Is the universe really expanding? Observations contradict galaxy-size predictions based on expansion

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March 22, 2018


Eric J. Lerner 908-546-7654,


The hypothesis that the universe is expanding is a basic pillar of the Big Bang theory. But observations of the size and brightness of thousands of galaxies contradict predictions based on the expansion hypothesis, thus shaking this key pillar, according to a new paper published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, a publication of Oxford University Press. The new study by Eric J. Lerner, Chief Scientist at the research firm LPPFusion in Middlesex, New Jersey, finds that none of the published expanding-universe predictions of galaxy-size growth fit the actual data. All of the proposed physical mechanisms for galaxy growth, such as galaxy mergers, also contradict observations. However, the paper finds that the data are closely fit by the contrary hypothesis that the universe is not expanding, and that the redshift of light is caused by some other, currently unknown, process.


The new research tests a striking prediction of the expanding universe hypothesis that objects at great distances actually should appear larger, not smaller. In ordinary, non–expanding space, the farther the object is, the smaller it appears. But in the expanding space of the Big Bang theory, very distant galaxies should actually look larger, an optical illusion due to the galaxies having been much closer when their light was emitted.


No previous observations found this predicted illusion—the most distant galaxies do in fact look the smallest. A number of researchers then theorized that galaxies actually grow in size with time. Distant galaxies—observed as they were billions of years ago—are thus hypothesized to be babies, and their small intrinsic size neatly cancels out the predicted optical expansion.


The new paper compared the quantitative, published predictions of the galaxy-growth theories with the observed sizes of thousands of both spiral and elliptical galaxies, limiting the samples to galaxies that have close to the same UV brightness. (Brighter galaxies are larger.) The data did not come close to fitting the predictions that galaxy size grows in proportion to the rate of expansion of the universe (Figure 1), or even any formula like the predictions, for either the spiral or elliptical galaxies.


Log radius of galaxies in kiloparsec plotted against hypothesized cosmological | lpp fusion


Figure 1. Log radius of galaxies in kiloparsec, assuming the universe is expanding, are plotted here against the log(H(z)), a measure of hypothesized cosmological expansion. Blue squares are samples of spiral galaxies, white circles are samples of elliptical galaxies. The white straight line is the closest prediction of galaxy size based on cosmological expansion and the growth of galaxy size. It does not fit the data.


In addition, Lerner pointed out that the process hypothesized for the growth of elliptical galaxies—mergers with other galaxies—occurs at a rate nearly ten times too low for the growth hypothesized. A still worse contradiction with observation is obtained by comparing the gravitating mass of distant galaxies, (calculated from rotational speed and size), with the mass of the stars in them, (calculated from their emitted light). The size predictions based on the expanding universe lead to a gravitating mass smaller than the mass of the stars, an obvious impossibility.


While the expanding universe predictions did not fit the data, Lerner found that predictions based on a non-expanding universe fit both the spiral and elliptical galaxies at all distances to an accuracy of a few percent. No matter what the distance, with a non-expanding universe, the galaxies of a given brightness were the same size, just as predicted by the non-expanding hypothesis (Figure 2).


Log of the ratio of high z galaxy radius to low z galaxy radius plotted against redshift | lpp fusion


Figure 2. The log of the ratio of high-z galaxy radius to the low-z radius is plotted against the log of z, where z is the redshift. White circles are samples of elliptical galaxies and blue and brown symbols are samples of spiral galaxies. As predicted by the non-expanding hypothesis, the size remains constant for galaxies of the same brightness (luminosity).


“In this hypothesis, the simple linear relation between the redshift of light and distance is caused by something that happens to the light as it travels, not by the expansion of space,” Lerner explains. “Right now, no one knows what could cause this, but the linear relationship and a non-expanding space make predictions that fit the data, while the expanding universe predictions don’t fit. The entire history of scientific-technological advance has shown the value of judging theories by their predictions. A hypothetical aircraft, for example, using a theory of aerodynamics that needed to be fine-tuned after every few miles of flight would scarcely be useful. Of course, broad hypotheses such as that of an expanding universe, need to have their predictions tested against all available sets of data—this is just one.”


The present research is an extension of earlier work done by Lerner at LPPFusion with colleagues Dr. Renato Falomo (INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova), and Dr. Riccardo Scarpa (Instituto de Astrofısica de Canarias, Spain and published in 2014. LPPFusion is developing an alternative route to fusion energy that evolved out of Lerner’s cosmological research into the nature of quasars.


More detailed background on this paper can be found here.









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