The universe refers to the cosmos; all of space-time and that which exists as part of it. Alternatively, it can refer to the observable universe, which only contains the part we can see. Questions tagged with this should ask about physics at scales the size of the universe or specific properties of ...

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What caused the expansion of the universe to slow down after the inflationary epoch?

As everyone knows, when the big bang happened, the universe expanded at an unbelievable rate and this was called the inflationary epoch (or more popularly cosmological inflation) which lasted for ...
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2answers
225 views

A question about multiverse

I have a question that I would like to ask here since I'm not an expert or any near to that. Actually I just came up with this question when I was watching The fabric of cosmos. I couldn't find where ...
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3answers
297 views

Cosmological redshift interpretation

Can the cosmological redshift be interpreted as atomic frequencies increasing by the scale factor as the Universe expands? This explanation seems closer to the truth than the popular idea that a ...
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2answers
93 views

Why should I believe that matter does not expand along with the space between it [duplicate]

This question has been asked before under other guises. I am not a scientific profesional however i have some schooling in pyhsics and mathematics and have a keen interest in these subjects. It seems ...
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1answer
131 views

Universe Expansion

I know the galaxies are moving away from us (faster and faster) but when we say the universe is expanding, is that really only pertaining to the galaxies expanding or is the space itself expanding? I ...
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1answer
229 views

How far can something travel in a straight line?

Suppose you have an object some distance from you and moving at a velocity different to the Hubble velocity you'd expect at that point. How does the motion of this object change with time? Does it ...
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2answers
210 views

Simulate the universe?

Alright, Lets assume that I have a computer with limited calculation speed (1-4GHz) but unlimited parallel processing capability and unlimited memory capacity to go with it. Under this assumption ...
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2answers
2k views

What's the avarage temperature of the Universe?

I'm sorry if this was asked before but with all the stars and dark matter and all the other stuff, curently in the Universe, what's the avarage temperature of the Universe? Is it like extremely high ...
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3answers
317 views

How do we know for certain that space is expanding?

How do we know for certain that space is expanding? Let's say that in the year 1950, we observe that galaxy 1 is 5 billion light years away from us and galaxy 2 is 10 billion light years away from ...
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2answers
1k views

What is space made of?

General Relativity posits that matter curves spacetime, such that geodesics point towards the object in question, hence, gravity. Now, how does matter do this? What is spacetime "made of", anyway, ...
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3answers
237 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 ...
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2answers
274 views

Expanding universe and the peculiar velocity

Hubble's law states that the universe is expanding with a velocity equals Hubble's constant*distance from earth. But, recent findings show that the Andromeda galaxy is actually blueshifting towards us ...
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2answers
591 views

Does light have an unending journey?

When we shine a torch in a room its light travels to the back of the room. What happens to the light of a star ? I dont suppose we can say it continues to travel to the back of the universe as the ...
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1answer
826 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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2answers
424 views

How does measuring redshift make us conclude that rate universe expansion is accelerating?

The universe is expanding in all directions. We can detect this by the redshift of electromagnetic radiation from other galaxies. We detect a larger redshift in galaxies which are further away, and ...
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0answers
91 views

Calculating the age of the Universe now and 30 billion years from now [duplicate]

I am confused about the age of the Universe. If you calculate it by $1 / H_0$, won't the answer be roughly the same today as it will be 30 billion years from now? I know $H_0$ is a parameter, not a ...
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2answers
3k views

Regarding possibility of infinitely many spatial dimensions

Recently I was taking a look at a video explaining the existence of fourth spatial dimension and thereupon that infinitely many spatial dimensions are possible. Also it showed that what Einstein told ...
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6answers
15k views

Am I attracting Pluto?

My question is simple: as the title says, am I exerting a force over for example Pluto, although it is a very small force, it is there, right? Or maybe let's go further: Am I exerting a gravity force ...
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8answers
4k views

Entropy is…disorder?

As I read somewhere, it said that the universe is heading toward disorder a.k.a entropy increasing. Now as far as I know from the second law of thermodynamics it states that entropy is indeed ...
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5answers
2k views

Does the amount of gravitational potential energy in the universe increase as it expands?

It seems to me that extra gravitational potential energy is created as the universe expands and the distance between massive objects such as galaxy clusters increases; this implies that energy is not ...
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3answers
2k views

How can we be so sure the universe has 3 dimensions?

I'm just a layman here so please bear with me if I don't get all the words or theories by correct name or whatever. I hope it will be clear enough what my question is. Here goes: When I read articles ...
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2answers
2k views

Atoms pop out of nothing/vacuum/pre-big-bang?

I saw a great documentary last night about 'nothing'. It's about vacuums, and how if you have a total vacuum atoms will pop out of nowhere! Pretty crazy stuff. Atoms literally coming out of ...
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1answer
319 views

Does matter shrink uniformly without restriction in freefall to central region of black hole?

It is often stated that a distant observer will observe a freefalling object as experiencing an infinite journey to the event horizon, but that a traveler in the local frame will experience a ...
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1answer
2k views

Size of the Observable Universe [duplicate]

I wanted to know what the observable universe is so I was thinking and I thought, it must be age of the universe times 2. Well I was wrong. I found on one website that it is 46B LY across in each ...
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6answers
2k views

How many times has the “stuff” in our solar system been recycled from previous stars?

Is there a cosmologist in the house? I've got a basic understanding (with some degree of error) of some simple facts: The Universe is a little over 13 billion years old. Our galaxy is almost that ...
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4answers
1k views

Are we big or small?

How does the size of humans compare to the size of other objects in the universe? Are we among the relatively large or the relatively small things? My very preliminary research suggests that the ...
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1answer
732 views

Alternative theories to the big bang?

Hey all, are there any theories out there on the origins (or infinite existence of) the universe beside the big bang that actually adhere to current scientific knowledge and fact?
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2answers
408 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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3answers
434 views

Why did decoherence start in the first place?

We learn that the quantum wave function $\Psi$ collapses when it interacts with a classic object (measurement). My question is: Why are there classic objects after all, how did it all start? In a ...
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1answer
272 views

What would happen to the universe if dark energy started “disappearing”?

Terribly naive question, I know. Obviously, not simply "disappearing", but if it could, theoretically, be absorbed or "used" somehow, what would happen to the universe? Would it stop expanding, would ...
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3answers
1k views

Failure of the Steady State Theory

I was reading a journal of astronomy and came to the most famous opponent of Big Bang theory: The Steady State Theory: The 20th - century theory was proposed by Hoyle,Gold and Bondie. The ...
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3answers
261 views

Has the universe we live in started as a black hole that is imploding?

As discussed in this question, as far back as the 1960s it was suggested that the Schwarzschild metric can be smoothly joined to a de Sitter metric. For example the idea has been used by Lee Smolin in ...
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1answer
4k views

Is there a finite amount of mass in the universe? [duplicate]

So, I'm not too physics savvy but I am curious to ask. Is there a finite amount of mass in the universe? or is there more and more being created from somewhere or something? If the universe is ...
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2answers
3k views

The meaning of multiverse

A) I am intrigued by the multiverse theory as mentioned in Stephen Hawking's new book, "The Grand Design". According to his theory, one can have different 'universes' in one ultimate existence, a ...
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2answers
2k views

Zero energy universe [duplicate]

Regarding this thread: http://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=506985 Why is the idea that the total energy in the universe "zero" so popular (re: Laurence Krauss) and why is the flatness of ...
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2answers
140 views

If the universe is spatially infinite, and if something (A) is possible, does that mean the thing (A) happens?

Assuming that the universe is spatially infinite, extending outwards in all directions without end, and is consistent with what we have thus far observed, and predict to find (and predict to be out ...
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3answers
139 views

source of energy for expansion of the universe

I know in order for something to expand or grow it has to be fueled by something? So, if the universe is expanding their must be something that's keeping the universe at a temperature high enough for ...
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1answer
182 views

Different age of universe

According to general relativity time runs slowly near a massive body. So, I have a question bothering me from some time, that if time for every body/object in universe runs at a different rate, then ...
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4answers
778 views

Is space unending?

Is the space unending, i.e it has no boundaries? If yes, how can a thing exist which is non-ending? Its impossible for me to imagine something like that. Secondly, if its not and has boundaries then ...
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2answers
199 views

How do we estimate $10^{23}$ stars in the observable universe?

Now, I read somewhere, that there are $10^{23}$ stars in the observable universe. How did scientists estimate this?
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3answers
432 views

Is observable universe an explanation against Olbers' paradox?

First of all, let me tell you that I'm not a physicist but rather a computer scientist with a mere interest in physics at nowhere near a professional level so feel free to close this question if it ...
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6answers
2k views

Does gravity slow the expansion of the universe?

Does gravity slow the expansion of the universe? I read through the thread http://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=322633 and I have the same question. I know that the universe is not being ...
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1answer
269 views

acceleration of the universe

Moments after the Big Bang, the universe was expanding at an incredible rate, (I've heard) faster than the speed of light. Due to dark energy, scientists predict the rate of expansion will pick up ...
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2answers
3k views

How can we know there is more than just the observable universe

If all we can observe are things inside the observable universe, how do we know that anything even exists outside this boundary? I can see four ways of solving this problem. 1) We wait a while, the ...
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1answer
103 views

How fast am I moving? [duplicate]

Given the speed of light is 299,792,458 meters per second and that it is constant through out the universe, (i.e a person who measures the speed of light while standing still will get the same result ...
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2answers
153 views

Could these hypothetical very long distance properties of light offer alternatives to an expanding universe or a finite number of galaxies?

Assume that there could be a property of light that it gets very gradually steadily red-shifted by traveling large astronomical distances, in exactly the same way that Doppler shift from receding ...
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1answer
189 views

Infinite space or finite space?

I have been reading about the nature of space (Brian Greene's and Max Tegmark's recent books) and have a question on the size of space. Both references acknowledge that general relativity equations ...
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1answer
332 views

Reconciling “The Big Crunch” with the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics

Assume "The Big Crunch" scenario (the universe will collapse to a singularity). In this case, I think of the entire universe as an isolated system; in the "Big Crunch" scenario, it seems to me gravity ...
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1answer
81 views

Traveling Back in Time at the End of the Universe [closed]

I apologize if this question may seem fantastical. Since the heat death of universe is said to be inevitable, is it possible to travel back in time to a younger universe when the time comes? Is that ...
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2answers
783 views

Why does time exist? [closed]

So I have been thinking about some subjects and one of it involves time. And I tried writing a story/question on here to summarize the bigger picture but it's not going to happen it's too complicated ...