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Dark Energy Comes To Light

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  • N. Tesla
    Dear Colleagues: Proof is at hand that missing matter is not really missing. Please read this article as it concerns a topic being discussed on many science
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 30, 2000
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      Dear Colleagues:

      Proof is at hand that missing matter is not really missing. Please
      read this article as it concerns a topic being discussed on many
      science radio broadcasts, including Art Bell (no longer publicly
      available) and Dr. Michio Kaku's "Exploration" generally carried on
      Tuesday afternoons on FM talk stations is the USA.

      Article reprints of the article are available on:
      http://www.eXaminer.com/000426/0426cosmos.html


      [NEWSPAPER ARTICLE REPRINT]

      New evidence on cosmic dark energy

      By Keay Davidson
      EXAMINER SCIENCE WRITER

      New evidence supports the notion that a mysterious dark energy
      pervades space and is driving the ever-faster expansion of the
      universe, scientists in Berkeley and elsewhere report.

      The evidence comes from astronomical observations conducted by a
      balloon-borne sensor that flew over Antarctica and scanned the night
      sky for 10 consecutive days during the winter of 1998-99.

      The device, dubbed BOOMERANG, detected extremely faint variations in
      light — like glowing waves on the surface of a choppy ocean —
      across a
      large patch of the heavens. The light, known as the cosmic
      background
      radiation, is the echo of the Big Bang that spawned our cosmos about
      15 billion years ago.

      "What we're really seeing is a snapshot of the universe as it was
      300,000 years after the Big Bang," said astrophysicist Julian
      Borrill,
      a scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley and
      member of the BOOMERANG team.

      The variations, sometimes called wrinkles, ripples or anisotropies,
      that BOOMERANG detected in the distribution of cosmic background
      radiation are thought to reveal density variations in the cosmic fog
      that formed soon after the Big Bang.

      That fog consisted of wildly careering ions and electrons —
      fragments
      of newborn atoms. Particles of light called photons bounced around,
      trapped within the cosmic fog.

      Eventually the early universe cooled and its density dropped, as the
      ions and electrons combined into atoms, the building blocks of
      ordinary matter (like the matter in your body).

      Thanks to the decreased density of fog, the photons were no longer
      trapped. They escaped into space.

      Escaped photons

      Those escaped photons are the light now detected — 12 to 15
      billion
      years later — by BOOMERANG's sensors.

      "It's very similar to what you see in the Bay Area," Borrill said.
      "Often you can't see out to sea bcause of fog, in which sunlight is
      bouncing off water droplets. Then the fog lifts and you can see out
      to
      sea."

      BOOMERANG's data strengthen astronomers' growing suspicion that outer
      space is full of an invisible dark energy that is continually
      accelerating the expansion of the universe. As a result, the
      universe
      is expanding faster and faster with time, contrary to the old
      assumption that it expands more slowly as eons pass.

      "We're asking the same questions that people have always asked about
      the nature of the universe: Where did it come from? And where is it
      going? And what IS it?" Borrill said. "We just now have the
      technological capability to ask those questions, in quite an
      extraordinary way."

      BOOMERANG stands for Balloon Observations of Millimetric
      Extragalactic
      Radiation and Geophysics.

      International team

      Besides the Berkeley lab and its neighbor, UC-Berkeley, the BOOMERANG
      project employed institutions around the world. The 36 team members
      come from 16 universities and organizations in Canada, Italy, the
      United Kingdom and the United States. Two other leading institutions
      involved are Caltech in Pasadena and the University of Rome in Italy.

      "These images represent the ultimate limit of our vision," said
      physics Professor Andrew Lange of Caltech. "The enormous structures
      that they reveal predate the first star or galaxy in the universe."

      The announcement was also greeted by U.S. Energy Secretary Bill
      Richardson, whose department bankrolls Lawrence Berkeley.

      "From studying our universe to studying the human genome, scientists
      are generating incredible amounts of data — but it takes the
      capabilities of supercomputing facilities such as the Energy
      Department's National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center to
      make sense of and learn from that data," Richardson said.

      The scientists flew the balloon over Antarctica during the winter of
      1998-99. Its sensors collected astronomical date for 10 1/2 days from
      a patch of sky that is about 40 degrees long and 20 degrees wide.

      Why Antarctica?

      For one thing, the cosmic background radiation is extremely faint and
      located in the infrared band of the electromagnetic spectrum.
      Normally, atmospheric moisture blocks detection of infrared radiation
      from space. But Antarctica's sky is extremely dry, so it is an
      excellent place for studying the cosmic background radiation.

      Smoking gun evidence

      The radiation was detected in the mid-1960s, quite by accident. It
      was
      quickly recognized as smoking gun evidence for the Big Bang theory,
      according to which our universe — not only matter but space and
      time
      themselves — formed from a sort of titanic explosion more than 10
      billion years ago.

      The cosmic background radiation is, in effect, the afterglow of that
      super-blast.

      Also, the Antarctic circumpolar wind blows around the South Pole.
      Hence balloons continue orbiting the South Pole for many days at a
      time, greatly extending the duration of observations. By contrast,
      balloons launched from elsewhere on Earth — say from Texas —
      quickly
      drift eastward on breezes; many end up plunking into the Atlantic
      Ocean.

      In 1992, George Smoot of Lawrence Berkeley and other scientists
      reported the first detection of cosmic wrinkles, based on
      observations from a space satellite called Cosmic Background
      Explorer (COBE).

      At the time, the Smoot team's discovery was hailed as one of the
      greatest findings in the history of astronomy, partly because the
      wrinkles indicated that the force of gravity is adequate to explain
      how primordial matter accumulated into galaxies.

      Sharper images

      Now, eight years later, BOOMERANG provides a much higher-resolution
      picture of the cosmic wrinkles than did COBE. The features in
      BOOMERANG's pictures are about 600 times smaller than those in COBE's
      comparatively blurry images.

      The existence of something like dark energy, also known as negative
      pressure, was proposed in the 1910s by the great physicist Albert
      Einstein.

      Einstein called it the cosmological constant because he thought it
      would keep the cosmos a constant size — i.e., prevent it from
      expanding. Soon after, astronomers discvered the universe really is
      expanding. Embarrassed, Einstein abandoned the idea, calling it the
      worst goof of his career.

      But now, it appears there is a cosmological constant, or something
      like it. If observations by BOOMERANG and ground-based astronomers
      are right, then space really is pervaded by it. What creates it?
      Probably invisible subatomic energies in the incorrectly named "void"
      of space.

      Physicists have long suspected the existence of such energies, whose
      existence is implied by quantum mechanics, the presently preeminent
      theory of light, energy and matter.

      Wild view of reality

      Developed mainly in the 1920s, quantum theory offers a seemingly wild
      view of the nature of reality, one in which commonsense notions of
      space, time and reality no longer hold.

      Yet quantum theory has been repeatedly verified by laboratory
      experiments. And its relevance to cosmology has been revealed by the
      observations from COBE and, now, BOOMERANG, hovering high in the
      winter night over the Antarctic ice.


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      *reprint now over*
    • John Schnurer
      Dear Folks, A better name would not be Dark Energy ... but regular energy, obscured by thin but large in area barrier... the energy, the photons... are not
      Message 2 of 3 , Apr 30, 2000
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        Dear Folks,


        A better name would not be "Dark Energy" ... but regular energy,
        obscured by thin but large in area barrier... the energy, the photons...
        are not "Dark" ... by any means... they are simply obscured. But it
        sounds cool to write "Dark Energy".
        Accurate names may not sell as much news... which does not lead to
        as any advertisement sales.
        Also... in some case... accurate words do not make the scientist
        sound like he is doing new work.

        Some examples:

        Fuzzy Logic

        And the recent mis uses of:

        Negative Resistance

        Dark Current

        Now if you really want to see some "new" then just re examine
        tried and true experiments which may be foundations of modern work. But
        examine them in the light of our present more effective instruments or
        examine them after the "shock" or new-novel-ness has passed.

        Example:

        The Stern Gerlach experiment was as follows:

        A low velocity, or 'thermal-velocity-only' beam of silver atoms is
        " launched" ... more accurate would be maybe to say "were allowed to loaf
        along in one direction" from a tiny oven with baffles with holes in them
        to make this low velocity weak beam of atoms of silver.
        Now....this thin column is passed through a magnetic field with a
        high gradient ... the idea was though it would leave a smear, to use
        Feynman's description.
        Instead it left two spots.

        The ONLY conclusion you can reach from this is it made a
        separation, and probably this was of spins and their opposites of the
        magnetic current loops formed by the electrons' orbits... but no
        more...and even this is a maybe.

        One cannot infer from this alone that there is quantization as it
        is described today... if this were so ... you would get more than two
        'spots' ... and even then, what aspect of 'quantisation' causes and Forces
        the two spots to be one atop the other?

        You might want to mention to the audience of the experiment that
        natural silver is nearly 50 50 of two stable isotopes.

        You might want to say.. that approaching the gradient part of the
        magnet poles the "beam" passes first through a gradient beginning as
        waek.. and then more pronounced fringe effects which are weaker at the
        top of the beam and are a respectable gradient perpendicular to the main
        body of the intent of the experiment.

        Hmm...

        I am NOT saying this is a 'bad' experiment... I AM saying it may
        well be poory interpreted.

        I say it is a GREAT experiment ... because it is almost certainly
        much deeper than it may appear with one interpretation and on first blush.


        J
      • c.h.thompson
        Dear John ... You re dead right here! I ve no idea what actually happens but nor has anyone else, so far as I can see. Trevor Marshall
        Message 3 of 3 , May 1, 2000
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          Dear John

          > The Stern Gerlach experiment was as follows:
          >
          > A low velocity, or 'thermal-velocity-only' beam of silver atoms is
          > " launched" ... more accurate would be maybe to say "were allowed to loaf
          > along in one direction" from a tiny oven with baffles with holes in them
          > to make this low velocity weak beam of atoms of silver.
          > Now....this thin column is passed through a magnetic field with a
          > high gradient ... the idea was though it would leave a smear, to use
          > Feynman's description.
          > Instead it left two spots.
          >
          > The ONLY conclusion you can reach from this is it made a
          > separation, and probably this was of spins and their opposites of the
          > magnetic current loops formed by the electrons' orbits... but no
          > more...and even this is a maybe.

          You're dead right here! I've no idea what actually happens but nor has
          anyone else, so far as I can see. Trevor Marshall
          <http://www.keyinnov.demon.co.uk/antiqm.htm> has his own theory within his
          "SED" paradigm. This is probably wrong too. He may not have taken enough
          notice of the actual experimental conditions. But the point is that the
          idea that the experiment supports QT and "quantisation" is on the level of
          pure myth. The Stern-Gerlach experiment has been "repeated" as nauseam as a
          thought-experiment but who takes any interest in real ones? Has anyone ever
          actually sent a beam through two pairs of S-G magnets in series, or is this
          just another of quantum theory's "thought-successes"?

          But apparently, the experiment did lead to the invention of nuclear magnetic
          resonance! A biographical article recently in Physics World (November 1999,
          p 27) told me that Isidor Rabi was inspired by it and went and worked with
          Stern for a while, then went on to discover NMR.

          > One cannot infer from this alone that there is quantization as it
          > is described today... if this were so ... you would get more than two
          > 'spots' ... and even then, what aspect of 'quantisation' causes and Forces
          > the two spots to be one atop the other?
          >
          > You might want to mention to the audience of the experiment that
          > natural silver is nearly 50 50 of two stable isotopes.
          >
          > You might want to say.. that approaching the gradient part of the
          > magnet poles the "beam" passes first through a gradient beginning as
          > waek.. and then more pronounced fringe effects which are weaker at the
          > top of the beam and are a respectable gradient perpendicular to the main
          > body of the intent of the experiment.
          >
          > Hmm...
          >
          > I am NOT saying this is a 'bad' experiment... I AM saying it may
          > well be poory interpreted.
          >
          > I say it is a GREAT experiment ... because it is almost certainly
          > much deeper than it may appear with one interpretation and on first blush.

          I guess this is what Rabi thought!

          Caroline
          http://www.aber.ac.uk/~cat
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