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back to article Big Bang bashing boffins ‘Big Bounce’ back to BIRTH OF TIME

A group of Penn State physicists says the universe we now see could have arisen from a "Big Bounce" rather than a Big Bang. The new work by Penn State, led by professor Abhay Ashtekar, director of the Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos, proposes ways to apply quantum physics "further back in time than ever before – right …

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Anonymous Coward

Big Bounce

Some claim that the big bang was actually a collision in other dimensions (as in string theory) that made things bounce to our three dimensions. See e.g. overunity.com/5793/cosmic-lattice

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Childcatcher

Re: Big Bounce

Everyone is trying to find alternative views to the processes at Time Zero. The Big Bounce view is nothing new, what would be new would be to put some numbers to the process.

I have never been convinced about the arithmetic of Time Zero. Clearly in a singularity the density is enormous however this also means that time is dilated so far as to be meaningless, so when someone declares that at 10e-38 sec after the Big Bang that matter condenses out of the primal cloud in current time this might be billions of years. Similarly if time is irrelevant then there can be no velocity, and consequently no distance. The primal cloud could be full of structures and yet be very small, from the inside we would not be aware of this. The view that without time there is not distance and without distance there is no time is paradoxical. However the standing of time as a dimension is dubious and is a convention we have developed to account for change, it is very much a result of what is happening rather than a cause. There is no question that time is flexible.

It might be that the big bang is no more than the realisation of time, what was very close is now extremely distant because time enables velocity acceleration and distance. The Big Bounce might be the collapse of time followed by the expansion of time.

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Anonymous Coward

Couldn't manage a Canadian Rugby program, so turning their hands to quantum physics. Awesome.

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Pint

I can't help but laugh at every single one of the theories for the origins of the universe. It's like an ant trying to comprehend the earth's rotation around the sun. We just don't have the scale or perspective and no theory can ever be proved.

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Boffin

Speaking of perspective,

on the scale of the earth's revolution* around the sun, we're on the same order of magnitude as ants, size-wise at least. Yet we can comprehend it.

[N]o theory can ever be proved.

Yes, that's the point of science. No theory about anything can ever be proved. But the most likely theory can be selected by comparing degree of assumptions and correlation with observed evidence.

* The earth revolves around the sun. It rotates around its axis.

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Holmes

Re: Speaking of perspective,

I'm glad someone took the effort to reply, rather than simply downvoting me. I welcome a discussion on this, I've always been confused by the ready acceptance of the Big Bang Theory. To me it speaks more to humanity's inability to comprehend infinity and a need for endings and beginnings, rather than a genuine 'origin of the universe' .

Semantics aside, I didn't understand you when you say we're on the same magnitude of ants.

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Re: Speaking of perspective,

Just to follow up my own comment here's a scholarly link for further reading

http://www.apologeticspress.org/apcontent.aspx?category=9&article=1453

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Bronze badge

Re: Speaking of perspective,

from the about page of Apologetics* Press:

The entire material Universe was specially created by this almighty God in 6 days of approximately 24-hours each, as revealed in Genesis 1 and Exodus 20:11.

Well, that's the big bang disproved then.

*The name was a giveaway but the I'm a bit of a masochist.

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Re: Speaking of perspective,

@Francis_Boyle

Irrespective of the background of the site itself, the article I linked is still an interesting examination of the science, complete with a full table of references, imagine that!

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Anonymous Coward

I thought ...

that the inflation model was proposed TO explain the heterogeneous distribution of the universe.

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Anonymous Coward

at least it's a better theory than bird poo

google 'Penzias and Wilson' for the origins of CMB.

Has this new work yet answered the question of whether a big quantum crunch is the inevitable re-ending of the multiverse?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: at least it's a better theory than bird poo

I made a somewhat indirect reference to this on another article hereabouts a short time ago. It appears that no-one at the time quite got the reference, but it seems like you probably would have. Well done you!

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Pint

Laws of Physics breaking down, etc.

The minimum size was exactly one Planck distance larger than the size where the ultimate Laws of Physics break down. It bounced off the limits of those laws.

Just like "Nature abhors a vacuum", She also almost-magically avoids discontinuities. In 13.77 billion years, Nature has 'divided by zero' exactly zero times. In years-per-discontinuity, that's a rate of...

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Is this...

anything to do with this: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/26/german_incident/ ?

if not you lost me at "quantum fluctuations might have created the pre-inflationary structures which, after the universe's inflationary phase, formed the kernels for the universe we know see".

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Silver badge

Sir Roger Penrose has given his (typically geometric) view on this subject:

Cycles of Time

Warning: may contain mathematics unsuitable for readers of a nervous disposition.

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Thumb Up

Penrose's explanation of the end...

.. of the universe and the whole solution to heat death and the start of the universe* was on a... panorama I think? recently and as an astrophyicist by training I was just utterly gobsmacked.

It was so... elegant.

It's as close as I get to a religious experience and I am still getting tingles when I think about it. It's quite humbling when you realise the gap between intellects who can come up with these solutions and yourself.

Oh well, I just hope that the human race keeps churning out minds like his.

*as I understood it, and I could well be out of practice, the universe will eventually cool to absolute zero (or close enough that quantum fluctuations are the only accelerating things) at which point space and time will have no real meaning since there won't be anything to distinguish anything from anything else. At which point everywhere is basically nowhere and so could be treated as a singularity which could then explode.

I probably mangled that thoroughly after 10 years away from university and not doing physics, but I think that was the gist of it.

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Re: Penrose's explanation of the end...

I keep reading the * paragraph and each time I think I've got it I forget whether that's a zero-entropy universe or not, and the 'getting' slips away...

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Re: Penrose's explanation of the end...

Maximum entropy is indistinguishable from zero entropy, if my extremely rusty memory is correct.

So yeah, odd things happen at extremes.

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Re: Penrose's explanation of the end...

Thanks.

When my head isn't going 'Stop attempting to think this, it hurts', I'm envisioning this as the 'onion-doughnut ' image of The Reality with multiple universes stacked above/below each other, a la Excession...I'm probably wrong tho...

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Bronze badge

Re: Penrose's explanation of the end...

My thought on this is probably somewhat simplistic: A cyclic universe.

<ul>Let's start after the BB.

<li>The universe expands, time moves "forward", entropy tends toward maximum.</li>

<li>At the heat-death of the universe, entropy is absolute, quantum fluctuations cause "clumping" which draws other matter into the clumps. to borrow from DA it's a "Gnab Gib".</li>

<li>After the GG, the universe is contracting, time moves "backward(-ish)", and entropy tends toward minimum.</li>

<li>After the final contraction (cold-death?) of the universe, everything is in one solid point, QF causes something to move, which breaks the draw, and everything starts expanding (Bing Bang/Bounce style)</li></ul>

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WTF?

Re: Penrose's explanation of the end...

I thought <code> <ul> and <li> were possible now? Or did I mis-read and that only goes to silver and gold, along with the editing privilege?

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@Thecowking

I think the prog you remember featuring Sir Roger (and also Neil Turok, another British hero (OK, South African, but educated here)) was on Horizon.

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Happy

Re: @Thecowking

Horizon!

That was it.

Honestly, I rarely watch TV so my memories of what programmes are called is... patchy to say the least.

Yes Horizon, I liked that episode. My girlfriend put it on iPlayer and for once I didn't spend the evening reading a book in front of the TV :)

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Anonymous Coward

What is the difference between

"that super-compressed mass that had a distinct history of its own," and the collapsed lump of the Big Bang previous to ours and out of which sprang ours?

Remember when Flash Gordon and Dr Zarkov go the previous Big Bang to hide from Ming, who had another wild hair? Episode 69, I think.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: What is the difference between

Not being a physicist I can just about understand these theories, although the underlying mathematics makes my head spin.

I've always wondered if the rules for things at a quantum scale are different to those of our macro universe, is it not possible that there is a larger scale we're not aware of with another different set of rules? If that is the case, would a universe experiencing heat death with its near uniformity not appear at this greater scale as a singularity? I imagine this singularity experiencing a sudden expansion so that the universe has effectively 'blown out' into this larger scale with it's different rule set. Perhaps the universe has been constantly expanding through different scales. It rapidly expands into its new scale (the blow out), then gradually expands until it reaches heat death, at which point it is indistinguishable from a singularity and blows out into the next scale.

I suspect the above is just a load of nonsense though.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: What is the difference between

And what if all that which became that singularity of yours, both expands and contracts at the same time? At one pole, a massive expansion occulting the last crumbs of the contraction of the last bounce. And at the other pole, the remnants of that same expansion lost in the muster of the Light Militia of Black Holes hell bent for camp. Never a moment of beginning. A seamless transition of the infinite bounces of the universe. And like a balloon that takes more time to inflate than it does to collapse with a cigarette.

No one has a copyright on Nonsense.

_

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Unhappy

I love to read about this stuff, but I feel like a medieval villager listening to someone trying to explain modern science, actually the science of about fifty years ago. Mind thoroughly boggled.

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