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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1answer
130 views

Why can't we detect redshift of Galaxies/Clusters moving parallel to us?

If a moving Galaxy/Cluster doesn't have radially outward motion component from us, we are unable to detect its redshift. The answer may look obvious: There's no wavelength squeezing/expanding ju-ju. ...
2
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1answer
59 views

Experimental evidence for the relic neutrinos

What are the experimental (indirect) evidence for the cosmic neutrino background? Where can I read more about this? The discussion on the wikipedia page about the C$\nu$B seems to me to be more ...
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1answer
60 views

Information Preservation and Weather Forecasting for Black Holes

Referencing Stephen Hawking's recent paper Information Preservation and Weather Forecasting for Black Holes and this question. I understand concept of holding the information on the apparent horizon ...
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0answers
22 views

Instabilities in the CDMT

Could anyone explain or refer to references on why the CDMT f(R) gravity model suffers from Instabilities any why the sign of ${\mu}^{4}$ matters.
0
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1answer
52 views

Calculating Hubble Radius using relativistic effects

I am trying to calculate the Hubble Radius, or the distance from which an object will recede from an observer at the speed of light. I initially tried using $v=H_0d$ which gives $d=1.424\times10^{26}$ ...
2
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0answers
92 views

Is the Higgs field part of space?

So I looked for some explanations, how I understand it so far is that the Higgs field causes particles to have mass by drag, like drag force in water, which prevents objects from moving at the speed ...
0
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1answer
200 views

Dark energy and conservation of energy [duplicate]

With accelerated expansion of universe which is same in all direction we know that dark energy increase with time because space between any two point in space time increases with time. So after some ...
3
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1answer
90 views

'There shall be reheating' and other inflation-related questions [closed]

I've some basic questions about inflation: What is reheating exactly? What triggered the reheating? Is it something that one pulls out of a hat? Through which force did the decay of the inflation ...
4
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1answer
54 views

Qualtitative explanation for the link between low magnitude of high z supernova and accelerated expansion

Is there any explanation on a qualitative level why we can see in the observed magnitude vs. redshift z plot that the universe is expanding accelerated? See for example here: http://hyperphysics.phy-...
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1answer
90 views

Could the universe be a series of Big Bangs? [closed]

Imagine an eruption of energy/mass $E$ from a singularity $O$, as in a Big Bang. After the energy/mass $E$ is all at more than a distance $d$ from $O$, is it for some value of $d$ possible that there ...
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0answers
40 views

Is Dark Energy Pushing Us Or Pulling Us? [duplicate]

This may seem silly, but how do they know that the effects we are seeing from dark energy, (which we only assume must be there due to observed acceleration), are not from gravity pulling us out from ...
2
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5answers
968 views

If you shoot a light beam behind the event horizon of a black hole, what happens to the light?

I have a couple of questions about light here, and sorry of they are silly.. So since anything that goes beyond the event horizon can't go out, so what if a light beam was pointed somewhere behind ...
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1answer
53 views

Does the universal expansion affect the gravitational constant?

If the universe was not expanding, would gravity be stronger? since the expansion happens everywhere and can overcome gravity at long distances? If not, then are there any changes that would happen to ...
4
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1answer
176 views

Open Big Bang-less universe?

This came up in discussion around a class I'm taking. For a Universe with $\Lambda$ and matter contributions to energy density (and implicitly curvature, but no radiation), can you have a universe ...
0
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0answers
25 views

Link for resource on cosmology [duplicate]

I have recently just begun studying cosmology. I have a background in physics. I would like a link to download video resources on Stephan Hawking's theories on physics and/or cosmology that have not ...
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0answers
36 views

Book suggestion for Theoretical Physics with easy maths [duplicate]

I am a Computer Scientist with literature interest in theoretical physics. I have already read books such as A Brief History of Time and Physics of the Impossible, and I am looking for suggestion for ...
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3answers
242 views

Is the universe flat?

There are more than one way to view the description of the universe as flat. There is the description of an open, flat or closed universe in terms of it's fate, expansion forever away from gravity, or ...
2
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1answer
149 views

Size of the Universe: Curved vs flat? Finite vs infinite?

I have recently heard the theory that the Universe may be smaller than observed but may be curved to the extent that light rays may have looped past us once already and hence appear to have originated ...
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1answer
131 views

Is redshift the only way by which we can tell that space is expanding?

There's another question on physics.SE whose answer, if I have understood it correctly, explains that the farther the points are in space the faster they are moving away from each other. Actually, ...
2
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1answer
74 views

Does the rate of expansion of the universe exceed the rate at which the local group is being pulled toward the Great Attractor?

I understand that the expansion rate of the universe driven dark energy exceeds the rate at which the local group is being pulled toward The Great Attractor (Hydra-Centaurus Supercluster). Does this ...
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2answers
146 views

Inflation in a closed universe or a stage 1 multiverse?

With the discovery of gravitational waves, Max Tegmark has been using this to promote his level 1 multiverse in that the universe is open (non-compact) and everything duplicates. My question is, are ...
0
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2answers
994 views

How does “space” expand? [duplicate]

According to Big Bang theory and The Red shift theory "space" is "expanding". Keeping this notion of "space" as physically something in and of itself(space -time did not exist before The Big Bang); ...
3
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1answer
399 views

Is the Universe Past-Eternal?

Does the Borde-Guth-Vilenkin theorem definitively demonstrate that the Universe cannot be past-eternal, whatsoever? Does it not assume a classical space-time while the real world requires Quantum ...
3
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1answer
140 views

Does inflation predict a multiverse?

Does inflation necessarily predict a multiverse? Or is it the case that "It all depends on the properties of the initial field responsible for inflation, about which we can only speculate"?
2
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1answer
600 views

Null Geodesics in Einstein Universe

I am currently taking a course in General Relativity, and I've hit a bit of a roadblock with a homework assignment. We are given the metric for Einstein's universe to be (forgive me, this is meant to ...
3
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1answer
181 views

The first $10^{-35}$ seconds [closed]

I am a rank amateur, so please forgive me if the answer to this is well-known. The following quote can in a weekly update for an EdX course I am following in astrophysics: "And what a week it's ...
13
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2answers
2k views

When did the first carbon nucleus in the Universe come into existence?

I am a chemist with a passion for astrophysics and particle physics, and one of the most marvellous things I have learned in my life is the process of stellar nucleosynthesis. It saddens me how my ...
4
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1answer
192 views

How does the Cosmic Microwave Background give us information about the Big Bang?

I was reading about CMB after this new breakthrough last week and I could not figure this out. The CMB did not exist before the epoch of Last Scattering. They were just photons which were formed at ...
2
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1answer
205 views

Immediately after the Big Bang, was the universe in a state of extremely low or extremely high entropy?

Phase space theory suggests that the largest course-graining region, $p$, in a phase space, $P$, is the point in the phase space with the highest entropy. As such, it is in thermal equilibrium with ...
5
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2answers
398 views

Light takes too long to get here

When looking at the night sky, we see lots of stars. Several places tell you that the light of those stars has traveled to many light years to reach Earth and there may be others where light has not ...
3
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1answer
96 views

What is $\phi$ as refered to in Guth 2007?

In this 2007 paper by Alan Guth discussing eternal cosmic inflation, he start's using a value $\phi$ on page 8. My understanding is that $\phi$ is the scalar field representing the dark energy of a "...
2
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0answers
77 views

Metric to describe an expanding spacetime from coordinates reflecting the perspective of a local observer

The FLRW metric describes the metric expansion of spacetime from the perspective of comoving coordinates. Given the way this metric is usually formulated, comoving distances stay constant, and the ...
0
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0answers
383 views

If nothing can travel faster than the speed of light, how can there be parts of the universe we can't see? [duplicate]

Assuming we originated from a single infinitely dense point in space time in the big bang, how can there be parts of the universe that we can't see as the light has not reached us yet, if nothing can ...
3
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1answer
172 views

Many times speed of light [duplicate]

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/24/theory-of-everything-big-bang-discovery_n_5019126.html What does "many times speed of light" really mean in this context? For a layman it's easy to draw wrong ...
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1answer
151 views

What's the meaning of the age of the universe?

I'm not asking about how we worked backward from an expanding universe to the age of the big bang, but rather what is the meaning of time in a near infinitely dense point in the context of general ...
8
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1answer
179 views

In the B mode power spectrum, what is the relationship between the multipole number and the wavelength of the seed gravitational waves?

One of the key datasets of the recent BICEP2 results is the B mode power spectrum shown below. The existence of these B modes implies the existence of gravitational waves prior to inflation. My ...
3
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0answers
114 views

Current state of the existence of absolute space debate [closed]

Samir Okasha writes about the controversy concerning the existence of absolute space in Philosophy of Science: A Very Short Introduction (2002): One of the intriguing things about the absolute/...
0
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1answer
157 views

What is the solution of general relativity for our universe? [duplicate]

So I just finished off learning quantum mechanics and special relativity. I just realized that in general relativity, there is Einstein field equation which must be solved in order to talk about ...
0
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1answer
97 views

Recession of galaxies

when you take such a given galaxy and it is said that you are moving away from us with a speed $v$, what do you mean really? Let me explain: is the galaxy itself which has an intrinsic velocity of ...
0
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2answers
192 views

Size of Universe after inflation

I read in some website that during the period of inflation, the expansion of the universe underwent incredibly fast, and its size increased by a factor of $10 ^{50}$, see this link In this field, I ...
7
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1answer
219 views

Fate of largest scale structures?

In $\Lambda\mathrm{CDM}$, structures form "bottom up" with larger structures forming later. Structures are generally speaking supported by the velocity dispersion of their constituent objects (e.g. ...
7
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1answer
264 views

The BICEP2 data are evidence of gravitational waves and of inflation. Are they also the first observation that requires quantum gravity?

It strikes me that the recent announcement of data from BICEP2 contains two really Big Deals: the first evidence of gravitational waves the first evidence of inflation. Is there also a third? ...
6
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2answers
216 views

Which BICEP2 r value should be compared to Planck's r<0.11?

The BICEP2 paper reports a tensor/scalar ratio $r = 0.20_{-0.05}^{+0.07}$, but then says: Subtracting the various dust models and re-deriving the r constraint still results in high significance of ...
25
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2answers
2k views

The age of the universe

Many times I have read statements like, "the age of the universe is 14 billion years" . For example this wikipedia page Big Bang. Now, my question is, which observers' are these time intervals? ...
9
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2answers
92 views

CMB curly B-modes and dark matter

I raised a question a while ago regarding weak gravitational lensing of galaxies and the CMB. With all the fuzz with the BICEP2 data, I think it is time to raise even more questions about this amazing ...
4
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1answer
442 views

What is the minisuperspace Lagrangian for gravity plus a scalar field?

In this paper by Sean Carroll and Grant Remmen, in equation (11) they write a Lagrangian of the form $$\boxed{\mathcal{L}=3a\left(k-\dot{a}^2\right)+a^3\left[\frac{1}{2}\dot\phi^2-V(\phi)\right]}$$ ...
1
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1answer
53 views

Is Λ-CDM and no inflaton field compatible with the observed value of the scalar spectral index?

From the cosmic microwave background, one can extract the scalar spectral index $n_s$. It is measured to be smaller than 1 by several standard deviations. Wikipedia says that it is a parameter of the ...
6
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4answers
464 views

Do photons make the universe expand?

I have a problem understanding the ideas behind a basic assumption of cosmology. The Friedmann equations follow from Newtonian mechanics and conservation of Energy-momentum $(E_{kin}+E_{pot}=E_{tot})$ ...