Is the Universe a sphere with water or ice surrounding its' confinement? Are there any theories that imply the Universe being confined within a sphere of water/ice material?

  • $\begingroup$ Your question implies that the universe has some kind of spatial boundary. There is no such boundary in any modern theory of cosmology, even in cosmologies that speak of multiple universes. $\endgroup$
    – PM 2Ring
    May 9, 2019 at 8:46
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    $\begingroup$ At least we cannot see any such boundary in the visible universe. For all we actually know there's a close packed array of Bertrand Russell's teapots receding from us at just past c. -No evidence, so better no speculation, unless it leads to a testable hypothesis. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 14:53
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    $\begingroup$ It's turtles all the way down. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 17:37
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    $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because this is well beyond mainstream-related questioning $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 17:37

2 Answers 2


No. The universe is not a sphere with water ice surrounding it.

Asking about "outside the universe" is akin to asking about what a candle flame is made of before it is lit. Just because you can put the words together doesn't mean the question makes sense.

The universe is "all that exists". Nothing can exist outside the universe, because then it would exist, and if it exists then it is part of the universe.

It is probably best to imagine the universe as stretching infinitely in all directions. This is not the only possible topology of the universe, but it does help to avoid visualisation of the universe as being like a "sphere" with something outside it.

  • $\begingroup$ You're talking semantics here. Yes. The definition of Universe is everything. Today, though, we have many astrophysicists who talked about Multiverse. That breaks your semantics talk... $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 5:36
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    $\begingroup$ I almost upvoted, but then asked myself if No. The universe is not a sphere with water ice surrounding it is worth the same +10 points as one of your really good answers, and decided to skip it this time ;-) $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    May 10, 2019 at 4:13

It's very difficult to answer a question "Are there any theories ...." in the negative, since if nothing else, the questioner has probably just formulated such a theory. I can say with reasonable confidence that no such theory has any traction or credibility in any of the communities of research and scholarship that consider such things (astronomy, cosmology, etc.). Most of the theories I am aware of have the universe unconfined and without boundaries, although possibly of finite extent.

Some consider the possibility of "domain walls" -- two dimensional surfaces that are vaguely analagous to the boundaries between crystals in a solid -- the fundamental structure of the universe has "crystallised" differently on the two sides.

  • $\begingroup$ Would the "domain walls" in theory, be crystallized ice like materials on the "edge/walls" of the universe? If so, where could one go to study people who believe this view? Thank you for your time. $\endgroup$
    – Doberg
    May 8, 2019 at 20:58
  • $\begingroup$ @Doberg No. They'd be more two dimensional elementary particles or maybe two dinmensional black holes than anything else, I think, but I'm no expert. To study these theories you'll likely need to study quantum gravity and string theory, for which purpose you probably need to start with maths degree and then plan on five to ten years postgrad study. $\endgroup$ May 8, 2019 at 21:17
  • $\begingroup$ Okay thank you. $\endgroup$
    – Doberg
    May 8, 2019 at 22:30
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    $\begingroup$ @WhitePrime Boundless but finite could simply mean closed into itself. TBH, we don't truly know this one is infinite (and we may never know for sure), although it is true this is the hypothesis that makes the most sense currently. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 3:50
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    $\begingroup$ @WhitePrime consider the surface of a sphere. As a two dimensional "universe" that is finite, but has no edges or boundaries. It is seriously proposed that the universe may be a higher-dimensional analogue of this shape. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2019 at 7:17

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