by Stephen Smith
January 28, 2011
Portion of the Hubble
Ultra Deep Field.
Credit: NASA, ESA, S.
Beckwith (STScI) and the HUDF Team.
Two major points in Big Bang theory are
that redshift is proportional to distance and that it also indicates
It is assumed that the larger an
object's redshift is the farther away it is and the faster it is
moving away from the observer. Those two ideas led to the commonly
held belief that the Universe is expanding.
Astronomer Edwin Hubble, based on his own observations, as
well as those of Vesto Slipher, believed that he had observed
remote galaxies receding from the Milky Way in 1929. His greatest
surprise was not the recession itself, but the apparent high
velocities associated with it. It seemed as if some galaxies were
moving away at thousands of kilometers per second.
Spectrograms from Hubble's galactic images appeared to indicate a "redshift"
of light frequencies. He adapted the Doppler effect (after the
Austrian physicist Christian Doppler) to the spectra of various
His thought was that the change in
location of "Fraunhofer
lines" (for the German physicist Joseph von Fraunhofer)
demonstrated a shift toward the red end of the spectrum because of
galactic recessional velocity.
Fraunhofer lines occur at certain regions in the spectrum because
different elements absorb unique light frequencies. If they are in a
different location, then they must be Doppler-shifted from the
element's velocity. Hubble's conclusion created the foundation for
galaxy-scale distance calculations and their supposed recessional
velocities. Some galaxies are said to be receding at over 90 percent
Although many observations contradict the consensus view, and have
been doing so for 40 years or more, those data are ignored or
marginalized. High redshift quasars have been located in axial
alignment with galaxies at substantially lower redshift. Sometimes
they are connected to those lower redshift galaxies by "bridges" of
glowing gas and dust.
According to a
recent press release, the Hubble
Space Telescope has recorded the image of a galaxy over 13 billion
light-years distant, making it the farthest object from Earth ever
As Rychard Bouwens, co-author of
the report in the science journal Nature article said:
"These observations provide us with
our best insights yet into the earlier primeval objects that
have yet to be found."
other Picture of the Day article,
the current theories of large-scale structure that are based on
cosmological distance assumptions have been brought to question.
Halton Arp, for instance,
interprets galactic redshift (below
video) to be an indicator of age and not distance.
Electric Universe theory proposes that galaxy clusters are Birkeland
current z-pinches in superclusters that make up a "superfamily"
Birkeland currents occur in a "nest" of
double helices: each filament of electric current is a tube
consisting of filament pairs that spiral around a common axis.
Therefore, galaxy clusters are composed of individual galaxies,
while stars make up the galaxies.
Electric currents charge and discharge vast concentrations of plasma
at every scale from star to supercluster, causing some z-pinches to
overload. In that case, another plasma blob gets ejected from the
overcharged galactic parent, forming a quasar and distributing the
current load over a larger area.
"The typical case is that the
largest galaxy in a cluster is a radio E, and the other bright
galaxies in this cluster are aligned on either side of this
central galaxy along the line of elongation of the radio
It is argued that this general
physical phenomenon can only be explained by having the line of
galaxies, or their progenitors, ejected from the central galaxy
along with the radio emitting material."
Halton Arp's work prompts the question:
how big and how old is the Universe
if redshift readings are not reliable indicators of distance?