Japanese 3D Galaxy Map Confirms Einstein Was One Smart Dude

On June 30th, 1905, Albert Einstein started a revolution with the publication of theory of Special Relativity. This theory, among other things, stated that the speed of light in a vacuum is the same for all observers, regardless of the source. In 1915, he followed this up with the publication of his theory of General Relativity, which asserted that gravity has a warping effect on space-time. For over a century, these theories have been an essential tool in astrophysics, explaining the behavior of the Universe on the large scale.

However, since the 1990s, astronomers have been aware of the fact that the Universe is expanding at an accelerated rate. In an effort to explain the mechanics behind this, suggestions have ranged from the possible existence of an invisible energy (i.e. Dark Energy) to the possibility that Einstein’s field equations of General Relativity could be breaking down. But thanks to the recent work of an international research team, it is now known that Einstein had it right all along.

Using the Fiber Multi-Object Spectrograph (FMOS) on the Subaru Telescope, the team – which was led by researchers from Japan’s Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (Kavli IMPU) and the University of Tokyo – created the deepest 3-D map of the Universe to date. All told, this map contains some 3,000 galaxies and encompasses a volume of space measuring 13 billion light-years.

Experimental results looking at the expansion of the universe, in comparison to that predicted by Einstein’s theory of general relativity in green. Comoving distance is one of the distance scales used in cosmology. It is derived from the time taken for the object’s light to reach the observer, including the change caused by the expansion of the universe so far. Illustration credit: Okumura et al
Experimental results looking at the expansion of the universe, in comparison to that predicted by Einstein’s theory of general relativity in green. Credit: Kavli IPMU/Okumura et al.

To test Einstein’s theory, the team  – which was led by Dr. Teppei Okumura, a Kavli IPMU Project Researcher – used information obtained by the FastSound Project over the past few years. As part of their effort to ascertain the origins of cosmic acceleration, this project relies on data collected by the Subaru telescope to create a survey that monitors the redshift of galaxies.

From what was observed over the course of 40 nights (between 2012 and 2014), the FastSound Survey was able to determine the on velocities and clustering of more than 3,000 distant galaxies. Measuring their redshift space distortions to see how fast they were moving, Okumura and his team were able to track the expansion of these galaxies out to a distance of 13 billion light-years.

This was an historic feat, seeing as how previous 3-D models of the Universe have not been able to reach beyond 10 billion light years. But thanks to the FMOS on the Subaru Telescope, which can analyze galaxies 12.4 to 14.7 billion light-years away, the team was able to break this record. They then compared the results to the kind of expansion predicted by Einstein’s theory, particularly the inclusion of his cosmological constant.

Originally introduced by Einstein in 1917 as an addition to his theory of General Relativity, the cosmological constant was basically a way to hold back gravity and achieve a static Universe. And while Einstein abandoned this theory when Edwin Hubble discovered that the Universe was expanding, it has since come to be an accepted part of the standard model of modern cosmology (known as the Lambda-CDM model).

What the research team found was that even at a distance of 13 billion light-years into the Universe, the rules of General Relativity are still valid. “We tested the theory of general relativity further than anyone else ever has,” said Dr. Okumura. “It’s a privilege to be able to publish our results 100 years after Einstein proposed his theory.”

These results have helped resolve something that astronomers have been puzzling over for decades, which was whether or not Einstein’s cosmological constant could be shown to be consistent with an expanding Universe. And while various experiments have confirmed that General Relativity did match observational data, they have been somewhat limited in the past.

For example, the Pound-Rebka experiment, which took place in 1960, was the first confirmation of Einstein’s theory. However, this experiment, and the many that followed in the ensuing decades, were either indirect or confined to the Solar System. A 2010 experiment conducted by researchers from Princeton University confirmed General Relativity to a distance of 7 billion light years.

But with this experiment, General Relativity has been confirmed to a distance of 13 billion light years, which accounts for the vast majority of the Universe that we can see (which is 13.8 billion light-years). It seems that even a century later, Einstein’s theories are still holding up. And considering that he once claimed that the cosmological constant was the “biggest blunder” of his scientific career!

Further Reading: Publications of the Astronomical Society of Japan

98 Replies to “Japanese 3D Galaxy Map Confirms Einstein Was One Smart Dude”

  1. If the universe is expanding; then we should see it around our own galaxy? And if space is expanding; where is it coming from; is space being stretched?

    1. technically, if the polls continued to drift, it would be possible for the earth to eventually end up “upside down,” which would in effect cause the sun to rise in the west…You do understand that the Earth doesn’t rotate on a fixed axis, right?

      1. Incorrect. Our North and South poles will not end up “upside down”. Precession doesn’t do that.

        Our magnetic poles have switched and will almost certainly switch yet again some day. That is not at all a change in the orientation of the Earth itself.

      2. It could happen if the mass distribution changes, but that would be improbable, to say the least.

    2. @tjake: As the point of infinite energy (Google: Big Bang event) dissolves, static mass and continuously unfolding new time and space are created within the singularity (Google: Universal Entropy). This phenomenon is expected to continue forever (Google: Ultimate Fate of the Universe).

    3. According to Esoptrics (from a Greek word for mirror and name of the cosmological theory this self-educated amateur has been honing since 1957), space is not a single reality; rather, it’s a collection of 2^256 species (There’s a definite number of each species.) of field envelopes Geometry speak would allegorically describe as anywhere from c. 10^-47 to 10^31 cm. in “diameter” (In Esoptrics: from 2 to 2^257 micro-states of excitation in linear extension & from 2^3 to [2^257]^3 in volume). As the smaller fields move thru the larger ones, there’s an increase in the distance of the smaller fields’ centers from the centers of the larger fields. The universe, then, expands NOT because space is expanding but, rather, because the centers of the smaller fields are racing away from one another by means of fleeing the centers of the larger fields — the largest of which Geometry speak would allegorically describe as 18 trillion light years in “diameter”. At the center of each field is a micro-state using particle which takes on mass as it takes its own “piggyback” field thru and away from the center of a larger field. It does such by “ingesting” (actualizing is the more accurate term) one per step and in logical sequence the micro-states of a larger field thus causing the larger field to function as a Higgs field.

  2. NONSENSE. Wrong interpretation of reality. We need to understand the basic elements of reality – light, matter and force, space and time – and how these elements combine together to construct the universe. Gravity has not a warping effect on space-time. Gravity affects only particles and celestials /congeries of particles/. So how can I claim they’ve got it all wrong? Well, obviously they don’t think what they’re doing is wrong. In fairy-tale physics, we lose sight of the empirical content, almost completely. Yes, of course there are references to photons and quarks and electrons, space-time and quantum ripples, but these are broadly qualitative, not quantitative, references. I believe that damage is being done to the integrity of the scientific enterprise. The damage isn’t always clearly visible and is certainly not always obvious. If we don’t look for it, we won’t notice that the foundations are being undermined until the whole structure comes down on our heads. Once the error is placed in the ground like a foundation stone, everything is built on it. For start: what we measure as mass? Neither mathematical beauty nor agreement with experiment can guarantee that the ideas a theory is based on bear the slightest relation to reality. Sometimes we fool ourselves badly, as individuals and as a society. There are some wrong assumptions we are all making. Contemporary picture of physics and astrophysics looks more like a surrealistic painting.

    1. You aren’t going to gain much ground debunking Einstein’s theory on Special Relativity with fluffy opinion. You need concrete evidence. You need mathematics. All you’ve done is make a loose generalization about the lack of empirical testing. It’s not going to work. Where is your cogent substance?

    2. Thank you and look for my book. Well, a giant of science !!! do you know what we measure as mass? No..? Well, no comments. My advice : go to school to learn about dialoging. Insults are for..

    3. Spoken like someone who doesn’t understand tensors, relativity, non-euclidean geometry, and the very physics he claims is incorrect.

    4. Science is about producing models which are more predictive and less ambiguous. There is a case to be made that general relativity is wrong – It disagrees with quantum mechanics – but that case is only the start. General relativity has proven to be highly predictive and highly unambiguous. If you want to make the claim that it is wrong then it is incumbent on you to produce a model which Proves to be even more predictive and less ambiguous than general relativity.

      1. Ben, It makes perfect sense to me that general relativity disagrees with quantum mechanics. I view it as the whole vs parts and I expect that parts of something will act differently than the whole of something. As far as Remi’s comments go, it is nothing more than rambling without stating a valid basis for his perspective. In other words, his comments have not a modicum of validity and they are moot.

    5. Good to know you’re more intelligent than tens of thousands of scientists spanning the past century…. Self-serving, arrogant ass!

  3. We can ask why ( which is deep ) or ask how (which is also deep ) but I think the most significant question of all is what does it mean ?
    I think the most important study of all of this is time , what does time mean ?
    Why are we slaves to time or better yet is it good to be a slave to time ?
    Theres something about time that pushes things forward whit out it there would be
    no true purpose so time seems to be utterly important and good .
    The most fabulous think ever created is time everything seems to work off of it but what does time mean really in the big picture .Time is golden so let’s try not to waste it and do something good with it . Time is a gift ( if used well or bad if not ) but what does it mean and is it possible to be outside of time , maybe thats where the source is and we can’t find it in this ream unless we could find away to step out of time . I think the best way to connect is to lose the concept of time
    and just be but what do I know .

    1. Time is origin of all energy. All kinds of energy are manifestations of time. Well, very long time ago to move a charged point from 1st to 2nd position had needed only a quantum of time. If there is one theme underpinning contemporary theoretical physics, it seems to be an innate inability to calculate anything, with the no-so-apologetic caveat: well, it still might be true. Sometimes we fool ourselves badly, as individuals and as a society. There are some wrong assumptions we are all making. Contemporary picture of physics and astrophysics looks more like a surrealistic painting. Let it be known and have a look at the painting. In a focal point is a particle /God particle / and sitting in rows millions of small particles, waiting for the “mass”. A canvas-stretcher is like a harp with millions strings. Equally you may fill vibrations of strings playing a symphony from “big bang”. But, look carefully, it seems that cosmic dust is the source of this cosmic microwave background. Motes of cosmic dust are bobbing on strings and brans. There are other dimensions rolled into structures of a resilient time-space. The issue is that in fairy-tale physics the metaphysics is all there is. Until and unless it can predict something that can be tested by reference to empirical facts, concerning quantity or number, it is nothing but sophistry and illusion.

    2. Time does not exist. It is a construct of how we organize space, and place. The universe has no time. We make a thing called to to help us think about what has, is, or will be.

      1. Then neither does energy. Because you can’t have energy without time, or at least you absolutely can not have the conservation of energy without the time symmetry of physics.

        But where you have it wrong is you are confusing the PHYSICS use of time with the LAY PERSON use of time. First of all, time is absolutely and inexorably tied to location. If time does not exist, then neither can location. How do I know this? Because what is called “time” in one reference frame can be called “space” in another moving at some speed with respect to it (this is a consequence of the Lorentz transformations, which are inherent features of this particular universe).

        Furthermore, time is a coordinate to describe an event, and if it did not exist, EVENTS would not exist. Clearly EVENTS happen, otherwise how did you type that comment? There is no universal time, but there certainly is some scalar that is mathematically related to energy that allows for events to be described.

        But the biggest reason why time must exist is the very first thing I wrote: you cannot separate time from energy. You cannot separate time from motion. If time does not exist, neither can energy or motion. It isn’t as simple as we once thought, but it exists as surely as distance exists.

      2. BS.
        It’s like the tree in the woods question. Time will continue merrily on with or without us. We are irrelevant.

      3. Dave, right on. Time is just a measuring tool. Time is a construct of our existence. What we call time is just experiences tangled with memory.

      4. I have to disagree with you Dave. Energy causes movement. Time describes the interval between one state and the next. It is there. The construct to which you refer is the scale by which we use to observe the interval between those two states. The best example I can think of is not on the sub-atomic scale but on something much larger. We use the LIGHT-YEAR to describe the amount of time between 2 states. While you are correct in that time does not exist in a physical sense, it does exist as does energy, gravity and electro-magnetism.

    1. So does mine Kt. But , it has nothing to do with this conversation. I think I did some things that TIME told me I should not be doing. on the flip side of that, with time, I should get better. 🙂

  4. Interesting observation using “red shift” light analysis. However, has anyone ever considered that the red shift light was sent many millions to billions of years ago? That, in essence, is not just old scientific news but extremely old news. Perhaps the universe has stopped expanding or even started to collapse. But we on Earth won’t know that because a “blue shift” light won’t be seen for eons. Just a thought.

    1. Clearly you don’t have a clue what Special Relativity is all about, or you have made such a foolish statement. If you still don’t gt it, perhaps a refresher on Hubble’s Laws might help. The Universe is not only expanding, it’s accelerating.

  5. Einstein was and continues to be one of the biggest frauds in history. He didn’t know jack. He was a puppet for Hitler and the Ashkenazi Jews, and was transferred to the US because the elite saw a golden opportunity to screw with American minds. Relativity is complete nonsense. Tesla is the real genius.

    1. Nicola Tesla called Einstein a clueless charlatan… so did Hitler. I can just see this article reported on YouTube will be making Tesla fan boys and anti-zionists, blood boil.

      1. I’m almost certainly going to regret asking this, but are you implying that they can’t both be geniuses? Why must there only be one?

      2. welllll, I happen to be a fan of both. I’m not anti-zionist whatever that means. And BTW: isn’t this a SCIENCE article discussion, NOT a popularity contest on who is the most intelligent.

    2. Wow… psycho much? A) Even if Hitler employed him, that doesn’t discount his theories and B) even now, a century later, the newest technology is continuing to prove them right. Why did you stop taking your Lithium?

    3. Lol, you must be a raging anti-semite. First of all, Hitler HATED Einstein and the Nazi’s actually plotted to kill him along with burning his books and deeming his theories “Juden Physiks!” (Jewish Physics). Secondly, Einstein is probably the greatest conceptual genius to ever live and one of the top 5 thinkers of all-time. Tesla is an absolute genius as well, but nowhere on Einstein’s level of abstract reasoning. And much of what is attributed to Tesla was created by Hertz and others. Tesla was a genius inventor and engineer but his cult has over-aggrandized his legend. He didn’t understand relativity, for one, and secondly he went a bit cuckoo towards the end of his career (although his work on wireless electricity was indeed decades ahead of its time). He was an inventor, not a theorist (completely different fields).

      Special Relativity ALONE is a work of unfathomable genius and it is so universal that Paul Dirac – in order to make quantum mechanics “work” – had to unify special relativity with quantum mechanics.

      Without General Relativity your GPS would not work, period. And without General Relativity we wouldn’t be able to map the universe; we wouldn’t be able to detect gravitational waves; etc etc. General Relativity is probably the most impressive scientific theory ever constructed – if you understand the tensor calculus of tulli levi-civita and Riemann, you’ll see it’s truly the PERFECT theory. If beauty can be expressed in science, GR is the Pieta and Mona Lisa

  6. And yet Nicola Tesla called Einstein a clueless charlatan. I can just see this article reported on YouTube will be making Tesla fan boys and anti-zionists, blood boil.

  7. And yet Nicola Tesla called Einstein a clueless charlatan. I can just see this article reported on YouTube will be making Tesla fan boys and anti-zionists, blood boil.

    1. Hey, can you press, “Post Comment” a couple more times? It makes your point more valid the more it’s posted…

  8. The scientists said that the Universe expands because the input of the energy matter. I am not sure about that (well Hawking the greatest scientist alive said that the Universe appeared Out of Nothing… and even an eighth grader knows that from Out of Nothing, Nothing comes) but it is more plausible to think that if in the Multiverse our “Dwarf Universe” is surrounded by Giant Universes then the galaxies from our Universe are attracted direct proportionally with the distance to those giant Universes from vicinity, therefore those galaxies closer to the edge of our Universe are attracted faster, that’s why we see the red shift. I do believe that our Universe appeared about 14 billion years ago as a projection of a hyper-dimensional space at the dimensions it is the observable Universe now, then it started to expand because it was attracted by the giant universes from vicinity. If you understand the relation “a tesseract is for a cube what a cube is for a square” then you understand what I try to say and also you understand that paradoxically the evolution is a Top-Down process, not a Down-Up we are inclined to believe. If you name One Super-Dimension of Space (it means infinite dimensions) God then that is OK with me.

    1. @Octavian: WRONG! Hawking did NOT say the universe appeared out of nothing; he said that we cannot know anything about the universe until it has aged at least 10?³² seconds because no information exists yet. Since there was no time or space before the BB event, we know that the universe must have existed for all time. Even though the universe had a beginning, it has also always existed, this is a wonderful paradox.

      Although there is no such concept as an “outside” to our singularity universe*, there’s no reason why an infinite number of singularities couldn’t exist, each with its own universe of infinite energy dissolving into static mass and continuously unfolding new time and space within.

      * A theoretical outside observer viewing our universe would only detect an infinitesimally small dimensionless point. New time and space continuously unfolds within the singularity (there is no “outside” for the singularity to expand into), which is why Einstein’s theory of General Relativity works.

      1. We live in a 3D Universe and its constrains do not allow “Miracles” and we already know that, therefore the only way our Universe could appear suddenly was from a hyper dimensional space. The same logic would apply to the Mulitiverse. Think about the projection of a 3d object that leaves a 2D shadow on a flat, likewise we are a projection of a hyper dimensional space onto a sub-dimensional space. I agree that all the relativistic equations could be correct but saying that “Since there was no time or space before the BB event” is paraphrasing Hawking “the Universe appeared Out of Nothing”.
        Just for the sake of the argument if you would live in that 2D shadow I talked above you might intuit that if your Flat World would have a height then you could jump and see farther away, but that would be the only think you would imagine about our 3D space, you wouldn’t imagine galaxies, stars, the life on a planet, dinosaurs. You would need infinite energy to create that height to see more. For the same token if you would add one more dimension to the 3D space then from that hyper dimensional space you would perceive everything in an instant, the beginning, the end and everything in between as an entity, but that is the only thing you could intuit about a hyper dimensional space and I bet there is by far more. I think our Millennium needs more philosophers like the ancient Greek Democritus who wrote in 400BC about the Atomic Theory of the Universe.

    2. Run on sentences full of unrelated and nonsensical technobabble win the day once more!

  9. @Remigiusz Zarosinski, please spare me the sophistry. You are only making a fool of yourself. You need to get off that tired old nag of a high horse that you have been riding. That horse, named “logical positivism”, is so weak and feeble that it has been put out to pasture a long time ago. Nowadays, no one (except blowhards like you and Guy Beebe) consider it to be a viable philosophy of science. Logical positivists took the extreme view that utterances and statements are true and meaningful only if they can be empirically verified.

    You need to move on to the Postpositivism of Thomas Kuhn, who wrote “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions”. There is a lot more knowledge to be gained if you would only remove your blinders and not try to stuff everything into a small box labeled “empirical facts”.

    What is “truth” or “reality”, anyway? This has been the subject of philosophical debate for centuries. The answer, if there is one, is probably far more complex than your simpleton mind can comprehend. The world is rich with phenomenological experience that does not have “empirical content” and cannot be quantitatively measured. You essentially live your life in a hidden inner world. Do you deny the existence of your inner world? I think not.

  10. (This is an add-on to my previous post.)

    Ideally, all truth should follow out of logical necessity, as exemplified by Aristotle’s deductive syllogism. However, most of our scientific knowledge comes from inductive reasoning. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it is probably a duck. Although I have no qualms about inductive reasoning, I do want to point out is that “truth” can be fragile and tenous. Those who champion the view that “truth” exists only when it can be empirically verified and quantitatively measured are only deceiving themselves.

      1. Quite true. It might not be a duck at all. The biggest drawback with inductive reasoning is that it lacks logical necessity. Exceptions to the rule are often missed or not observed. In contrast, deductive reasoning has logical necessity that flows from self-evident truths that require no further proof. For example, in plane geometry these self-evident truths are called “axioms”. One axiom is that “a straight line may be drawn between any two points”. Another axiom is that “a circle may be drawn with any given point as center and any given radius”. In philosophy, these self-evident truths are called “first principles”. The statement that “all men are mortal” is considered to be a first principle.

        Despite lacking logical necessity, inductive reasoning is still “good enough” as a viable method for gathering and expanding scientific knowledge.

  11. it’s nice to see that you guys opened up the comments. they used to be quite restricted. however, as you can see, these anons are posting quite a bit of garbage. tough to strike a balance I suppose…

    1. It is a science article discussion. If everyone ignored the inane comments, I could actually enjoy the discussion/comments made here.

  12. — Confirms Einstein Was One Smart Dude

    I think the world knows that already! 🙂

  13. What has this study to do with General Relativity? Or is it only to repeat the name of Einstein to make him a Godly entity when all his theory of relativity was proven to be a science fiction not related to real science?

    1. Einstein was real; please don’t reduce him to myth and superstition.

    2. By whom? A handful of nutcases blogging in the dark? Show your sources…

  14. pardon. but its truly just waste of time in studying galaxy, cosmos, universe, multiverse etc. it doesnt help in understanding anything (if we understand the evolution of human being than what ?) rather wasting billions of billions of dollars in intergalactic space rather than these could be spend on this green planet for the betterment of humanity.
    sorry astrophysicist.

  15. “the Pound-Rebka experiment, which took place in 1960, was the first confirmation of Einstein’s theory”

    Uh, no. This author doesn’t know their science. The first confirmation was way back in 1919, and involved the perihelion precession of Mercury’s orbit.

    1. That wasn’t an actual test. It was Einstein showing that his theory could account for problems arising out of the perhelion precession of Mercury. While it was able to explain this, it did not constitute a precise measurement of the effects of general relativity. That did not come until the Pound-Rebka experiment, which was the first to conclusively measure cosmic redshift and confirm that time would be experienced differently at different rates in different places in a gravitational field. Knowing your science means knowing specifics. 😉

  16. Its a sad day to read so many reactions on the wrong topic

    Maybe we could sub-divide the human species into
    Homo Sapiens Solaris
    Homo Sapiens Sapiens
    Homo Sapiens Deus and lastly
    people who don’t comform to labels. 😉

  17. It’s quite noticeable to religious thoughts ,that this part is totally above what they think or told .So lets have logical conversation depend on observations and information .The 3D image of the universe is an excellent scale to understanding how our universe is expanded and where to begin in describe .The only important questions still is remain the same ,what cause the beginning of the universe ? Is there another universe/universes same as this ?How waste is Casmo or dark matter?What is cause of first ignition ? where these material are coming from at the first place?Does a nano particle can carry such huge scale event in that tiny space ?

    1. @John: Great questions!
      “…what caused the beginning of the universe?” Since there was no time or space before the BB event, we know that the universe must have existed for all time. Even though the universe had a beginning, it has also always existed and no cause was even necessary. This is a wonderful paradox and our universe is full of them.

      “Is there another universe?” Although there is no such concept as an “outside” to our singularity universe, there is no reason why an infinite number of singularities couldn’t exist; each with its own universe of infinite energy dissolving into static mass and continuously unfolding new time and space within.

      “Where did all the material come from?” Mass has no volume attribute and doesn’t even exist within dimensional space. These attributes are imparted upon mass by continuously unfolding time and space. This is the reason why mass can neither be created nor destroyed and why all the mass within the universe could come to exist from the BB event and also why the center of a BH may be a point of infinitely dense mass – it isn’t really there!

      “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
      – Albert Einstein, US (German-born) physicist (1879 – 1955)

  18. I know nothing so don’t be surprised by my ignorance.

    I do find it interesting that beside the magnetic north and south poles, there are two other highly active magnetic anomalies of earth. (1) bermuda triangle and (2) dragon’s triangle.

    Moreso of interest are that both of these two locations fall within the same lines of longitude and the corresponding opposite latitude lines.

    Could it be possible that (1) bermuda triangle and (2) dragon’s triangle have ever been the dominating poles of earth?

    Like i said, simple minds can believe anything.

  19. Diluting reality with ancient myths and superstition is emotional hysteria and pandering to delusion. Your mind is obviously imprisoned by an irrational belief system, unshackle your delusional mentality from this thought control and discover critical thinking – embrace reality.

  20. Shame on you folks for taking odd paths away from the science of the article. It makes no sense to invoke god and to deride one another. What good is this type of behavior? We should be in awe of this great universe in which we live.

  21. Einstiein didn’t come up with the Theory of Relativity Henri Poincaré did. Relativity also has many problems and evidence appearing already refuting it, as a result in the next 10 or so years we most likely will abandon it as a theory.

    1. What evidence refutes the ToR and especially SR? Poincare, Lorentz and Einstein (et al) all contributed to the Theory, but Einstein demonstrated how it was reality; E=mc².

      1. Don’t forget Fitzgerald and Galileo…and while you’re at it the most important person in the SR creation: Maxwell.

        That was tongue in cheek. The point is EVERY scientific theory has a grandfather, even Newton: stole Robert Hooke’s inverse square law for gravity (although he gets credit for mathematizing it), used Fermat and Descartes work on analytical geometry to co-create calculus (along with Leibniz), used Galileo’s work on relativity (the original one), as well as the work of Kepler as a cosmological paradigm.

        Every work of genius has many fathers but Einstein was truly a different cognitive breed. Have you read his paper on a completely different subject, “On Stimulated and Spontaneous Emission”? Absolutely, mind-boggling, genius. And he did that by himself in 1917 (a year after predicting gravity waves lol); it’s become a staple of photonics, steady state physics and quantum mechanics.

    2. “I will make grandiose public defamations and produce no evidence whatsoever to uphold them… then go off into a corner of my room and rub one out, sure that I’m the smartest person I know!”

      1. i LOVE your comment Jeff. Now there are two smartest people in the room. Funny, but you are absolutely correct!!!!

    3. (Sigh) If I could count the amount of times I’ve heard this sophistry I would approach an infinite asymptote. Poincare did NOT formulate Special Relativity (at least in the form Einstein published – and then refined – in 1905). There is a wide literature on this subject – from Harvey Brown, Abraham Paid etc – but I’ll settle on the words of Hendrik Lorentz (one of the smartest physicists to ever live) and the man, besides Einstein, must integral to Special Relativity: In response to Albert Michelson at the Solvay Conference who intimated that Lorentz should really be given the credit for Special Relativity, Lorentz replied “No, you are mistaken. Special Relativity is the work of Einstein and he would have created it even if I had never written a word on the matter.”

      By this Lorentz was really trying to tell Michelson something that scientists didn’t really understand en masse until the 40’s, which is to say Lorentz by then realized that the time coordinates and transformations inhered in SR could be derived DIRECTLY from Maxwell’s equations on electromagnetism. And Lorentz, having developed a rapport with Einstein, had realized that Einstein was the first to see this existential scientific fact. The invariance of the speed of the light is the foundational cornerstone for everything that follows from SR and Einstein could derive it from first principles using Mach’s ontology and Maxwell’s equations.

      Learn some science first before spewing absolutely moronic rubbish.

      1. *Abraham Pais, T.S. Kuhn, Gerald Holton and others…

        *Poincare held on to two things that obviate him from the priority dispute: he still clung on to the notion of the aether (even though he later conceded it would probably eventually have to be done away with) as well as absolute space (even though his own equations contradicted it). These and many other aspects excluded him from the priority dispute (not to mention that many of the time transformations Einstein created were insanely original and were, what we physicists call, “dynamic” while hiding in the language of kinematics).

  22. Can someone translate this? I just want to know if dark matter exists! 🙂 does this debunk the dark matter theory or confirm it?

    1. @Sarah foot: Several observations have been made which seem to indicate that there is mass, which is difficult to detect, wafting around galaxies. All the information about this phenomenon is lumped into a category called Dark Matter Theory, and it is incomplete and there are conflicting ideas about it.

      One idea is that this mass may have originated as the plumes of energetic material spewed from supermassive black holes (galactic nuclei) into intergalactic space during the early universe which have now cooled, slowed and are being reabsorbed into galaxies by gravity; but dark matter most likely has multiple sources, including something exotic and as yet unknown.

    2. If Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity holds true at any cosmological scale, then the accelerating expansion of the universe remains validly explained by Dark Energy, which acts as anti-gravity, through Einstein’s Cosmological Constant, which is the value of the energy density of the vacuum of the universe. Now, scientists have also found that there is more gravity in the universe than what ordinary/baryonic matter can generate, and they discovered an unknown matter causing that extra gravity, which bends light, by observing what’s called Gravitational Lensing. They called that unknown matter dark Matter to account for the extra gravity in the universe.
      Now, if the Theory of General Relativity breaks down at any cosmological scale, then the explanation of the accelerating expansion of the universe by Dark Energy through GR & the Cosmological Constant is void..

  23. Why are people bringing religion into science? They are both different and they both believe different theories…. simple.

  24. The Japanese map only proves skill at creating a computer generated graphic. It proves nothing. If a graphic of Mickey Mouse was created would it prove Mickey existed in reality? It would not.

    Figures don’t lie, but liars can figure.

    Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.

    and that’s me, hollering from the choir loft…

    1. “I have no idea what I’m talking about, so I’ll make vague analogies and quips so I feel like I do!”

  25. I am not sure that distance is the determining factor of the validity of Einstein’s Theory of general Relativity! I believe Gravitational Waves from the Inflation a fraction of a second after the Big Bang is the crucial part for the validity of GR and Spacetime.

    1. It’s not the distance that’s important, but the time. When we look out into the universe, we are seeing back in time at how the universe was long ago. Since the universe appears homogenous (the same) everywhere, even in the distant past, we can theorize that the same laws of physics apply for the universe throughout time.

      Of course there are some caveats; the universe doesn’t seem to follow the rules where spatial dimensionality loses cohesiveness approaching infinites, such as: At the point of infinite energy of the BB event; the infinitely dense mass at the center of a black hole and the ambiguous dimensionality encountered in the infinitely small subatomic universe (to name a few..).

  26. When people try to demean theoretical physics and astrophysics as being pseudoscience, I tend to get ticked off, and I am not inclined to let it go unchallenged, even though the topic of discussion might go a bit off tangent.

    That being said, I think that Einstein was an absolute genius. To me, Einstein and Shakespeare are the two geniuses that inspire the most awe.

    It boggles my mind that Einstein was able to formulate so many theories that have been proven to be correct many decades later (or even a century later). How did he do it? He certainly did not formulate his revolutionary scientific theories and mathematical models by trying to build upon “established facts” or strictly using empirical methods. To unlock the secrets of the universe, Einstein often gave credit to “thought experiments” and “intuition” (a forbidden word among many scientists).

    Don’t indiscriminately throw the baby out with the bath water if some new scientific theory does not fit with “established facts”. Theories that were formerly unproven and unsubstantiated have often lead to paradigm shifts in science.

  27. (continuation of previous post)

    For example, Einstein’s famous equation, E=mc2, was just a theoretical mathematical formula when it was first published in 1905. In simple layman’s terms, Einstein’s formula stated that a resting mass, even as small as a single atom, contained an enormous amount of stored energy that could potentially be released. Despite being an “unproven” mathematical model, nonetheless it continued to serve as the guiding principle for all future nuclear energy research.

    It was not until many years later that Einstein’s mathematical model was empirically verified to be true and accurate. In the 1930s, research scientists finally had the technology to build particle accelerators to split the nucleus of an atom and measure the amount of energy that was produced. Sure enough, the amount of energy that was produced exactly matched what was predicted by Einstein’s mathematical formula. This research, of course, eventually lead to the development of the world’s first atomic bomb.

  28. To quote Monty Python…

    “The universe itself keeps on expanding and expanding
    In all of the directions it can whizz
    As fast as it can go, the speed of light, you know
    Twelve million miles a minute and that’s the fastest speed there is

    So remember, when you’re feeling very small and insecure
    How amazingly unlikely is your birth
    And pray that there’s intelligent life somewhere up in space
    ‘Cause there’s bugger all down here on Earth”

  29. Folks! Let’s try to keep it civil here. This is forum for scientific debate, so let’s try and leave things like religion, Islamophobia and Godwin’s Law out of it Okay? 🙂 .

  30. I’m not a scientist or really all that intelligent at all. I look at this and what I have to say is that if the universe is 13 billion years old and we are seeing images that are 13 billion light years away does this not mean that we are seeing the universe as it started? That should mean that we would see it very small not as vast as we do see it. My theory is that either the universe is a whole lot older then we believe or the images that we are seeing are no where near as far away as we think. I’m trying to explain it the best I can but it doesn’t make sense to me that we would see such a huge universe if we were seeing images from when the universe started. Also how could an image be 13 billion light years away and we be viewing it. That would either mean that we are at the center of the universe looking out or the edge of the universe looking in.

    1. The Universe is 13.8 billion years old, so by measuring the redshift of galaxies at a distance of 13, we are essentially seeing the early universe. At a distance of just shy of 13,8 billion light years, all we can see is the Cosmic Microwave Backround radiation – the leftover radiation from the first few hundred thousand years after the Universe.

    2. @Chris McKay: That’s a really wonderful question and I believe you are confusing the age of the universe with the distance to the Big Bang (BB) event.

      The origin point of the singularity (the BB event when new time and space began unfolding within the universe) is about 47.5 billion light years away in every direction within our 13.8 billion year-old universe. This counter-intuitive observation is due to the fact that new time and space is continuously being created within the singularity everywhere. The most distant objects within the universe are receding from our view at an accelerating rate due to this phenomenon.

      We can’t actually observe all the way back to the point of the BB event because the universe was an opaque fog for the first 300 million years or so.

      Of course we are the center of the universe; but every point within the universe shares the exact same relative frame of reference of observing itself to be the oldest, most central and most distant point from the BB event as any other point within the entire singularity. Even though new time and space is continuously unfolding within our universe, it still maintains characteristics of the singularity of our origin.

  31. I have questions: Is the SPACE OF THE UNIVERSE actually expanding or are galaxies just moving away from us. It it is expanding, then is it actually expanding like a balloon or is it stretching. Are the galaxies moving away from us due to stretching or are they moving in a static space. Lastly, and I”m a bit confused on this point. If all galaxies we observe are moving away from us, would not that make us the center of the universe???

    1. New time and space is continuously unfolding into the singularity and creating more universe*. Every point within the universe shares the same relative frame of reference of observing itself to be the oldest, most central and most distant point from the BB event as any other point within the entire singularity. Even though new time and space is continuously unfolding our universe, it still maintains characteristics of the singularity of our origin.

      * Another way to look at it: The universe began as a point of infinite energy which is dissolving into static mass and infinitely unfolding spacetime. This phenomenon is observed to be accelerating and is expected to continue forever.

  32. Fraser….. PLEASE close the forums again!! These ranting so-and-so’s make me not want to come here anymore….

    1. Hang in there, I’m sure the crazy train just landed at our stop by accident. I too am worried, mainly because I get the notifications every time someone posts! 🙂

  33. Great article Matt. It’s very well-written and you’ve articulated it in such a way that the layman understands the relevant science and that those more rigorously groomed in the literature can also appreciate the research. Bravo.

  34. I’ve sometimes wondered if time only exists because of a “first observer.” Basically there is no time until the first observation which creates the first thought and moment, which is inevitably followed by the next. An intelligence which suddenly becomes self-aware and whose exploration of self propels time. Somewhat paradoxical, but reality is already such.

    1. Energy is what causes time to exist as energy causes movement and we have to opportunity to observe and measure that movement with time. Time exists whether we observe it or not. Very much like the “tree falling in the forest, does it make a sound”, Yes, it does whether we hear the sound or not.

  35. If Einstein was such a genius then why did he not address the action causing gravity in his equations? Because he did not know what was causing gravity.

    1. And we still don’t, guilty, despite the passage of a century. Faulting Einstein for that doesn’t make him like less of a genius, it makes the rest of us look stupider by comparison.

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