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Singularities, dark matter, and dark energy. A connection?

  1. Jan 9, 2010 #1
    First off, let me say that while I am an avid astronomer, I know very little about the mathematics of astrophysics. My specialty falls more under mechanical engineering. While initially they may not seem all that related, history shows that the mixing of varying disciplines often sparks discoveries.

    There are some big holes in our understanding of the movement of large galactic scale structures. To get by, we make additions and subtractions to various parts of our equations to make sense of things for us. We add invisible, undetectable matter in order to achieve the gravity necessary for these structures to make sense to us. I find this way of working somewhat disturbing. The evidence seems to point to the idea that we are missing something fundamental about the way these structures, and the universe at large, function. It screams loudly, to me at least, that we need to widen our perspective and consider new factors to understand what we see out there.

    Lets think about the evidence and our understanding of gravity. Our equations work great on smaller scales, easily predicting the movement of nearby objects. This basic system of small objects orbiting larger objects orbiting even larger objects seem to function perfectly within our equations. We seem to hit a tipping point though when we scale this up a little more. Things fall apart as soon as we scale up to galaxies, galactic clusters, and beyond. Why is this?

    Basic logic points to a fundamental change. Something is very different at these large scales. Ignoring the scale difference of the formations (which has been shown by smaller scale changes to be irrelevant), there is one structure that is strikingly exotic; the singularity. There really isn't any other structure that I know of that is exotic enough that we could attribute this markedly different behavior to.

    I would only loosely call gravity a force. I consider it more of a gradient in the fabric of space. Matter moves in the presence of gravity in the pursuit of equilibrium. What if space were subject to more than simple gravitic depressions? We know that space can be created from observations made of distant galaxies and their perceived accelerating retreat. We make sense of this strange fact by creating 'dark energy' to 'fund' this process. I also find this disturbing because it implies that this energy simply comes from nowhere (the seemingly insufficient sub-atomic randomness aside). To create additional space should have a measurable cost associated with the process.

    So, space can be deformed and created. Could it also be destroyed? It doesn't seem like that much of a leap considering what we already know.

    What if these singularities, as a fundamental property of their interaction with the universe, were engaging in the slow destruction of space at or near their centers? The fabric of space would seem to be slowly marching toward these points in space, like oceanic crust moving toward a subduction zone. Since matter is inexorably tied to this fabric, it would be pulled along for the ride, in addition to any gravity-induced gradient it encountered. If space were easily deformed by matter (creating gravity), but far more resistant to tensile deformation (caused by singularity action), it seems like this may be able to account for the exceptionally large influences galaxies exert on the space around them, allowing higher orbital velocities in the outer edges and even tugging at very distant material. The combined result of this effect between two or more galactic core singularities (in addition to the stellar mass singularities common near their cores) may help to hold galactic clusters together without adding abhorrent amounts of 'imaginary matter' to simulate the required gravity.

    This may also help to explain the odd behavior of space over long distances. Essentially the space between galaxies would be tugged in many directions at the same time, forming sort of a distributed rift zone similar to what we see in geology here on earth when new oceanic crust forms.

    An interesting property of a black hole is it's slow evaporation rate. Perhaps this slow evaporation is the cost of the newly created space in these rifting regions. Energy cannot be destroyed and the evaporated energy doesn't seem to be emerging from the singularity. The creation of new space should have some sort of energy cost associated with it, since you can't get something for nothing. We're left with a positive value and a negative value on opposite sides of this equation which may just balance out.

    So the effects we attribute to Dark matter could be explained as spacial drift caused by a singularities 'subduction zone'; A unique force we see on galactic scale in the presence of large quantities of singularity-state matter. The effect we call Dark Energy could simply be the 'rifting' response of space as it tears apart, subtracting energy from the tugging black holes to fund the newly created space. Since light waves would also be subject to this spacial drift, this could account for the stretched light waves we see from distant galaxies (Doppler effect and Hubbles Law) as well as the optical lensing effect used to measure this discrepancy we call 'Dark matter'. Rather than measuring the actual retreating speed of a distant galaxy as indicated by the Doppler effect, we might inadvertently be measuring the combined rifting rate of all space between the target galaxy and the observer! Measured instantly (or accounting for the proposed spacial subduction), we may find that these distant galaxies are actually advancing toward us but the light waves have been lengthened and distorted by billions of years of exposure to slowly stretching regions of space. In the same way as attempting to run sideways across a moving treadmill, light waves would bend around large concentrations of singularities, causing the optical lensing used to create the 'dark matter' map below:


    So, evaporation of black holes, discrepancies in galactic rotational speed (dark matter), cohesion of galactic clusters (dark matter), creation of new space (dark energy), as well as red-shift and optical lensing of distant galaxies, perhaps the big bang itself, all explained by allowing ONE property of the poorly understood black hole; spacial subduction. In this model, the universe isn't violating the laws of thermodynamics by destroying or creating energy through accelerating expansion or the evaporation of singularities. We're left with a decelerating universe with the illusion of expansion caused by stretch and drift of space as singularities tug from all directions.

    In the long run, the effect of spacial-subduction would overcome the momentum imparted from the big bang and would slowly pull everything down to the center. As more matter winds up in singularities, the effect may strengthen and the collapse could accelerate. Eventually, despite the ability of space to 'give' a little (spacial rifting), it would be overcome, pulled in and destroyed. Since gravity is a property of the interaction of matter with space, removing space itself from the equation would preclude gravity. For that instant, the universe consists of nothing more than a single point of almost infinitely compressed, unrestrained matter. This sounds to me like the recipe for an unimaginably intense explosion. Could this be the cause of the Big Bang? Could our universe be cyclic?

    This post is literally the product of a 4 year (maybe longer) thought experiment I've been undertaking. Reading articles and collecting information and trying to make sense of what we know and what we don't understand. Of all the possibilities I've dreamed up or encountered, this one seems to make the most number of pieces fit without disproving anything we know for certain. The discovery of a black-hole spacial-subduction force would seem to bring it all together, even explaining how the matter in our universe could have become so 'lumpy' from what was a nearly uniform state originally (above and beyond what gravity should have accomplished alone), and why we see so little matter in intergalactic space today. Most importantly, it manages to elegantly clean up and unify several seemingly unrelated but observed mechanisms in our universe.

    Maybe someone with more astrophysics education or expertise could shed some light on why this could or couldn't be the case. I've reached the limit of what I can ponder on the subject with the information I have.

    Thanks for any additional insight you can provide or opinions you might have!
    John Foy
    amateur astronomer
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2010
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 9, 2010 #2
    The basic problem that you have with that idea is the general problem that you have with any theory of physics that is based on words, which is that without numbers and equations, you don't have enough details to make predictions that can be compared with observations. As long as your ideas are vague enough, you can make them fit any set of observations. What you find is that once you start putting numbers to things, it's hard to make everything fit one wave of the magic wand.

    The other problem that you have is that you aren't playing the game. Instead of trying to come up with ways to show that you are right, you need to think of a set of observations, that will demonstrate that your ideas are totally wrong. I'm trying to think up of ways to come up with a set of observations that could show that this is all wrong, but what you have described is a bit too vague for that.

    One thing that occurs to me is that if space does have fault lines then two unrelated galaxies which are separate would look different.
  4. Jan 9, 2010 #3


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    One issue I see is that dark matter and dark energy are wholly unrelated phenomena. The only thing they have in common is the word 'dark'. Dark matter is a player in the formation of dark holes in that it accelerates the process, but, is not a direct contributor to black hole mass.
  5. Jan 11, 2010 #4


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    Black hole 'singularities' are not real physical objects which we think exist in our universe. They are mathematical oddities almost certainly pointing to a breakdown in our theories for very dense regions. That's not to say black holes don't exist, but that our understanding of the central regions is not complet. The event horizon of black holes is much better understood, and has been effectively 'observed' (at least the consuquences of there being an event horizon).

    When we say in GR that space curves, bends, warps, expands etc remeber these are all just shorthand descriptions of the mathematical framework. It doesn't 'take energy' to 'create space' (at least not directly) because space is not a real thing, at least not according to our current theories.

    It sounds like you are very interested in cosmology, and I encourage you to spend some time here and ask many questions, but unfortunately what you've got there is based on too many misconceptions to come across particularly coherently.
  6. Jan 12, 2010 #5


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    I agree that you (Psycho0124) should certainly pursue your interests in cosmology, and encourage you to read and ask more questions here however, unfortunately, since your thread here contains many misconceptions, it does not conform to our rules and thus must be closed.
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