Did you know that dark energy is the most perplexing problem in cosmology?
Dark energy has baffled scientists for decades because there is no way to directly see it, and it seems to work against our understanding of gravity. If it had a light bulb in front of us, we would be able to make out some of its properties by looking at it with a telescope.
Dark Energy makes up 72 percent of the whole mass-energy density of our universe.
The other dominant contributors are Dark Matter, composed of mostly hydrogen, and a very small amount from normal matter or atomic nuclei. In 1998 two independent teams of scientists announced that very distant, x-ray fuzzy galaxy explosions were only slightly less bright than predictions of a rapidly expanding (but slowing) universe. This has led to many theories as to what might cause this cosmic acceleration, including a variety of theories involving dark matter, time, accelerated evolution, strange holes, or vacuum.
It is also believed by many scientists that dark energy is an example of something called quintessence.
A quintessence is an “empty” space with the same temperature as a perfect vacuum, i.e. vacuum cleaner. Although it cannot be seen, it absorbs all the radiation emitted by every atom and molecule in the entire universe, including light. As a result, it tends to collapse the fabric of space-time, thus making it appear like we are living inside a bubble. If this bubble is ever cooled, as a result of some type of explosion, it will collapse, and everything within it will go into a vacuum.
One of the major predictions of dark energy comes from the Standard Model of particle physics.
This theory states that it is possible for a given matter to have its own antiparticle, which will make up for any deformation caused by the growth of the particle. In this model, the growth of the particle occurs at the quantum level, rather than on the Planck scale. In order to reach this conclusion, a great amount of experiments, calculations, observations, and predictions had to be performed, which resulted in the Standard Model becoming one of the most accepted theories in physics.
Another prediction of dark energy comes from the study of CANDLES.
These are long strings of infinitely long carbon diodes. These strings are made by stretching a string infinitely, without the aid of a magnetic field, until it breaks. The length of the stretched strings will vary according to the speed of the stretched object, which scientists believe is a result of an abundance of “colder” empty space at the quantum level. The scientists have been able to mathematically define this effect by the use of complex mathematical equations, and the calculation is consistent with theories that predict the presence of a “phantom floor”.
In another prediction of dark energy, the speed of light will continue to increase as time goes by.
They have also found that the expansion of the Universe occurred at a very fast rate during the big bang. This was later altered by General Relativity, which is a branch of science that was developed by Albert Einstein. According to Einstein, space and time are not constant, but are rather “asymmetric.” The symmetric predictions of General Relativity lead to the conclusion that the speed of light is not constant.
It has also been predicted by scientists that there is no such thing as a “decelerated universe”.
This because it is impossible for black holes to collapse. Another prediction of dark energy comes from the study of cosmic acceleration. This is the idea that accelerating particles travel faster than the speed of light in vacuum. This was first proposed by sci-fi writers like Arthur C Clarke, and later came into reality with the development of software for tracking the speeds of stars. Based on this research, scientists have calculated that our galaxy, the Milky Way, contains many such accelerating objects that are moving very fast indeed, even while our space-time continuum is virtually unbroken.
Based on this new understanding of dark energy, scientists have devised several theories in order to test the validity of their calculations. One possible theory revolves around the idea that a black hole which is rotating slowly is sucking the gas that makes up a galaxy, and the slower the rotation, the greater the amount of gas that is being sucked.
Another interesting prediction is that the gas distribution around a bulge in a spiral arm of a spiral galaxy may also be affected by the accelerating mass. Although astronomers have not yet come up with a complete solution to the problem, they have made some progress already. In one way or another, scientists are going to have to look into this problem eventually.