Monday, May 30, 2016

Study Suggests That Dark Energy Is The Reason The Arrow Of Time Moves Forward

The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.

-Fitzgerald's translation of  
The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam, 1859

From 3tags:

Study Suggests That Dark Energy Is The Reason Time Moves Forward
Ever since Lemaitre and Hubble’s first proposed it in the 1920s, scientists and astronomers have been aware that the universe is expanding. And from these observations, cosmological theories like the Big Bang Theory and the “arrow of time” emerged. Whereas the former addresses the origins and evolution of our universe, the latter argues that the time flows in one-direction and is linked to the expansion of space.

For many years, scientists have been trying to ascertain why this is. Why does time flow forwards, but not backwards? According to new study produced by a research team from the Yerevan Institute of Physics and Yerevan State University in Armenia, the influence of dark energy may be the reason for the forward-flow of time, which may make one-directional time a permanent feature of our universe.

Today, theories like the arrow of time and the expansion of the universe are considered fundamental facts about the universe. Between measuring time with atomic clocks, observing the red shift of galaxies, and creating detailed 3D maps that show the evolution of our universe over the course of billions of years, one can see how time and the expansion of space are joined at the hip.

The question of why this is the case though, is one that has continued to frustrate physicists. Certain fundamental forces, like gravity, are not governed by time. In fact, one could argue without difficulty that Newton’s laws of motion and quantum mechanics work the same forwards or backwards. But when it comes to things on the grand scale like the behavior of planets, stars, and entire galaxies, everything seems to come down to the second law of thermodynamics.

This law, which states that the total chaos (aka. entropy) of an isolated system always increases over time, the direction in which time moves is crucial and non-negotiable, has come to be accepted as the basis for the arrow of time. In the past, some have ventured that if the universe began to contract, time itself would begin to flow backwards. However, since the 1990s and the observation that the universe has been expanding at an accelerating rate, scientists have come to doubt that this.

If, in fact, the universe is being driven to greater rates of expansion – the predominant explanation is that “dark energy” is what is driving it – then the flow of time will never cease being one way. Taking this logic a step further, two Armenian researchers – Armen E. Allahverdyan of the Center for Cosmology and Astrophysics at the Yerevan Institute of Physics and Vahagn G. Gurzadyan of Yerevan State University – argue that dark energy is the reason why time always moves forward....MORE
So the first thing I think of when I read the headline about time 'moving forward' is that bit from the Rubiayat and I jot it down and the second thing I think of is "Am I remembering Eddington correctly?" so I go to Wikipedia's 'Arrow of Time' page and there at the bottom of the main article is the Fitzgerald and I realize I have no hope of ever being original in this life and time keeps on slippin', slippin' slippin' into the future.