Sunday, April 26, 2015


Astronomers have found an enormous "void" in space 1.8 billion light-years across, the largest structure yet found in the universe. The void is aligned with a "cold spot" discovered in the cosmic microwave background. The void was found using the PAN-STARRS telescope on Maui and NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) in space.

Detection of a supervoid aligned with the cold spot of the cosmic microwave background

The study suggests that the void is draining light energy from the surrounding space, causing the cold spot. This supervoid may not be empty, but could be the lair of an ultra-massive black hole. Old theories of the universe can't explain a structure this large.

The void could have been formed by an ultra-massive black hole emptying the space around it. The black hole would be primordial, born of a quantum fluctuation shortly after the Big Bang. Size of a black hole is limited by a "horizon distance" related to the speed of light. This immense void is one more sign that the speed of light was once much larger.


Blogger Ed said...

If it is a primordial black hole, then there should be a gravitational lensing effect. I have seen no mention of such an effect.

For a giant void to be the biggest structure in the universe, and for the universe to be expanding, the voids must be expanding faster than the rest of the universe.

If R=ct and the volume of the universe is V=(4pi/3)R^3, then the volume of the universe is
V=(4pi/3)GMt^2 and the rate of change of the volume is
dV/dt = (8pi/3)GMt

Taking the mass of the universe (M=tc^3/G) and dividing by the Planck mass, and assuming a quantized space, we can get a number of quanta for t=undefinable, and then calculate the number of quanta present originally and an initial volume of ~10^-60 m^3. Then the moment of the big bang would be t=1 Planck time, and from the dV/dt calculation we can find the volume at t=1.

If my math is correct and the assumption of quantized space isn't completely incorrect, then the universe exactly quadrupled in volume in the first Planck time. That is, for each completely-filled quanta of space, three empty ones were incorporated into the universe in the first Planck time.

Thereafter, a quadrupling in volume of the universe takes a longer and longer amount of time.

This idea has had me packing circles in Flatland. Lemme tell ya, this rabbit hole goes deep.

What I have found is that one can place equal-sized circles in such a way that each circle is constrained in place by its neighbors, but that the overall density of circles in a given area can vary by a great deal. One can have them packed with six neighbors, with no room for additional circles - all the way down to three neighbors, each constrained in its movement by its neighbors, but with gaps between them for more circles. The equivalent in our 3D universe is for areas of great density of quanta of space, each with 12 neighbors, down to areas with low density, where each has only 4 neighbors.

If a "signal" starts in a random location and takes a random walk from neighbor to neighbor, the signals tend to move from regions of low quantum density to regions of high quantum density. I have only done this on paper but am starting to put together ideas for a computer simulation on a much larger scale.

In this model, the areas with lots of mass - black holes, stars, planets - become regions there the quanta of space are packed tightly together, with the greatest density in the center of the black holes at the centers of the galaxies. The great voids become the areas where the quanta of space are most sparsely packed - and thus these are the regions with the most volume available between existing quanta for new quanta of space.

As I said, this rabbit hole goes deep. I am starting to see how relativistic time dilation can be explained by this model (the faster you move, the fewer new quanta of space have an opportunity to be incorporated into the universe before your own existing quanta moves into a gap). I'm starting to view photons as quanta of space which do not obey an exclusionary principle but instead expand through their neighbors, a sphere expanding at the speed of light. And I think this computer model I'm putting together can show how gravity works at a quantum scale - it looks to me so far that it reduces to the Newtonian view after a distance of about 6 Planck lengths or so.

And all this digging started with you and John Kulick, so thanks.

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Happy to have inspired your thoughts, Ed.

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Blogger C Mac said...

No. Firstly the claim that standard cosmology cannot produce such a void is false (Nadathur et al. 2014 predict 20 such voids at low redshift). LambdaCDM not only explains the void but it predicted this. Dark energy motivated people searching for a void, people have long suggested a void could be connected to the Cold Spot via the ISW effect (which is a dark energy effect).

Secondly void does not mean black hole, it is not "sucking energy" out of anything. The void is only ~20% underdense, why would a black hole make mild underdenisty?

And the horizon distance at redshift 0.2 is MUCH bigger than 200 Mpc as Szapudi quotes in the paper. You don't need to assert the speed of light must change.

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