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Relativity and Cosmology

This is a Blog on relativity and cosmology for engineers and the like. My website "Relativity-4-Engineers" has more in-depth stuff.

Comments/questions of a general nature should preferably be posted to the FAQ section of this Blog (http://cr4.globalspec.com/blogentry/316/Relativity-Cosmology-FAQ).

A complete index to the Relativity and Cosmology Blog can be viewed here: http://cr4.globalspec.com/blog/browse/22/Relativity-and-Cosmology"

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Is Space Really Expanding?

Posted April 23, 2007 12:00 AM by Jorrie

Everyone knows, or has at least heard, that our universe is expanding. It is also very common to read or hear that space is expanding. This is often used to explain the cosmological redshift as follows: since the space between us and a distant galaxy has "stretched" during the time that light took to reach us, the wavelengths of the photons have been "stretched" by the same ratio.

Figure 1:

Figure 1 (from Relativity 4 Engineers) shows how every piece of space undergoes an equal amount of expansion as time goes on. This leads to Hubble's law, H = (recession velocity)/distance, normally expressed as km/s/Mega-parsec (km s-1 Mpc-1). It does not mean that for constant time intervals the expansion is always the same; it may vary over time, but for a given time, the expansion rate is on average the same all over space.

This notion of expanding space may (perhaps) be misleading. It may even be a fallacy, if we are to believe Prof. John Peacock of Edinburgh.[1] "The idea of an expanding universe can easily lead to confusion, and this section tries to counter some of the more tenacious misconceptions. The worst of these is the 'expanding space' fallacy." To be fair, the professor states that space on the global scale is expanding, but he holds that on a local scale, expanding space is a misconception. The space between the walls of your room, or between the Moon and us, or between nearby galaxies and us is not expanding, he says.

To me, Prof. Peacock's proof is not very convincing. He postulates a low redshift object that is somehow given a "push" directly towards us, with a velocity that just cancels out the cosmological redshift by means of a Doppler blueshift. Then he uses two approaches to analyze what will happen to the object as time goes on. One analysis shows that the "zero redshift" object will start moving away from us and obtain a redshift again. The other analysis shows that the object would actually pick up a blueshift and approach us.

It is important to note that he uses an Einstein-de-Sitter model[2] for the initial analyses, meaning that the cosmic expansion is slowing down 'just right' to prevent a contraction in the future. This result is then used to refute the "expanding space" notion. Shown below is a graph of the latter method, where the object approaches us.

Figure 2:

An object presently located at 100 million light-years from us is given a "push" so that it momentarily co-moves with us, meaning that it has the same velocity vector relative to the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) than what we have. The object will eventually reach us in a time depending on the rate of expansion. Shown here in blue is a distance curve for a decreasing expansion rate (Einstein-de-Sitter) and in green for comparison, the same curve with no expansion.

With Ho ~ 70 km s-1 Mpc-1, the required initial radial velocity relative to us is vr ~ -0.00715c. With Einstein-de-Sitter expansion, it will take some 45 billion years for the object to reach us. With no expansion (Ho = 0) it would have only taken some 0.1/0.00715 ~ 14 billion years (one Hubble time) for the object to reach us.[3] I feel that this says that space is expanding and not the contrary!

The said object will only be coming towards us in a universe with a decreasing expansion rate. This is perhaps of academic interest only, since the real universe seems to have an increasing expansion rate at present, meaning that the object in question would never reach us. It would drift away with the expansion and acquire a redshift once again. Prof. Peacock admits this in his article and comments that in this case one could possibly call it "expanding space".

Over a few meters, the present local expansion may be negligible - but the Moon is not quite "local". I calculated the pure Hubble expansion for the distance between the Moon and us, using the present Ho ~ 70 km s-1 Mpc-1 and I got ~27mm per year.[4] We know from laser ranging that the Moon is presently receding from Earth at ~38mm per year and all of this is normally attributed to tidal effects.

Figure 3:

Figure 3 shows the mechanism of angular momentum transfer to the Moon, as viewed from above the South Pole. The blue band represents a hypothetical continuous ocean and the blue and red arrows indicate the average tidal current flows. The offset gravity vector, due to the tidal bulge (probably also aided by magma currents, causing the crust to bulge) transfers some of Earth's angular momentum to the Moon. This causes the Moon to slowly recede from Earth.

My question is: can we be sure about the size of this effect? Tidal effects on Earth's rotation are very hard to model with any precision. Earth's slowing rotation seems to be influenced more by movements of the tectonic plates than by the Moon, so who says we have the Moon's recession rate right? One cannot just take Earth's presumed loss in angular momentum and transfer that to the Moon. Maybe only ~11 mm/year is caused by the tidal gravity effects and the rest by spatial expansion.

Finally, if I have my sums right, a 10x10x10m chunk of local space should presently expand at a rate of 0.07 micron per century on each side. We would probably never notice that. Sadly, putting your money into such a piece of spatial "real estate" and waiting for it to expand is not useful. That is unless a "Big Rip" happens anytime soon and then your claim will be of no value anyway!

What do you think: has Prof. Peacock got it right or wrong?

Regards, Jorrie

Credits and notes:

[1] Cosmological Physics: additional topics by J Peacock.

[2] See the Einstein-de-Sitter page in Relativity 4 Engineers for more...

[3] Interestingly, the 45 and 14 billion years are only dependent upon Ho and not upon the distance. The speed required to be momentarily stationary relative to Earth scales automatically with distance, keeping the times constant.

[4] One Mpc is about 3.26 million light-years. The distance to the Moon is about 1.25 light-seconds, which converts to about 1.2 x 10-14 Mpc. Multiplied by Ho ~70 km s-1 Mpc-1, this gives ~8.5 x 10-13 km/s, or about 27 mm/year.

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#1

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/23/2007 11:28 PM

Hi Jorrie,

Your link to Peacock's article didn't seem to work, but I agree with you, I can only say that what you show here is expanding space. It's really hard to figure out where people are coming from sometimes. Maybe he wrote it on a Monday.

I think I read somewhere that space is expanding between the galaxies, but not inside the galaxies. That didn't make any sense to me. Was it in one of your blogs?

What a great idea to use the moon's recession rate to prove or disprove expansion. Hopefully someone will have expertise enough to give us good data on the tidal effects.

regards,

S

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 12:42 AM

Hi S,

Tx, I fixed the link to Peacock's article.

I have a feeling that cosmologists now and then confuse themselves with their complex theories. Maybe Peacock had co-moving coordinates in mind, in which frame "space" does not expand at all.

J

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 8:18 AM

Is it not possible for a group of space objects to move as a single entity if the ballance of forces hold a neutral atractive field; and for this group to travel as a single object relative to the surounding source field (car/train) (space rocket with passengers)? I feel that all the mathematics and theories just mix things up and that my friends theories are just as good as any other I have read or heard. So far every word of his theory has been proven right.

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#3

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 7:27 AM

Anyone know how "Mond" and Milgrom fit into this? Also, does the "Pioneer Anomaly" assert anything on this way or the other?

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#5

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 9:57 AM

Come on Prove IT !!!

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#6

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 10:08 AM

Jorrie, once again a great read.

You Wrote: "Finally, if I have my sums right, a 10x10x10m chunk of local space should presently expand at a rate of 0.2 micron per century on each side."

That would be a 8.0 x 10-9 m3 volume increase. If I do my math correctly (a big "if") the volume of a small atom is roughly 1Åx1Åx1Å = 10-30 m3 and that would experience an increase of 8.0 x 10-44 m3 in volume in a year.

I think I have a point, so bear with me. As you go to smaller distances, energy is more densely packed. For instance the Strong Force, a very short range force, is much stronger than the electromagnetic force or gravitational force. So although small changes to large volumes should go relatively unnoticed, I'm not so sure small changes in small volumes would go as easily unnoticed. After all, the volume of a proton is roughly 10.0 x 10-44 m3, roughly the expansion in an atom sized volume of space in one year.

So shouldn't we be detecting this expansion? What happens to matter when space expands? Does it stretch out or just become displaced?

Too many questions, I know, and some I think are impossible to answer, so please answer what you can or give me your opinions on this.

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#15
In reply to #6

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:32 PM

Hi Roger,

You asked: "So shouldn't we be detecting this expansion? What happens to matter when space expands? Does it stretch out or just become displaced?"

Matter is just taken along with the "Hubble flow" caused by the expansion of space. Matter like stars and planets are not thought to expand with space, so it is probably totally out of the question at atomic level and smaller.

Whether galaxies and planetary systems (i.e., gravitationally bound systems) expand with space is uncertain. In any case, the amount must be so small that it is probably not detectable.

-J

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#32
In reply to #15

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 3:21 PM

Jorrie,

You Wrote:"Matter is just taken along with the "Hubble flow" caused by the expansion of space."

The thing that bothers me, and I know that I'm in full meta-physics mode at the momment, is that matter is mostly space (actually mostly energy).

For instance, the radius of an atom is on the order of angstroms (10-10 m) but the radius of a nucleus is on the order of Femtometers (10-15). That's 100,000 times smaller. There's a lot of space in an atom, and as far as I know, there's no reason why that space isn't expanding like everyother piece of space.

Taken further, protons are made of up, up, and down quarks and Neutrons are made up of down, down, and up quarks. Between the quarks there is space and lots of energy (strong force). Wouldn't it be reasonable to assume this sort of space expands as well.

If that's the case, it would be as if matter was being stretched and was snapping back into place. It just seems that when we're talking about the strong force, this should be detectable.

Anyway, like I said, everything I've said is metaphysics. For all I know, there is some quantum explanation of space when you start getting to these tiny volumes.

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#7

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 12:39 PM

Looking at the big picture, I feel that there is alot of misconceptions here.

Assuming we are starting with the big bang, a simple analagy is to drop a handful of marbles on the floor.

The first ones to hit the floor will travel the farthest and fastest, because the others give them a push and transfer some of their potential energy. The marbles spread out and eventually stop. The air (space) in between the marbles (stars) is not pushing, however, the space(distance) between all the marbles is expanding. The inner or slower marbles will never catch up with the outer ones because of less total energy.

Yes our galaxy is expanding and may eventually stop due to atrophy or accumulated resistance from other objects or forces. But that does not mean the fabric of space is expanding, it only means the distance between the objects is expanding.

We are not "stuck" in the fabric of space but are travelling through it

The tests with the doppler shift of light from moving objects, do not compensate for the natural phase shift that happens to any wave over distance. It is the same as looking at only the voltage and ignoring the current in a power cct.

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 12:55 PM

You Wrote: "Yes our galaxy is expanding and may eventually stop due to atrophy or accumulated resistance from other objects or forces. But that does not mean the fabric of space is expanding, it only means the distance between the objects is expanding"

I don't think that's true. Look at background radiation. It's the same regardless of the direction you look in. I don't think that would be the case if it were only the distances and not space itself that was expanding.

No, as far as I understand it, space itself expands.

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#10
In reply to #8

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 1:32 PM

Yes it would, if the background radiation also started at the same starting point and is travelling with us. The same effects would be seen in the radiation (smallest objects)as on larger objects.

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#13
In reply to #10

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:04 PM

Background radiation is not travelling "with us", it occupies all of space. It doesn't matter the direction you look, the "background" radiation is the same frequency. This would not be the case if it was "travelling with us".

To use another example, big bang started as a single point. So where did all the space that we live in today come from? It expanded outward from the singularity. That's what inflation theory tells us:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_inflation

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:29 PM

If we assume that theory was true, than; only the space within a galaxy exists, and the space between galaxies does not exist. How then can we see other galaxies?

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#19
In reply to #14

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:55 PM

You Wrote "If we assume that theory was true, than; only the space within a galaxy exists"

No, big bang created the universe, not just our galaxy. So only the space within our universe exists. That's why you can see other galaxies, they are part of our universe.

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#17
In reply to #13

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:54 PM

Ok I read these theorums. Typical of incompetent scientist to come up with a theory that solves all thier problems and ignores the laws of physics. These theories are a result of trying to prove a stupid theory that is based on the universe expanding faster than the speed of light. When a theory has problems that cannot be solved without breaking all the known rules.... the theory is wrong.

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#11
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 1:34 PM

Basically everything at the same distance from the starrt would be travelling at relatively the same speed. Objects closer to the start would be travelling slower.

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#18
In reply to #7

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:55 PM

Hi techno, you wrote: "Looking at the big picture, I feel that there is a lot of misconceptions here."

I'm afraid to say that what follows in your post contains gross misconceptions about the prevailing cosmology theories, but some are quite novel, I must confess!

Your marble analogy has little chance to explain the observations that is made on a daily basis in astronomy.

When you said "We are not "stuck" in the fabric of space but are travelling through it", you were partially right. The movement of stellar object through space is called 'peculiar movement' and does happen. However, at large distances, the redshifts that we measure on every object visible (without exception) is dominated by the Hubble flow, caused by the expansion of space. The distant galaxies recede from us because they are dragged along by the fabric of space.

Lastly, redshift is not a phase shift, it's a wavelength change due to the expansion of the space over which the wave travels.

-J

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#20
In reply to #18

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 3:38 PM

The redshift studies only looked at ht frequency shift of long distance signals. It did not compensate for the polarization and phase shift of the signals that today we now know happens. Examples are long range radars, and radio signals that change its polarity over distance.

A simple analagy is to cause a wave in a pool. The initial wave has a high potential and frequency. Over distance the wave flattens and spreads out. The change happens in the wave. The pool is not expanding.

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#9

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 1:28 PM

As far as the moon changing orbit goes: The orbit is a function of speed , direction, and mass: an equation that has been figured out long ago. The problem is that you have to take into consideration, all objects in the solar system. The only way to get a perfect orbit is to have no other objects in the vicinity and constant mass and speed.

As far as predicting the Tides, it is a simple matter of mathematics. The gravitational force on a spinning object has a 90 degree phase shift. The delay in the tide can be attributed to the time it takes to move the total volume of water. The attitude of earth (at 90 degrees from the moon), you calculate the volume of water that can move. Factor in the instantaneous gravitational effect, and the delay in moving the water to compensate for the gravity differential at that instance.

All in all you need to know:

Instantaneous gravity differential, 'Y' in your gravitational angle + Earths gravity (we can already can calculate this)

Volume of water on earth at 90 degrees from the moon (changes continually depending on the specific rotation and attitude with the moon) We need to come up with a water volume model of the earth., and

A constant that reflects the X in your gravitational angle and its effects on water.

Once these values are produced, a simple fast fournier transform can calculate the tides to the resulution of your volume model.

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#16
In reply to #9

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:40 PM

Hi techno, you wrote: "As far as predicting the Tides, it is ..."

What I wrote has little to do with predicting the tides; I referred to the difficulties of modeling the effect of the tides on the rotation of Earth and the effect on the orbit of the Moon. Reread my OP and you will see that clearly.

I see you modified my sketch of the mechanism for transfer of momentum to the Moon, but I don't understand what you mean by it. Can you elaborate?

-J

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#21
In reply to #16

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 4:28 PM

The Y axis is the gravitational pull between the moon and the earth. It is a combination of the moons gravity and the earths gravity. It changes depending on their instantational distance.

The X axis is the resulting directional force on earth due to the gyro effect of the spinning earth. This creates your gravitational vector.

The X axis points to the location where the peak instantaneous force is located, (lessening of the gravity). Water being a liquid will try to flow to the lower pressure area (X Axis). I takes time to get there and is accumulated with the previous instance(s) in time. This explains why the high tide is delayed from the X axis. The amount of water flowing to that point + the previous Incidents amounts will produce the level of high tide at a later time (due to the delay).

A Fast Fournier Transform of gravitational measurements and water volumes is an excellent formula to accurately take instantaneous measurements and calculate accurately the waveform. (predict the tides)

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#25
In reply to #21

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 1:03 AM

Hi Techno,

I must say that your inputs are highly entertaining, but I'm afraid quite far off the technical mark!

I will not reply to all of them, but let us analyze this particular one (#16). Your opening paragraph is technically sound, but that's about where it stops. I'll quote from your post one by one and then reply:

1. "The X axis is the resulting directional force on earth due to the gyro effect of the spinning earth. This creates your gravitational vector."

No. The gyroscopic effect has nothing to do with the tides. It is pure tidal gravity and the water attempts to flow to the "+" an "-" Y axis in my sketch. The rotation drags the heaping effect around a bit (about 45°) depending on the surface topology).

2. "The X axis points to the location where the peak instantaneous force is located, (lessening of the gravity)."

No. In fact the tidal gravity of the moon "squeezes" the Earth on those sides on the X axis, so there is an effective increase of the gravity there!

3. "Water being a liquid will try to flow to the lower pressure area (X Axis)"

No. The highest pressure is around the X axis and the water tends to flow away from there. The rotation drags that low point some 45° clockwise (as viewed from South Pole).

4. "This explains why the high tide is delayed from the X axis."

No. The high tide is delayed from the Y axis, for reasons as before.

5. "A Fast Fourier Transform of gravitational measurements and water volumes is an excellent formula to accurately take instantaneous measurements and calculate accurately the waveform. (predict the tides)"

Yes and No. A FFT is performed on water level and tidal current measurements for every point of interest. The astronomical cycles are used as periods, but not gravitational measurements. Ask NOAA, who does it every day.

I welcome robust debate on this, but let's keep it technically sound as far as possible. I did post a series on tidal prediction before. If you want to debate that, I will prefer to do it there. http://cr4.globalspec.com/blogentry/518/Tidal-Prediction-Part-1

As I said before, the point here is not tidal prediction, but about the slowing down of Earth's rotation rate purely due to the tides. If this "slowing down" can be modelled accurately, it will tell us how much the Moon recedes due to tidal interaction alone.

-J

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#22
In reply to #16

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 4:35 PM

Back to your original Op.

If you look at the gravitational maps of earth, the tides have little effect. The greatest effects, or changes in the gravitational measurements on earth are the mountains.

http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/stories/s911917.htm

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#23
In reply to #16

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 4:50 PM

I think that you can attribute the expanding distance of the moon by its increasing mass and resulting momentum.

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#26
In reply to #23

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 1:05 AM

Yes, the theory that space is expanding is just a theory, but just like epicycles were used to explain why planets moved forward, then backward, then forward again in a geocentric Universe, I think you could hard wire some possibility why space "seems" to be expanding.

I hate to use this analogy, but you can think of it like all the galaxies are on the same train, moving that a way. In the meantime, they're all free to move about the train, but they'll all arrive at Tombstone soon or later.

Also, I don't think your analogy about the wave in the pond quite works, your talking oranges and apples. A water wave is a gravitational wave - water is displaced upward, then falls back. There's lots of things to rob this energy, hence the increase in wavelength. Photons don't have these issues. If the light from two stars were checked for a frequency shift and they were at different distances from us, and not moving... AND if they were the same type of stars, their wavelength would be pretty much the same. Yes, there are visible red and blue shifts associated with objects that are moving relative to us, but Jorrie is talking about the red shift that relates to the Hubble expansion. It's not the distance that shifts the frequency (distance in itself has no affect on photons) but the fact that the space through which the photons travel is getting larger.

Of course, this is just a theory, but a very popular theory nonetheless.

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#33
In reply to #26

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 3:26 PM

You have Identified the Heart of the problem, it is the assumption that " Photons don't have these issues" Photons have all the same problems, but because of the speed, it is difficult to see. Light is simply energy waves at above the extreemly high frequecy band

Photons also have the same problems with scattering (multiple paths), distortion and is affected by gravity. Radio frequencies and above all travel at the speed of light

Here is an example of measurment of these effects can be found at:

http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/freeabs_all.jsp?tp=&arnumber=1144581&isnumber=25710

A small example of solving the problems in light distortion can be seen here.

http://documents.exfo.com/appnotes/anote073-ang.pdf

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#27
In reply to #23

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 5:58 AM

Hi techno, you said: "I think that you can attribute the expanding distance of the moon by its increasing mass and resulting momentum".

This is an interesting hypothesis. Can you perhaps show a few calcs on this, or is it just a "gut feel"?

-J

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#28
In reply to #27

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 10:03 AM

Sorry, I was getting tired last night. It was just a stupid idea that entered my head that assumed since the moon had no atmosphere all the asteroids hitting it would add to its mass and potential energy and not reduce its speed. Meanwhile on earth most of the meteors hitting earth are burn't up. On second thought this morning, I realize that Even though the meteors burn up, their mass may still be added to earths mass eventually as fallout or condensation

As far as calc the moons orbit is not concentric (e=0.05). A non concentric orbit changes continually. Think spirograph

How do you know it is increasing its average orbital distance?

As far as the moon gravity goes, You say push, I say pull, the result is the same. It is the same argument as the airplane wing; wether it is pushed from the bottom or sucked from the top. The real answer is both, even though math can be made to prove either theory.

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#30
In reply to #28

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 2:45 PM

Hi techno, you asked: "How do you know it [the Moon] is increasing its average orbital distance?"

Easy - laser ranging is done to mm precision at all points of the Moon's orbit and shows an increase of 38 mm in the average Lunar distance each year. The other planets, especially Jupiter, influence the Moon's orbit, but the effect is easy to calculate and compensate for over a year. Over a long period, it cancels out in any case.

About the mass that falls onto the Moon from meteors: it is insignificant relative to the mass of the Moon and then, it is coming randomly from all directions, so it adds and subtracts roughly equally to the Moon's orbital energy. They only credible influences causing a long term increase is the tidal bulges on Earth and then, possibly, the expansion of space. The jury is still out on the latter.

-J

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#35
In reply to #30

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 4:17 PM

Thanks

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#24
In reply to #9

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 6:17 PM

Am I the only one to see through the fog? Yes I understand what you are getting at and it is as good as any other way of conveying the information. Don't let the b'stds grind you down.

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#12

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/24/2007 2:01 PM

But then again space may not be expanding. All masses may indeed be shrinking! Don't raise the bridge, lower the river.

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#29

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 11:27 AM

Back to your Original question.

The tests and proofs that all these theories are based on incomplete and inaccurate mathematics.

Redshift is based on the doppler theory that a moving target will change its frequency depending if the object is approaching the transmitter or going away from it. The problem with this theory is that it is based on 'Ideal' mathematics where long distance corruption of signals is ignored.

In fact, the fact that all long distance objects are red shifted does not prove they are all moving away, It just proves the signal has been distorted by distance.

I do not dispute that the universe is expanding, I also have no proof that it is. I do dispute the theories since they are based on flawed mathematics and incomplete wave theory. In the basic study of wave theory, you cannot ignore the distortion effects due to distance. These problems are significant in as small distance as within our own planet and are unpredictable in the distances we are talking in cosmology. I also dispute that we have yet to develop an accurate way to measure the distance to the stars.

In the study of electricity there is voltage, current, and frequency. The voltage and frequency is important, but to ignore the current will kill you. In all these theories only the voltage and frequency is studied.

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#31
In reply to #29

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 3:02 PM

Hi techno, me again. You wrote: "Redshift is based on the Doppler theory that a moving target will change its frequency depending if the object is approaching the transmitter or going away from it."

You are referring to Doppler shift here. Cosmological redshift has a completely different meaning than Doppler shift. It may be that you do not understand the theory that you are attacking - if so, it's never a good ploy!

When you wrote: "In fact, the fact that all long distance objects are red shifted does not prove they are all moving away, It just proves the signal has been distorted by distance", you were perfectly right! The signal's wavelength has been 'distorted' by the distance it had to travel through expanding space. It has nothing to so with the movement of the emitter. You said it and that is the essence of the theory that you are disputing!

Lastly, to call cosmology theory "based on flawed mathematics and incomplete wave theory" sounds like gross ignorance of theoretical cosmology. I invite you to show the "flaws" in the mathematics - it might win you the Nobel price if you can!

-J

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#34
In reply to #31

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 4:14 PM

Sorry, I have a tendancy to over simplify. I completely understand that the viewed redshift or lowering of the frequency of light signals from far away objects is caused by the distortion effects of the distance and the gravitational distortions between the source and observer. I understand that the use of the measurement of the doppler effect on far away objects was used to try and calculate the speed and distance of the stars. Reading all the history and going through all the math that was used for these calculations, it was obvious to me that only ideal frequency measurements were taken into consideration.

  • As I have said numerous times, this is like measuring the power in your wall and calling it only 115v 60 hz. This is incomplete with out the current. A better measurement would be 115 v 60 hz , 10 amps current 90 degree out of phase with the voltage. Even more accurate would include how fast the phase shift changes for both voltage and current over a specific distance in a specific medium, and at what distance the phase shift makes the signal unrecognizable.

In all the math used to prove the universe is expanding, with redshift as the proof;

  • In no case was the natural phase shift of the intensity and volume of light related to distance taken into account.
  • In no case was the distortion due to multiple paths taken into account.

Thus the result of not accounting for this natural phase shift was a conclusion that the universe is expanding because all far away objects redshift.

When all the math is done, sometimes the result represents the answer, however sometimes it represents 'what you missed' + the answer. In this case until the 'what you missed' is taken into consideration, you cannot say you have an answer.

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#37
In reply to #34

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 12:34 AM

Hi techno, you wrote: "In all the math used to prove the universe is expanding, with redshift as the proof;

  • In no case was the natural phase shift of the intensity and volume of light related to distance taken into account.
  • In no case was the distortion due to multiple paths taken into account."

My final remarks before I'm stepping off this line of argument.

You cannot measure the phase shift of a remote, non-coherent source. And if you could, it has no bearing on the cosmological redshift anyway -ask any physicist. For redshift you look at the "signature" of the source and find, say, hydrogen in the spectrum. Then you compare the spectral shift of that signature with what we measure here on Earth, in the lab. This gives the redshift and the apparent recession speed of the object, due to the expansion of space.

Multiple paths are taken into account, but just in the case of gravitational lensed signals. Otherwise, there are no multipath involved. I will post a Blog article on gravitational lensing soon.

Signal strengths are obviously taken into account in astronomical measurement, especially of distances to calibrate the redshift/distance relationship.

On your comments on gravitational redshift effect, check my response to StandardsGuy below.

-J

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#36
In reply to #31

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/25/2007 10:35 PM

Hi Jorrie,

I'm not here to take techno's side. I was going to tell you that older books refer to the redshift as the Doppler effect, but you no doubt know that. Because of your post I googled Cosmological redshift and read this:

http://astronomy.swin.edu.au/cosmos/C/Cosmological+Redshift

which explained it. However, it did not leave me with an impression that anyone knows the math that can calculate the expansion, if any. Gravitational Redshift, I learned from another site, is also involved. It may be that all that dark matter is making fools out of us. So now I must ask your original question: Is Space Really Expanding?

Regards,

S

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#38
In reply to #36

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 1:18 AM

Hi SG,

You wrote: "However, it did not leave me with an impression that anyone knows the math that can calculate the expansion, if any."

The article that you referenced above is a bit thin and inconclusive - it lists many problems without answers! I can assure you that cosmologists have models that calculate the expansion to considerable accuracy! At the risk of frustrating you, I must refer you to the cosmology section of Relativity 4 Engineers for a detailed discussion - it's far to long to do here.

You then said: "Gravitational Redshift, I learned from another site, is also involved. It may be that all that dark matter is making fools out of us."

When you observe at large distances, the effect of gravitational redshift is vanishingly small when compared to cosmological redshift. When the light leaves a distant galaxy, it is slightly red-shifted as it climbs out of the local "gravitational well". When it enters our own galaxy's "well", it is blue-shifted again, partially (or completely) cancelling out the original gravitational redshift. So what we observe is the cosmological redshift with a tiny error due to uncertainty of the mass of the source galaxy.

Matter that is encountered along the way does not change the redshift in any measurable way, because light goes into and out of the same gravitational well, hence cancelling out the effect. Dark matter counts as matter "along the way", so even if clumped together, it does not affect the redshift in any significant way.

Gravitational lensing may have a tiny effect on the redshift, because it may lengthen the path that the light takes considerably. However, there are virtually always more than one path, causing us to observe multiple images of the same distant object. The multiple images help to characterize the gravitational lens, so any effect can be accurately modelled and taken out of the measured redshift.

Think about the size of the distant redshift factors: galaxies and quasars at 6+ and the background radiation at 1000+. The redshift factor is how many times the wavelength of the "signature light" has been stretched. Gravitational redshifts only reach that sort of figures extremely close to black holes. Any light getting that close to a block hole is "swallowed" in any case, so it does not bother us!

So yes, all evidence points towards an expanding universe. The only arguments may be about the rate of expansion, the change in rate of expansion and whether the latter is positive or negative (accelerating or decelerating).

Further, there are uncertainties on the smallest scales at which expansion actually occurs, which prompted this thread.

-J

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#46
In reply to #38

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 12:06 AM

Hi Jorrie,

I'm not frustrated with you at all, but you may be with me, and certainly with others in this thread. I should have known you knew all about gravitational redshift. Thanks for being so patient with me and others that don't know as much as you and for mentoring us. I've really been too busy to read much of your book and had a slow internet connection, but have taken steps to rectify that problem.

One thing though, I think you're a little too optimistic at the uncertainties of these measurements. Remember, Hubble was off a factor of 5 at one time, and other things have been off far too. Things are getting better, but I'm not sure we're there yet. We don't know what dark matter is, or what its properties are, so we have to go with the flow for now.

Regards,

S

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#47
In reply to #46

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 1:59 AM

Hi S, it's a pleasure!

You wrote: "One thing though, I think you're a little too optimistic at the uncertainties of these measurements."

I think I'm keeping an open mind, e.g., cosmologists reports the Hubble constant with a 5% tolerance these days, but it is in fact a model (ΛCDM) dependant measurement. I believe its more like ±10% absolute.

The "worst" I have seen is quoting the age of the universe as 13.7±0.2 Gy, while this is also model dependant! I believe that when model dependency has been factored out, the correlation between different observational types might reduce it to some 13.7±1 Gy.

But I guess we could still (conceivably) be are out by a factor 2...

-J

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#48
In reply to #47

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 2:10 AM

The other day I was playing with my new Geiger counter. I was looking for something radioactive. I knew I'd find something in my dad's garage if anywhere. Yep! I found it. Thorium in an old lantern mantle. Turns out that some isotopes of thorium have a half-life of 1014 power years. Further research produced isotopes whose half-life are powers of tens longer. And that's just the half-life!!!

So I wonder what role these isotopes will play, say, a billion years after the Universe becomes what it will become.

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#49
In reply to #48

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 2:50 AM

Hi vermin: "Turns out that some isotopes of thorium have a half-life of 1014 power years."

I believe 1014 years is about when the "big-rip" could start (heavily accelerated expansion, the start of the "degenerative epoch"), if current theory holds.

I guess that the time of your: "Further research produced isotopes whose half-life are powers of tens longer. And that's just the half-life!!!" might be around the time that protons will decay.

What will happen to those isotopes if their protons decay one can probably not even guess...

-J

PS: I have a little bit on these timescales in the download from my page on cosmic inflation.

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#50
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 2:58 AM

Thanks!

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#39

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 10:57 AM

Prof Peacock's argument makes perfect sense to me. He in truth has argued the same as me. He says that too many people are taking the expanding space as a source or 'force' of nature and not a consequence of increasing distance.

His Argument is simply that there is a paradox in the Hubble flow theorum. The proof is that the waveform of current mathematics of expanding space of an object moving towards us cancells the Hubble flow.

In other words The math proves that the objects are indeed moving away from each other, however, there is no 'force' in the expanding space.

My interpretation

The hubble flow is currently theorized at a rate of ~70 km per second per megaparsec. This equation is an error equation it is not an acceleration equation. this equation interprets as 70 km(distance) per second (time) per megaparsec (distance)

It says the distances ar errored by 70 km every every megaparsec

An acceleration equation would have distance per time per time ie gravity on earth is g = 32 ft/s2 = 9.8 m/s2 or distance per time per time

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#40
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 3:14 PM

Apples and oranges, techno. Apples and oranges...

Your equations for gravity on Earth, compare speed of falling object with reference to time.

The Hubble thing is referencing acceleration with reference to distance. Of course they're using different values.

By the way, being in Canada, do you know Big Foot? If yes, please tell him to return my car. I said he could borrow it, not "Have" it! Dang!!!

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#41
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 4:15 PM

My point is that an error in distance is not a proof of expansion unless that error continuously increases. It is simply an error.

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#44
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 11:19 PM

I think that we're at a point where only time will tell. Whether that time is within our life times is another question. However, sooner or later we will see a change or we won't. I guess I'm betting on the pooch named "YES," while I assume you're betting on the "NO" dog.

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#42
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 4:18 PM

As for your car, I think Bigfoot sold it to pay for drugs

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#45
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 11:23 PM

Oh, well. That's OK, the thing was only worth about two pine cones and a rock Canadian.

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#43
In reply to #39

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/26/2007 11:13 PM

Hi Techno,

This discussion with you is going in circles, with apparently no hope of a resolution, so as I said in my last post, I will not comment technically again here.

This Blog is about mainstream relativity and cosmology and it's implications, so I can only allow so much "dissident" theory and discussion on it. (No hard feelings, anyway!)

I recommend that, if you wish, start another thread in the general section of CR4, where the discussion can continue until it "dies a natural death".

-J

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#51
In reply to #43

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 9:12 AM

Didn't mean to be 'dissident', and I was thinking the same thing yesterday. It became apparent to me that very few people have the same indepth understanding of wave propagation theory as I do.... Spent my whole career working with it. I'll have to publish something on this first.

Again, sorry

And, thanks, you did make me do some serious research on cosmology,

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#52
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Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

04/27/2007 3:21 PM

Hi techno, no problem!

I can recommend a CR4 Blog to start publishing mini-articles on your field of expertise. Drop Chris Leonard a CR4 email and he will assist you in setting up one, if you so desire.

-J

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#53

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

05/03/2007 5:16 AM

According to the results of studying Supa-Novas, the universe is not only expanding but the expansion is accellerating. Unknown forces are driving the Universe appart at the smallest level. I am finding it hard to relate to the points and comments that are being made as most, if not all, appear to ignore recent developments in Cosmology.

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#54
In reply to #53

Re: Is Space Really Expanding?

05/03/2007 5:29 AM

In my above comment I did not mention Quantum Mechnics because that is another major subject. However, I understand that current thinking involves that there is no such thing as a 'vacuum' in space (anywhere) as at the quantum level there is infinite energy available at any 'point' (with any 'point' in space itself open to the Uncertainty Principle). This is clearly supported by energy and matter being interchanegable according to Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity. DRB.

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