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Quark Overproduction in the Big Rip Theory

  1. Jan 7, 2016 #1
    In the big rip theory, the force of dark energy isn't constant and increases over time. This causes first galaxies to fly apart, then solar systems, then planets, then stars, then atoms, then the atom nuclei. If it keeps increasing, it would start pulling the quarks inside protons and neutrons from each other. Since quarks have to be in pairs, if enough energy is put into pulling the quarks apart, they will just create new pairs. If this is true, wouldn't this cause a runaway effect of quarks "duplicating" until it supersedes the expansion of the universe?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 9, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    I'm not sure we know exactly what would happen. The Big Rip scenario is based off of General Relativity and cosmological models which work well for the universe as a whole, but may not be accurate when it comes to subatomic scales.

    From page 3 here: http://arxiv.org/pdf/astro-ph/0302506v1.pdf

    Thus, molecules and then atoms will be torn apart roughly 10−19 seconds before the end, and then nuclei and nucleons will get dissociated in the remaining interval. In all likelihood, some new physics (e.g., spontaneous particle production or extra-dimensional, string, and/or quantum-gravity effects) may kick in before the ultimate singularity, but probably after the sequence of events outlined above.
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