February 25, 2012
by Arnold Lasky
Hi, cosmic mystery buffs. Once upon a time (1987), Alan Dressler and his “seven samurai” colleagues had to fall on their swords, when The Great Attractor, which they were touting, turned out to be a great illusion. The fact that the Milky Way’s local group of galaxies were all moving in the same direction, was misinterpreted as the result of the gravitational attraction of a huge mass, which lay in the direction of movement, and which was up to a million times more massive than the Milky Way. It is now known that such effect is caused by parallel lines (galactic orbits) meeting at a distant point.
Nevertheless, the unidirectional movement of the local group remains a fact, as is the movement of the local cluster of galaxy groups, which indicates that the orbits of all these galaxies may contain a component of motion, which follows a very shallow arc, around a profoundly more massive central object, perhaps containing half the mass of the universe, and lying a great deal farther away, but at a 90 degree angle to the perceived direction of movement. Let us consider this central object to be a fossil artifact of the Big Bang, and call it, the Great Centripeter.
There may be evidence that the observable universe is rotating on the largest scales, even as it uniformly expands in all directions. Measurements of the cosmic microwave background, from many sources, reveal a dipole effect, which amounts to a 0.1 percent asymmetric caloric difference from opposite ends of the night sky, as measured from earth- i.e., this snapshot of the primordial radiation at some moment in time (allegedly about 400,000 years) after the Big Bang, appears 0.1 percent hotter than an equally colder location that is 180 degrees opposite in the sky- i.e., for a total 0.2 percent heat differential. This heat differential implies that opposing parts of the background radiation are moving toward us and away from us, at the same time. For our purposes, the dipole effect indicates that every part of the Expansion is revolving around a central point.
If our universe were, in some way and at some time, connected to one or more other universes, a group led by Laura Mersini-Houghton, of the University of North Carolina, made a prediction “that was so outrageous that nobody believed it, but it has been confirmed”, she said. It was that quantum entanglement would require spacetime to flow in a particular direction (NewScientist, January 24, 2009).
In Physical Review Letters, an article by Borge Nodland and John P. Ralston reports measurements suggesting that the rotational symmetry of space is being violated at cosmic distances. It appears that polarized light from distant galaxies is twisted as a function of its distance from the earth, and as a function of the direction of the light relative to the angular distance between each such galaxy and the constellation Sextans- i.e., the twisting is most pronounced, when the direction to an observed galaxy is most nearly parallel to a line drawn between the earth and Sextans, and least pronounced when the direction is nearly perpendicular to that line. Nodland offers that this twisting effect would occur if spacetime exhibits a preferred direction. Because angular momentum is conserved, such a preferred direction would not only indicate that the original source was rotational in nature, but that the CMB may have always rotated perpendicular to the earth/Sextans axis.
Michael Longo, of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, came to the same conclusion, but by a different route. He established that there is a preferred spin to the arms of thousands of spiral galaxies, along the same axis, near and far, and in both northern and southern skies. As quoted in the October 15, 2011 issue of New Scientist, he concludes, “If this asymmetry is real, it means that the universe has a net angular momentum,” so that it must have been spinning from the outset.
In a 1995 paper, in the Journal of Mathematical Physics, John W. Moffat and Neil J. Cornish provided mathematical support for the proposition that the expanding universe is rotating as it moves outward. They modified Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity to provide for the twisting and bending of space-time in the presence of a large mass. The Great Centripeter could just be that mass.
To consider an alternative Big Bang – Big Crunch model, you are invited to contact me, at email@example.com