Primordial gravitational wave discovery heralds ‘whole new era’ in physics
Scientists have heralded a “whole new era” in physics with the detection of “primordial gravitational waves” – the first tremors of the big bang.
The minuscule ripples in space-time are the last prediction of Albert Einstein‘s 1916 general theory of relativity to be verified. Until now, there has only been circumstantial evidence of their existence. The discovery also provides a deep connection between general relativity and quantum mechanics, another central pillar of physics.
If ‘every action has an equal and opposite reaction’ something of an equal magnitude to our universe must have existed prior to the big bang. This means the bang shouldn’t be regarded as the beginning of the universe, merely an event (albeit of massive significance) in its history.
The very smallest sub atomic particles oscillate between a state of energy and matter, the former doesn’t require space. The ‘big bang’ occurred when a huge transfer from energy to matter created a displacement that forced the rapid expansion of the universe which in turn led to the effects of gravity and the emergence of stars. But this begs the question of whether or not anything existed before energy? It is possible that a universe consisting almost entirely of energy might itself have resulted from a previous event involving a transfer from matter, a ‘reverse big bang’. If so, was this a previous universe exploding and was it the first or one of many? And if there were previous ‘universes’ of any description, surely we can no longer use the term ‘universe’ to describe each?
The real ‘universe’ may consist of many former solar and planetary systems and the real age of this universe may be much, much, older than we can even imagine.