Is "Hubble's Law" Flawed?
Give a physicist a workable set of field equations and he happily applies them to his scientific measurements and to designing marvelous technologies. Most physicists are pragmatic, in this sense, and would say that questions like: Why does gravity do what it does? Why do opposite charged particles attract each other? And what is a particle, anyway? The “why” is not important, unless it can enable you to predict something!
Past generations of scientists observed physical reality and contemplated the very nature of existence, hoping to discover its secrets. Occasionally these scientists see mathematical patterns and describe their discoveries by building mathematical toolboxes of formulae. (This is plural for formula.) Subsequent generations inherit and apply these tools to interpret their own measurements and data, or use them to aid in designing some new invention.
How many students, do you think, question the perceptions of the previous generation? Not that there would be a mistake in the math itself, but I mean to question the perceptions of reality that those mathematical formulations intend to model.
1Co Where is the wise? Where is the
Where is the disputer of this world?
Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?
Do we know what we “think” we know?
Isn’t it due time that someone ask even “more fundamental” questions? Yes, it’s when you get as far as asking Chapter 1’s third epistemological question that we can begin to sort out raw data, information, “facts”, and understanding -- from the heaps of measurements, misperceptions, hear-say facts, assumptions, postulates, and just plain lame theories.
When science makes a discovery they publish their conclusions. Most people accept these conclusions as fact and never ask: “How do they know?” “What were their perceptions?” “From what mental perspective did they perceive those perceptions?” This has everything to do with how they arrived at their conclusions.
Einstein visited CalTech starting December 1931. Edwin Hubble (pictured center) discovered the “redshift” in light from distant galaxies, noting the further the galaxy -- the more the shift, therefore, the faster it’s fleeing. The obvious conclusion: the universe is expanding. He and Einstein discussed the implications this had on Relativity theories. They visited Mt. Wilson Observatory, here; Einstein is looking through the eye piece of the 100-inch Hooker telescope.
Let’s equip one set of scientists with Hubble’s Law equations. Is it, in fact, Law?
Shift in wave-length
Distance “r” = Velocity / Hubble’s Constant
Then we give them the redshift for a galaxy and -- after some quick calculating -- they can immediately conclude their -- believed to be -- “fact” that the galaxy is “r”-million or billion light years away.
For this group of scientists: What fundamental questions did they NOT ask?
1. When Hubble said the word “expanding”, could he have really meant “spreading”?
2. What’s the difference between the meanings of: spreading, expanding or stretching?
3. Did he perceive this “expansion” or “spreading” as occurring in just 3 or 4 dimensions?
4. Is Hubble’s constant – Constant?
5. Besides the Doppler Effect, did Hubble even consider other causes of redshift?
6. Did he assume that Euclidean geometry even applied to this universe?
Ok, enough questions!
Fine! Let’s save the rest for a later chapter. For now let’s try answering these questions and see what we might learn:
say “expanding” whereas, his formulations seem to say “spreading”.
Perhaps it did not occur to Hubble that this distinction made any difference.
R E A
D I N
would mean the galaxies just spread apart, . . .
but individually remain the same size.
EX P A N
N G :
means that everything naturally grows:
the gaps between galaxies
ST R E T C H I N G:
would mean the space-time medium itself, the firmament, was being influenced continually from an external force which would not only result in things getting bigger, but would cause ever increasing tension within the firmament itself. (This is not the case, but I had to mention it so the reader would, at least, be aware of this distinction.)
a. Neither! His one dimensional view of the beam of light yielded the correct formulation for a universe spreading in only one dimension!
From a 3D
Euclidian perspective whether “spreading” or “expanding” his distance and
velocity formulations are way wrong!
It’s a question of perspective. Apparently Hubble and Einstein’s perceptions were both totally immersed in space-time. Both agreed all observers from any galaxy, “reference frame”, would see the same phenomenon – everything is moving away.
So what wrong with that?
A universal law of the mind is: in order to truly understand a problem you must not only grasp its elements and relationships but also need to identify the boundaries in which it exists. What Hubble and Einstein needed is a “Frame of Reference” that transcends space-time – a mental vantage point outside. You see even if Hubble considered a universe as expanding at a “constant rate” in just three dimensions – it would be expanding “linearly” in EACH of those three dimensions!
So for a 3D universe expanding at a constant rate – then when it was half its current age it its size was:
= 86.6% of its current size.
When a 3D constantly expanding universe was 1/100th its present age, then its size was:
of its current size
Even considering only 3 dimensions this is DEFINITELY NOT a linear relationship.
The situation for our 4D universe is even worse for Hubble. But before we can even talk about the 4th dimension we need to discuss the geometry and structure of space-time.
a. Apparently, Einstein was still stuck in the mind-set of non-Euclidian geometry meaning, a Euclidian geometry with local dents. Like a rectangular slab of warm marble with a small round cylinder of dry-ice resting on its surface. The cold would contract the marble under the dry-ice. The area immediately surrounding it would also contract with diminishing effect. But the lukewarm area just further away would be stressed having to stretch to accommodate the local contraction! A pre-stretched 4D medium with a 3D wave-front expanding from within its depths solves this problem. Chapter 5 will describe how this was constructed.
b. Gravitational redshift is another factor, but would only become a significant factor around giant stars, black-holes or other extremely massive or dense concentrations of matter.
c. The expansion of space-time itself would affect the light in transit to a much greater extent. Most cosmologists today agree the universe had some point of origin in the past and has been expanding away from ever since. Space-Time expansion is prime candidate for explaining the redshift. But, how does one describe the path light takes across expanding space-time? More hints in Chapter 3 with explanation in Chapter 5.
Wow! There are more reasons to doubt Hubble’s Law than to believe it. The only thing “constant” about Hubble’s Constant is its constant need for continual revision! Now they’ve gone as far as inventing “Dark Energy!” What does it take before someone realizes there’s something basically wrong with common perceptions of space-time?
How dare you question Hubble’s Law! After all they named a Space Telescope after him.
I understand your frustration at this point. The math may be fine for linear-time in one-dimensional Euclidean space, but the big questions are: (1) Is Time linear, and (2) Is the light from distant galaxies passing through Euclidian space? The answers are: No and Absolutely NOT!
Usually, when one generation builds upon the previous generation’s accomplishments, it’s a good thing. The next generation of students should not just accept and memorize the material from their books and professors – just to score points on the next test. Science does not advance until we question assumptions and search unexplored branches. Before we explore the dimensionality and structure of space-time let’s address a more important question. A question whose answer is a stepping stone to where our quest will lead us next...
 Pythagoras (569-475BC) :
famous for his “Pythagorean Theorem” r2
= a2 + b2
Also was the Pythagoreans who discovered that the relationship between musical notes could be expressed in numerical ratios of small whole numbers. The Pythagoreans elaborated on a theory of numbers the exact meaning of which is still debated among scholars. They taught that all things were numbers, that the essence of everything is a number, and that all relationships can be expressed numerically. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pythagoras)
 Incidentally, in the scientific literature after Einstein’s radical perceptions changed the way people thought about space and thought about time -- somewhere along the line the word “spacetime” (no hyphen) became coined – presumably meaning “spacetime continuum”. I deliberately use the hyphenated form to distinguish that the time dimension is structured into time-quanta – a non-continuum. This distinction is important when resolving many of the other mysteries.
 mega-parsec is a million parsecs; a parsec is about 3.2616 light-years; it comes from using the parallax method of determining the distance to nearby stars within our galaxy. Parallax uses trigonometry to determine the fraction of the celestial sphere (360 degrees) as the Earth moves from one extreme in its orbit to it position 6 months later. It like placing your left on in January and your right eye in July. Tiny angular measurements subdivde 1 into 60 minutes which is further divided down to 60 seconds. An Astronomical Unit is defined as the mean radius of Earth’s orbit around the sun – approximately 93 million miles. So AU*360*60*60/2π = 3.2616 light-years. The only problem with this definition is that time is NOT LINEAR its logarithmic!