Did the Big Bang Really Happen?
It's hard for us humans to know what the Universe looks like, since we have no way to look at it from outside. Although scientists have been able to trace the origins of the Universe to within less than a second after the Big Bang, they can neither explain the nature of the universal singularity at the time of the Big Bang, nor what occurred before it.
We now know that the density of ordinary matter only constitutes 4 percent the Universe’s total energy density. Of this, the stars (Hydrogen and Helium) are about 3.97 per cent, and all other heavier elements (planets, asteroids, etc., across the entire universe) a mere 0.03 per cent! The remaining 96 per cent is made up of 23 per cent dark matter and 73 percent dark energy, but no one really knows what they are.
A team of three researchers, Niayesh Afshordi, Robert Mann and Razieh Pourhasan, have created a model of the Universe wherein the Big Bang was in fact the implosion of a four dimensional star in a five dimensional universe. And the Universe as we see it is nothing more than the cloak or wrapping around its singularity in three dimensions. Just as a blackhole’s singularity is perceived to be two dimensional while in our four dimensional Universe.
According to these researchers, our Universe is actually a 3 dimensional event horizon surrounding a 4 dimensional blackhole. And just as a 3 dimensional blackhole’s singularity is hidden by the 2 dimensional event horizon, so is the 4 dimensional singularity hidden by the 3 dimensional event horizon, which would be our Universe.
Now before our collective brains explode with the idea of a five dimensional universe, consider the following - humans are used to the three spatial dimensions of length, breadth and height. Adding to it the dimension of time, we can establish that we live in a four dimensional universe.
But what if there was another spatial dimension that we weren’t capable of perceiving? In this model of four spatial dimensions (with time as a fifth) the researchers have proven, at least mathematically, that the new idea fits better with our observations of the cosmos than the idea of the inflationary Big Bang.
The mathematics behind this explanation has already been vigorously tested and is part of a field called holography. Unlike the popularised understanding of holography such as in holographic displays, the study of the holographic principle is related to string theory and quantum mechanics. It studies the properties of strings and is also related to the study of quantum gravity.
Fortunately, like any good scientific theory, the theory of multidimensional brane universes is easy to test. Since the fourth dimensional matter would undergo thermal fluctuations due to the four dimensional blackhole it would register as small but noticeable distortions in the cosmic microwave radiation - a change we can observe and measure.
If these distortions aren’t in line with the new theory, then it would mean the new theory is wrong. Other similar aspects of the new theory can be tested and measured proving its veracity. All it takes is a little time and a really big cosmic radiation detector.
While the theory of a five dimensional universe takes a while to digest - what about the theory that the Universe is infinite in age with no beginning or end?
This new model was postulated by Egyptian scientist Ahmed Farag Ali and Indian scientist Saurya Das. These two researches used the foundation work of 1950s theoretical physicist David Bohm to replace the use of classical geodesics (shortest path between two points on a curved surface) with the newly developed method of quantum trajectories between two points.
In this way they were able to derive an equation which described the expansion and evolution of the known Universe. Their equation combines the properties of quantum theory with general relativity which are expected to hold true, if and when a unified theory of quantum gravity is discovered.
Using the new variables and factors in their equation, as a representation of the Universe, these scientists have posited that the Universe is of a finite size. This conclusion also has the natural corollary that the Universe is of an infinite age, which would imply that time has neither a beginning nor an end.