Take a Picture of Big Bang - Clarifying Questions

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In summary: Cristo, are you sure about this? (I am not).In summary, people took a picture of the big bang using X number of light years as their distance. Doing this from outside the Universe would give a different picture than what was observed. The fluctuations in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) were explained by inflation, which is the theory that states that the size of the Universe increased rapidly in a short amount of time.
  • #1
From my understanding, people have taken a picture of the big bang(or microwaves), and they did it by pointing whatever they took the picture with X number of light years(i forgot the the real distance). But my question was did they take a the picture from outside(like how they take pictures of stars, galaxy's, etc. or was it like taking a number of pictures from inside, like as if u were in a ball taking pictures of the walls.

i understand that that was a bit confusing so if i can clarify please ask. But please answer thx:)
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  • #2
The later, i.e. viewing the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) is like taking a picture of 'the walls' of a ball from the inside. Very perceptive of you to realize this possibility!

The reason for this is that contrary to what is often supposed, the Big Bang was not like an explosion that happened at some point but rather happened everywhere, so everything in the Universe is moving away from everything else. If you look far enough back in time in any direction you will see what the universe was like shortly after the Big Bang in that direction, therefore all around us if we look for the right signal we see the CMB.
  • #3
I dig what wallace is saying, but i'd like to add a little.

The big bang is something that happened at a point... but more importantly you must realize that at that time - that point was everywhere.
When you look far away, you're looking back in time; back in time (13.7ish billion years), there was very little spatial extent - so its been, kind-of, stretched out over all the sky.
  • #4
The Big Bang cosmological model actually predicted the existence of the microwave background radiation and its temperature over 50 years ago

It also predicted that this radiation should NOT be uniform and actually reflect the fine detail and density fluctutions enherent in what we see today in the universe.

Thats what was so frustrating for researchers - they knew what to look for and where and at what temperature BUT didnt have the instrument sensitivity to measure the detail. Eventually the COBE and the WMAP sattelites revealed what was there all along and gave the BIG BANG model a massive tick of approval.
  • #5
So the fluctuations in CMB come from quantum fluctuations amplified by inflation, right? Is inflation assumed to be part of BB model? What made inflation happen?
  • #6
pixchips said:
So the fluctuations in CMB come from quantum fluctuations amplified by inflation, right?
Is inflation assumed to be part of BB model?
Inflation solves the big bang "problems", and so most cosmologists believe in it. However, whether it is included in the phrase "big bang theory" will depend upon who you talk to.
What made inflation happen?
We don't know. As I said in another thread (that you are participating in?) there are many different models of inflation, but what we really want is one with some motivation from elsewhere, say particle physics. We currently don't have such a model.
  • #7
" So the fluctuations in CMB come from quantum fluctuations amplified by inflation, right?


Cristo, are you sure about this? (I am not).

EDIT: sorry, I mean, were they really quantum fluctuations? Do the casually disconnected CMB anistrophies we see today actually correspond to a tiny space that was once only separated by ~1fm?
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  • #8
Cristo is correct, at least that is the current leading theory, which is about at 'correct' as you can be when it comes to science.
  • #9
Wallace said:
Cristo is correct, at least that is the current leading theory, which is about at 'correct' as you can be when it comes to science.

okay, just making sure. That's helluva lot of expansion, in a very short space of time:)
  • #10
Inflationary Numbers

Okay, so this prompts the question, "How big is a helluvalot?" If you go to this web site,


there is a intro guide to inflation by John Gribbin. Current theory (twelve years ago) says:

Inflation is a general term for models of the very early Universe which involve a short period of extremely rapid (exponential) expansion, blowing the size of what is now the observable Universe up from a region far smaller than a proton to about the size of a grapefruit (or even bigger) in a small fraction of a second.

Caveats: Gribbon's page hasn't been updated for 12 years, so whatever we've learned since 1996 isn't there. But Gribbon writes very clearly, I will be spending some time perusing his material.
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1. What is the Big Bang theory?

The Big Bang theory is the prevailing scientific explanation for the origin of the universe. It proposes that the universe originated from a singularity, a point of infinite density and temperature, around 13.8 billion years ago. The universe has been expanding and cooling ever since.

2. What evidence supports the Big Bang theory?

There are several pieces of evidence that support the Big Bang theory, including the cosmic microwave background radiation, the abundance of light elements in the universe, and the observed expansion of the universe. These pieces of evidence are consistent with the predictions of the Big Bang theory.

3. Can we take a picture of the Big Bang?

No, it is not possible to take a direct photograph of the Big Bang. The Big Bang happened around 13.8 billion years ago, and the light from that event has long since passed us. However, scientists have been able to study the remnants of the Big Bang, such as the cosmic microwave background radiation, to learn more about the early universe.

4. How do scientists study the Big Bang?

Scientists study the Big Bang through various methods, including observations of the cosmic microwave background radiation, computer simulations, and mathematical models. They also use telescopes and other instruments to observe and analyze the universe's structure and composition.

5. Is the Big Bang theory accepted by all scientists?

Yes, the Big Bang theory is the most widely accepted scientific explanation for the origin of the universe. While there are still some unanswered questions and ongoing research in this field, the Big Bang theory is supported by a vast amount of evidence and is widely accepted by the scientific community.

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