The study of the large-scale structure, history, and future of the universe. Cosmology is about asking and answering questions about the "big picture" - the extent, origin, and fate of everything we know.

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Could the universe have evolved WITHOUT the non-determinism of quantum mechanics? [on hold]

(I'm going to make a few conjectures here - please answer the question in light of them as if they were true, even though of course they may be overly simplistic or wrong) Assuming that: the ...
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21 views

Active-sterile mixing for KeVins

People sometimes talk about KeV mass sterile neutrinos as a warm dark matter candidate. I think they call them KeVins (horrible name btw). Now, In order for it to be a good dark matter candidate it ...
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21 views

Universe in the magnetic spectrum

Can we scan the universe in magnetic spectrum and then separate the paramagnetic , diamagnetic and ferromagnetic objects and get a new picture of the cosmos.
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30 views

What is the difference between a low vs. high entropy plasma just after and before a singularity occurs?

Although it appears that the universe is not closed (since it is accelerating) I have been reading different websites on how the universe would look like if it was closed and the big crunch did occur. ...
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72 views

Why was theory of cosmic aether discarded? [duplicate]

Can cosmic aether be considered analogous to higgs field? Higgs field remains (almost) consistent throughout.
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375 views

Could a ship equipped with Alcubierre drive theoretically escape from a black hole?

Could a ship equipped with Alcubierre drive theoretically escape from a black hole? Also, could it reach parts of the universe that are receding faster than the speed of light from us?
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133 views

Difference between horizon and flatness problems & how inflation solves flatness (w/out math)

Layman here so I'm hoping for an answer for my query that doesn't involve math. I'm reading about inflation and how it solves the flatness and horizon problems. I get that the horizon problem deals ...
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1answer
56 views

Black holes: Behaviour of light near an event horizon

Electromagnetic waves travel mostly in vacuum medium, in outer space, but sometimes in gaseous media, such as in gaseous atmospheres involved in nebulae. If electromagnetic-waves come anywhere in the ...
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1answer
157 views

How do black holes in merging galaxies find each other to merge?

In many accounts of galaxy mergers, the prompt merging of their central black holes, if any, is stated seemingly as too obvious to need further explanation. While I don't dispute that this may indeed ...
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246 views

Questions about the Jeans length

I have a couple of questions about the Jeans length. Suppose the universe has a homogeneous energy density, except there's a spherical region that is overdense. I understand that if the region is ...
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1answer
41 views

Number of Stars vs Value of Omega (Crtitical Density of the Universe)

I may be badly mixing things up here. If I am, please kindly correct me. As I understand it, if the universe was too dense at the start of the big bang, it would have collapsed back in on itself. Too ...
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1answer
48 views

What is intrinsic gravitational entropy?

What is intrinsic gravitational entropy? Does it have to do with dark matter or coarse graining in the universe? Is it unique to general relativity, or there are predictions from quantum mechanics as ...
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138 views

Do the standard cosmology models spontaneously break Lorentz symmetry?

In standard cosmology models (Friedmann equations which your favorite choice of DM and DE), there exists a frame in which the total momenta of any sufficiently large sphere, centered at any point in ...
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2answers
99 views

Quantum entanglement on cosmological scales

This may be a foolish question given my limited understanding of QM but here it is. As I understand quantum entanglement basically means that two particles evolve as a single "unit", i.e., are ...
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87 views

Does the universe have an edge/boundary/barrier? If yes, what is at the edge? [duplicate]

My question related kind of to asking what the shape of the universe is. Say a hypothetical alien civilization built an faster-than-light spaceship. If they keep flying would they end up where they ...
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1answer
68 views

Thermal gravitational radiation and its detection

To my poor knowledge on the topic, the gravitational waves that are most likely to be detected by LIGO or other experiments do not have thermal spectrum. But I'm not certain. I know that Hawking's ...
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1answer
52 views

Time Energy symmetry in General Relativity (not asking about energy conservation)

In General Relativity is there a TE symmetry similar to CPT symmetry in the Standard Model ? It's pretty easy to understand that by flipping charge and parity you merely get a time reversed equivalent ...
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1answer
53 views

If non-zero cosmological constant interpreted as a repulsive field, what would be the properties of this field's quanta?

If non-zero cosmological constant interpreted as a repulsive field, what would be the properties of the excitation of such field, i.e. the particle which serves as the field's quantum? What would be ...
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25 views

Which cosmological dark matter theory is most compatible with current particle physics?

This occurred to me while I was writing Why hasn't warm dark matter replaced cold dark matter as the standard model of cosmology? but I think this deserves a question of its own. The background ...
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Why hasn't warm dark matter replaced cold dark matter as the standard model of cosmology?

The $\Lambda\rm CDM$ (cold dark matter with cosmological constant) is the current standard model of cosmology because the model comes with a long list of phenomena successfully explained by it. ...
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0answers
20 views

How do inflationary models predict the generation of gravitational waves during the inflationary period?

Recent results from the BICEP2 experiment have produced a lot of talk about the primordial gravitational waves produced during the inflationary period. I would like to have some explanation about how ...
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1answer
152 views

Redshift of Cosmic Microwave Background

Does the cosmic microwave background radiation have a red shift parameter z? If so what is the value for z?
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37 views

Cosmic Expansion - Why aren't we ripped off yet? [duplicate]

According to Hubble's law, the universe expands exponentially ever since the big bang. If the space-time expands, what effects does it have upon us, (1.Earth, 2.solar system and 3. Milky Way). ...
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1answer
72 views

If dark energy is accelerating the expansion of the universe, why can't I feel it?

Based on the Lambda-CDM cosmological model, our universe is not only expanding, but is accelerating in its expansion. However, the Equivalence Principle would suggest that inertia manifests itself in ...
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Is topology of universe observable?

There is an idea that the geometry of physical space is not observable(i.e. it can't be fixed by mere observation). It was introduced by H. Poincare. In brief it says that we can formulate our ...
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1answer
56 views

How has the age of the Universe been derived from the observations made by the Planck mission?

The parameters of $\rm\Lambda CDM$ model have been determined to an amazing high precision from the measurements made by the Planck mission. In particular, the Hubble "constant" (the value of Hubble ...
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24 views

Is the Baum Framptom a valid alternative to Big Bang?

In the Baum Frampton model, proposed in 2007, because $\epsilon\lt-1$, after the Big Rip the universe starts again empty. The problem of this model is that inverting the arrow of the time, after a ...
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1answer
27 views

Luminosity distance from angular diameter distance

Consider that I know the cosmological angular diameter distance at a given redshift : $$D_{A}\left(z\right)=\frac{x_{object}}{\theta_{observer}}$$ Is there a general formula to compute the ...
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2answers
104 views

Frame dragging — is there a “non-tiny” example?

Now. As I understand it, in fact, the earth (10^25 kg) creates a very small, very tiny, frame dragging effect. Indeed, we have measured this using satellite experiments. So, the Earth (10^25 kg) ...
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219 views

What are the alternative theories of dark energy? ($w \neq -1$)

There has been a lot of related questions about dark energy around here but these are usually 2-4 years old and the closest question to mine hasn't really been answered, so I am going to proceed. ...
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3answers
189 views

Could Dark Matter particles that don't couple to quarks or leptons have been produced?

With what we know about physics, is it possible that when the universe 'began', around when quarks and leptons were produced, another particle, which doesn't couple to either quarks, leptons or ...
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467 views

What is “Energy” of a vacuum in the context of quantum theory?

I'm not a physicist or cosmologist, so I hope I am asking the right question with the right words here. My question regards the word "energy" as it pertains to quantum vacuum states, and to concepts ...
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0answers
45 views

Avoiding Pseudo-tensors when addressing global conservation of energy in GR

Discussions about global conservation of energy in GR often invoke the use of the stress-energy-momentum pseudo-tensor to offer up a sort of generalization of the concept of energy defined in a way ...
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6answers
250 views

Are there free data available online from cosmology (or astrophysics) experiments that anyone can analyse?

One can understand a subject better in physics by trying to solve as many problems as one can from a textbook say. When it comes to experimental physics and data analysis, no book on experimental ...
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530 views

Dark matter and dark energy references

I've been looking for questions about dark matter, and I've read some very interesting answers. However, I desire too look into it deeply. This is not actually a question. I'm asking the community ...
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1answer
29 views

Peaks and dips position in the Planck CMB

I am currently looking for the values of the firsts peaks and dips (at least the first 3) in terms of l and angular size for the CMB angular power spectrum measured from Planck. But the only thing I ...
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2answers
370 views

Before inflation, what sets the initial value of the inflaton field?

[This is a version of the question that I've revised based on helpful comments from Dan.] I haven't studied inflation at a technical level. My picture of the process is that we have an inflaton field ...
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2answers
277 views

If the universe didn't expand faster than light, would our nights brighter like day?

There's a common QnA which has amused and inspired many kids: There are billions of Stars in the sky. If we combine lights received from all stars, wouldn't it beat Sun? Why is night dark really? ...
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Why only 4 spacetime dimensions? [duplicate]

What led the universe to expand only in 4 dimensions after the big bang? Why not in less than or greater than 4 dimensions? In other words, just before a moment of the big bang; the universe was just ...
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3answers
800 views

Scale factor and age of the universe

Why is the cosmological scale factor (expansion rate of the universe) not simply the time $t$, i.e. the age of the universe?
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1answer
480 views

Does the heat death of the universe really imply a maximum entropy state *all* of the time? Or most of the time?

Statistically speaking, you're going to still encounter deviations from equilibrium, even though the expected value is equilibrium. But these rare deviations from equilibrium - which are inevitable - ...
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1answer
78 views

Why is an electric and magnetic field present in all universe?

the Earth has its fields due to the motion of molten metals in the core but how does this whole universe has its fields without any discontinuity? And we can say for sure that fields are present in ...
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2answers
390 views

How to obtain the field equations in Brans-Dicke theory from the action?

The action for the Brans-Dicke-Jordan theory of gravity is $$ \\S =\int d^4x\sqrt{-g} \; \left(\frac{\phi R - \omega\frac{\partial_a\phi\partial^a\phi}{\phi}}{16\pi} + \mathcal{L}_\mathrm{M}\right). ...
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53 views

What was the density of the universe when it was only the size of our solar system?

What was the density of the universe when it was only the size of our solar system? Did it approach neutron star density? Is it physically correct to even ask such a question?
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32 views

Future of a universe with scalar field

Assume that $\phi=\phi_0\gg M_{Pl}$, what can you say about the future of a universe in a model with $V(\phi)=\frac{1}{2}m^2\phi^2+\epsilon \phi$, where $|\epsilon|\ll m^2M_{Pl}^2$, is a small ...
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0answers
32 views

Is the expansion accelerating or decelerating? [duplicate]

I have already asked this on Astronomy.SE but I couldn't understand the answer there. According to Hubble's Law, the farther a galaxy is, the farther it is moving away. But do we take into account ...
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0answers
64 views

Maybe photon energy is constant as the Universe expands?

This is a question following on from my previous post Time-like Killing vector in FRW metric? For simplicity I take the spatially flat FRW metric in cartesian co-ordinates given by: $$ds^2 = -dt^2 + ...
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2answers
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Why aren't we Boltzmann brains in an infinite universe?

Either space is compact, or it is infinite. If space is infinite in extent, either it is thermal over an infinite volume, or it is in the vacuum state for most of it. If it is thermal, infinity is a ...
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2answers
100 views

When was the cosmic background radiation in the visible spectrum?

From what I understand about the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation is that it was from the big bang, and since space has streched and become bigger since then the wavelength of the CMBR has ...
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3answers
62 views

If empty space has energy, and space is expanding, is this energy equally distributed as space expands?

The cosmological constant (dark energy) is often described in terms of empty space having a non 0 energy value and this energy being the source of the accelerated expansion of the universe. If space ...