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Space Science

Astronomers Find Huge Hole in Universe 628

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the no-it's-not-rosie-o'donnell dept.
realwx writes "Astronomers are surprised by a recent discovery of a space hole that is nearly a billion light years across. "Not only has no one ever found a void this big, but we never even expected to find one this size," said researcher Lawrence Rudnick of the University of Minnesota. Rudnick's colleague Liliya R. Williams also had not anticipated this finding. "What we've found is not normal, based on either observational studies or on computer simulations of the large-scale evolution of the universe," said Williams, also of the University of Minnesota.""
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Astronomers Find Huge Hole in Universe

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  • by earnest murderer (888716) on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:57AM (#20340699)
    God is giving you the goatse.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:27AM (#20340843)
      The look [flickr.com] on the lead astronomer's face when she found this discovery is priceless!
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Guppy06 (410832)
        I can think of so many things I'd like to do with that woman (does she have any buttons on her shirt fastened?), but no, let's show her goatse instead.

        And you wonder why you're all virgins.
    • by QuickFox (311231) on Friday August 24, 2007 @06:26AM (#20341669)

      God is giving you the goatse.
      That explains why He put it in the constellation Eridanus.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Himring (646324)
      Haha! I love to make fun of God, cuz God's a got a sense of hu....

      NO CARRIER

    • by Lucas123 (935744) on Friday August 24, 2007 @10:53AM (#20343879) Homepage
      "We don't know one millionth of one percent about anything" -- Thomas Edison. Think about it. Light travels roughly 5.8 trillion miles in a year. Our galaxy is about 120,000 light years across, give or take 40,000 light years, and it contains an estimated 100 billion stars (scientists are only guessing; they can't see them all). This newly reported area of "dark matter" (translation: uh, we don't know what it is), is a billion light years across -- a billion light years. Any attempt to place definitive explanations on the origins of the universe, its size, how it is expanding (or not), and what fills it, is an exercise in lunacy. We're like blind people feeling away in the dark and trying to describe what we can't even touch. We don't even know what a black hole is; we're only guessing based on what happens at the event horizon. Science is a great discipline -- I fell in love with it even before college -- but the scientific community needs an enormous dose of humility; and that's not something I see a lot of these days. Every news story that I see about scientific discovery is more often than not missing huge qualifiers, such as scientists theorize that... Think about it. The laws of physics that apply to us here and in the space that immediately surrounds our infinitesimally small portion of our galaxy may not apply in other regions of the universe -- of that I'm convinced based on what we can't explain. It's an amazing universe. Personally, I can't wait to see what we stumble on next.
      • by shawn(at)fsu (447153) on Friday August 24, 2007 @11:17AM (#20344173) Homepage
        Actually the article said it was devoid of "dark matter", they freely admit they have no idea what this void is.
      • by markbt73 (1032962) on Friday August 24, 2007 @12:32PM (#20345017)

        When you have a bunch of yahoos shouting about their imaginary friend every chance they get, and trying to force their 2000-year-old slasher novel down everyone's throats, it becomes much more difficult to use the proper qualifiers. You almost have to make assertions in that situation, so you don't get shouted down: "You don't know? HA! It must be Jeebus, then! See, you guys are all going to Hell! Jeebus, Jeebus, Jeebus..." It's wrong to state things as fact, but I can't really fault people for doing it.

        Those of us who are brave and smart enough to accept the answer of "we don't know" are in the minority. Maybe someday in the future, we can get the God-botherers to shut up long enough to make the methodology of science widely enough understood to be able to speak intelligently in public about the findings of science.

        But unfortunately, I'm not holding my breath.

        • The Bible isn't a slasher novel, it's a love story. It's about these kids who run away from home seeking independence and what they perceive as life's true fulfillment, and a father who desperately tries to get them to return. The father pleads with them for years to come home and enjoy the shelter and comfort of his house, but they continue to ignore him until finally the father makes a tremendous sacrifice in order to open the door for them to return. Some of the children realize the father's sacrifice an
          • by jinxidoru (743428) on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:09PM (#20346313) Homepage
            I love that the title of your comment is "Ya forgot to read the ending..." The ending of the Bible is Revelations. That's a pretty convoluted book that does more resemble a slasher novel than a love story. It makes a fitting end to the Bible.

            With your above white-wash of the book, I am honestly questioning whether you have read the entire book. I have read the entire Bible (which probably puts me into something like a 10% group). While it does have the occasional uplifting section, the Be-attitudes, for example. But the truth is that the vast majority of it revolves around people slaughtering one another in one grotesque fashion after another. That would still fit with your above description, if it weren't for the fact that it is, more-often-than-not, God commanding people to do the killing. It's not as if the killing is occurring and God is disappointed. No, he is the one either commanding the killing (think Israel's destruction of Canaan) or even himself doing it (the flood).

            You should read the whole book sometime. It's horrifying!
          • by metlin (258108) on Friday August 24, 2007 @04:14PM (#20347693) Journal
            A love story where this god character tortures his children by throwing them into pits of fire and hurting them for all eternity?

            Sounds like *your* god has a thing for BDSM, dude.
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by isomeme (177414)
              Sounds like *your* god has a thing for BDSM, dude.

              As a friend of mine once remarked, "Christianity is nothing but institutionalized Stockholm Syndrome [wikipedia.org]."
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Bearhouse (1034238)
        With you 100% - but then again, if you look at;

        1. The biographies of many 'great' scientists, (selfish, obsessed and frankly quite often mad),
        2. How hard it is to get funding for 'real' science these days,

        Then I suppose a little hyperboyle is inevitable, indeed perhaps necessary
  • hm.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by tpwch (748980) <slashdot@tpwch.com> on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:57AM (#20340705) Homepage
    Maybe its a civilization that managed to blow themselves out of history trought an accident somehow? If it is, I hope we can control that technology better when we advance enough to have it.
    • Re:hm.. (Score:5, Funny)

      by phagstrom (451510) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:00AM (#20340723)
      Just digging a hole to build a new bypass.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Whiteox (919863)
        NO IT ISN'T!!!!

        It's the MUTANT STAR GOAT!!!!

        Those Golgafrincham's were right after all!
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by austior (1063772)
      If the civilization blew itself up, we would probably see some sign of the super-heated matter being ejected from the region. More likely is that the civilization gobbled up all the available matter and then decided to slip into a universe with favorable physical properties and more room for computation.
      • Re:hm.. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by 0xABADC0DA (867955) on Friday August 24, 2007 @09:40AM (#20342967)
        More likely still is that the server responsible for simulating that section of the universe crashed and hasn't been restarted yet (or will never restart). The civilization there probably started using too many quantum calculations causing the simulation to take too long doing useless things like reversing encryption keys instead of sending us more photons.

        In any case, I would not worry about this since we'll probably just be rolled back to a known-good state once the problem has been fixed.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Maybe its a civilization that managed to blow themselves out of history trought an accident somehow? If it is, I hope we can control that technology better when we advance enough to have it.

      Yes, this seems like the most reasonable explaination.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jimstapleton (999106)
      Unfortunately, I think your view is way too optimistic :-(

      It is the great emptiness (think Alan Dean Foster's Commonwealth universe)

      On the bright side, it won't be here to eat us for at least 10,000 years, by which time, Flinx, the Krang, the Ulru-Uljurans, etc. will hopefully manage to destroy it.
    • by Ex-MislTech (557759) on Friday August 24, 2007 @08:48AM (#20342479)
      Perhaps this was the start point for the big bang ???

      Just fishing wildy here .....
      • by eddy the lip (20794) on Friday August 24, 2007 @12:25PM (#20344931)
        Yes, but you are also sitting at the start point of the big bang. Every spot in the universe can make the same claim. "Big bang" is a cool name for it, but it's a bit of a misnomer, as there wasn't anywhere for an actual explosion to occur when it happened. Thinking of the big bang as having a point of origin is a bit like asking "what's outside the universe?" Just as with Oakland, there's no there there. I'd recommend Brian Green's The Elegeant Universe. It's focus is string theory, but to get there you have to go through relativity, the big bang theory and quantum mechanics, as they're all related. He's a gifted science writer and ties it all together in a very accessible way.
  • More info here (Score:5, Informative)

    by Mr Europe (657225) on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:58AM (#20340707)
    Now this is *big* news ! The scientific world is waiting for good explanations.

    More info here (with pictures..)
    http://www.nrao.edu/pr/2007/coldspot/index.shtml [nrao.edu]
    • by UserGoogol (623581) on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:59AM (#20340715)
      Sounds like a whole lot of nothing to me.
    • It's the plug hole of course.
       
    • Re:More info here (Score:5, Informative)

      by Randomly (858836) * on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:33AM (#20340879) Homepage
      Here's a link to the original paper:

      http://xxx.lanl.gov/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/0704/0704.0 908v2.pdf [lanl.gov]
    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:47AM (#20340937) Homepage Journal
      ``More info here (with pictures..)''

      Pictures?! Of nothing?!
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Griim (8798)
        From the great people who brought you pictures of something
    • Wow! (Score:5, Funny)

      by Toreo asesino (951231) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:52AM (#20340947) Journal
      A photo of a hole...in the the biggest emptiness in the universe. I can see that one winning competitions.
    • by SL Baur (19540)
      That's a better article than the original. Thanks.

      I'm confused on one point. (This is not a flame). Why would photons going through a void lose energy? OK, I will accept the statement that photons gain energy going through dark matter, but the losing energy part sounds like the standard BS of baseline budgeting. I got a 5% increase last year, but equal funding and no increase this year so it's a budget cut. Why wouldn't this just be the same thing? Photons get a boost going through dark matter and no
      • Re:More info here (Score:5, Informative)

        by mikael (484) on Friday August 24, 2007 @09:25AM (#20342823)
        I'm confused on one point. (This is not a flame). Why would photons going through a void lose energy?

        The energy of a photon is directly proportional to the frequency and inversely proportional to the wavelength.

        Photoelectric effect [asu.edu]

        Shorter wavelengths of a photon (ultra-violet, X-rays, Gamma rays) have more energy than longer wavelengths (visible light, infra-red).

        Photons that we see from distant parts of the universe become affected by red-shift [wikipedia.org] - anything moving away from us ends up with a longer wavelength that we would have seen if it were stationary. But this can also be caused by gravititional effects (time dialation causes by massive objects).

        If the object is moving towards us, then the photos become affects by blue shift [wikipedia.org].

        When a spiral galaxy is observed, the side moving towards the observer will have a slight blue shift, because the photon wavelength has been decreased.

        The photons in the void must be getting a longer wavelength somehow - perhaps the spacetime continuum is expanding more there than it is where there is ordinary matter.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Kagura (843695)
      Sorry for the language. What the fuck? That is impossible. It must be some sort of equipment error or methodological mistake. Please go look at the parent's picture, it must be some sort of joke news page for the issue, seriously. It's amazing.

      Here's a higher res image of exactly what I'm talking about. I can't find anything that indicates this is an artist rendition rather than an actual map, other than the fact that they used the word 'illustration' just once on the previous page. Please help me figure
  • by wombatmobile (623057) on Friday August 24, 2007 @02:58AM (#20340713)
    Next time, remove the lens cap.
  • by Chlorus (1146335) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:02AM (#20340733)
    Your theory of a donut shaped universe intrigues me, Homer. I may have to steal it. That's the first thing I thought of when I read this.
  • by RuBLed (995686) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:04AM (#20340747)
    The scientists had just recently answered the bugging question "Is there a hole on Mars?" but now they too had answered a bigger question still.. "Is there a hole out there, in the expanse of the universe?"

    A great day to be alive....

    Well I guess the ones who used to live out there had something similar like our LHC...
  • by mrjb (547783) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:07AM (#20340759)
    ...and it was overlooked all this time. How's that for a security flaw?
  • by Bin_jammin (684517) <Binjammin@gmail.com> on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:10AM (#20340779)
    is that in the middle of all of infinite space, they've now found space without anything in it? Let me know when they build something exciting there.
  • yeah (Score:4, Funny)

    by Almir (1096395) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:15AM (#20340803)
    don't worry about it, god is patching that on tuesday.
  • ...said God, and promptly vanished in a puff of logic.

  • by jsiren (886858) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:19AM (#20340815) Homepage
    The hole is not considered serious, since it is not remotely exploitable. It will be fixed in Universe 1.1, which is to be released shortly.
  • by Knutsi (959723)
    Could it possibly be that someone unleashed an exponentially growing pack of machinery that does nothing but turns the matter it find into more copies of itself...? Should give you a pretty nice bubble filled with nothing.

    Given enough time, it's not totally unlikely this is bound to happen, also by human hands.

  • by iminplaya (723125) <iminplaya.gmail@com> on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:27AM (#20340847) Journal
    How many Albert Halls is that?
  • "Not only has no one ever found a void this big, but we never even expected to find one this size,"

    ... but I wish the goatse* jokes would finally stop.
  • Normal (Score:3, Insightful)

    by RAMMS+EIN (578166) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:45AM (#20340927) Homepage Journal
    How can it not be normal if it occurs in nature?

    Declaring something is not normal because it doesn't agree with our imperfect idea about how things work seems to be the wrong way about it to me.
    • Re:Normal (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Baumi (148744) on Friday August 24, 2007 @03:57AM (#20340971) Homepage

      How can it not be normal if it occurs in nature?

      Declaring something is not normal because it doesn't agree with our imperfect idea about how things work seems to be the wrong way about it to me.
      The full quote is: "What we've found is not normal, based on either observational studies or on computer simulations of the large-scale evolution of the universe."

      That doesn't mean it's not normal per se. It means that this void is caused by some factor not previously observed or taken into account in simulations, i.e. "If these simulations were 100% correct, something like this couldn't occur."

      (Let the speculations commence...)
      • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)
        ``It means that this void is caused by some factor not previously observed or taken into account in simulations, i.e. "If these simulations were 100% correct, something like this couldn't occur."''

        Yes, exactly. And the conclusion that follows from that is that your model is not correct, not that what you observe is not normal.
      • Re:Normal (Score:5, Interesting)

        by pln2bz (449850) * on Friday August 24, 2007 @05:14AM (#20341295)
        I think you guys are missing the point. The void correlates with a cold spot within the CMB. The CMB is not supposed to have artifacts. It's supposed to be unrelated to the items between us and it. When you find a relation, that would tend to suggest that the CMB may have a more local source -- which actually threatens the primary proof for the Big Bang in the first place.

        If I may, can I suggest that you guys are not being skeptical about what you're reading? I don't mean to be critical here, but a local source for the CMB would confirm what the Electric Universe Theorists have been telling people for some time now: that the CMB is an electric fog that is generated locally.

        I highly recommend that you pay attention to the logic being used at the end of the article:

        Photons of the CMB gain a small amount of energy when they pass through normal regions of space with matter, the researchers explained. But when the CMB passes through a void, the photons lose energy, making the CMB from that part of the sky appear cooler.

        At some point in time within the development of the Big Bang Theory, it became normal to say that light can be absorbed more by nothingness than by matter. In another article here (http://science.nasa.gov/NEWHOME/headlines/ast22fe b99_1.htm [nasa.gov]), they explain this theory, called the Sunyaev-Zeldovich Effect:

        The Universe is filled with conglomerations of galaxies called clusters that are millions of light years across, consisting of hundreds or thousands of galaxies held together by gravity. Mostly clusters have atmospheres of very hot gas that we can see because of the X-rays they emit. Sunyaev and Zeldovich realized that something interesting happens when a CMBR photon passes through such a cluster. There is a good chance that it will collide with one of the electrons in the hot atmosphere. In the process, some photons would gain energy while others would lose energy. At microwave radio frequencies, they predicted, the intensity of the CMBR would appear to be depleted in the direction of the cluster because the photons would be "scattered" to other frequencies outside the microwave frequency band. This process is called the Sunyaev-Zeldovich Effect.

        [...]

        Typically, the deficit in the CMBR is only 0.05% of the cosmic microwave background intensity. Detecting these small perturbations requires lots of observing time and painstaking data reduction.

        So, the SZ effect allows them to explain away the fact that some galaxies are not casting shadows against the CMB. If there isn't a shadow for some of them, then perhaps that's because the photons are being energized by the obstruction. One is left wondering if the nothingness in the void is absorbing the quantity of light that they were predicting that nothingness should even absorb?

        But, let me ask you guys this: Isn't it just possible that the cold spot *is* related to the void, and that the Big Bang is a paradigm in its death throws?
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by pragma_x (644215)
          Thank you for this delightfully sane post. Please write more often; slashdot needs this.

          But, let me ask you guys this: sn't it just possible that the cold spot *is* related to the void ...

          I'd go as far as to say that they're right, and that the void *is* a positive indication that there is a big (mostly and unusually) empty spot out there.

          While I'm not as deeply read as yourself in these matters (as your post strongly suggests), I've always been skeptical about the Big Bang as proposed, largely because mat

    • by Jugalator (259273)

      How can it not be normal if it occurs in nature?
      Because it doesn't commonly occur in nature? I think they're using "not normal" in the sense of "rare".
  • Oh no!!! The Nothing [wikipedia.org] will eat the universe!! Quick, take me to the empress!
  • We finally found trace of civilization that screw their ecosystem more then we are able to (so far!). When they converted to energy everything in range of 1 billion years for their gigantic SUVs they moved elsewhere. But where did they go? ... Oh... wait...
  • by mathfeel (937008) on Friday August 24, 2007 @04:02AM (#20340997)
    ...so that's where my socks went.
  • Cleaning up their lenses? You never know...
  • by Dachannien (617929) on Friday August 24, 2007 @04:25AM (#20341097)
    Fry: Let me ask you something. Has anyone ever discovered a hole in nothing with monsters in it? 'Cause if I'm the first, I want them to call it a "Fry Hole".

    ---

    Fry: So what do you nerds want?
    Nichelle Nichols: It's about that rip in space-time that you saw.
    Stephen Hawking: I call it a Hawking Hole.
    Fry: No fair! I saw it first!
    Stephen Hawking: Who is the Journal of Quantum Physics going to believe?

    ---

    Farnsworth: Yes, we tore the universe a new space-hole, alright. But it's clenching shut fast!

  • by Carbon016 (1129067) on Friday August 24, 2007 @04:47AM (#20341177)
    Universe needs to stop running defrag every few million years, it's leaving giant empty space holes and confusing the scientists.
  • by MOMOCROME (207697) <momocrome@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Friday August 24, 2007 @05:17AM (#20341311)
    Billions of years ago, the Emperor Gortron IV of the Hugalugag Empire discovered the existence of other intelligent races in neighboring solar systems. The very fact of this, the mere idea of other races so infuriated the Emperor that he decreed them all illegal and ordered his vast military machine to wipe them out.

    His generals tried many different approaches but none served to eliminate the threat completely. In fact, often times, the attempt would so infuriate the enemy that they would buzz about the borderlands of the Empire for years on end, death-raying this, atomic blasting that until they could finally be stamped out by the Hugalugagians with plain old fashioned space wars. This only further enraged the Emperor, and so he held a contest open to any of his citizens that could fashion a means to end the threat once and for all without requiring the messiness of pitched combat and planetary siege. The race of Hugalugag was quite xenophobic from top to bottom, from the least peasant in the fields to the mighty Emperor on high, and so everyone turned their thoughts on how to eradicate the menace of 'otherness' that surrounded them.

    One day a simple weaponsmith by the name of Nancypoo Gammatron approached the throne with his proposal. This took a great deal of courage, for when the Emperor listened to the proposals of all that had come before, he only listened far enough to find a potential weakness in the plan and immediately ordered the presenter disintegrated. Proposals had become infrequent of late, which in turn further enraged the already apoplectic Emperor when he thought on it. Nevertheless, Nancypoo felt he had a fine idea. His great innovation was all in the scale of things. The Hugalugugians would build a gun so gigantic that they could march it out to one enemy star system and use their sun as a bullet to shoot the sun of yet another enemy, and so on until all enemies even remotely able to reach them were reduced to ash before they knew what hit them.

    The Emperor was pleased with this idea indeed. So impressed that he ordered ten thousand of these guns be made with all due haste. And though the Hugalugagians would need to dismantle much of their empire to construct the weapons, including many planets and stars of their own, and it would take millions of years to stage the attack, at the end, the Hugalugagians might finally have a sense of peace and security. Which is really what it is all about, in the end- assuaging the vague fears with brutal violence.

    You can rest assured that the Emperor's forces cleaned out their own galaxy only to find the next galaxy over teaming with filthy others, and so the troops marched on, ever on, cleaning out one galaxy after another until any potential threat was addressed, a never ending assault on a reality that didn't jibe with their mean psychology and ancient traditions, until even today. For though we can only see a hole in the universe one billion light years across, you can bet that they've been hard at work all the time the light has taken to reach us way out here in our galaxy, so that even now there is a lonley little planet orbiting around a lonely little star in a void many times the size of the big blank spot we can make out from our hopefully remote-enough vantage point here in the Milky Way.
     
  • by martin-boundary (547041) on Friday August 24, 2007 @05:30AM (#20341389)
    They finally did it! Those Maniacs! They stopped Plan Nine and now they blew up their own solarbonite bombs! Damn them! Now the unstoppable chain reaction from their part of space has started! God damn them all to hell!
  • I am disappointed (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Shohat (959481) on Friday August 24, 2007 @05:35AM (#20341431) Homepage
    I am not an astronomer/astrophysicis, but this is a really interesting story, it's a real shame that 80% of the >filter comments are "Funny".
  • by Esion Modnar (632431) on Friday August 24, 2007 @06:29AM (#20341681)
    Move along.
  • by Ginger_Chris (1068390) on Friday August 24, 2007 @06:32AM (#20341697)
    One of the fundamental approximations in modern cosmology is that the universe is both isotropic and homogeneous over large scales (such as those which treat galaxies as point objects). This size hole s fairly big, and is noticeable on even this scale. This means there could be a special point in the universe, which caused all sorts of problems. Does this mean we have to re-think our basic theory of cosmology, or is this size hole possible under current theories, even if it is extremely unlikely to form. (the universe is a big place, even if something has a minuscule probability it still could happen somewhere out there. Personally I think it was placed there by the universe to test our belief in God not existing.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ceoyoyo (59147)
      This void (it's not a hole) is just a particularly large version of the large voids that were known before. On large scales galaxies seem to arrange themselves into filaments. The spaces between the filaments are voids. This is a big one. There's no particular reason to think it can't be described by the same processes that caused matter in the early universe to clump.
  • by Zdzicho00 (912806) on Friday August 24, 2007 @06:43AM (#20341739)
    See: Heim Theory [wikipedia.org]

    I mean here Heim's corrected gravitional law [engon.de].
    See that snippet:

    The CMB is an imprint of radiation left from the Big Bang, the theoretical beginning of the universe.

    "Although our surprising results need independent confirmation, the slightly colder temperature of the CMB in this region appears to be caused by a huge hole devoid of nearly all matter roughly 6 to 10 billion light-years from Earth," Rudnick said.

    Photons of the CMB gain a small amount of energy when they pass through normal regions of space with matter, the researchers explained. But when the CMB passes through a void, the photons lose energy, making the CMB from that part of the sky appear cooler.

    Now have a look on Heim's corrected gravitional law:

    Any mass which is situated in the range between the upper border distance R0 and must overcome a very weak repulsion force, if it wants to approach the source of field. Since this effect occurs only for very large distances, it is practically not observable.

    And:

    Finally Heim found that cosmic red shift too is a result of the corrected gravitation law. Therefore each particle of this world must approach primarily against the repulsive gravitation component of almost the whole remaining world. (This corresponds to the field curve between and R0.) This is using energy whereby each photon becomes longer in it's wavelength during this journey.

    What do you think about this? Is there any other explanation for this phenomena?
    One more thing. Mumbling about mysterious Dark Mater or Dark Energy isn't an answer.

    /Z
  • by vegiVamp (518171) on Friday August 24, 2007 @07:54AM (#20342109) Homepage
    We don't want the Krikkit guys knowing we're out here.
  • by brundlefly (189430) on Friday August 24, 2007 @09:52AM (#20343157)
    If the universe is "infinite", then there's plenty of room for lots of strange anomalies out there. A region which has nothing in it is just a blerp in the standard distribution of matter. One which would seem entirely consistent with anomalies in random distributions, sequences, etc.

    Not only that, but since the universe is constantly expanding and at an ever-increasing rate, greater and greater becomes the possibility of finding big "holes".

    Cool, yes. But it doesn't really surprise me at all. Then again, I'm just a programmer so what do I know?
  • by Acy James Stapp (1005) on Friday August 24, 2007 @11:51AM (#20344595)
    This void is around 450M light years wide. An advanced civilization expanding for a billion or so of years would produce this kind of void by capturing and using all radiated energy for its own use.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by quantaman (517394)

      This void is around 450M light years wide. An advanced civilization expanding for a billion or so of years would produce this kind of void by capturing and using all radiated energy for its own use.

      Note that we can see the other side of the hole so we're not talking about something like a giant dyson sphere. However your explanation could work if they found a way to do something like remove that region from our universe (thus leaving the hole) and make their own separate mini-universe, one with shiny walls and stuff to keep radiated energy in.

  • A hole? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by nurb432 (527695) on Friday August 24, 2007 @11:59AM (#20344673) Homepage Journal
    That has a different definition to me, this looks more like just an absence of ' stuff '.

    A 'hole' to me, would make the assumption there is 'tear' and there is an 'other side' involved. I don't see either in this story. ( nor would there be much of a way to prove a hole either.. )
  • by Zobeid (314469) on Friday August 24, 2007 @01:22PM (#20345699)
    There's something very important I forgot to tell you.

    What?

    Don't cross the streams.

    Why?

    It would be bad.

    I'm fuzzy on the whole good/bad thing. What do you mean, "bad?"

    Try to imagine the instant annihilation of all matter and energy within 500 million light years of here.

    Right. That's bad. Okay. All right. Important safety tip. Thanks, Egon.

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