November 30, 2022

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Einstein's theory and time trial.  Was the famous scientist wrong?

Einstein’s theory and time trial. Was the famous scientist wrong?

Scholars whose publications hit the pages natural astronomyI decided to test general relativity on a large scale. According to them, their point of view on this issue can help solve some mysteries of cosmology. The results obtained indicate that the general theory of relativity may need improvement.

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According to Einstein, the energy of a vacuum has gravity and pushes away empty space. In 1998, it was discovered that the expansion of the universe is accelerating. On the other hand, the amount of vacuum energy needed to explain this acceleration is much less than what quantum mechanics predicts.

So the question arises: does vacuum energy really exert gravitational pressure and affect the expansion of the universe? If so, why is its gravity so much weaker than expected? And if the scenario in which the vacuum does not gravitate at all turns out to be a real scenario, then what is causing the acceleration of the expansion of the universe?

So far, Einstein’s general theory of relativity has stood the test of time

The LCDM model indicates that there is 70% dark energy, 25% dark matter, and 5% “normal” matter in the universe. This model fits all the data cosmologists have collected over the past 20 years. On the other hand, the fact that most of the universe is made up of dark energy and matter with strange values ​​makes Einstein’s theory of general relativity somewhat questionable. Or at least indicates the need to modify it.

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Much of the confusion is caused by the irregular Hubble constant, which is an indicator used to determine the expansion rate of the universe. Among the theories that explain these anomalies are alternative theories of gravity. The authors of the aforementioned studies decided to check whether the general theory of relativity was valid on a large scale. To this end, they focused on three different aspects of it: the expansion of the universe, the effect of gravity on light, and the effect of gravity on matter.

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Using what is called Bayesian induction, he reconstructed the gravity of the universe through cosmic history in a computer model based on these three parameters. The data used came from the Planck satellite, supernova collections, and observations of the shapes and compositions of distant galaxies. The next step was to compare the reconstruction with the predictions of the LCDM model. Preliminary conclusions indicate a possible need to modify what Einstein said. Moreover, scientists believe that changing the theory of gravity is unlikely to do much in the face of errors related to the Hubble constant.