Astronomers see galaxies further back in time.

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Biped, Jul 12, 2007.

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  1. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    Astronomers have claimed to see galaxies that were in existence only 500m years after the big bang, and therefore the furthest back in time we have yet seen. Beeb Clicky

    Now, I know this has got nothing to do with military matters, but this is news and I do want to analyse it with the help of the high quality brains available on this forum.

    Is it me being thick, or does it take longer than 500m years to form a 'galaxy', and if so, does this not kill the big bang theory; the basis of which underpins current thought on the nature of the universe, and what I personally think is a ludicrous proposition anyway?
  2. Sorry Biped, I can't help with the science on this one, but if there are any Royal Scots on the site, they were about in those days and maybe able to help.
  3. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    Just a thought - the Earth is supposed to be 4.5 billion years old, as is the Sun.

    Just to put this in persepective, the dinosaurs roamed the Earth some 230m years ago.

    So these guys are basically saying that in a period of only twice as long between the dinosaurs roaming the Earth and humans, a galaxy formed from the big bang, and we can now see it (in fact, considering the minescule portion of space looked at, we can assume that within 500m years of the Big Bang, hundreds of billions of galaxies formed).
  4. They will be looking at a galaxy in the middle of forming, rather than one "completed" like ours. There will still be stars and the inital clumping together of materials that will form planets later on, its just pretty much a lump of gas with chunky and glowing bits in it (There a joke in there but i cant be bothered :p ). Hope that helps.
  5. OR, it could be some bird droppings on the lens of the telescope! Has anybody climbed up to check?

    At the university I went to, one of the researchers thought he was in line for a Nobel prize having apparently discovered a new energy level for the electrons in carbon atoms. Mysteriously, his instruments only ever detected this new form of carbon when a tram rumbled past outside his lab window.
  6. Biped, actually the dinosaurs were about 65m years ago. Orthodox theories blame a giant meteor for their demise, but there are alternative theories...

  7. Biped

    Biped LE Book Reviewer

    All the same, I'm not convinced about this big-bang thingy. Surely, the earliest we can see back in time is that which resides within the light-speed boundary of the visible universe, the rest travelling away from us faster than the speed of light, and therefore invisible.
  8. Biped - nothing can travel faster than light, according to Einsteinian physics. Maybe if you went back to Max Planck and extrapolated from there, ignoring Einstein, you'd come to different conclusions.
  9. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    I seem to recall something about a theorised sub atomic particle called a quark?
  10. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    Some physicist types seem to be discussing quarks and their potentials in this thread....


    ...if subatomic particles could travel through time avoiding space, then this would make a nonsense of a classical mph to a more advanced E=MC2 type calculation....
  11. the way they are judgeing the distance to these new 'star forming galaxies' is using 'red shift'. 'Red Shift' only makes sense if we are talking about an expanding universe. basically the further things are away, the faster they are moving away from us, and the more the light from them is red shifted.

    if the data indicated that the 'big bang' idea was wrong, then they would say so, however the evidence for the big bang is very strong.

    Ski. (not a physicist, just a nerd!)
  12. There is not such thing as invisible light. Firstly light as we see it is actually an energy wave similar to a radio signal, the range of wavelengths that this energy wave can be is massive. Humans only see the tiniest fraction of this wavelength range in the form of the blues and greens and reds we see around us. There is still a hell of a lot more signals floating about we can’t see, but modern telescopes work by picking these signals up and converting them into an image we can see.

    If objects in space are moving towards or away from us the speed of the signal does not change, but its wavelength does as it travels. Its how the signal has changed we can tell how far away and in what direction the signals source is moving. We pick up a signal we already know the original value for such as elements, then we look at a star and pick that signal up and see how it has changed.

    Now what the scientists are picking up are these signals out with our visual range (just the same as how humans can only hear a certain range of frequencies) and they all travel at the same speed (very big number). Now at the moment of the big bang pretend all the planets were sitting there as they are now (fully formed planets now space dust), As with any explosion some fragments get blasted out further than others, in this case we got sent out much further than the galaxy the egg-heads have now discovered. Ok back to the bomb that just went off, take us as fragment A miles away from the bang and Fragment B that landed closes to the bang. If B sent a runner to A with a message (for example “egg banjos and coffee at our place”) by the time the runner got to A they would have eaten it all. Now image that the runner is actually the light signal being picked up by the astronomers, it has “ran” all the way here with a picture of that galaxy but it’s a few billion years old, the galaxy doesn’t look like that anymore. We have picked up outdated intel from the “runner”, but its intel from a few billion years in the past and that’s rather funky to look at!

    Now as for proving the big bang, I don’t know much about it other than its proven by some seriously hardcore eye-crossing pant wettingly complex maths. And it’s the best thing we have got. But right now the EU is building a massive experiment under the alps that will recreate the big bang on a tiny atomic scale so we can prove it wrong or not. Cant remember the name of the experiment but it’s a rather big ringed tunnel complex under the alps about a few kilometres in diameter. They wouldn’t spend that much money if the theory was even slightly wobbly.

    .... Wow what a big geeky post, now accepting donation to buy a girlfriend!

    Edit to add - Puncture repair kit will be bought due to obvious regular use
  13. shirley the rumour is the fastest thing anywhere.
  14. Welcome to arrses trekkie convention
  15. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs


    [align=center](edited to add, I'm far more Romulan only a smidgin of Vulcan :twisted: )[/align]