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Astronomers: Dark Matter Guides Universe's Structure
Information Week ^ | 04/05/2009 | Bob Evans

Posted on 04/05/2009 12:46:41 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan

A 10-year study of 100,000 galaxies close to our own offers compelling proof that long-hypothesized "dark matter" does exist and is in fact a guiding force behind the structure of the universe, a team of Australian, British, and American astronomers revealed this week.

Saying that "the universe we see is really quite structured," one of the lead researchers explained that the 10-year "census" of galaxies near our own Milky Way offers powerful evidence that this invisible dark matter "seems to hold the galaxies together."

The dark matter's influence on galaxies "stops their constituent stars from flying off and it seems to be driving the large-scale galaxy clusters and super clusters" that are the largest objects in the universe, said Dr. Heath Jones of the Anglo Australian Observatory in an article on the website of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

Offering rich details about the direction, speed, shape, and evolving structure of 100,000 galaxies, the 10-year study offered great promise because of its exhaustive scope: it analyzed those dynamic properties for a much larger number of galaxies than any other study had ever attempted.

In reviewing the data from the study, Jones said, it became clear that directly observable visible objects could not possibly have exerted sufficient gravitational force to account for all of the movement and dynamics of the galaxies being studied.

And in hypothesing about what other, nonvisible forces could account for that additional gravitational effect, theories about dark matter completed that equation very nicely, he told the ABC:

"The galaxies just aren't uniform. They are scattered throughout the universe," he said. "What we find is that they tend to clump and cluster together. So you'll get galaxies clustering along nice delicate filamentary chains. You get some galaxies that will congregate in their clusters and you will get clusters of galaxies collecting in super clusters of galaxies, so the universe that we see is really quite structured…. "Astronomers know that this dark matter must exist in the universe," he said. "We can't see it with our telescopes directly, but by studying large objects like galaxies and how they move with respect to each other we can infer its existence quite accurately."

In addition to the compelling evidence the study provides for the existence of dark matter, Jones said, it also offers equally compelling proof that the universe is expanding and will continue to do so, rather than at some point collapsing back in upon itself as some astronomers have theorized.

So back in the world of IT – which for a while looked like it, too, would expand infinitely -- perhaps dark matter will turn out to be the devilish factor that has long distorted ERP projects and seems to torment most government IT efforts; maybe Jones and his team can tackle that in a future study.

And in the meantime, the new evidence that the universe is expanding forever will be of no comfort to the existentially tormented boyhood character of Alvie Singer in the classic movie, "Annie Hall."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: darkmatter; expandinguniverse; galaxies; science; stringtheory

1 posted on 04/05/2009 12:46:42 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan
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To: BuckeyeTexan

“There is in the world more things than are dreamt of in your philosophy Horatio.” (paraphrase)


2 posted on 04/05/2009 12:49:03 PM PDT by kenavi (Want a real stimulus? Drill!)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
The dark matter's influence on galaxies "stops their constituent stars from flying off and it seems to be driving the large-scale galaxy clusters and super clusters"

Gosh. I seem to remember gravity having the same sort of behavior.

3 posted on 04/05/2009 12:51:17 PM PDT by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

I don’t know much about astronomy or science, but I have a deep suspicion that in the grand scheme of things we are incredibly tiny.


4 posted on 04/05/2009 12:51:55 PM PDT by TheRightGuy (I want MY BAILOUT ... a billion or two should do!)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

PelosiDoddReid are huddling now writing a bill to tax something to halt the expansion of the universe. It’s Bush’s fault.


5 posted on 04/05/2009 12:55:15 PM PDT by Bhoy (TEA PARTY ON)
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To: SunkenCiv

Ping.


6 posted on 04/05/2009 1:02:09 PM PDT by rdl6989
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To: BuckeyeTexan

There is little doubt that there is an abundance of dark matter. What we are lacking is an abundance of gray matter.


7 posted on 04/05/2009 1:04:23 PM PDT by fish hawk (The trouble with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other peoples money.)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Flying rocks = dark matter.


8 posted on 04/05/2009 1:06:43 PM PDT by BobS
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Well, at least one thing; Alvie Singer did come up with the perfect reason not to do your homework.


9 posted on 04/05/2009 1:07:14 PM PDT by Beowulf9
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To: TheRightGuy
...I have a deep suspicion that in the grand scheme of things we are incredibly tiny.

No we're not. We are destroying the planet just by exhaling the "pollutant" CO2. Haven't you heard?

10 posted on 04/05/2009 1:08:42 PM PDT by Sgt_Schultze (Si vis pacem, para bellum)
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To: Glenn

The presence of dark matter is inferred by its presumed gravitational interaction with visible matter.


11 posted on 04/05/2009 1:12:07 PM PDT by dr_lew
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To: TheRightGuy
I don’t know much about astronomy or science, but I have a deep suspicion that in the grand scheme of things we are incredibly tiny.

That's because "Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly hugely mindbogglingly big it is. I mean you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist, but that’s just peanuts to space. "

Mark

12 posted on 04/05/2009 1:13:55 PM PDT by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

” invisible dark matter “seems to hold the galaxies together.”

Kind of like duck tape


13 posted on 04/05/2009 1:15:44 PM PDT by Daveinyork
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Maybe the universe is alive, a big hungry creature, and we are in its tummy.


14 posted on 04/05/2009 1:16:34 PM PDT by pallis
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To: Glenn

One of the reasons for the study was that gravity can’t account for what is being observed. I’m no expert, but that’s what I’ve read.


15 posted on 04/05/2009 1:27:11 PM PDT by cydcharisse
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To: BuckeyeTexan
Because we can see the far galaxies I suspect that this “dark matter” is in fact invisible matter with mass?
16 posted on 04/05/2009 1:28:49 PM PDT by BillT (New Executive Order to abolish the WS Constitution to be signed to save the US Constitution)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

17 posted on 04/05/2009 1:35:26 PM PDT by qam1 (There's been a huge party. All plates and the bottles are empty, all that's left is the bill to pay)
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To: Glenn

Gravity does, but there is insufficient observable matter to account for all of the gravity necessary to explain the structures we see. Therefore some non-observable matter must account for the extra gravity. Hence, dark matter.


18 posted on 04/05/2009 1:47:11 PM PDT by navyguy (The National Reset Button is pushed with the trigger finger.)
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To: navyguy
Hence, dark matter.

Thanks to all for clearing it up.

Regards

19 posted on 04/05/2009 1:49:19 PM PDT by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

bump


20 posted on 04/05/2009 2:02:55 PM PDT by Captain Beyond (The Hammer of the gods! (Just a cool line from a Led Zep song))
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To: qam1

That is one funny graphic. Al Gore’s secret global warming model, perhaps?


21 posted on 04/05/2009 2:13:17 PM PDT by ModelBreaker
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To: BuckeyeTexan

so is dark matter wimpy, neutrino-y, or axion-y?


22 posted on 04/05/2009 2:23:52 PM PDT by mjp (Live & let live. I don't want to live in Mexico, Marxico, or Muslimico. Statism & high taxes suck)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Image courtesy of the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory operated by CalTech with data from the Two Micron All Sky Survey by UMass and funded by you and I. The nearest objects are in blue and then follow the order of the spectrum to the most distant objects in red.

23 posted on 04/05/2009 2:46:15 PM PDT by concentric circles
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To: TheRightGuy
...we are incredibly tiny....

So is everything, relatively speaking.

24 posted on 04/05/2009 3:32:58 PM PDT by onedoug
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To: BuckeyeTexan
...it also offers equally compelling proof that the universe is expanding and will continue to do so, rather than at some point collapsing back in upon itself as some astronomers have theorized.

Ouch, I guess the haples naturalists have to go with the multi-verse thing now.

25 posted on 04/05/2009 3:43:17 PM PDT by AndyTheBear
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To: rdl6989; AdmSmith; bvw; callisto; ckilmer; dandelion; ganeshpuri89; gobucks; KevinDavis; ...
Thanks rdl6989.

· Google ·

26 posted on 04/05/2009 5:45:14 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/____________________ Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
And recently it's been observed that dark energy slows down the contraction of large galaxy clusters.

Dark Energy Observed Stifling Growth of Galaxy Clusters

27 posted on 04/05/2009 5:54:10 PM PDT by Moonman62 (The issue of whether cheap labor makes America great should have been settled by the Civil War.)
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To: BillT
Because we can see the far galaxies I suspect that this “dark matter” is in fact invisible matter with mass?

It's dark because it doesn't interact with the electromagnetic force, thus it doesn't emit or absorb light, but it does have mass.

28 posted on 04/05/2009 5:58:34 PM PDT by Moonman62 (The issue of whether cheap labor makes America great should have been settled by the Civil War.)
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To: SunkenCiv

Hi SunkenCiv,

Can you please add me to the string theory list?

Thanks!

Navyguy


29 posted on 04/05/2009 5:58:55 PM PDT by navyguy (The National Reset Button is pushed with the trigger finger.)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
As a matter of fact, dark matter, medium-dark matter, or even light-dark matter is pretty easy to comprehend.

At least in comparison to wondering what is going to hold this country (my galaxy) together with the hundreds of trillions (maybe even light-years) worth of funny money being printed by the current administration.

Maybe dark matter (or dark anti-matter), in some parts of the universe, pushes things apart instead of holding them together?

30 posted on 04/05/2009 8:14:29 PM PDT by SuperLuminal (Where is another agitator for republicanism like Sam Adams when we need him?)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
A 10-year study of 100,000 galaxies close to our own offers compelling proof that long-hypothesized "dark matter" does exist and is in fact a guiding force behind the structure of the universe, a team of Australian, British, and American astronomers revealed this week.

Ever wonder why scientists give Christians so much crap when a buttload of their theories demand just as much if not more FAITH?

If you cannot PROVE it and still believe it, you're taking it on faith.

31 posted on 04/06/2009 12:19:37 AM PDT by Centurion2000 (01-20-2009 : The end of the PAX AMERICANA.)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

I never liked ‘fudge factors’. Dark matter is one of them. The assumption that the gravitational force and the rate of time has remained consistent throughout the lifetime of the Universe should be scrutinized more carefully IMO. In short, question the model that doesn’t fit without mysterious, unseen additions.


32 posted on 04/09/2009 12:59:30 PM PDT by allmost
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