Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Out of the Darkness

The week's news reminds us that the universe can be both violent and mysterious. Chandra X-ray Observatory images of 3C321 show that it is composed of two galaxies orbiting one together, with one galaxy firing on the other. Every galaxy yet observed contains at its centre a massive Black Hole. In this image, X-ray data from Chandra is violet, optical data from Hubble is orange, and radio data is blue. The Black Hole at one galaxy's core is obscured by dust, giving it an hourglass shape. One of the twin jets blasts out the upper right into the neighbour galaxy. Chandra Press Release.

One reason people cling to belief in "dark energy" is that 2/3 of the Universe's mass seems to be missing. The GM=tc^3 Theory predicts, and WMAP confirms that average density is a "critical" value $\Omega$ = 1. The visible galaxies, and even the dark mass surrounding them, only account for about 1/3 of this total. This has created a void in which theorists can insert fantasies of repulsive energy.

Large scale maps like the Sloan Digital Sky Survey show that galaxies are arranged in sheets with enormous voids between them. A fish in the Barrier Reef knows to avoid dark holes, because something hiding in those holes could eat her! We can only hope that scientists are more intelligent than fish. Since the "voids" contain most of the Universe's volume, they could contain many massive unseen objects.

Gamma Ray Bursts are some of the most powerful explosions in the Universe. Earlier this year GRB 070125 suddenly flared where no object had appeared before. The location in the constellation Gemini is more than 88,000 light years from any known galaxy. Searches by the Palomar Observatory and telescopes atop Mauna Kea showed no signs of surrounding dust. Something, possibly a giant Black Hole, caused the GRB. There could be many more similiar objects in the voids between galaxies. NASA press release

The jet attack of 3C321 shows us how violent the Universe can be. About 2/3 of the Universe is hidden from our eyes. This dark Universe could contain massive Big Gulp Black Holes or other exotic objects. Sometimes this dark Universe erupts into visiblity like GRB 070125. There is far more out there than meets the eye.

More about 3C321 and the anniversary of Australia's first satellite at Carnival of Space!



Anonymous Tony Smith said...

I hope that this is not too off-topic,
but there is a Telegraph article at

by Tom Chivers and Roger Highfield dated 18 December 2007 that said:

"... The idea that time itself ...[ is ]... gradually slowing down ... has been set out by Professor José Senovilla, Marc Mars and Raül Vera of the University of the Basque Country, Bilbao, and University of Salamanca, Spain ...[ to ]... be published in the journal Physical Review D ...
The team's proposal ... does away altogether with dark energy ...".

Isn't that consistent with your c-change model ?

Does that mean that you are going to be a Charter Member of the New Establisment ?

Tony Smith

PS - Thanks for letting me know about seeing my friend's AGU presentation. I have not heard from them since AGU - I hope the talk went well.

11:08 AM  
Blogger L. Riofrio said...

HI Tony: I would have to read the paper to make a detailed comment. Their idea seems to be based on brane theory, which is a highly speculative notion to say the least. The notion of the Universe slowing to a halt only happens at infinite time in my model. However, a theory that does away with "dark energy" can't be all bad.

"Does that mean that you are going to be a Charter Member of the New Establisment ?"

We may very soon see a time where the boys at Fermilab are out of work and those predicting a varying-c have more funding and toys than one could ask for.

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Tony Smith said...

In their paper at arxiv 0712.1462
Mars, Senovilla and Vera say in their abstract:
"... We show that some types of sudden singularities admit a natural explanation in terms of regular changes of signature on braneworlds in AdS5.
The present accelerated expansion of the Universe and its possible ending at a sudden singularity may therefore simply be an indication that our braneworld is about to change its Lorentzian signature to an Euclidean one, while remaining fully regular. ...".

So, maybe it is fine for superstring establishment AdS5 brane people to say that cosmological evidence is consistent with time not only slowing down but also stopping and going into a Euclidean freeze,
if you are non-establishment saying that the same cosmological evidence is consistent with c change,
then you should be held up in customs so that you cannot corrupt Imperial with your thoughts.

Tony Smith

PS - Have you seen the movie Golden Compass, in which the hero is a girl fighting for free thought against the rigid thought control and brainwashing of children by the Establishment Magisterium ?
Maybe we need the help of witches and armored bears ?

7:19 PM  
Blogger L. Riofrio said...

A high NASA administrator, a PhD with impeccable credentials, was stopped from attending a conference by some idiocy at an airport. That happens a lot these days, the IAU meeting in Bali "lost" several speakers that way.

I've not seen that movie, but will. In certain braneworlds it is possible that polar bears can talk and pigs can fly. Branes have a practical value in advancing one's university career.

7:35 PM  
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