Multiple Big Bang theory could bring ‘Copernican revolution’ says Astronomer Royal 

Posted: May 31, 2016 by oldbrew in Astrophysics, opinion, solar system dynamics

credit: NASA

credit: NASA


Roll up, roll up – more Big Bangs for your buck here.
H/T Daily Telegraph 

‘We have reason for thinking the Universe we observe goes on much further, almost certainly one thousand times further and maybe so much further that all cosmological options are repeated’ – Lord Rees

There may have been more than one Big Bang, the Astronomer Royal has said and claims the world could be on the brink of a revolution as profound as Copernicus discovering the Earth revolved around the Sun.

Lord Rees said that other universes may exist which are unconstrained from the laws of Newtonian physics, with different atoms and gravity fields. But other universes more like our own could also exist, raising the prospect that humanity, or something like it could have evolved elsewhere.

“Many people suspect that our Big Bang was not the only one, but there’s a whole ensemble of Big Bangs, a whole archipelago of Big Bangs,” he told The Hay Literary Festival in Wales.

“This raises another question. Even though the laws of physics are the same everywhere we can see in our observable region, if physical reality is far more extensive, then maybe there are domains where the laws are different.

“There are some theories which suggests that in the aftermath of other Big Bangs the universe may cool down differently governed by different laws.

“This has some interesting implications. It could be that the different Big Bangs cool down with different gravity, different atoms etc and then what we call the laws of physics will, in this grander perspective, be just parochial bylaws in our cosmic patch, governed maybe by some deeper set of laws, but just environmental accidents.

“Maybe we are due for a further Copernican revolution and say there are many Big Bangs and some are tuned some life and others are not. This is a speculation but it is a very exciting one.”

The report concludes with this:
“There may be a lecture like this where people are listening and we may all have avatars.

“It may be some comfort that way beyond our horizon you have an avatar that makes the right decision whenever you make a wrong one. That’s a possibility.”

Full report: Multiple Big Bang theory could bring ‘Copernican revolution’ says Astronomer Royal 

Another possibility is that something was slipped into his drink…

Comments
  1. Sparks says:

    They’re are not “Universes” but ripples in time…

  2. ferdberple says:

    by GR time dilation, the interior of every black hole is its own universe, existing infinitely far into the future of its parent universe. in this fashion the number of universes grows exponentially, as each universe gives rise to many daughter universes, which give rise to their own daughters, all occupying the same space, but not the same time. in this fashion all possible futures are played out, with all possible arrangements of physical laws. this gives rise to the “many worlds” interpretation of quantum mechanics, where at the sub atomic scale we see the resonance between similar universes to our own, which occupy our space, but not our time. ultimately, as all possibilities are tried out, the end product will be perfection, and the universe will have created god. thus, we have it backwards. god did not create the universe. the universe seeks to create god.

  3. oldmanK says:

    From ferdberple above ” the end product will be perfection, and the universe will have created god. thus, we have it backwards. god did not create the universe. the universe seeks to create god.”

    Perfection at last, all explained–not by physics but psychology. A perfect theory where science has reached the ultimate, become a religion–in the sense that whatever is said cannot ever be proven wrong (or right). As far away from the here and now as one can get. (At least it is a safe form of fanaticism, –or is it?)

  4. tallbloke says:

    From relativity to relativism. Welcome to the multiverse, where matter doesn’t matter, and light is darkness.

  5. Steve Borodin says:

    Wasn’t it Rees who said the science is settled? Grant dredging?

  6. tallbloke says:

    Probably. One of his predecessors, Francis Graham-Smith, nearly made me fall off my seat laughing when he told us they were “just filling in the details now”.

    I got a dig in the ribs off my history of Science prof:

    “Don’t laugh at the Astronomer Royale; he’s just doing his job”.

    Back then the job was to reassure the laity that everything was in hand, well understood and all was well in the universe.

    It seems now that the job is to persuade us to accept the cultural diversity of all possible universes and embrace them without knowing what makes them tick.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Max Tegmark in his 2014 book ‘Our Mathematical Universe’ goes as far as the ‘Level IV Multiverse’ and asks ‘Are we living in a simulation?’

    That’s the kind of thinking that seems to be popular today.

  8. oldbrew says:


    [credit: wizardwonderland.com]

  9. Alan McIntire says:

    Brian Green wrote a book on this subject, “The Hidden Reality”.

  10. The problem is that we are limited by the highly prescriptive rules of what we call ‘logic’ which is derived, ultimately, from our ability to distinguish between self and not self.

    There is no reason why the external reality should be similarly limited so that the ultimate truth of existence is unknowable to us.

  11. p.g.sharrow says:

    “Another possibility is that something was slipped into his drink…”

    The best explanation for such flights of fancy that I have heard…

    Hum-bug, it is all hum-bug…pg

  12. JohnM says:

    I’m wondering if there wasn’t a single big bang but many spread out over time. In fact I’m thinking oscillations of expansion and contraction, with the contraction ultimately becoming so intense that it causes another big bang. Rapid expansion, slow contraction, big bang, repeat.

  13. oldmanK says:

    From the piece above “We have reason for thinking the Universe we observe goes on much further, almost certainly one thousand times further and maybe so much further—“.

    So then what is beyond that? And how far is beyond? and beyond? Certainly in that piece the concept of ‘space’ is warped. Eternity has no concept in physics, AFAIK.

  14. oldbrew says:

    Is the universe infinitely inflating? Nobody knows.

    Hubble finds universe may be expanding faster than expected
    http://phys.org/news/2016-06-hubble-universe-faster.html

  15. oldmanK says:

    @ Oldbrew: your question “Is the universe infinitely inflating?” points to a huge anomaly in the logic of our comprehension of space (and for that matter, time ). Putting a measure to something which would then extend ‘forever’ and is therefore ‘infinite’ is pure illogical.

    Are these statements like the miracles of old, where you are expected to be over-awed but at the same time to totally disbelieve? Fodder for the dumb.

  16. oldbrew says:

    oldmanK: what can be ruled out, given current observations? Not much as there are different ways to interpret those same observations.

  17. p.g.sharrow says:

    GOD built the universe in 3 dimensions over time. Mathematicians require 28 to make their universe work and use a “rubber yardstick” of fudge factors to make things align. Now in their fanciful fevered brains they posit many different universes to make use of all these imagined factors.

    K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Stupid!

    The universe works because of applied science, Not mathematics. It can only work 1 way!
    Everything else is flights of fancy or mind altering substances…;-)…pg

  18. Sparks says:

    The only way a universe can come into existence is through ‘pressure’ differences, in an infinite time and space of nothing, it may seem like it’s so tiny and such an irrelevant idea, it makes sense though… how can something so big from our relative perspective be a result of something so small and irrelevant?

  19. oldbrew says:

    Sparks: they offer inflation theory.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflation_(cosmology)

    But: ‘The detailed particle physics mechanism responsible for inflation is not known. The basic inflationary paradigm is accepted by most scientists, who believe a number of predictions have been confirmed by observation;[3] however, a substantial minority of scientists dissent from this position.’

    More non-settled science😐

    Footnote: reading further (The magnetic monopole problem)…
    ‘as cosmologist Martin Rees has written, “Skeptics about exotic physics might not be hugely impressed by a theoretical argument to explain the absence of particles that are themselves only hypothetical. Preventive medicine can readily seem 100 percent effective against a disease that doesn’t exist!” ‘
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflation_(cosmology)#Magnetic-monopole_problem

    It gets worse: ‘At a conference in 2015, Penrose said that “inflation isn’t falsifiable, it’s falsified. […] BICEP did a wonderful service by bringing all the Inflation-ists out of their shell, and giving them a black eye.” ‘
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflation_(cosmology)#Criticisms

  20. oldmanK says:

    AFAIK we have not got anywhere near to a concept to explain time and space (T, L). Infinity is a concept and is different in maths than in religion. Only Einstein’s theories had started to address that enigma, in some way.

    At the speed of light, which is the speed of the image of the universe being observed. time and space take on a very new meaning. All I have heard about the universe in the last 40 years seem to conveniently circumvent that mystery.

  21. Zeke says:

    This raises another question. Even though the laws of physics are the same everywhere we can see in our observable region, if physical reality is far more extensive, then maybe there are domains where the laws are different.

    “There are some theories which suggests that in the aftermath of other Big Bangs the universe may cool down differently governed by different laws…”

    Which raises another question: Could this “Copernican” scientific discovery help by providing more chances for complex, self-replicating life to arise within the 13.7 billion years since the big bang?

    If yes, this raises another question: “How many chances will string theory or multiverses or separate ‘cosmic patches’ of physical laws add to the potential combinations of genetic code?”

    The answer: 10^500

    This scientific paradigm shift to universes governed by different laws (which can intervene with our own universe) certainly has its uses. And perhaps like Copernicus’ theory it will save the calender, and the universe will still be 13.7 billion years old. We just need a Little Bigger Bang for a few more cosmic patches.

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