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New Crisis in Cosmology - not a call to smear mainstream physics.

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Yes, a discussion of standard crisis associated with the standard model cosmology. Science trying to work out inconsistencies. And facing the inevitable fact that science over time will have to change and adapt to new data and discovery: 



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  • Joshpantera changed the title to New Crisis in Cosmology - not a call to smear mainstream physics.
On 3/17/2021 at 4:33 AM, Joshpantera said:

Yes, a discussion of standard crisis associated with the standard model cosmology. Science trying to work out inconsistencies. And facing the inevitable fact that science over time will have to change and adapt to new data and discovery: 




Yeah, this so called BB crisis has been around for about 5 years. Most astronomers and theorists at that time thought that errors would be found and the problem would go away. But most now believe the problem will not go away because the problem is unrelated to specific cosmic distances. The problem lies with the Hubble constant within the Hubble distance formula which calculates galactic distances outside our local group and cluster, starting roughly 10 million light years away from us. This minimal distance to calculate by the Hubble formula is about 100 times the diameter of the Milky Way. This "constant" is based upon the supposed constant expansion rate of the universe, unrelated to specific distance measurements. For these great distances, galactic redshifts calculated by the Hubble formula is the only mainstream method known to make exact galactic distance measurements. There is no distance ladder for cosmic distances.


The crisis is that when measuring this universe expansion rate using the cosmic microwave background radiation, the supposed remnant of the Big Bang, compared to what has been calculated by galactic measurements, shows about a 10% error factor between the two methods. The reason why this problem has been brought out into the open now is because many astronomers and theorists have now concluded the so-called error between the two will never go away since it is unrelated to specific distance measurements.. The cosmic microwave background calculated Hubble constant measurement claims an error factor of no more than 1.5 % when the observed error variation between this method and  galactic measurements is about 10%. Many now believe that the error factor of this constant will never be able to accommodate the microwave background measurement, since the Hubble constant is unrelated to specific distances.


The cosmic microwave background radiation is considered a foundation pillar of the Big Bang theory so problems with its measurements are a big deal. Since this calculation differs by 10% from nearly all other methods, the question then becomes: is the microwave background radiation really a remnant of the BB, or does it represent something else? Concerning the cosmic microwave background radiation, are the inferences they use to calculate the Hubble constant valid? Some consider this difference in calculation results just another nail in the coffin of the Big Bang model,. But the mainstream could instead propose a relatively simple explanation if they wished. They could propose that this different expansion rate of the universe could be related to the dark energy proposal, where the present expansion rate of the universe is supposedly accelerating, expanding faster and faster from what it was a few billion years ago.


If such a new proposal were made they could assert that following the hypothetical Inflation era of the Big Bang there was another period where there was an earlier era involving accelerated expansion of the universe, like the present, requiring a cosmological constant change, then vs. now, which would be easy to propose and consider since it would have followed the Inflation era. To do this they might have to provide a mechanism as to how this accelerated expansion rate once started could then slow down providing a constant expansion rate again. Although easy to propose, it would require another ad hoc hypothesis to add to the great many already required as part of the BB model, such as expanding space, Inflation, dark matter, dark energy, no defined big bang beginning, etc. A number of theorists would object to such a change since they believe the number of ad hoc hypothesis now required by the theory is already too many.


A theory that has to be altered every decade or so to accommodate new observations, rather than one that can predict beforehand such new observations, could be in trouble.


Of course all realize that it's far easier to explain what's wrong with a theory than to propose one that is obviously better.


Here's an excellent link/ video IMO explaining the many ongoing problems with the BB model. The beginning minute or so of this video is sometimes garbled (but not always), soon thereafter it clears up. It's a great informative video without too much technical language.




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The crisis in cosmology is the disparity between 'local' and 'distant' measurements of the universe's rate of expansion.  They should agree, but they don't.   But both sets of measurements are based upon a raft of difficult and incomplete observations and equally difficult and incomplete assumptions.  Any errors of observation and/or assumption introduce errors into any set of measurements, whether local or distant.  Which could mean that either or both measurements are incorrect.  So the crisis in cosmology could be solved or exacerbated by better and more complete observations.


To give a sense of just how difficult the process of gauging distances is, please look at this Wiki page...




...and take note of the complexities shown in the Extragalactic Distance Ladder diagram.


To compound the problems, distance errors and uncertainties within our own galaxy translate into even greater problems, the further up the distance ladder we go.





The distance to the Pleiades can be used as a key first step to calibrate the cosmic distance ladder. As the cluster is relatively close to the Earth, its distance should be relatively easy to measure and has been estimated by many methods.



Measurements of the distance have elicited much controversy. Results prior to the launch of the Hipparcos satellite generally found that the Pleiades were about 135 parsecs (pc) away from Earth. Data from Hipparcos yielded a surprising result, namely a distance of only 118 pc by measuring the parallax of stars in the cluster—a technique that should yield the most direct and accurate results. Later work consistently argued that the Hipparcos distance measurement for the Pleiades was erroneous. In particular, distances derived to the cluster via the Hubble Space Telescope and infrared color-magnitude diagram fitting (so-called "spectroscopic parallax") favor a distance between 135 and 140 pc; a dynamical distance from optical interferometric observations of the Pleiad double Atlas favors a distance of 133 to 137 pc. However, the author of the 2007–2009 catalog of revised Hipparcos parallaxes reasserted that the distance to the Pleiades is ~120 pc and challenged the dissenting evidence.[2] Recently, Francis and Anderson[40] proposed that a systematic effect on Hipparcos parallax errors for stars in clusters biases calculation using the weighted mean and gave a Hipparcos parallax distance of 126 pc and photometric distance 132 pc based on stars in the AB Doradus, Tucana-Horologium, and Beta Pictoris moving groups, which are all similar in age and composition to the Pleiades. Those authors note that the difference between these results can be attributed to random error. More recent results using very-long-baseline interferometry (VLBI) (August 2014) and preliminary solutions using Gaia Data Release 1 (September 2016) and Gaia Data Release 2 (August 2018), determine distances of 136.2 ± 1.2 pc, 134 ± 6 pc and 136.2 ± 5.0 pc, respectively. The Gaia Data Release 1 team was cautious about their result and the VLBI authors assert "that the Hipparcos-measured distance to the Pleiades cluster is in error".


Selected distance estimates to the Pleiades
Year Distance (pc) Notes
1999 125 Hipparcos
2004 134.6 ± 3.1 Hubble Fine Guidance Sensor
2009 120.2 ± 1.9 Revised Hipparcos
2014 136.2 ± 1.2 Very-long-baseline interferometry
2016 134 ± 6 Gaia Data Release 1
2018 136.2 ± 5.0 Gaia Data Release 2


Parsecs aren't easy units to understand, so here are the above maximum and minimum distances to the Pleiades , expressed in light years.


120.2 parsecs = 392.03 light years


136.2 parsecs = 444.22 light years


So, which is it?  Are the Pleiades 392 light years away or are they 444 light years away?


And if there's that much disparity between distance measurements of something that's 'on our cosmic doorstep' just how confident should we be about extragalactic distances, which are m-i-l-l-i-o-n-s of times larger?


Thank you.








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In reverse distance order, here are some further examples of the 'local' problems astronomers face when looking out at the wider universe and trying to gauge cosmic distances.  All of the these problems are local because they are all proper to our galaxy, the Milky Way.  We have no choice but to try and peer through the murk and muck in our galaxy to see what's beyond.  And, as I mentioned before, local observing problems inside our galaxy translate into bigger problems outside of it.  Anyway, here are the examples.




It now seems clear that the signal initially claimed by BICEP2 as an imprint of the rapid “inflation” of the early universe is in fact a foreground effect caused by dust within the Milky Way.


This foreground effect generated by swirling clouds of galactic dust has to be completely subtracted from any information about what lies beyond.  




Looking into Lockman's Hole (no sniggering, please!) gives us a clearer view out of our galaxy.  Catch is, Mr Lockman's hole is 'only' about five times the diameter of the full Moon, as seen from Earth.  Also, since the hole is located in the northern constellation of Ursa Major, none of the major telescopes located in the southern hemisphere can see it.




Sixty years on from its discovery, the presence of the 2175 angstrom anomaly in the ultraviolet part of the spectrum is still not well understood.  So, UV observations have to compensate for this effect without having a reliable model to subtract it from the data.


Coming right down to the most local of scales, we arrive at the Local Fluff.  




It is unknown if the Sun is embedded in the Local Interstellar Cloud, or in the region where the Local Interstellar Cloud is interacting with the neighboring G-Cloud.  


See that?  Despite decades of observations we still don't know where we are in relation to two overlapping interstellar clouds.  


And according to this site... https://www.centauri-dreams.org/2010/09/01/into-the-interstellar-void/ ...there are seven interstellar clouds within 5 parsecs (16.3 light years) of the Sun.


All of which means that 'empty' space really isn't anything of the kind.  ☹️





Thank you.









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  • Super Moderator
34 minutes ago, Joshpantera said:

Looks like driving through Florida any given May. 

Ah, yes.  The love bugs.  They're insects in sex.

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18 hours ago, WalterP said:

All of which means that 'empty' space really isn't anything of the kind.  ☹️


I've always felt that to be the case intuitively.

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