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BIG BANG THEORY

The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological model for the observable universe[1][2][3] from
the earliest known periods through its subsequent large-scale evolution.[4][5][6] The model
describes how the universe expanded from a very high-density and high-temperature
state,[7][8] and offers a comprehensive explanation for a broad range of phenomena, including the
abundance of light elements, the cosmic microwave background (CMB), large scale
structure and Hubble's law (the farther away galaxies are, the faster they are moving away from
Earth).[9] If the observed conditions are extrapolated backwards in time using the known laws of
physics, the prediction is that just before a period of very high density there was
a singularity which is typically associated with the Big Bang. Physicists are undecided whether
this means the universe began from a singularity, or that current knowledge is insufficient to
describe the universe at that time. Detailed measurements of the expansion rate of the universe
place the Big Bang at around 13.8 billion years ago, which is thus considered the age of the
universe.[10] After its initial expansion, the universe cooled sufficiently to allow the formation
of subatomic particles, and later simple atoms. Giant clouds of these primordial elements
(mostly hydrogen, with some helium and lithium) later coalesced through gravity, eventually
forming early stars and galaxies, the descendants of which are visible today. Astronomers also
observe the gravitational effects of dark matter surrounding galaxies. Though most of the mass in
the universe seems to be in the form of dark matter, Big Bang theory and various observations
seem to indicate that it is not made out of conventional baryonic matter (protons, neutrons, and
electrons) but it is unclear exactly what it is made out of.

The Big Bang theory is the prevailing cosmological description of the development of the
Universe. Under this theory, space and time emerged together 13.799±0.021 billion
years ago[2] and the energy and matter initially present have become less dense as the
Universe expanded. After an initial accelerated expansion called the inflationary epoch at
around 10−32 seconds, and the separation of the four known fundamental forces, the
Universe gradually cooled and continued to expand, allowing the first subatomic
particles and simple atoms to form. Dark matter gradually gathered forming a foam-like
structure of filaments and voids under the influence of gravity. Giant clouds
of hydrogen and helium were gradually drawn to the places where dark matter was
most dense, forming the first galaxies, stars, and everything else seen today. It is possible to
see objects that are now further away than 13.799 billion light-years because space itself has
expanded, and it is still expanding today. This means that objects which are now up to 46.5
billion light-years away can still be seen in their distant past, because in the past when their
light was emitted, they were much closer to the Earth.

Features of the model


The Big Bang theory depends on two major assumptions: the universality of physical laws and
the cosmological principle. The cosmological principle states that on large scales the universe
is homogeneous and isotropic.
These ideas were initially taken as postulates, but today there are efforts to test each of them.
For example, the first assumption has been tested by observations showing that largest possible
deviation of the fine structure constant over much of the age of the universe is of order
10−5.[40] Also, general relativity has passed stringent tests on the scale of the Solar System and
binary stars.[notes 2]

If the large-scale universe appears isotropic as viewed from Earth, the cosmological principle can
be derived from the simpler Copernican principle, which states that there is no preferred (or
special) observer or vantage point. To this end, the cosmological principle has been confirmed to
a level of 10−5 via observations of the CMB. The universe has been measured to be
homogeneous on the largest scales at the 10% level.[41]

Hubble's Law[edit]
Hubble's law violates the special theory of relativity: Hubble's law predicts that galaxies that are
beyond Hubble Distance recede faster than the speed of light. However, special relativity does
not apply beyond motion through space. Hubble's law describes velocity that results from
expansion of space, rather than through space.[131]

Hubble's Law describes the expansion of the universe mathematically:

where v is the velocity of recession of a celestial object, and d is the distance to the object. H0 is
the Hubble constant, where H0 = 70 km s−1 Mpc−1. The '0' signifies that this is the Hubble
constant now, not in the past or the future. This allows for the fact that the Hubble constant might
be changing, but very slowly.

The Age of the Universe[edit]


Imagine a galaxy which flies out from the big bang at the speed of light (c). The distance it has
travelled d is given by:

where t is the age of the universe, since the galaxy has been travelling since the beginning. If we
substitute in Hubble's Law for v, we get:
So, the reciprocal of the Hubble constant is the age of the universe - but be careful with the units.

Evidence for the Big Bang Theory:


Background Radiation, Red-Shift and
Expansion

Universe Expansion and Red Shift

The evidence that the universe is expanding comes with something called the red shift of light.
Light travels to Earth from other galaxies. As the light from that galaxy gets closer to Earth, the
distance between Earth and the galaxy increases, which causes the wavelength of that light to
get longer.
This is similar to the Doppler effect of sound waves, which also happens with light waves. I'm
sure you've heard it for yourself in real life: as an ambulance approaches you, the siren pitch
seems to increase, and as it moves away from you, the siren pitch decreases. This is due to how
the sound waves increase or decrease depending on the movement of the object emitting the
waves relative to the person hearing them. As the ambulance approaches you, the sound waves
get closer together and shorter, which results in a higher pitch. As the ambulance moves away
from you, the sound waves stretch out and get longer, which results in a lower pitch. If everything
in the universe is moving apart from everything else, then those light waves should move further
apart and get longer. Longer wavelengths of visible light are red, and that is why it is called the
red shift.
This red shift of light gives scientists information on the speed and direction that a star is moving.
This in turn tells scientists that stars are not only moving away from us, but they are also moving
away from each other.