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The universe may not be expanding?

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#1 ggiles

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 11:38 AM

http://www.theprovin...ter research...

Thoughts?

#2 GregLee1

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 12:25 PM

Because the frequency or “pitch” of light increases with mass, Prof Wetterich argues that masses could have been lower long ago.



Could this be a relativistic effect due to the increasing speed of modern life? Is this why that as we age, we feel increasingly that life is passing us by?

#3 Jarad

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 06:55 PM

So that explains it - as my mass increases, I get the blues...

:sumo:

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#4 scopethis

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 09:55 PM

so if we eat more Big Macs we can outrun the Universe...

#5 Jarad

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:34 AM

On a serious note, I doubt this explanation. If mass really is changing constantly over time, it would also affect other things like orbits, nuclear fusion, supernovae, etc. We don't see those changes.

Jarad

#6 llanitedave

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 09:11 AM

Same as the other "physical constants change with time" ideas. If they do, they'd have to do it in such a synchronized way that it's invisible to observation.

And thus proof of the divine what's-it, or whatever.

#7 shawnhar

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 11:07 AM

All hail the Devine What's-It!

#8 GregLee1

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 02:23 PM

Same as the other "physical constants change with time" ideas. If they do, they'd have to do it in such a synchronized way that it's invisible to observation.

The changes are not invisible to observation -- they are proposed in order to account for certain observations. So are you saying that it's the synchronization that is not observable? I don't understand that.

#9 Jarad

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 02:34 PM

The proposal is to explain red shift as being due to a change in particle mass. Red shift is in fact observed.

But if mass of individual particles was changing, it should also change other things. For example, orbits. If the mass of the electrons and protons in the sun and the planets were getting heavier over the last 5 billion years, we should see the planets being pulled in closer over time. We should the same effect in galaxies - older galaxies should appear less massive, newer ones more massive in terms of orbital velocities. We don't see that.

For Type 1a supernovae, they go off when the star passes a certain critical mass limit to overcome the electrical repulsion between nuclei and initiate fusion. If the mass of the particles were changing over time, we should see differences in those supernovae - lighter mass per particle would require more particles to generate the same amount of pressure. Less mass per charge unit would require more pressure and temperature to overcome the charge repulsion. Less mass per particle may also mean less energy produced by the fusion.

So we should be seeing signficicant differences in star behaviors (brightness/temperature relationships, etc.) if fundamental properties like the mass of an electron and proton were changing. In order to keep the behavior constant (as it appears to be), you would need to adjust lots of other parameters (like the strong and weak nuclear forces, electric constant, gravity constant, etc.) in perfect synch with the mass change to make orbits, fusion, etc. appear to work the same as the mass changed.

Jarad

#10 GregLee1

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 03:54 PM

In order to keep the behavior constant (as it appears to be), you would need to adjust lots of other parameters (like the strong and weak nuclear forces, electric constant, gravity constant, etc.) in perfect synch with the mass change to make orbits, fusion, etc. appear to work the same as the mass changed.

So? What does this have to do with observability? The synch is observable.

#11 gavinm

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 05:44 PM

The synch is unlikely (even if it is observable)

#12 Ira

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:21 PM

It's like saying the room you are sitting in is getting smaller by the minute but you never feel confined because you are getting smaller at the same rate. Possible but unlikely.

/Ira

#13 GregLee1

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 07:31 PM

It's like saying the room you are sitting in is getting smaller by the minute but you never feel confined because you are getting smaller at the same rate. Possible but unlikely.

How did you go about estimating the likelihoods of getting smaller at the same rate and getting smaller at different rates? I don't understand your reasoning.

#14 groz

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 07:46 PM

If the mass is changing, then maybe we dont need all that unobserved dark stuff injected into the system in order to make equations work out. m=f(t) could solve that conundrum

#15 llanitedave

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 08:16 PM

In order to keep the behavior constant (as it appears to be), you would need to adjust lots of other parameters (like the strong and weak nuclear forces, electric constant, gravity constant, etc.) in perfect synch with the mass change to make orbits, fusion, etc. appear to work the same as the mass changed.

So? What does this have to do with observability? The synch is observable.


Is it? So what was the fine structure constant 11 billion years ago compared to what it is today? What is the difference in c between then and now? What is the difference in the value of the electroweak fore between then and now?

If the constants had changed in an observable way, these questions would be answerable.

#16 GregLee1

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 09:15 PM

In order to keep the behavior constant (as it appears to be), you would need to adjust lots of other parameters (like the strong and weak nuclear forces, electric constant, gravity constant, etc.) in perfect synch with the mass change to make orbits, fusion, etc. appear to work the same as the mass changed.

So? What does this have to do with observability? The synch is observable.


Is it? So what was the fine structure constant 11 billion years ago compared to what it is today? What is the difference in c between then and now? What is the difference in the value of the electroweak fore between then and now?

If the constants had changed in an observable way, these questions would be answerable.

You said the behavior appears to be constant. That's the observation that shows the synchronization persists. So synchronization is observable, since it has been observed. This is all just your own reasoning.

#17 Qwickdraw

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 07:11 AM

But if mass of individual particles was changing, it should also change other things. For example, orbits. If the mass of the electrons and protons in the sun and the planets were getting heavier over the last 5 billion years, we should see the planets being pulled in closer over time.

Jarad


I don't necessarily agree. If mass was changing across the board, the planets would have an equal increase in mass and have a net zero loss in angular momentum.

#18 Jarad

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 07:52 AM

You said the behavior appears to be constant. That's the observation that shows the synchronization persists. So synchronization is observable, since it has been observed. This is all just your own reasoning.



No, synchronization has not been observed. What has been observed is that apparent behavior of orbits, star formation, supernovae, etc. appear the same in nearby galaxies and distant ones. So there are 2 possible interpretations of why that has happened:
1 - the natural constants are in fact constant, and red-shift is due to relative motion.
2 - the natural constants are all changing in such a way that orbits, star formation, supernovae, etc. are unaffected, but emisison lines are blue-shifted over time (so old lines appear red-shifted). It is not clear yet that such a thing is even possible (there would be a lot of math to work through to see if it is).

There is really no evidence that any of them are changing at all, just an assertion that they could be if they do it in a very complicated, synchronized manner that makes them unobservable except for a redshift effect.

Jarad

#19 Jarad

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 07:54 AM

I don't necessarily agree. If mass was changing across the board, the planets would have an equal increase in mass and have a net zero loss in angular momentum.



Actually, that would be a gain in angular momentum (mass * angular velocity) with constant angular velocity. But that's still not enough, because if the mass of the sun increases, they need to increase angular velocity to maintain orbit. The only way to do that is to fall inward until they pick up enough speed.

Jarad

#20 Jarad

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 07:55 AM

If the mass is changing, then maybe we dont need all that unobserved dark stuff injected into the system in order to make equations work out. m=f(t) could solve that conundrum



Only if we saw orbits indicating dark matter in old, distant galaxies but not nearby ones, or vice-versa.

Jarad

#21 GregLee1

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 09:24 AM

There is really no evidence that any of them are changing at all, just an assertion that they could be if they do it in a very complicated, synchronized manner that makes them unobservable except for a redshift effect.

I didn't say there was evidence that any "constants" were changing. If they are not changing, they're in synchrony, because they have the same relationships all the time. Isn't this what "synchronized" means here? "Syn-" plus "chronos".

I am saying that I am skeptical about an argument being made here, which I take to be: (a) it is improbable for changing "constants" to change in synchrony; (b) if they change, apparently they do so in synchrony; © therefore it is improbable that they change. Isn't that the argument? Did I get that right?

I don't accept the (a) in this argument, because I don't understand what basis there could be for estimating the probability of synchronous change (whatever exactly that would mean).

#22 Jarad

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 10:21 AM

Well, let's look at it this way:
The odds of one constant changing is X, where X must be between 0 and 1. I would argue it is close to 0, but for sake of this argument let's just specify less than 1.

Let's assume the odds of another constant changing is also X.

Let's assume the odds of two constants changing in synch is Y. Constants could change up, or down, or at various rates, so it would seem that Y would necessarily be smaller than X.

So the odds of 10 or so constants changing in synch would be X^10*Y^9. Even if X is high (let's say 50%, for equal odds of changing or not changing), and Y is pretty high (let's give it 25%, for 50-50 between up and down, and 50-50 between fast and slow), that's 1 in 268 billion odds.

And I think those odds are hugely over-estimated.

The bottom line on this hypothesis is that it seeks to explain something (red-shift) that current theory already explains adequately (expansion). It invokes an idea that many things that appear to be constant are actually changing in a complex way so as not to be noticeable except for the red-shift.

Until this hypothesis at least produces a testable prediction that would be different from the expansion hypothesis, at best is not much use. But yes, I think it is fair to say that it is unlikely for all the physical constants to be changing in a manner synchronized to produce the effect we see.

Jarad






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