What would it take to falsify the "big bang" model of cosmology?

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Dec 15, 2019
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What if there wasn't a t=0?

Arp's evidence suggests redshift doesn't always indicate distance. Therefore the problem that neither QM nor GR can address no longer needs to be addressed.

<<Religious content removed by moderator>>

But while I love talking philosophy, I'd rather talk about what it would take to falsify the BB. So far I'm finding it nearly impossible to get answers!
 
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Catastrophe

"There never was a good war, or a bad peace."
This may be overly simplistic as my knowledge of these things is embarrassingly lacking; however, wouldn’t the observation of a “membrane” or wall encompassing the universe shoot down the BB argument?

I may be misunderstanding you’re request as we obviously have not observed any such ”space sized cellular structure” but I’m uncertain by what you mean if “new” information wouldn’t qualify to thwart the accepted BB theories.
Interesting. Have you seen the flatlander analogies I pursued? Whilst I am absolutely not proposing some cellular structure (but, am I in n+1 dimension?) the surface of the sphere, to a flatlander might be construed as some sort of "layer" of zero thickness.
 

Catastrophe

"There never was a good war, or a bad peace."
What would it take to falsify the "big bang" model of cosmology?

Helio posted:
"Neither QM nor GR can address the events at t=0. What's remarkable is just how close physicists can get to it." With which I agree.

As some of you know, I am against the singularity obtained by (IMO) invalid retrograde extrapolation from 'expansion of the Universe especially inflation'. The concept is wrong - not in theory but in execution. For example, you have this ad hoc interpolation of rapid expansion - how do you fit that into uniform retrograde extrapolation?.

Just make yet another adjustment to the HI near (OK very near) to t=0. Forget singularities - just whoosh through the narrow constriction . . . well, you just meet a black hole "head on". Seriously, I am of the persuasion which advocates cyclic BB-BH progressions. I believe the entropy objection to that is a bit lame - whenever have you heard talk of entropy in the context of either?

Have Fun! - just search: irregular expansion of the universe! Bye Bye BB

Cat :)

Just found this in my notes and must add it here:
"It is possible that what we see as our universe is the remnant of a black hole forming in another universe. One of the leading proponents of this idea is a Polish theoretical physicist Nikodem Poplawski"
 
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IG2007

"Don't criticize what you can't understand..."
Apr 5, 2020
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I have a question, Robotron. Why do you always refer to Arp while stating your statements. Do you have only one person's evidences for debating with hundreds of other astronomers and astrophysicists' evidences worldwide?
 
Jun 26, 2020
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Interesting. Have you seen the flatlander analogies I pursued? Whilst I am absolutely not proposing some cellular structure (but, am I in n+1 dimension?) the surface of the sphere, to a flatlander might be construed as some sort of "layer" of zero thickness.
No, I have not not. Is it possible for you to link back to them?
 
Jun 26, 2020
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Edgeless Universe #109
Quickest is type flatlander in the little search mag glass _________________ R of bell
Ok, I’ve only now tapped into this and I “think” I understand. Please forgive my rudimentary style but here goes: I'm an ant on a surface thickness of 0. I cannot perceive the “z” because it does not exist for me. I can see my world expanding by my distances becoming longer but I do not perceive they are expanding on the “z” axis?

Hopfully this describes my level of understanding. That being said, could you recommend a book that would help me understand this edgeless universe? Thanks for the patience and I’ll now step back so this thread can continue its search on the BB. I feel like a kindergartner listening to high schoolers talk of algebra, hahahahaha. It’s important to me that I do not distract others.
 
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Dec 15, 2019
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<<Religious content removed by moderator>>
Religious content? Laff. Okay. Apparently someone doesn't like me equating belief in the big bang with believing in miracles, even though that's exactly what it requires. But I'm glad someone's reading this thread.
 
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I have a question, Robotron. Why do you always refer to Arp while stating your statements. Do you have only one person's evidences for debating with hundreds of other astronomers and astrophysicists' evidences worldwide?
Arp worked in concert with many scientists to show redshift doesn't always indicate distance. How many scientists do you need before a conclusion is valid? Two, five, a thousand?

I was under the impression science is not a popularity contest, but rather a data driven effort. If people disagree with Arp's data, they address the data. One black swan is all we need to prove that all swans aren't white, after all.
 
Religious content? Laff. Okay. Apparently someone doesn't like me equating belief in the big bang with believing in miracles, even though that's exactly what it requires. But I'm glad someone's reading this thread.
Science and religion are distinctly different. Science is objective based. The BBT from day one came with tests astronomers could conduct to falsify the theory. As physicists took it more seriously new tests were given the theory, including the CMBR requirement. To go to t=0, however, is going beyond the theory and into metaphysics or pseudoscience, both philosophical or religious viewpoints.

Religion can have support from scientific evidence (e.g. archeology) but it is subjective-based reasoning.

I like the analogy where science is like an island and religion and philosophy are like the ocean surrounding it. We can build impressive things and enjoy a nice standard of living by building on the island but we are very limited on what can be built in the sea. But the sea is important, too.

"The heart has its reasons, that reason cannot know." - Blaise Pascal.
 
Arp worked in concert with many scientists to show redshift doesn't always indicate distance. How many scientists do you need before a conclusion is valid? Two, five, a thousand?
It only took one to falsify Arp's model, though I assume there were many to discredit his views of redshift.

Astronomy can see far more and has learned far more since Arp's day. It's difficult for me to want to go through all the Arp ideas and have any hope they are fully defensible and should be reconsidered. However, if they are valid, the sooner we make corrections the better. Such things have happened where decades were lost due to erroneous viewpoints. Spectroscopy includes a few of those stories. My favorite is that the Sun is yellow. *Caugh!*
 
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Jul 5, 2020
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Hello all, yes, we do need a new model, or should I say, "a completed model". You see, the Big Bang only explains half of what happened. Something banged. Yes? OK, The other half of the story seems to be "the Big Bounce"- you've heard about it, but now it's becoming mainstream. Why? Because it jives with the conservation of energy (no free lunch, no creation, no problem), and beautifully correlates with time dilation. (time affected by gravity and velocity). Still with me? Yes, time dilation. When a star is in fusion it is in a state of "expansion", with dying stars that run out of fuel, collapsing (gee, I wonder why?) and if the star's mass is large enough, then if "bounces" off its hyper-dense state to produce a supernova, but the core continues into a black hole, in a future time zone specifically due to increased gravity and density (special relativity)- we on the outside of the black hole must wait billions of years to "see" what the black hole actually is. The punchline to this scenario is that these black holes have already bounced and exploded from "their" point of view (Planke Stars), but we won't see the explosion until we pass through huge amounts of time, and "catch up" with them. They lead the way into the contraction of the universe. Even though we can't easily prove the existence of Planke Stars (black holes exploding) the theory does eliminate the "origin" of the universe, because there was none. (What came first: the expansion or the contraction?) It also eliminates the contradiction between Einstein's World and the quantum realm- both turn out to be correct, but happen in different time zones, depending on proximity in the approach into and out of the Singularity. The icing on the cosmological cake is that the big bounce also eliminates the Singularity by bouncing off it, all due to quantum gravity.
 
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FYI. The issue of time is a major conflict between Einstein GR description and QM.

https://phys.org/news/2020-06-theorists-upper-limit-quantization.html, "...For many years, theoretical physicists have been trying to explain a major problem—the general theory of relativity suggests that time is a continuous quantity, one that can move slower or faster depending on acceleration and gravity conditions. But quantum mechanics theories suggest that time ticks away at a steady pace, like the frames of a movie being played out. In this scenario, time must be universal."

This is a major conflict between QM and GR. 'Physical Implications of a Fundamental Period of Time', https://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.124.241301, "If time is described by a fundamental process rather than a coordinate, it interacts with any physical system that evolves in time. The resulting dynamics is shown here to be consistent provided the fundamental period of the time system is sufficiently small. A strong upper bound Tc < 10^−33 s of the fundamental period of time, several orders of magnitude below any direct time measurement, is obtained from bounds on dynamical variations of the period of a system evolving in time."

In find it interesting in cosmology today, that inflation and multiverse teaching, is based upon the QM time and this definition of time is *several orders of magnitude below any direct time measurement* in the lab. This thread discussion is titled, 'What would it take to falsify the "big bang" model of cosmology?'

Defining time is needed to falsify the BB cosmology. GR and QM are in conflict here.
 
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Time dilation and special relativity hold up as the universe approaches the downward fractionalization of the Planke scale. In other words, as the universe contracts towards the singularity, (at the alleged "Bounce"), the Plank intervals of time and space become so infinitely small, that the actual "bounce" occurs infinitely fast. Therefore, the quantum reality can only be expressed at that billionth of a second occurrence. If the quantum realm is expressed ubiquitously (happening now in our expanding world), then the hadron collidor experiments would produce subatomic particles that would last, but they can't exist against the forces inherent in an expanding universe that we are in today , especially dark energy. The quantum reality can only be manifested in or around the tiniest expression of the plank scale, at trillions of degrees, and in a nanosecond environment- certainly not now. This is what I would consider a major misunderstanding in cosmological physics today.
 
Aug 6, 2020
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Yes, I (and many others) would argue that all three of these pillars have been thoroughly demolished.

Van Flandern said this about the hypothesized microwave background:

The microwave “background” makes more sense as the limiting temperature of space heated by starlight than as the remnant of a fireball. [https://www.spaceandmotion.com/cosmology/top-30-problems-big-bang-theory.htm]
This is often repeated but it is actually a mischaracterisation of what Eddington said. If you actually look at Eddington's original book he makes it quite clear that he was not proposing his background was a 3 K blackbody.

" Radiation in interstellar space is about as far from thermodynamical equilibrium as it is possible to imagine, and although its density corresponds to 3°-18 it is much richer in high-frequency constituents than equilibrium radiation of that temperature."

He then goes on to list the intensity as a function of wavelength, where the effective temperature changes wildly with wavelength. There is a plot of the spectrum against the CMB spectrum here.


Eddington did not predict the CMB. Furthermore standard cosmology made many predictions about the CMB beyond its mere existence, such as its blackbody nature and the statistics of its fluctuation. A starlight scatting model doesn't even explain these things, so it certainly doesn't make more sense as a model.
 
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Aug 6, 2020
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If your model rests upon the idea that redshift-indicates-velocity, it only takes one Arp galaxy to implode the whole model. He's got an entire book full of them. Stephan's Quintet, for example, is a clear instance of the often ridiculous mental gymnastics
It's going to take more than one galaxy, because analyses like this are not objective. In this example you are basing your claim that the galaxies in Stephan's Quintet are actually connected on your subjective option. Without hard evidence of a physical connection we cannot base our conclusions on cherrypicked examples. Let's consider an analogy, an imaginary game of darts.

My plot attached illustrates what I'm talking about. In the first panel on the left I have randomly drawn points across the plot. These points know nothing about the bullseye target in the middle so they are not correlated, but by random chance some happen to be close to the center. In the next panel I have chosen only the closest random point. If this was all I showed you then you might conclude that the point in the center is connected in some way to the bullseye. But this is only because this example has been cherrypicked to give that impression. The same logic applies to galaxies and quasars. If you look at enough pairs you will find examples that look associated, but you've ignored most of the objects. So how can we do a better test? If the points are really connected to the target then all of them should have some correlation with the target's position. An example of that is shown on the right panel, where there is real correlation. It's clear from comparing the full distributions of the left and right plots that there is a difference, but if you only look at one or two cases you could never see this. By looking at this clustering effect we don't have to pick and choose which quasars and galaxies to analyse, we look at the full sample.



People have actually done this in real data to test Arp's idea. If high redshift quasars are really ejected from low redshift galaxies then the two should be correlated in position. This analysis looked at thousands of pairs, rather than Arp's small numbers of objects. The result was consistent with the quasars and galaxies being randomly distributed with respect to each other. This the cleanest test of Arp's ideas and it shows no evidence of any connection.



This is especially ironic given that the infamous Einstein Cross, for example, clearly shows a quasar connected to a local central galaxy of vastly different redshift. Instead of accepting the obvious, however, astronomers relied on "coincidence" to claim that the four quasars surrounding the local galaxy were the *same* quasar split into four separate images by gravitational lensing.
Arp's claims about gravitational lensed quasars are refuted by observation. Observers have measured the variation in brightness of the multiple images in the Einstein cross, the variations in brightness are correlated between the different points. This is exactly what you expect from lensing because they're all the same object, but you expect delays with the different travel time. For the Einstein cross the delays have been measured at less than 40 hours.


Now in Arp's model all 4 points are different quasars. You might be able to come up with a reason why the variation is correlated, but there is absolutely no rational reason the delay should be so small for us on Earth. If it was 4 different objects, different observers would see it from different angles, and so would be slightly closer to one of the quasars than the others. Even a slight variation in angle would lead to years of delay. And there are many other similar systems with small delays.

Arp's claims just don't hold up to more recent data.
 
Dec 15, 2019
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Eddington did not predict the CMB. Furthermore standard cosmology made many predictions about the CMB beyond its mere existence said:
It looks like you didn't read all the way down to #10 on TVF's list, which addresses the claim "Eddington did not predict the CMB."

Regardless, there are 29 more claims on that page that surely must cause some unease for BB supporters. Then again, maybe not.

The above information is definitely useful. Thank you for the links. Unfortunately, both Van Flandern and Arp are long dead, so they won't be providing any rebuttals to criticisms of their work.

My question was simply this: "What observation could possibly be made that would falsify the BB model?" At this point I'd accept an observation that would invalidate *parts* of the model, given that no one has been able to provide a single example of something that would cast doubt on its viability as a whole.

Why is this such a difficult question to answer?
 
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The biggest weakness in the BB is extrapolating backwards linearly.
Especially inflation.
I asked the same question of Dr. Pesce over in his Q&A thread. He provided a cordial non-answer:

The big bang model is absolutely predictive: it makes many predictions (an important one being the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation). And it’s falsifiable. Again, we just haven’t be able to falsify it – either because it is correct or because of the issues mentioned above. Just because we can’t think of predictions that would falsify a model doesn’t say anything about the quality of model.
So is it falsifiable or not? I would think that not being able to proactively outline criteria that could cast doubt on our assumptions is a slippery slope that no scientist should like to tread. So the BB is safe and being provided cover under any circumstance and in the face of any observation. Curious.

I'm always frightened when a scientist openly admits that he cannot even fathom a case where the model du jour is threatened.
 
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I did read down, it doesn't change what I said. Eddington did not predict the CMB. Claiming that dust scattered Eddington's background to the microwave range is a post hoc explanation, it's absolutely not a prediction. So this "model" has never been tested independently, you can't claim it's a better explanation.

No I'm not going to respond to all of the claims on that page, he couldn't even be bothered numbering them in the end and the references are screwed up. If you find any of them particularly convincing then feel free to present it. Most of these are actually about galaxy evolution, and not cosmology. "The big bang model" does not predict most of these things, you need a model of galaxy evolution on top of a cosmological model to make these predictions.

Lots of these things are also completely out of date and misrepresented. As an example close to my heart the point about damped Lyman alpha absorbers is silly, host galaxies are detected in significant numbers and DLAs are not consistent at all redshifts. Rafelski et al. showed very nicely that DLAs have less heavy elements as you look to higher redshifts, which is what you expect in a big bang scenario where heavy elements are built up over time.


I mean his point number 6 is literally a misunderstanding of statistics. Error bars are not hard limits, there are degrees of deviation which correspond to probability levels. In any case the new age of the universe is consistent entirely.

There are lots of ways the standard big bang could be falsified. For example if there was no epoch of reionisation then the CMB couldn't be from recombination. If redshift was found to depend on wavelength that would be rather strong evidence that redshift wasn't due to expansion. Or perhaps if gravitational waves didn't experience redshift. Lots of things, it's just that the violation you would see would depend on the true cosmological model and so there isn't one answer.
 
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Catastrophe

"There never was a good war, or a bad peace."
I asked the same question of Dr. Pesce over in his Q&A thread. He provided a cordial non-answer:



So is it falsifiable or not? I would think that not being able to proactively outline criteria that could cast doubt on our assumptions is a slippery slope that no scientist should like to tread. So the BB is safe and being provided cover under any circumstance and in the face of any observation. Curious.

I'm always frightened when a scientist openly admits that he cannot even fathom a case where the model du jour is threatened.
"I would think that not being able to proactively outline criteria that could cast doubt on our assumptions is a slippery slope that no scientist should like to tread."
I have and I will.

Cat :)
 

Catastrophe

"There never was a good war, or a bad peace."
I am a chemist, not an astrophysicist, but when I see an assumption so outrageously wrong (IMNSIO) that will allow you to "substantiate" if not "prove" just about anything, then I am personally convinced that something is very very wrong.

This is my science, not my cosmology, talking.
 
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@Robotron , Dr. Joe said that it's falsifable. But, again, we have not yet got enough evidence to falsify it. Instead, we have got more evidence on its side. So, sorry.
Dr. Joe said it's falsifiable but that he couldn't think of anything specifically that would falsify it. Isn't that the very definition of contradiction?

Above, Lyman_alpher takes a stab at a real answer, and I appreciate that. The most viable way I see to falsify any expanding universe model is to show that redshift is not a reliable indicator of velocity. A single Arp galaxy showing a definitive physical connection between galaxies of widely varying redshifts would do it. Arp's book "Seeing Red" has multiple examples of such bodies (he claims). I haven't been able to find any follow-up images of the same regions, unfortunately.

The discovery of objects older than the universe itself would obviously present a conundrum to the BB. Or so one might think. That's happened before and the response is merely to push the age of the universe back far enough to incorporate the new observation. Seems like cheating. But I guess that's was Dr. Pesce means by "tweaking." If there was a prize for the model with the most tweaking, the BB would be leading the pack.
 

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