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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9
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2answers
534 views

Could spontaneous symmetry breaking happen again in our universe?

It is generally believed that $10^{-35}$ seconds after the Big Bang, the symmetry of a GUT was broken and after $10^{-12}$ seconds the electroweak force was broken: \begin{equation} \mathrm{SU(2)} ...
3
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3answers
3k 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?
4
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3answers
518 views

Dark age of universe when all fusion process ceases?

Some say we live in the golden age of the universe because there exits countless number of stars that shines in the dark universe. As the supply of gas for star formation is steadily being exhausted, ...
13
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1answer
1k views

What could explain the measurements that the Methuselah star is older than the universe?

So there has been talk in the news of a star named Methuselah that is "older than the universe". Moreover, this star happens to belong to our very own Milky Way. The article mentions that Methuselah ...
3
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1answer
435 views

Fulvio Melia's linear Universe

I would be interested in what people think of Fulvio Melia's argument for a linearly expanding Universe. I realize that the experimental evidence seems to be pointing to an accelerating Universe ...
1
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1answer
74 views

Newtonian approximation in cosmology

In Peeble's "Large scale structure of the Universe" the Newtonian approximation in cosmology is examined by looking at a transformation that makes the metric locally Minkowski. On pg 38 it is stated ...
16
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4answers
1k views

How would we see a near-lightspeed object emitting light?

Consider an object travelling near the speed of light relative to us (let it be a spaceship or a star), which is emitting light (consider it monochromatic resulting from a two level electronic ...
0
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5answers
689 views

What generates such a huge amount of gravitational attraction in a black hole?

I had been fascinated to hear that anything can be swallowed by a black hole. But what causes such a huge amount of gravitational force?
1
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1answer
185 views

Red shift and the expanding universe

Given that the universe is expanding because space itself is expanding, is that expansion occuring in all places and on all scales? Consider a photon emitted from a source billions of years ago. As it ...
3
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0answers
90 views

what is the radial extent of the last scattering “shell”?

At CMB recombination (z=1090), what is the radial extent of the last scattering "shell"? a) Delta(z) = .... b) Delta(comoving angular distance)= ....Mpc The WMAP first-year parameters give Delta(z) ...
1
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1answer
1k views

Is the total angular momentum of the universe zero? [duplicate]

I know that having a net angular momentum will contradict isotropy of the universe by preferring a specific direction. But is there any experimental data on the total angular momentum of the universe ...
1
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0answers
85 views

Photon temperature above Electroweak Symmetry Breaking (EWSB) transition

In discussions of the history of our Universe, photon temperature is substituted for time. As the Universe cools, phase transitions break symmetries, including electroweak symmetry. Why does it make ...
2
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0answers
76 views

Do cosmologically redshifted photons violate energy conservation? [duplicate]

I understand that, due to the Doppler effect, different frames of reference moving at different velocities relative to each other will measure different photon frequencies and hence energy. The ...
3
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2answers
185 views

Relation between $\Lambda$ and $\Omega_\Lambda$ in $\Lambda\mathrm{CDM}$

In minimal $\Lambda\mathrm{CDM}$, there is a parameter labeled $\Omega_\Lambda$, and current fits place it at around $\left( \Omega_\Lambda \sim 0.73\right)$. Meanwhile, $\Lambda$ enters the Einstein ...
0
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0answers
74 views

Closed linear cosmology implies G M / R = c^2?

I have a question about a linear FRW cosmology with $k=+1$. Assuming zero cosmological constant the first Friedmann equation can be written: $$\left(\frac{\dot R}{R}\right)^2 + ...
2
votes
1answer
112 views

How to calculate mass of a closed Universe?

How does one integrate the mass density over a closed Universe (a 3-sphere?) to obtain the total mass of that Universe? Is this the correct integral? $$M = R(t)^3 \rho\int_0^1 4 \pi r^2 ...
3
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1answer
447 views

What are the general relativity equations for relativistic constant acceleration?

At constant acceleration in special relativity, the time differs for a stationary observer and the astronaut. see the following article for an in-depth explanation: Relativistic Rocket However, when ...
0
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3answers
583 views

Entropy and Big Bang aren't mutually exclusible? [closed]

There are some principles in entropy im having trouble understanding. If Entropy requires that the energy in the universe must always been constant, shouldnt in theory 'Heat Death' have occurred since ...
0
votes
1answer
257 views

The Faint young Sun paradox: an alternative solution?

The faint young Sun paradox describes the contradiction between the fact that there must have been liquid water 3.5 billion years ago for life to have begun then and the fact that the Sun's power ...
5
votes
1answer
617 views

Additional merits to Wetterich's “Universe without expansion” compared to standard cosmological redshift interpretation?

A recent news item in Nature promotes Wetterich's preprint "A Universe without expansion". All sounds very exciting but hard to judge for non-experts. As I understand from the Nature's article, the ...
5
votes
0answers
107 views

Evidence that the Solar System is expanding like the Universe? [duplicate]

I've just come across Krasinsky and Brumberg's paper that claims, from an analysis of radiometric measurements, that the astronomical unit (earth-sun distance) is increasing at the rate: ...
4
votes
2answers
390 views

Why does $8\pi/3$ appear in the equations describing cosmological expansion?

What is the significance of $8\pi/3$ in the first Friedmann Equation, and in the question concerning the time independence of the Hubble Constant? Is it the 'same' $8\pi/3$ that appears in the total ...
4
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2answers
117 views

Hydrogen cloud at the universe's beginning?

What prevented all of the hydrogen at the universe's start from coalescing into one gigantic star?
8
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5answers
681 views

What evidence refutes a “pre-eternally existent cosmic egg”?

I've seen many Young-Earth Creationists attempt to discredit Big Bang cosmology. For example, an article by Cal Thomas in the 1990's stated that it meant there was a "pre-eternally existing 'cosmic ...
6
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0answers
262 views

Poincare recurrence and the multiverse

In this paper Susskind claims that a stable de Sitter universe is problematic (among other things) due to the existence of Poincare recurrence, which happen because of finite entropy. I disagree that ...
-1
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0answers
101 views

Are we travelling at a speed close to the light speed? [duplicate]

This is a question which has been puzzling me quite a while. There was a news report saying that the farthest galaxy spotted so far is at 13.3 billion light-years away, and it is said that the galaxy ...
4
votes
3answers
295 views

Basic Question About General Relativity?

I'm a layman that loves Physics. I'm also horrible at math. Having said that I have many, many questions in regards to physics and General Relativity in-particular. I will try to keep my question(s) ...
8
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3answers
2k views

A Cosmological horizon at the Hubble radius?

I have calculated that if one extends a rigid ruler into space by a fixed proper distance $D$ then a clock at the end of the ruler, running on proper time $\tau$, will run more slowly than time $t$ at ...
1
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0answers
87 views

How often can virtual particle/antiparticle pairs form real particles in a space expanding sufficiently fast to do this?

And if the rate of expansion of the universe becomes sufficient for virtual particles to be ripped apart into real particles, what effect would the mass of these particles have on the rate of ...
3
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0answers
123 views

At what expansion rate (H) would virtual particles be ripped apart into real particles, and what might be the density (temperature) of such an event?

Is it even possible for a virtual particle-antiparticle pair to be torn apart by cosmological expansion? Virtual particle-antiparticle pairs are ripped apart near black hole event horizons, creating ...
2
votes
1answer
210 views

Weyl Large Number Coincidence

I've just learned of the Weyl Large Number Coincidence on the Wikipedia. It looks interesting. Here is my interpretation of it. What is the smallest "quantum" of energy in the Universe? $$E_{min} = ...
2
votes
1answer
509 views

What is the geometry of our universe?

I have some questions about the notion of space in current cosmological theories. I have been trying to decipher a few papers written on this topic such as this one, but I keep running into some ...
9
votes
1answer
353 views

Baryogenesis only at the Planck scale, or none at all?

I can think of three general ways of explaining why the universe contains more matter than antimatter: (1) Near the Planck time, the universe had zero baryon asymmetry, but at some later time, ...
1
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0answers
148 views

Spontaneous symmetry breaking by axions?

I am just reading at the beginnin of this nice article, that axions could be responsible for spontaneously breaking of a symmetry in the early universe. Does anybody know which symmetry is alluded to ...
25
votes
4answers
6k views

Is space “real”, or is it some sort of accepted postulate?

What is space? It seems to be everywhere in the equations of physics, as some sort of postulate or hidden hypothesis. We also have a direct experience of it, but is it "real"? The fact that we ...
21
votes
3answers
3k views

How do people calculate proportions of dark matter, dark energy and baryonic matter of the universe?

The Wikipedia page on dark matter mentions that the Planck mission had revealed that in our universe ordinary baryonic matter, dark matter and dark energy are present in the ratio: 4.9%, 26.8% and ...
5
votes
1answer
173 views

Why is there a line in the middle of the Planck full sky map?

Why there is a straight line (or perhaps a flat surface) in the middle of the Planck full sky map? and zoom (it makes it seem that the big bang was a collision between two unknown surfaces)
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Is Hubble's constant really constant? [duplicate]

How does Hubble's constant resembles age of universe? Isn't universe getting old each day? How can a constant be a reciprocal of age of universe? Hubble's value must be variable, isn't it?
1
vote
5answers
2k views

If the multiverse theory is true, can there be a Universe where there are different laws of physics?

This is probably a very difficult question. But my question is essentially this, if there are other Universes can different laws of physics exist in those Universes and if so, can't there be a ...
11
votes
2answers
714 views

How does dark matter halo outside a galaxy help to explain galaxy rotation curve?

How does a dark matter halo outside a galaxy help to explain a galaxy rotation curve? Suppose for simplicity we use a model of a star rotating about a more massive star in a fixed circular orbit. For ...
1
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0answers
186 views

IR divergence and renormalization scale in dimensional regularization (part 2)

This is in continuation of my previous question, IR divergence and renormalization scale in dimensional regularization. Lubos gave a nice answer there but I want to get to a very specific example ...
0
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2answers
1k views

Effect of space time relativity on the age of the universe?

So we all heard about the twins paradox to explain einstein's time space relativity. Wikipedia Quote :" In physics, the twin paradox is a thought experiment in special relativity involving identical ...
2
votes
2answers
157 views

Evidence for expansion of space [duplicate]

If I understand correctly, Einstein's theory of General Relativity predicted the expansion of space itself, and Hubble confirmed this prediction by observing the red shift of receding galaxies. I ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

According to Hubble's Law, how can the expansion of the Universe be accelerating?

Scientists today think the expansion of the universe is accelerating. According to Hubble's law, objects further away are moving faster than objects closer to us. The further away an object is, the ...
2
votes
1answer
121 views

General expression of the redshift: explanation?

In some papers, authors put the following formula for the cosmological redshift $z$ : $1+z=\frac{\left(g_{\mu\nu}k^{\mu}u^{\nu}\right)_{S}}{\left(g_{\mu\nu}k^{\mu}u^{\nu}\right)_{O}}$ where : $S$ ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

Cosmology and TOE

I have read an answer on this site regarding the change of laws over time . However a physisct told me that the laws did evolve at planck era and then stopped evolving after it , is that true even in ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Conformal time or cosmological time?

Let us assume a flat FRW metric $$ds^2 = -dt^2 + a(t)^2(dx^2+dy^2+dz^2)$$ Imagine a lightbeam traveling in the x-direction. It travels on a null geodesic with $ds=0$ so that its path obeys the ...
4
votes
1answer
132 views

How can contracting dimensions lead to cosmological inflation?

Using the Kasner metric, given by $$ ds^2 = -dt^2 + \sum_{j=1}^D t^{2p_j}(dx^j) $$ it is possible to not only describe the cosmological expansion of some space directions (the ones with positive ...
2
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0answers
48 views

Scaling in Vlasov equations

This question is in reference to the paper, http://arxiv.org/abs/1301.7182 What exactly is the argument being made on page 6 and 7? One deduces that the function $\Delta$ has to be such that, ...
1
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1answer
1k views

Is time slowing down and disappearing from the universe instead of the expansion of universe? [duplicate]

Are we fooled into thinking that expansion of the universe is accelerating, when in fact, time itself is slowing? Or if dark energy does exist?