Questions tagged [cosmology]

Questions about the origin, history, evolution and fate of the Universe.

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Observable universe equals its Schwarzschild radius (event horizon)?

The estimated age of the universe is 14 billion years. The estimated Schwarzschild radius (event horizon) of the observable universe is 14 billion light-years. What are the ramifications?
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How did UV from the earliest stars 'alter the state of the 21 cm line' such that it shows up in CMB today?

In this question I discuss the recent (open access) paper in Nature An absorption profile centred at 78 megahertz in the sky-averaged spectrum at length. The abstract begins: After stars formed in ...
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851 views

How can gravity lead to the Big Crunch scenario?

According to modern cosmology, space is expanding, causing proper distances (but not comoving distances) to increase between galaxies. In the Big Crunch hypothesis, gravity halts and reverses the ...
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3k views

Why is there a supermassive black hole at the center of every galaxy?

According to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sphere_of_influence_(black_hole) the gravitational sphere of influence of a supermassive black hole is really limited compared to the size of its hosting ...
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312 views

Is there a paper on galaxy mergers in clusters of galaxies?

I'm looking for something to cite about galaxy mergers in clusters of galaxies. I need numbers on the frequency of mergers in the outer parts of galaxy clusters vs. the cluster center. In the center ...
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Does the radius of the Universe correspond to its total entropy?

I heard a claim that due to holographic principle, the surface area of the cosmic horizon corresponds to the universe's total entropy. As such the initial state had zero surface area and later ...
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1answer
159 views

Going from the second moments of an object to its ellipticities and half-light-radius

I am studying ellipticity distributions of galaxies and am having trouble moving from the second central moment matrix (covariance matrix) to properties for an object such as its half-light radius. I ...
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what is a Friedmann model?

Can you explain what is a Friedmann model to a layman? And also give some examples of Friedmann models, specially I would like to know if the lambda-CDM model is considered a Friedmann model.
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If the Universe is infinite, why isn't it of infinite density?

If we make the assumption that the Universe is infinite, and has an infinite number of hydrogen atoms, then why is it not of infinite density - because, under Schrodinger's wave equation the ...
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865 views

Could there really be a preferential direction to the speed of light?

This question is inspired by a recent video by Veritasium Why no one has measured the speed of light linked below. To summarize the video, Derek points out that it is impossible to measure the one-way ...
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109 views

If an object 1 billion light years away emits light, does it take more than 1 billion years to reach us because of the expansion of the universe?

From page 7 of the recent (September 26, 2020) edition of Science News Magazine: Detected May 21, 2019, the gravitational waves came from a source about 17 billion light-years from Earth, making this ...
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288 views

Collision with Andromeda Galaxy

According to Hubble's law, the universe is expanding and this expansion is proportional to distance between the two objects and thus objects are moving away at a very fast rate, then why is it ...
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How will nearby galaxies some day expand beyond our horizon? (Neil deGrasse Tyson)

In his appearance on Television contained in the video The Mystery That Keeps Neil deGrasse Tyson Up At Night, Astronomer andeducator Neil deGrasse Tyson says: I don’t want to be blamed if you can ...
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How can the equation of state for cosmic strings and domain walls be derived?

In this article which nicely explains why it is really the quantity $\rho + 3p$ which is relevant to determine if the expansion of the universe is accelerating or decelerating by making use of the for ...
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1answer
327 views

Early universe's first starlight (indirectly) detected for the first time, could it have been detectable with 1970's technology?

The recent paper in Nature An absorption profile centred at 78 megahertz in the sky-averaged spectrum seems (to me at least) to be an incredibly simple and elegant experiment with far-reaching ...
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1answer
290 views

What is difference between horizon and comoving distances?

I wonder if there a difference between horizon and comoving distances in cosmology ? I mean both correspond to a null geodesic $(ds^2=0)$ right ? $$d_{horizon} (t) =a(t) \int\limits_{0}^{r} \frac{{\...
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139 views

What happens to the shrinking universe in the presence of the pressure of Hawking radiation?

Black holes release Hawking radiation. Now assume that the universe after all collapses back again, bringing all matter to a single black hole. I assume that this would bend the whole space-time of ...
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99 views

Is the Astronomy community still concerned about the lumpyness of matter distribution in the universe?

A decade or so ago, when I was still a science undergrad, one of the open questions in astrophysics was to explain the uneven distribution of galaxies in the observable universe. That is, why did the ...
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221 views

Might the universe be really small yet seem infinite from spherical reflections? [closed]

if a single source of light quite small, was placed somewhere inside a completely reflective sphere, quite large, what would the reflections look like from the light source's point of view within that ...
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1answer
97 views

To what extent are structure formations unexplained?

I hear conflicting claims about our understanding of the structure formation in our universe. I heard that ΛCDM explaines well the large scale structure of the universe i.e. Comparison of the model ...
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47 views

What is the history of the average pressure, density, and temperature of the matter in the universe over time?

This question is inspired by this more specific question where Cerelic wanted to know if conditions were suitable for liquid water to exist during an epoch when the characteristic temperature of the ...
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Why can primordial tensor perturbations of the CMB be ascribed to gravitational waves?

Why can primordial tensor perturbations of the CMB be ascribed to gravitational waves? Is this attribution unique, or are there other mechanisms that could lead to the excitation of tensor modes? In ...
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Does a merging massive binary black hole ‘emits’ more than one gravitational wave?

If we want to use gravitational waves (GW) to determine the Hubble constant, we need to find the source in the electromagnetic spectrum (EMS). However, we need to be lucky to ‘see’ it simultaneously ...
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So where are these measurements of galaxies moving faster than light?

https://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/400457/what-does-general-relativity-say-about-the-relative-velocities-of-objects-that-a "we can actually observe galaxies that are moving away from us at >...
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The CNO cycle in first generation of stars

I'm an undergrad interested in astophysics and this question struck my mind: As the CNO cycle requires carbon to start, and carbon is produced by thermonuclear fusion in stars, is it fair to think ...
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Strong force and metric expansion

If the expansion of the universe (the metric) continues (and perhaps is accelerating), in a very large but finite time the expansion of the metric will clash with the effects of the strong nuclear ...
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289 views

What is the furthest object in the observable universe?

My question is about furthest object in the observable universe except Сosmic microwave background.
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213 views

What are GEODEs?

Phys.org's Researchers predict location of novel candidate for mysterious dark energy says that GEODEs may explain the dark energy problem. I'm not an astronomer but I've never heard of GEODEs. I know ...
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155 views

At what rate is the observable universe expanding?

The observable universe is $4.4 \times 10^{26} m $ in every direction. I told this to my daughter and then added, "And guess what? It's a little bigger today than it was yesterday." "Wow!" But by ...
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478 views

How did the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy separate before they began their collision course?

How did the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy separate before they began their collision course? I understand that gravity is pulling together the two galaxies, but what separated them in the first ...
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127 views

Would stars have formed in the Universe if atomic hydrogen couldn't make molecular hydrogen?

I just saw this YouTube video made by PBS Studios. There they explain that $H_2$ can reduce the traslational kinetic energy of regular $H$ atoms when it is formed since the energy can also be stored ...
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344 views

Number Density of Dark Matter Halos

Is there a way to calculate the expected number density of Dark Matter Halos above a given mass, in a certain redshift range, and in a certain area?
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250 views

Why is dark energy preferred to the cosmological constant?

Dark energy and the cosmological constant are often identified, but Peebles and Ratra explain that "Einstein did not consider the cosmological constant to be part of the stress-energy term... a ...
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1answer
714 views

Was the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation originally gamma rays?

I believe that sometime after Big Bang the entire universe was filled with high energy particles. Now we fast forward to the present; most of these particles still linger and managed to avoid being ...
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2k views

How to convert density from physical unit to comoving unit?

I am learning co-moving units and I am interested to see how the conversion works. If Hubble constant is assumed to be 0.7, then I want to convert $1gm/cm^3$ into comoving unit. If I want to express ...
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325 views

Do the E and B modes of the CMB polarization have anything to do with electric and magnetic fields?

As explained in this article, as the CMB is created from a vaiable (matter?) density $\kappa$ its gradient $\nabla \kappa = \vec{u}$ can be separated into a gradient and curl part, called the $E$ and $...
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244 views

What does black hole evaporation correspond to in the accelerating universe / black hole analogy?

In the same way, as a black hole emits Hawking radiation corresponding to its temperature $$ T = \frac{\hbar}{r_{BH}} $$ the accelerating universe can be described as all of the stuff falling ...
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110 views

What accounts into calculating the Hubble constant?

From my understanding, the Hubble constant $H_0$ calculates from observed redshifts $z$ of distant galaxys against their proper distance $D$. The current value appears to be 67.80(77) $\frac{km}{s}Mpc^...
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184 views

Can Hubble red shift be interpreted as time dilation?

Can we interpret the de Sitter universe as a spherical cosmic horizon null surface of finite radius, centered at Earth, and containing the Hubble volume of space where time is dilated and radial ...
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210 views

Motivation for using $\sigma_{8}$?

Press-Schechter formalism allows one to universally quantify the number of massive dark matter halos in a given volume -- The Halo Mass Function. The density contrast is given by the rms mass variance ...
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1answer
3k views

How do you convert an observed magnitude to a flux? [duplicate]

For a series of supernovae I have the observed magnitude and I want to convert these values to flux. I understand that I need to apply: $m - M_r = -2.5\log_{10} \frac{F}{F_r}$ where $M_r$ is a '...
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4answers
327 views

Influences from outside the observable universe explaining dark energy and expansion?

Could some influence from outside the observable universe be causing the expansion?
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1answer
537 views

Generating random galaxy catalogs for correlation functions

The galaxy correlation function, when computed directly from a galaxy catalog, relies on computing a randomly generated counterpart catalog. When dealing with a simulated galaxy mock-catalog, where ...
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524 views

Has a “white hole” theory been advanced to explain anomalous star formation in Sagittarius A?

In 2008, the European Southern Observatory reported, upon the end of a 16-year study described here http://www.eso.org/public/usa/news/eso0846/, that the 28 stars nearest the very large black hole in ...
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210 views

Why are galaxies distributed as walls and voids, or spider webs?

I have wondered why the "walls and voids" of the cosmological galaxy distribution seem to resemble a "foam", like rising bread that's ready to fall, with "voids" corresponding to empty bubbles in the ...
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Is our universe stable or metastable?

I've been reading and thinking about this subject for some time, but I can't seem to find a clear answer. After reading Q14: Aspects of the Higgs boson suggest that our Universe is only “...
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180 views

What good is the Einstein de-Sitter model?

Why is the EdS model still taught and used to predict the age of the universe if ours is not an EdS Universe. Does this model have any pros?
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2k views

Why does earth not collide with the sun? [duplicate]

Gravity is most accurately described by the general theory of relativity (proposed by Albert Einstein in 1915) which describes gravity not as a force, but as a consequence of the curvature of ...
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208 views

cosmic-microwave-background - 2.7 degrees but does the Big Bang care?

The Big Bang is a proposed answer to the beginning of the universe, and the Cosmic Microwave Background or CMB is a central part of the evidence for it. Now suppose the measurement returned a ...
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How do I create a galaxy stellar mass function?

Suppose that I have an array of stellar masses of tens of thousands of galaxies, and that I also already know what the total "survey volume" is (in Mpc^3) within which all of those galaxies are ...

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