Was Existence of Our Solar System Triggered by a Supernova? (Weekend Feature)
Voices of the Cosmos --"New Harvard CfA Site Allows Listeners to Hear the Music of the Stars"

The "Dark Flow" & Existence of Other Universes --New Claims of Hard Evidence




Is our universe merely one of billions? Evidence of the existence of 'multiverse' revealed for the first time by a cosmic map of background radiation data gathered by Planck telescope. This past week, the first 'hard evidence' that other universes exist has been claimed to have been found by cosmologists studying the Planck data. They have concluded that it shows anomalies that can only have been caused by the gravitational pull of other universes.

"Such ideas may sound wacky now, just like the Big Bang theory did three generations ago," says George Efstathiou, professor of astrophysics at Cambridge University."But then we got evidence and now it has changed the whole way we think about the universe."

Scientists had predicted that it should be evenly distributed, but the map shows a stronger concentration in the south half of the sky and a 'cold spot' that cannot be explained by current understanding of physics. Laura Mersini-Houghton, theoretical physicist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Richard Holman, professor at Carnegie Mellon University, predicted that anomalies in radiation existed and were caused by the pull from other universes in 2005. Mersini-Houghton will be in Britain soon promoting this theory and, we expect, the hard evidence at the Hay Festival on May 31 and at Oxford on June 11.

Dr Mersini-Houghton believes her hypothesis has been proven from the Planck data that data has been used to create a map of light from when the universe was just 380,000 years old. "These anomalies were caused by other universes pulling on our universe as it formed during the Big Bang," she says. "They are the first hard evidence for the existence of other universes that we have seen."




Columbia University mathematician Peter Woit writes in his blog, "Not Even Wrong," that in recent years there have been many claims made for “evidence” of a multiverse, supposedly found in the CMB data. "Such claims often came with the remark that the Planck CMB data would convincingly decide the matter. When the Planck data was released two months ago, I looked through the press coverage and through the Planck papers for any sign of news about what the new data said about these multiverse evidence claims. There was very little there; possibly the Planck scientists found these claims to be so outlandish that it wasn’t worth the time to look into what the new data had to say about them.

"One exception," Woit adds, "was this paper, where Planck looked for evidence of 'dark flow'. They found nothing, and a New Scientist article summarized the situation: 'The Planck team’s paper appears to rule out the claims of Kashlinsky and collaborators,' says David Spergel of Princeton University, who was not involved in the work. If there is no dark flow, there is no need for exotic explanations for it, such as other universes, says Planck team member Elena Pierpaoli at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. “You don’t have to think of alternatives.'"

"Dark Flow" sounds like a new SciFi Channel series. It's not! The dark flow is controversial because the distribution of matter in the observed universe cannot account for it. Its existence suggests that some structure beyond the visible universe -- outside our "horizon" -- is pulling on matter in our vicinity. 

Back in the Middle Ages, maps showed terrifying images of sea dragons at the boundaries of the known world. Today, scientists have observed strange new motion at the very limits of the known universe - kind of where you'd expect to find new things, but they still didn't expect this. A huge swath of galactic clusters seem to be heading to a cosmic hotspot and nobody knows why.

Cosmologists regard the microwave background -- a flash of light emitted 380,000 years after the universe formed -- as the ultimate cosmic reference frame. Relative to it, all large-scale motion should show no preferred direction. A 2010 study tracked the mysterious cosmic 'dark flow' to twice the distance originally reported. The study was led by Alexander Kashlinsky at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

"This is not something we set out to find, but we cannot make it go away," Kashlinsky said. "Now we see that it persists to much greater distances - as far as 2.5 billion light-years away," he added.

Dark flow describes a possible non-random component of the peculiar velocity of galaxy clusters. The actual measured velocity is the sum of the velocity predicted by Hubble's Law plus a small and unexplained (or dark) velocity flowing in a common direction. According to standard cosmological models, the motion of galaxy clusters with respect to the cosmic microwave background should be randomly distributed in all directions. However, analyzing the three-year WMAP data using the kinematic Sunyaev-Zel'dovich effect, the authors of the study found evidence of a "surprisingly coherent" 600–1000 km/s flow of clusters toward a 20-degree patch of sky between the constellations of Centaurus and Vela.

The clusters appear to be moving along a line extending from our solar system toward Centaurus/Hydra, but the direction of this motion is less certain. Evidence indicates that the clusters are headed outward along this path, away from Earth, but the team cannot yet rule out the opposite flow.

"We detect motion along this axis, but right now our data cannot state as strongly as we'd like whether the clusters are coming or going," Kashlinsky said.

The unexplained motion has hundreds of millions of stars dashing towards a certain part of the sky at over eight hundred kilometers per second. Not much speed in cosmic terms, but the preferred direction certainly is: most cosmological models have things moving in all directions equally at the extreme edges of the universe. Something that could make things aim for a specific spot on such a massive scale hasn't been imagined before. The scientists are keeping to the proven astrophysical strategy of calling anything they don't understand "dark", terming the odd motion a "dark flow".

A black hole can't explain the observations - objects would accelerate into the hole, while the NASA scientists see constant motion over a vast expanse of a billion light-years. You have no idea how big that is. This is giant on a scale where it's not just that we can't see what's doing it; it's that the entire makeup of the universe as we understand it can't be right if this is happening.

The hot X-ray-emitting gas within a galaxy cluster scatters photons from the cosmic microwave background (CMB). Because galaxy clusters don't precisely follow the expansion of space, the wavelengths of scattered photons change in a way that reflects each cluster's individual motion.

This results in a minute shift of the microwave background's temperature in the cluster's direction. The change, which astronomers call the kinematic Sunyaev-Zel'dovich (KSZ) effect, is so small that it has never been observed in a single galaxy cluster.

But in 2000, Kashlinsky, working with Fernando Atrio-Barandela at the University of Salamanca, Spain, demonstrated that it was possible to tease the subtle signal out of the measurement noise by studying large numbers of clusters.

In 2008, armed with a catalog of 700 clusters assembled by Harald Ebeling at the University of Hawaii and Dale Kocevski, now at the University of California, Santa Cruz, the researchers applied the technique to the three-year WMAP data release. That's when the mystery motion first came to light.

The new study builds on the previous one by using the five-year results from WMAP and by doubling the number of galaxy clusters.

"It takes, on average, about an hour of telescope time to measure the distance to each cluster we work with, not to mention the years required to find these systems in the first place," Ebeling said. "This is a project requiring considerable followthrough."

According to Atrio-Barandela, who has focused on understanding the possible errors in the team's analysis, the new study provides much stronger evidence that the dark flow is real. For example, the brightest clusters at X-ray wavelengths hold the greatest amount of hot gas to distort CMB photons. "When processed, these same clusters also display the strongest KSZ signature -- unlikely if the dark flow were merely a statistical fluke," he said.

In addition, the team, which now also includes Alastair Edge at the University of Durham, England, sorted the cluster catalog into four "slices" representing different distance ranges. They then examined the preferred flow direction for the clusters within each slice. While the size and exact position of this direction display some variation, the overall trends among the slices exhibit remarkable agreement.

The researchers are currently working to expand their cluster catalog in order to track the dark flow to about twice the current distance. Improved modeling of hot gas within the galaxy clusters will help refine the speed, axis, and direction of motion.

Future plans call for testing the findings against newer data released from the WMAP project and the European Space Agency's Planck mission, which is also currently mapping the microwave background.

Which is fantastic! Such discoveries force a whole new set of ideas onto the table which, even if they turn out to be wrong, are the greatest ways to advance science and our understanding of everything. One explanation that's already been offered is that our universe underwent a period of hyper-inflation early in its existence, and everything we think of as the vast and infinite universe is actually a small corner under the sofa of the real expanse of reality. Which would be an amazing, if humbling, discovery.

The Daily Galaxy via Peter Woit, New Scientist, and JPL.


Not to surprising, but interesting. Here's my first periodic table of particles, including the ones to be "found". It's based on the hybrid of the cyclotomic factor group and the elliptic torsion group.


CMB is not even cosmological in its nature! CMB is what big bangers found to support their creationism

Nice article: if it doesn't square with the Big Bang theory (and there's no room in it for multi-verses) then trim the edges so it'll fit into the round hole then pound like hell. The BB theory says that the universe should be homogenous and that there should be no "holes" in it. But there are. Everywhere. But if the universe was trillions of years older and massively large (trillions of light years in diameter--effectively infinite) then there would be cold and hot parts of the CMB. This is about cosmologists holding dearly to the theories that make up their psyche (and are sustained by their academic credentials and standing).

Is there such a thing as a limited space that is contained with-in itself? We still want to believe the world is flat, and that we are the center of this universe. I don't believe in "multi-universes; as I don't believe in multi-dimensions. I do believe that space is infinite and the number of universes in existence is infinite. We (our universe) may be part of a cluster of universes that are clustered together, we may be a dwarf universe that is being cannibalized by an even larger universe. Our universe may have hundreds of billions of galaxies, but there may be universes that are in the trillions. Matter can not be destroyed; nor matter can't be created. If that is true then our universe has always existed, and this universe will always exist. I think that the universe as it exists is finite and will implode creating what will create another Big Bang, and life will begin anew; some fifty to seventy billion years from now. Some 20 trillion years does not infinity make. Any number you think of makes it finite. Infinity is without end.

It would be comforting to think that our universe is a corner of a sofa. If one would take an eye dropper full of water and stood in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and created a single drop of water, how many drops of water is contained in the Atlantic Ocean? If our universe was that single drop of water, how many universes would there be? The difference between space and the ocean is that the ocean is finite, and space is infinite.

So, where are these other universes? On the other side of the wall that surrounds this one?

Indian mythology has it that their "God" is the "hero" of Infinite number of universes...goes something like this, "Anant koti brahmand nayak...."
If some ancient Indian can imaginatively create this myth, it opens questions about myth itself....

Area + Movement = Matter


Any reason for just one planet?
Any reason for just one sun?
Any reason for just one intelligent species?
Any reason for just one universe?

Just remember Giordano Bruno 500 years ago...

This is discussed in an episode of "through the wormhole" entitled "is there and edge to the univers." Laura Mersini-Houghton is interviewed and explains her theory along with Alexander Kashlinsky. It used to be on youtube but I don't know if it still is. Well worth checking out. It's a great episode. Really fascinating stuff.

Does this mean that extra-universal gravitation can be substituted for the dark energy and dark matter anomaly
Can the gravitation formulae be tweaked by extra-universal gravity to a better fit in the theory of everything?

They need to give up on their belief in evolution. They need to imagine dark matter, dark energy, and dark flow to make their stupid beliefs work. They do not even know the boundaries or shape of our universe, but claim there are other universes. lol

Makes sense to me, we know our Universe is expanding (in all directions), somewhere out there is the edge of our Universe. WHAT IS IT EXPANDING INTO, AND HOW BIG IS THAT???

Whoa! Did you feel that?! It was like something tugging us two inches to the left. By the way...Which way is South on WMAP? Oh yeah, and the answer to life, the universe and everything is as we all know...42. Man, that's some good weed!

"The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age." H.P.Lovecraft, "The Call of Cthulhu"

It all comes down to this; Al Einstein was right in so many ways but wrong in one ! He Never thought the Speed of Light was anything but the speed of light! If the Big Bang actually happened; then the speed of light started off one hell of a lot faster than it is now! Look at the data from Galileo to today ! The Speed of Light has been following an Exponential Decay to its present value of today of approximately 2.98^10 cm/sec !!!

We just happen to be in mid cycle of our universe right now! Everything degrades over time! We just haven't made enough observations and measurements yet to sort it all out properly ! Don told me that! -

REA, Ph.D. physicist.

Correction - present speed of light = 2.98 x 10^10 cm/sec. ! REA.

"Big Bangers." These Christians are some real fools. The Big Bang was first proposed by Georges Lemaitre--a Christian. So what you're calling our creationism was actually a scientific hypothesis put forth by a believer. Seriously uneducated idiots not to know this. We know the shape of the universe: it's flat; that's to the gentleman that said we don't know the shape of our universe. People with far more education and credentials interpret this type of data; you guys aren't even qualified to offer an opinion on these matters. Go read books not titled Bible and come back a year from now. Freedom of religion doesn't mean freedom to bring it up in places where it's irrelevant--like on this science platform. Want to discuss religion, go to your church. Thanks.

I think matter can be created and destroyed. Thru the condensation of energy matter can be created. Remove all the energy and it is destroyed. I use a black hole as an example of the latter. As far as other universes existing being proven by the radiation left over by the BB not being evenly distributed, that means nothing. Our universe is so large that any measurements we make are limited to what we can measure and CERTAINLY NOT SEE THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE...

"They need to give up on their belief in evolution. They need to imagine dark matter, dark energy, and dark flow to make their stupid beliefs work. They do not even know the boundaries or shape of our universe, but claim there are other universes. lol"

Yeah, stupid scientists with your math and your evidence. An imaginary person floating in the sky who snapped his fingers and made everything into existence seems much more plausible.

I wonder if my Illudium Q-36 Space Modulator would annihilate these other universes as well as pathetic Earth.

Ah, yes, well, let me guess. The "scientists" are all evolutionists looking for research money.

The Big Bang theory was broken in 1994 for God's sake. That's when they added dark matter to make it function. Of course, there is no dark matter, it's just an equation plug-in so research money kept flowing.

Pretty sad when "science" resorts to complete fiction to keep people employed.

I see the ignorant, pretending to be Phd's are out insulting the Christians again.

Fred Hoyle, who sarcastically named the theory "The Big Bang" thought it was nonsense. Fred was a good Christian man.

Science and Religion do go together. You cannot have this universe and all of Creation without the All-Mighty GOD, Lord of all.

"it's not just that we can't see what's doing it; it's that the entire makeup of the universe as we understand it can't be right if this is happening."

He is correct. We cannot sense any useful information or workable strategy.
I suppose the theories prviously accepted have reached a "midlife crisis" point.Some believe that we know enough to develop "a universal theory of everything". I howver am not convinced. We still have too many "unanswerables" left to face.

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