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Robb
SFN Regular

USA
1223 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2006 :  10:11:00  Show Profile Send Robb a Private Message
Can anyone shed a light on the subject of the beginnings of the Big Bang? It is my understanding that the theory states that all matter existed in a single point. What I cannot understand is how this can be? Is there math that suggests this? Is there any evidence that all the matter in the universe can actually exists as a single point, or is this what the math is telling us? I cannot wrap my head around it.

Can anybody explain in laymens terms? Thanks.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. - George Washington

BigPapaSmurf
SFN Die Hard

3192 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2006 :  10:39:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send BigPapaSmurf a Private Message
Well it happens on a smaller scale with black holes and whatnot. I'm pretty sure theres no details on the inner workings of the singularity though.

Perhaps it cant be held all in one point, thus the bang. There was no universe at the time so perhaps the rules as you know them didnt apply at the time. Dont think of matter as just matter, broken down it can be energy as well.

"...things I have neither seen nor experienced nor heard tell of from anybody else; things, what is more, that do not in fact exist and could not ever exist at all. So my readers must not believe a word I say." -Lucian on his book True History

"...They accept such things on faith alone, without any evidence. So if a fraudulent and cunning person who knows how to take advantage of a situation comes among them, he can make himself rich in a short time." -Lucian critical of early Christians c.166 AD From his book, De Morte Peregrini
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Cuneiformist
The Imperfectionist

USA
4954 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2006 :  10:43:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Cuneiformist a Private Message
Hi, Robb. You're asking about some very complex things and I won't even begin to try to explain them-- I don't know much, myself!

However, this article over at Wikipedia is, perhaps, a starting point, as is their entry on the Big Bang itself.
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2006 :  12:03:33   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
Think about taking a foam ball and squishing it. The harder you press on it, the more it compresses. This is how matter works with gravity as the force. The more matter there is lumped together, the more gravity there will be. It may not seem like it, but you can compress a solid, given enough force. And the more matter there is, the more gravity there is, the more compressed the matter becomes.

But along with what BPS said, not only may the physical laws be different, we don't even know how matter behaves when put under forces that would have existed if all the matter in the universe was lumped into one spot. We can't experiment with it because we don't have all the matter in the universe to put in one spot. So science, experimentation that is, is out of the question. But you can set up a theory based upon math and what we know about matter and predict how it should react. Again, this is assuming we are still talking about the same physical laws.

We do know that it would no longer exist as the matter we know of as now. There would be so much force that the pieces that make up the proton and neutron would break apart into quarks.

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
Edited by - Ricky on 06/02/2006 12:06:39
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furshur
SFN Regular

USA
1536 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  10:37:37   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send furshur a Private Message
I don't have so much of a difficulty understanding how all matter can be contained in a point. The analogy of a black hole is a good one. If enough matter is concentrated in one area it will collapse in on itself, if there is enough matter the gravity will be so large that there is no known force that can stop the collapse.
The part of the origin of the universe that I cannot understand is what force could possibly have overcome the gravitation attraction for a mass the size of the universe?





If I knew then what I know now then I would know more now than I know.
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9664 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  11:24:52   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message
Matter did not exist at the beginning of time. A (poor) analogy would be to think of energy as steam, and matter as water: in the beginning the energy was too hot to form matter, then as the Universe expanded, it cooled down enough for the steam to form droplets of matter.

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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  11:47:05   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
To add to Dr M's post and I know the details are better found on the links like the Wiki link, but in short:

Everything in the Universe was pure energy which to my understanding may not have had to occupy space in the same way matter does. And the math breaks down at the first teensiest fraction of a second of the Universe's existance so cosmologists have been unable to describe that first fraction of a second. But lest you go thinking that proves God, Robb, remember that idea is just more of the god of the gaps stuff.

The math of the physics of quantum mechanics does not match the math of the physics of matter and energy on larger scales. One works for predicting the world at the quantum level and the other works for predicting the world on the scale larger than the quantum scale. Physicists are working on the Unified theory of matter. What remains to be solved to make the math work on all scales is to find "the missing link" between the world of the large and the world of the small.

Just as genetic science has provided all we ever wanted to know about evolutionary links, there are many candidates for quantum links such as string theory and dimensions of space beyond the 4 we currently know about. It will be figured out eventually. It's really fascinating stuff.
Edited by - beskeptigal on 06/05/2006 11:49:20
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Randy
SFN Regular

USA
1988 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  16:48:21   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Randy a Private Message
On the Big Bang...
http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/acosmbb.html

When I have a leaky faucet, I call up a expert in the field, a plumber. Same logic with the big questions. Here's a on-line site, Astronmy Cafe, that gives the up-to-date science on the great cosmos head subject.

The main site...
http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/qanda.html

Spend an hour persusing the site, and I guarantee, it'll clear your sinuses, in a positive way.
What a incredible universe we live in. And, here we are...able to project/contemplate/explore in our little way the cosmos in which we live.

"We are all connected; to each other biologically, to the earth chemically, to the rest of the universe atomically."

"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?"
-Neil DeGrasse Tyson
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Randy
SFN Regular

USA
1988 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  16:58:53   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Randy a Private Message
The idea of the Big Bang being a singular expansion from a small point, like a conventional explosion, is urban legend/myth.
http://www.astronomycafe.net/qadir/q1164.html
>snip...
"The best, non-mathematical description that any cosmologist can create for describing the Big Bang is that it occurred in every cubic centimeter of space in the universe with no unique starting point. In fact, it was an event which our mathematics indicate, actually brought space and time into existence. It did not occur IN space at a particular location, because it created space ( and time itself) as it went along. There may have existed some state 'prior' to the Big Bang, but it is a state not described by its location in time or space. This state preceded the existence of our time and space."


"We are all connected; to each other biologically, to the earth chemically, to the rest of the universe atomically."

"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?"
-Neil DeGrasse Tyson
Edited by - Randy on 06/05/2006 17:06:47
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
25970 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2006 :  19:36:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
"Evidence for the Big Bang," over at the Talk.Origins archive, is also a very good piece on this subject.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
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Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Michael Mozina
SFN Regular

1647 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  16:58:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Michael Mozina's Homepage Send Michael Mozina a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Dave W.

"Evidence for the Big Bang," over at the Talk.Origins archive, is also a very good piece on this subject.



quote:
First, we look at the observational evidence.

By the mid-1990s, a number of cosmological observations had reached sufficient precision that it was difficult to reconcile them with a universe dominated by dark matter. Roughly a decade and a half prior, Alan Guth and others suggested an addition to the then current picture of BBT: inflation. The motivation for inflation was to explain the horizon and flatness problems (basically, why is the universe so uniform and close to flat if we know that these are unstable solutions to the equations governing BBT; this is covered in more detail in 3e). Since that time inflation had become a standard part of BBT (and remains so today).


Alan Guth is nothing but a two bit snake oil salesman IMO. I'm therefor not very impressed with that reference frankly. Anyone who tries to suggest that we get something from nothing by claiming that volume increases while the density remains constant should be tarred and feathered.

IMO the Big Bang is a big fat myth. The only reason astromers like the idea is because it is a "tidy" little theory that way. That's the fascination with Guth too IMO. Unfortunately life isn't tidy and we can't even figure out where most of the matter of the universe is hiding. To then claim we know that everthing began at a "point" is just silly.

To answer your question Robb in layman's terms from a skeptical point of view, the Big Bang is a "theory" that is loosely based upon what we get by plotting the trajectories of galaxies backward in time. When we do this we notice that the galaxies seem to all originate from one general direction, or one general area of space. Whether all of the energy of the universe was ever concentrated to a single "point" howver remains to be seen. To date that theory is more based on "faith" than on direct observation. It may be that we simply experienced a "big slam" much like a galaxy collision rather than a "big bang". As I said, the only reason the Big Bang is all the rage is because it a "tidy" and "neat" little theory that comes to a single point.

Alan Guth's inflation theory is pure nonsense since his theories violate the conservation of energy laws in a huge way. He claims that volume increases while density remains constant. The laws of physics claim that cannot happen.
Edited by - Michael Mozina on 06/13/2006 17:01:59
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  18:17:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message
I'm curious. Do you have a theory that explains red shift, the expanding of the universe, and cosmic background radiation? Of course, not having one is perfectly fine. But I don't see any other theory currently explaining any one of these, let alone relating all three to the same thing.

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  19:29:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Ricky

I'm curious. Do you have a theory that explains red shift, the expanding of the universe, and cosmic background radiation? Of course, not having one is perfectly fine. But I don't see any other theory currently explaining any one of these, let alone relating all three to the same thing.

I recall that Fred Hoyle's "Steady State" theory handled red shift by supposing the universe is in a constant state of expansion.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  19:50:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by HalfMooner
I recall that Fred Hoyle's "Steady State" theory handled red shift by supposing the universe is in a constant state of expansion.
Yep, but it was the verfication of cosmic background radiation that stuck a fork in the Steady State theory.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  20:08:29   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by H. Humbert

quote:
Originally posted by HalfMooner
I recall that Fred Hoyle's "Steady State" theory handled red shift by supposing the universe is in a constant state of expansion.
Yep, but it was the verfication of cosmic background radiation that stuck a fork in the Steady State theory.



Right.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
25970 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2006 :  21:15:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Michael Mozina

Alan Guth is nothing but a two bit snake oil salesman IMO. I'm therefor not very impressed with that reference frankly.
So with an "IMO" and the implication that Guth ignores laws of physics at a whim, an entire field of physics is dismissed. Applying that same sort of "skepticism," Michael, one might suggest that Dr. Manuel's work is "a big fat myth" and ignore it completely.
quote:
To then claim we know that everthing began at a "point" is just silly.
Good thing that Big Bang theory doesn't state that, then, isn't it? It's also a good thing that Guth's version of inflation was found to be lacking, years ago, and cosmologists have since moved on to other ideas which better fit the observations.

In other words, if your opinion of the Big Bang Theory is informed only by theorists from 20-plus years ago, and you present "facts" about the theory which are plainly incorrect, then one can easily see that your conclusions aren't even wrong.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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