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Re: Question about inflation theory

Subject: Re: Question about inflation theory
From: "George Dishman"
Date: Sun, 19 Mar 2006 20:24:05 -0000
Newsgroups: sci.astro
"George" <george@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message 
news:1BdTf.833195$x96.210782@xxxxxxxxxxxx
> Recently, new results were released from NASA's Wilkinson Microwave 
> Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) satellite, launched in 2001 to measure the 
> temperature of radiant heat left over from the Big Bang, which is the 
> theoretical beginning to the universe.  The new WMAP observations, 
> announced at a NASA press conference today, reveal what the universe was 
> like in the first trillionth of a second after the Big Bang. From the 
> microwave background, researchers teased out a new signal called the 
> "polarization signal."  According to the conclusions of this report, 
> during this growth spurt, a tiny region, likely no larger than a marble, 
> grew in a trillionth of a second to become larger than the visible 
> universe.  Well, I'm confused.  According to Einstein nothing can travel 
> faster than the speed of light.  If that is true, how is it that the 
> universe expanded from the size of a marble to something large than the 
> visible universe in a trillionth of a second?

Releativity says an object cannot travel through
space faster than the speed of light in vacuo,
but that doesn't stop the sapce between objects
expanding at a rate such that the distance between
them increases faster than that speed.

> I'm neither an astrophysicist nor a physicist, which is why I'm asking 
> this question here.  And please be kind, as my calculus is a little rusty 
> these days.  Any thoughts?

This is probably the best introduction to the
subject around:

http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/cosmolog.htm

HTH
George (D)



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