
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March 24, 2010

"There Was No Big Bang" - We Live in a Universe that Endlessly Expands and Contracts (VIDEO)

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Does the universe repeat itself every trillion years? A new cosmological model appears to demonstrate that the universe can endlessly expand and contract, providing a rival to Big Bang theories and solving a thorny modern physics problem, according to University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill physicists. A new view that requires for a new take on our concept of time – one that has more in common with the “cyclic” views of time held by ancient thinkers such as Plato, Aristotle and Leonardo da Vinci, than the Christian Calender and Bible-influenced belief in “linear” time now so deeply imbedded in modern western thinking.

The cyclic model proposed by Dr. Paul Frampton, Louis J. Rubin Jr. distinguished professor of physics in UNC’s College of Arts & Sciences, and co-author Lauris Baum, a UNC graduate student in physics, has four key parts: expansion, turnaround, contraction and bounce.

During expansion, dark energy -- the unknown force causing the universe to expand at an accelerating rate -- pushes and pushes until all matter fragments into patches so far apart that nothing can bridge the gaps. Everything from black holes to atoms disintegrates. This point, just a fraction of a second before the end of time, is the turnaround.

At the turnaround, each fragmented patch collapses and contracts individually instead of pulling back together in a reversal of the Big Bang. The patches become an infinite number of independent universes that contract and then bounce outward again, reinflating in a manner similar to the Big Bang. One patch becomes our universe.

 “This cycle happens an infinite number of times, thus eliminating any start or end of time,” Frampton said. “There is no Big Bang.”

Cosmologists first offered an oscillating universe model, with no beginning or end, as a Big Bang alternative in the 1930s. The idea was abandoned because the oscillations could not be reconciled with the rules of physics, including the second law of thermodynamics, Frampton said.

The second law says entropy (a measure of disorder) can’t be destroyed. But if entropy increases from one oscillation to the next, the universe becomes larger with each cycle. “The universe would grow like a runaway snowball,” Frampton said. Each oscillation will also become successively longer. “Extrapolating backwards in time, this implies that the oscillations before our present one were shorter and shorter. This leads inevitably to a Big Bang,” he said.

Frampton and Baum circumvented the Big Bang by postulating that, at the turnaround, any remaining entropy is in patches too remote for interaction. Having each “causal patch” become a separate universe allows each universe to contract essentially empty of matter and entropy. “The presence of any matter creates insuperable difficulties with contraction,” Frampton said. “The idea of coming back empty is the most important ingredient of this new cyclic model.”

Key to Frampton and Baum’s model is an assumption about dark energy’s equation of state -- the mathematical description of its pressure and density. Frampton and Baum assume dark energy’s equation of state is always less than -1. This distinguishes their work from a similar cyclic model proposed in 2002 by physicists Paul Steinhardt and Neil Turok, who assumed the equation of state is never less than -1.

A negative equation of state gives Frampton and Baum a way to stop the universe from blowing itself apart irreversibly, an end physicists call the “Big Rip.”  The pair found that in their model, the density of dark energy becomes equal to the density of the universe and expansion stops just before the Big Rip.

6a00d8341bf7f753ef0128770b7b55970c-500pi One of the most important space probes of the century is the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) launched in 2001 to measure the temperature differences in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation -the 14-billion year old Big Bang's remnant radiant heat . The anisotropies then in turn are used to measure the universe's geometry, content, and evolution; and, perhaps most importantly, to test the Big Bang model, and the cosmic inflation theory. WMAP data seem to support a universe that is dominated by dark energy in the form of a cosmological constant.

Perhaps not surprisingly, there is no supporting data to date to confirm the Big Bang theory, although the results aren't sensitive enough to rule out the pervasive Big Bang/inflation model. 

The influence of gravitational waves on polarization is different from that of overall energy distribution, so it should be possible to tell from polarization in the WMAP scans whether the variation is coming from contrasting energy density (heat) or gravitational waves that a Big Bang should have produced.

The world's leading astrophysicists are confident that with a sensitive enough probe such as that by the new Planck telescope with its more detailed CMB plots, that they can reduce the level of uncertainty low enough so that they can say definitively whether the gravitational waves that should have been created by the Big Bang as present.

If this next generation Planck Telescope shows that there is no obvious distortions caused by gravity waves, it will rule out the Big Bang plus inflation theory -an add-on theory that explains the phenomenal sudden expansion of space from a tiny point. In it's place will be new models that support what many leading cosmologists see as our universe to be proved to be one of just many in an eternal cycle of birth and rebirth.

Models of the universe that involve a bouncing brane or a Big Crunch rather than a start from scratch Big Bang predict much smaller gravity waves being produced than would come from a Big Bang. If the universe actually went through cycles of expansion and contraction, it is possible that the uneven distributions in the early post-Big Bang universe that resulted in the formation of galaxies were leftovers from the universe before.

Only gravity can't exist soley in a specific brane, but wanders where it will, leaking off our brane into what physicists call "the bulk" -- the rest of space-time. Brane theory offer an fascinating and plausible explanation for why gravity is such a weakling: Maybe it's not any weaker than the other forces, but just concentrated somewhere else in the bulk, or on another brane, providing the key to understanding the dark matter that makes up 90 % of our universe.

If our brane is but a small slice of a much larger cosmos, however, the "dark matter" might be nothing but ordinary matter trapped on another brane. Dark matter is no longer some mysterious unknown, but the force at the heart of the brane-brane interaction. With the brane model the universe goes through an eternal cosmic cycle over a vast timescale of attraction, bounce with a spread out bang, springing apart, and expansion until attraction (gravity) takes over again.Such a shadow world, Hawking speculated, might contain "shadow human beings wondering about the mass that seems to be missing from their world."

Are branes the key to understanding the origin of our universe? "Who knows?" says CalTech's Sean Carroll. "they will have taught us a useful lesson that we should have known all along, which is that we don't have a clue to what's going on."

Alan Guth of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, creator of the currently accepted model of the Big Bang, said recently "he felt a little like Rip Van Winkle -- picking up his head from a long sleep only to notice that the landscape of physics he thought he knew had suddenly, drastically, changed."

Roger Penrose of Oxford sums up some of the most brilliant new thinking on the big bang in the video below. The summary is the big bang happens after the end of the universe, starting a new one.

Casey Kazan.

Source Credits:

http://articles.latimes.com/2003/may/17/science/sci-branes

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20327226.000-review-before-the-big-bang-by-brian-clegg.html

Top of Page Image Credit: With our thanks to: Lost in Space by jrtce1.
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2614/3840980051_deec6f83e3.jpg

Image Credit: http://www.csudh.edu/dearhabermas/stringtheory01.htm

http://www.unc.edu/news/archives/jan07/newmodel012907.html

Comments

There is no supporting data to date to confirm the Big Bang theory, although the results aren't sensitive enough to rule out the pervasive Big Bang

There are no new ideas, just recycled old ones.

I form the light and create darkness... - Isaiah 45:7

What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. - Ecclesiastes 1:9

I will create new heavens and a new earth... - Isaiah 65:17

The bible has been saying it all for a while now.

“This cycle happens an infinite number of times, thus eliminating any start or end of time,” Frampton said. “There is no Big Bang.”

A cycle cannot happen an infinite number of times, that would be assigning an empirical value to infinity - a gross violation of mathematics.

Infinity is a concept of no limit, injecting infinity into an empirical equation renders the end product conceptual - non scientific. That is until one can prove the existence of infinity in nature. (It would take forever to prove it)

Please knock off scientific extrapulations from the bible. It's an ad hoc series of stories that have nothing to do with cosmology. Your religion is not a replacement for hard science.

I never have believed in the big bang theory. Still this seems a little out there too. For me common sence must dictate. From some of the smallest stuff like nutrons and protons we have spinning happening. Our earth spins, our solar system spins,and our galaxy spins. Even though we can't see much of our universe, I have still to this date have no other reason but to believe we live in a spinning universe.

There remains the question of "infinity" where expansion and "bouncing back" should not apply... Huh?

Most of hard science is made up from educated guesses (theories) and those who believe in scientific guess work are just exchanging one religion for another and so, just as relevant as the other. One thing I have noticed about what Jesus was reputedly to have said is that looking at today’s society, the love of money really does seem to be the root of all evil.

If space-time is able to expand and contract within multiple branes, couldn't that overlap of branes be what creates dark energy?

Just a thought...

Tiff

having watched every clip of that class that I could find I have determined that scientists must have told us everything they know about the universe already and that ( unless we build a time machine ) we will never understand what the beginning of the universe was like no matter what theory about it is presented.

So, infinity is used to explain something that we can’t explain. It and therefore our understanding, and my opinion more importantly, of the universe itself which is significantly flawed. This at the very least is obvious. I welcome new theories, in their abundance if necessary. The more outlandish the better, as their easier to disprove (therefore publication and success). The more possibilities we rule out, in as many forms we put forward, the closer we are to understanding another piece of the nature of things (the scientists job). This theory has minimal evidence but is as yet almost as plausible as all other theories, at least they have provided a hypothesis^ and suggested a method to test and an expected result. This maybe a short-lived piece of inspiration or the ‘one great truth’, as scientists we should be as open to any new ideas. This is because as a scientist we can never prove any hypothesis! The only thing we can do, is provide almost insurmountable evidence, in most cases, to a single conclusion (via disproving all other options*). There is always more data to be collected, more hypotheses to be tested.

Sorry about to go into a philosophical argument.

I agree, the use of bible quotes adds nothing to this discussion. In this case, every culture from around the world has these types of quotes and beliefs (in this case the Aztecs mythology/belief/religion (all the same to me) have stated four cycles have already passed and in Hinduism this is the 27th cycle, just to mention a couple, therefore this is already more information than the bible quotes, hence more credible/testable~). We must treat and weigh each proposal equally against the evidence provided; this makes it easy for most religious quotes can be disregarded quickly. But the most profound 'hard science' comes from freethinking and imagination, artistic tendencies if you will, and open-mindedness. The ability to connect seemingly unimportant pieces of information and with passion and diligence be able to attempt to solve real problems is fundamental to the intellectual progression of humanity. We should not attempt to stop people voicing their views but be tolerant and as true scientists should weigh the evidence of one argument against another. Probably from the first humans who looked up at the stars and wondered, then thought. We are as much them as they are us (all humans), the only thing that differs is the quantity and format of the information we are provided with. I wish I was happy with my outlook on the world (universe, etc..), I would be content. Why do I find flaws, defects, inadequacies and insufficient evidence at every turn? I have therefore accepted my place in society as the doubter, experimenter and theorist ('scientist' or in bible terms 'Thomas'). This is the reason why we are so affronted by religious ‘attacks’ against us. Not because we are so 'high and mighty' and we know more than 'thou', but because we have taken it upon ourselves to bear a burden of fascination of the truly awe-inspiring, beautiful, highly complex and almost unfathomable place we live! If, as a scientist you are not tolerant to new hypotheses and ways of thinking, then you are only worth your practical skills and only contribute your understanding of the physical world, which lets face it a plumber does on a day to day basis. If this is the case I dread to think of your reaction to referees comments following publication rejection.

^ - Opinion/theory/hypothesis this is all assumed to be educated and have the ability to make a sound and sensible propositional statement.

* - There can always be an experimental result, which contradicts all of the current findings and therefore the hypothesis is incorrect or needs altering (or the result and hence experiment can also be flawed).

~ - I’m not happy I was made to refer to mythology.

wrong. quanta are connected.

look to more subtle forces.

only wrong on the disintegration.
the heartbeat is accurate.

only wrong on the disintegration.
the heartbeat is accurate.

Jesus Christ where did the Biblethumpers all come from.

If you wish to invoke religion, John M., Hinduism is a better match, as Failed reaction mentioned and as this segment from Sagan's Cosmos shows: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EyAKFi3_Xg

so is there any evidence of a contraction? i thought our current understanding was that not only is there no proof of a coming contraction but that all the evidence points towards an ever accelerating expansion.

I am not a cosmologist or a physicist nonetheless I often marvel at the fact that velocity is never input as a significant metric in models of the universe. Be it big bang or bounce or oscillation I look for the math to reflect velocity and the closest thing I find is time. In an infinite universe where things in motion tend to stay in motion it would seem velocity would be a significant measure. At the point of big bang there would be no gravitational forces strong enough or close enough to slow down the leading edge of the blast wave. While we look for the heat signature of the big bang I think it would also be helpful to determine the velocity of the expanding universe which should be measurable by the increasing distance between objects (galaxies). If the theories of vacuum are correct whenever an object reached maximum velocity (speed of light?) after the big bang it should have maintained that velocity. What would have slowed it down? What if the velocity was actually constant acceleration that we perceive as destruction but may in fact be faster than light velocity we cannot yet measure? How could an infinite universe have a finite speed limit? If the universe is not infinite what is it expanding into and what is the volume of that region? I think we should reconsider the retracting universe theory bounce crunch or whatever it is being called and look for the proof of constant acceleration approaching the speed of light.

Was Fred Hoyle right all along...?

Universe starting with a big bang and ending with a big cruch the process repeating in a cycle and the dicovery of dark energy resolves the entropy problem.

I expected a carl sagan quote from 'cosmos' and got a comment from zoc with video from youtube..Even though Sagan appreciated the concept of Billions of year cycle (most of the religion think on thousands)mentioned in some Indian and taoist chinese texts he was against finding parallels between religion and science by quoting some words out of context like Fritjof capra and to a minor extent by Erwin schrodinger,David Bhom and Neils Bhor(in physics and philosophy)..

the concept of cyclic universe is not a new theory ..Quantum loop gravity is trying to find what happened before big bang .. the lost memories of previous universe ..Lee Smolin's natural selection and baby universes ..universes in bubbles ..string and M-theories which tells us about other dimensions At least in the last ten years we are nearing to reach the conclusion that there are possibilities of Multiverses .and the universe is not as we see and percive it .

So far we have a known universe and a dark component... what if Hawking's Shadow is all else that there is and we live in one half of a universe split in two by light...?
Does that turn the instinctive core statements of Taoism (duality) Buddhism (Nirvana), Christian (Light) and Hinduism (Maya) into the fundamental principles of science?
Do the 'primitive' human instincts concerning 'how things are' turn out to reflect the actuality of our existence?
Shame if we've wasted a couple thousand years of science if we already had the answers :)

MYTHO-COSMOLOGY, BOTH SIDES ARE RIGHT.

There is nothing wrong in taking both the Biblical or the Mythological telling for granted - as long as one connects the telling with the best of the modern cosmological science. And as long as one take the modern science with a grain of salt.
----------------

Firstly: Everything we/the scientific society know about "the universe", should really be mentioned as "knowledge of the VISIBLE universe".

- Then we better can accept the term of the "expanding universe" - at least as a local phenomenon.

- In my opinion, the whole universe is filled with a kind of "cosmic soup" in which all gasses and stuff eternally changes between contraction and extraction.

Cosmic contraction and extraction does not work trough gravity as we normally understand it. Contraction occurs when a cosmic explosion hits molecular cloud of gas and dust.

This explosive push on the cloud sets it in an accelerating swirling and concentrating motion which heats up the as and dust until it all melts together - and the extraction takes place when it all explodes out again and forms galaxies of all kinds and shapes.

Thereby we can find both contracting and extracting galaxies - depending of their actual "age" or stage. That is: The "gravity force" goes both ways on and on. This is a swirling natural law of everything in the Creation.

- The "cosmic soup" can very easily be connected to the "stuff of the cosmic microwave background" of black and white filaments which has been taken as account for the suddenly expansion in the Big Bang - but this "cosmic filament soup” has always been and always will be, and therefore it supports the basically idea of Steady State Theory.

But IN this soup both contracting and extracting movements are taken place all over in the Universe, as for instants observed in galaxies turning both inwards and outwards - as with our clearly outwards turning Milky Way.

Our Milky Way galaxy really pushes everything outwards from the centre - just like told in the Bible and other religious /mythological telling of the Expulsing from the centre Garden of Eden from where everything in our galaxy is created.

- For further explanations and illustrations, visit my websites.

Natural Philosopher
Ivar Nielsen, Denmark
http://www.cosmology-unified.net
http://www.native-science.net

NB: See also here:
Image of the Day: "The Most Violent Winds in the Cosmos".

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2010/03/image-of-the-day-2.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheDailyGalaxyNewsFromPlanetEarthBeyond+%28The+Daily+Galaxy%3A+News+from+Planet+Earth+%26+Beyond%29

"Superwinds are thought to play a key role in the evolution of galaxies by regulating the formation".

Ivar Nielsen

The entire news item involves speculation, as no concrete cosmological data has been presented. The Big bang theory at least has been corroborated by the Wilkinson Probe through measurement of Microwave anisotropy measurements. Cosmology is speculative mainly and hence any definite conclusion at this stage is not going to last long. Measurements are required from well into space in order some semblance of truth in the matter.

Christian calendar??? Do you mean the calendar where they picked a defined point in time as the start? Yes, it was picked by Christians but thats it. Christians also defined north, does that also mean its theology based? Its also false that Christians are the only ones who view time as linear.

Can future articles please keep their personal theologies out and just stick to science and fact? Or is this just junk science used to push a personal grudge against religion?

One: These theorists really don't know what they are talking about. I think it's clear that they understand this to be true. They have discovered a few pieces of truth here and there. But they have not fitted very many of them together well. And their verbalizing skills are lacking. They are mostly just guessing and brain storming. Mathematics is one of the problems. It is useful as a tool, but it's not a very good crutch. And they are pretending that if something is illustrated by math it must be legitimate. Having made that mistake, they then base subsequent assumptions upon it, thus compounding the error. When they talk about what they think they know, the most they are actually doing is displaying the fact that human language is not adequate to treat these topics.

Two: Time doesn't really exist. It is merely a concept humans invented to explain certain phenomena, such as change. The concept of time is a literary construct, a verbal device so that we can think that we understand something and can write it down on a page using symbols. It does not have an existence in the sense of being a real thing.


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