Space-Time Fabric

Let’s assume that the space-time fabric is situated within our entire closed universe and matter is scattered throughout like small insects trapped on a giant spider web.  And let’s also assume that the space-time fabric along with the matter is in constant motion, either accelerating because of gravity since they are the same thing (Einstein’s principle of equivalence), or decelerating because of entropy, or shrinking because of dark energy, which quite possibly may be found in the quantum world.

So, finally let’s assume that dark energy is scattered about everywhere in the universe, fighting to overcome the original expansion from the Big Bang and matter and dark matter’s gravitational attraction in an effort to pull everything in back on itself to finally collapse into a Big Crunch.  And mathematics tells us that dark energy has about three times as much force as dark matter and all visible matter, so shrinking may well be the strongest force in the universe.

From our perspective, the matter probably would appear to be expanding at increasing speeds.  Yet, if the fabric were alternating back and forth between expanding and contracting, we might not be able to recognize the difference between expansion and contraction from our perspective.  It might look exactly the same to us on the planet earth.

The matter in the universe would warp the space-time fabric and perhaps, vice-versa, but we would not detect these variations from our perspective.  So, what can we surmise from our perspective?

Let’s again assume that the Big Bang was the start of expansion of the space-time fabric when all matter was very close together and should have slowed down time.  As the space-time fabric expanded, it would have also expanded the distance between mass in the universe, thus causing time to speed up.  Let’s assume that we would not detect this time difference, just as we would not detect it in a spaceship traveling toward Mars.

So depending on our position and speed, time can appear to move faster or slower to us relative to others in a different part of space-time.  The phenomenon is called “gravitational time dilation.”  In a nutshell, it just means time moves slower as gravity increases.

A time reversal may simply be caused when the expansion away from masses becomes a contraction back to an increase in gravity from the narrowing of the distance between the matter in the universe.  Time would initially move faster as everything expanded, but would move slower as everything contracted.

Again, we could not detect this time reversal or the increase or decrease in time.  However, we could see the effect of time going backwards by examining ancient galaxies, whose light passed by us billions of years ago.  When we can actually see those galaxies which existed billions of years ago, it is only because we are in a time reversal headed back toward the Big Bang, which will be more aptly named the “Big Crunch” for our future.  Otherwise, we could not see the sight of these old galaxies, which would have zipped by at the speed of light never to be seen again.  Just count your lucky stars that you cannot see the Big Bang… yet.

Fabric of Spacetime

Would we understand our universe better by thinking of it as a web of spacetime that either: (1) bends around itself or (2) expands first into a macroworld and then contracts into a microworld until it is ready to expand again?

Einstein in his theory of relativity discussed space and time or “spacetime” as if it were a single interwoven continuum.  By combining space and time into a single entity and additionally marrying a three-dimensional universe (length, width, height) with a fourth dimension (time), we create Minkowski space.  And even though Einstein was disappointed that he never could unify the supergalactic universe of gravity with the subatomic world of quantum mechanics, this fabric might well extend from the macroworld into the microworld.  The Big Bang probably is the best example of this nexus.  But we probably leave the four dimensions behind when we journey into the subatomic world.  The quantum world could be ruled by dark energy.  We just don’t know.

Many cosmologists propose that the universe is expanding so that billions of years from now, earth will push into a dark corner of the universe with no sun or other stars in the sky, since our corner of the universe will settle into a “Deep Freeze.”  Of course, this makes no sense if you believe we exist in a closed universe.  A closed universe would probably have edges that were elliptical like orbits within galaxies or the orbits within atoms.  A closed universe also portends an infinite spacetime that could bend around an orbit or could expand and contract forever.

So, the first significant question is:  Is our universe closed or open?  Well, if you believe in the Big Bang, and there certainly is sufficient evidence to prove that event, you must argue that the universe is closed.  Why?  Because an event like the Big Bang had an event horizon, similar to the one predicted at the fringe of a black hole.  In other words, there is another side of the black hole and the Big Bang that we can never see.  Spacetime may stop at this point.  This separation creates an edge or event horizon that could not logically exist in an open universe.

If the universe were closed, then the next significant question is: Is perpetuity served by a curved spacetime or by constant expansions and contractions?  Or is it a little of both?

We know that the strength of a gravitational field can slow the passage of time for an object seen by an observer from a distance.  We also know that time speeds up for space travelers and even for those who reach the top of the Empire State Building.  Those of us, who remain on the ground, age slower.  If we were able to travel to a black hole, as we approached the event horizon, we would probably circle the dark matter close to the speed of light; however, observers on earth would think we were barely moving as time slowed down.

In effect, spacetime would be compressed near the event horizon.  And spacetime might even stop at the entrance of a black hole.  Logically, this may be the portal to a microworld where gravity goes wild and turns the reins over to quantum mechanics.  An example on a smaller scale could be when a star expands into a red giant, then contracts into a white dwarf, shrinking into a black hole, and finally explodes into elements that will eventually come back together again through gravity.  The Fusion-Fission cycle sounds like a miniature Big Crunch and Big Bang, doesn’t it?

And how does the curvature of spacetime come into play?  Well, we know that light bends around large objects like black holes.  We also know that objects bend the spacetime fabric.  We don’t know if the bending of spacetime is such that it encloses itself.  For example if we examined the earth from our perspective on earth, we might think it were flat.  But if we were in space, we would see the curvature of the earth.  That same principle may apply to our perspective of the universe.  We might view the universe as flat from where we are, but if we could see a larger segment of the universe, we might see it as being circular.

The temporal and spatial aspects of spacetime may be part of a unified fabric, but they may also operate on different principles.  In other words, space may move back and forth like an accordion, while time may travel both forward to the future and then back to the past.  The spatial movement is more in line with what we can understand using something like a coordinate grid to define where objects are in relation with each other.  The temporal movement is a more abstract manifold defining when events occur.  It would be difficult for us to imagine that time could move backward into the past.  However, there may be proof that it is doing just that.

We are able to see the light from ancient galaxies, dating back to the earliest galaxies in our universe.  How is that possible?  The light from that galaxy would have zipped in front of us billions of years ago.  Since the galaxy hasn’t existed for billions of years, it hasn’t emitting light for eons.  So, how can we view the light today?

Well, you might argue that spacetime is not regulated by the speed limit of light.  And that probably is true, but remember that there are two parts of spacetime.  Space may expand faster than the speed of light, but this probably occurred for only a short period of time after the Big Bang.  Time, on the other hand, may slow down and then reverse itself.  We are very familiar with spatial reversals of the north and south poles and other reversals that are part of the nature of our universe.  But it is difficult to imagine a temporal conversion that starts heading into the future and then backs into the past.  Quite frankly, it is a concept reserved for science fiction.  However, what else can explain the sighting of ancient galaxies?

Furthermore, we know that the older galaxies have a red shift that evidences an increasing acceleration.  Why would they be moving at increased speeds since gravity would have less of an impact on their movement due to entropy?  Well, it might be because of the additional aspect of time moving backwards.

An increased red shift of ancient galaxies viewed from our perspective may be caused by:  (1) a shrinking of the galaxies in a spatial movement away from each other or (2) a reversal of time creating the synergistic appearance of spatial and temporal movement in multiplying effects.  In other words, if you were to measure the distance from A to B and then include time constriction in that equation or consider the repetition of that movement from A to B by first going forward and then backward in time, your red shift might increase.

It is interesting to note that a red shift could be detected if two galaxies were shrinking just the same as if they were expanding away from each other.  The spacetime fabric may have billions of galaxies embedded in this fabric, so that an expansion of the fabric could also expand the galaxies.  The galaxies would be glued to the fabric and thus would not be flying away from each other.  It seems more likely that the galaxies that currently exist are either being drawn to each other by gravity, like the Milky Way and Andromeda, or they are slowly moving away from each other with only a minor red shift.

So what would explain the significant red shift among galaxies that are further away, who either are no longer in existence or would have very little gravitational tug on the other galaxies?  It might be caused by a mixture of temporal and spatial movements.   Since a contraction of the fabric may have the same effect on the galaxies, the galaxies might be shrinking in a proportional manner so that it would not be detected from our perspective.  As the galaxies got smaller, they would pull away from each other which would increase the red shift.

It appears to be more likely that a red shift would be evidence of a contraction rather than an expansion, since a proportional expansion, in theory, would be like slowly filling a polka-dotted balloon.  Those dots, signifying galaxies, would not separate very much as the balloon gradually expanded.  However, the dots would quickly reduce in size as the air came rushing out of the balloon with a time reversal.  When you add in the potential for time reversal, then the case for a shrinking universe in both space and time becomes more attractive and may explain the substantial increase in the red shift as we view ancient galaxies.

If we can look back and see ancient galaxies, why can’t we see the Big Bang.  Well, it is likely that we will never see anything except the results of the Big Bang.  In other words, we should be able to see the smoke from the gun, but not the gun itself.  And we may have stumbled upon this smoke.

There is an anomaly within the universe which is about 1.8 billion light years across and is located around three billion light years away from our solar system.  Currently, this is the largest structure we have found in the universe.  Little energy emanates from this circular area, which contains about 10,000 fewer galaxies than in other areas of the universe.  In effect, this anomaly has about 20 percent less matter inside it.

This cold spot within our universe has perplexed scientists since 2004, when it was discovered as an oddity in the otherwise homogeneous cosmic microwave background radiation.  This cosmic microwave background which can be traced back to the Big Bang is spread evenly throughout our universe except this area, which is about 2.7 degrees K cooler than the average temperature in the universe.  This anomaly could be the smoking gun for the Big Bang.

One other point that should be mentioned is:  There is a proportion of 3:8:24 that seems to consistently act as a foundation of our universe.  Mathematically we know that about 3% of our universe is visible matter, 24% is dark matter, and 72% is dark energy.  This division of matter and energy in the universe is a ratio of 3:8:24.  This same proportion applies to hydrogen, helium, and all other elements.  This could be a coincidence, but it is not likely.

But what about the missing 1%?  Our formula only accounts for 99% of the universe.  What accounts for the other 1%?  I can only guess, but it could be the ignition or the unknown force that keeps the universe constantly moving from expansion to contraction and back again.

And how does this apply to the closed universe?  Well, we know that neither matter nor energy is created or destroyed in this universe.  The proportionate division makes sense in a closed universe that is balanced for the most part, but needs that 1% to reverse the polarity so that our universe is a perpetual time and recycling machine.

Gravitational Waves

Scientists have made the first direct observations of gravitational waves, which are ripples in the fabric of space-time predicted by Albert Einstein.  It is similar to ripples caused by a rock thrown in a pond, but the difference is that these may go on forever through the space-time fabric.  The hero is LIGO, which is an acronym for Laser Inteferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory.  LIGO picked up gravitational waves created by two merging black holes, which occurred about 1.3 million years ago.  Yet, we can still hear them, rippling through the fabric.

Wow!  So, what does all this mean?  Well, it may herald a future in astronomy where we can finally learn more about the dark side of our universe.  LIGO may pick up gravitational waves caused by both dark matter and dark energy.  Perhaps we will detect waves from the Big Bang.  Only time will tell, but at a minimum astronomers will be able to study other black holes.

LIGO was designed to search for compact binary objects such as pairs of neutron stars or black holes, locked into the spiraling dance of death.  In 1993, Joseph Taylor and Russell Hulse won the Nobel Prize in physics after showing that binary neutron stars radiated gravitational energy.  This was the precursor or indirect proof of gravitational waves.

Patrick Brady, a professor at the University of Wisconsin who worked on LIGO explained the project:  “LIGO senses those last few minutes or seconds of the waves generated just before the objects crash into one another.”  He said that LIGO begins to hear the impending collision once the orbits tighten to about five times per second.  At that point, the gravitational waves reach a frequency of 10 hertz, or cycles per second, the low end of its range.  And in the few minutes left in their lives, the tightening spiral causes both the frequency and strength of the gravitational waves to increase.  Brady concluded, “That means they sweep right through the most sensitive band of the LIGO instruments.”

Scientists are in the early stages of developing supermassive LIGOs to find supermassive black holes in the center of galaxies.  Just like light giving off different frequencies, the gravitational waves also give us different frequencies.  Thus, we will need to develop supersensitive instruments that can detect unique chirps in a field of crickets.  Currently, there are only two detectors online (LIGO and Virgo, the European Gravitational Observatory’s primary instrument in Italy), but researchers will create more and improve them incrementally.  They will broaden the range of detectable waves and pinpoint sources of waves.  Italy’s Advanced Virgo instrument will come online in the fall of 2016.  Others will follow.

In December, the European Space Agency launched the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) Pathfinder into orbit 932,000 miles from Earth.  Even though, Pathfinder will not be searching for gravitational waves, it will prove that a hypersensitive, space-based wave detector is possible to launch into space.  Space will be able to filter out the static and noise detected with earth-based instruments.  Martin Hewisson, LISA Pathfinder scientists said, “We want to make this the quietest place in the solar system.  If LISA is successful, scientists can build a gravitational wave detector called eLISA, which will consist of three spacecraft in an equilateral triangle connected by laser arms.  This detector will pick up gravitational waves generated by binary supermassive black holes, ultra-compact binaries, and small black holes falling into supermassive black holes.

Different events produce gravitational waves of different frequencies. The above graph compares those sources against operating and future detectors.  This shows the potential for future astronomers being able to detect not only where black holes are located in our universe, but perhaps even locating the Big Bang.

But even before we have eLISA, new ground-based gravitational wave detectors should turn on within a few years.  These new instruments will allow astrophysicists to triangulate the positions of waves and hone in on their sources.  An upgraded version of Virgo will begin observations in the fall of 2016 in conjunction with LIGO.  Advanced Virgo’s improvements will increase its sensitivity ten times.  This will allow researchers to probe a volume of space thousands of times larger than before.  Virgo could pick up a gravitational wave signal once per month, or even per week, with its enhancements.  LIGO India is a proposed detector that would serve as the third in the LIGO family and could be operational by 2022.  In Japan, crews have blasted and excavated tunnels in the abandoned Kamioka mine to make way for the Kamioka Gravitational Wave Detector (KAGRA).  KAGRA is expected to detect signals from neutron star mergers every one or two months once it is fully operational.

The Einstein Telescope represents a third-generation detector that is in the design phase.  It would be hundreds of times more sensitive than the instruments we have now.  This telescope will be buried underground to reduce noise.  It will form a full triangle like eLISA and will have three detectors: two for low-frequency signals and one to detect high frequencies.

A new era in astronomy is set to begin based on a heightened sense of listening.  So, what is the gravity of this new discovery?  Well, certainly it gives us a new tool for detecting dark matter through sound, which otherwise cannot be detected with sight.  But more importantly, it gives us a basis for using our imagination to carry beyond the simplistic theory of the Big Bang and expansion until everything freezes in the icy depths of space.  Now, we know that Einstein got it exactly right and that the space-time fabric carries throughout the universe.  This fabric is so connected that gravitational waves created over a billion years ago still vibrate across the fabric.

What does all this mean?  Well, I’m not certain, but I think it means that everything in our universe, including time and the Big Bang are still in this fabric.  That may mean that past, present, and future are just nouns that help us imagine where we are in that fabric.  And whether this fabric encloses on itself so that time is continuous or whether this fabric is part of a perpetual time machine that expands and contracts, it really does not matter.  Because the primary point is that the universe is all interconnected in one fabric.  Solar systems are connected to galaxies and galaxies are connected together, so that our universe is one entity.  We don’t know if there are other universes which are also connected like cells in an organism, but we know that we are connected in our universe.

This helps explain a lot of mysteries in our universe.  Now, we know why the stars orbiting on the outside of the Milky Way galaxy are traveling at the same speed as the stars on the interior.  They are all connected in the space-time fabric.  Typically, you would expect the exterior stars in a galaxy to slow down as they get farther away from the center, which probably houses a supermassive black hole.  But if they are in the same fabric as those stars located closer to the center, the distance from the supermassive black hole will not change their speeds.

What else?  Well, this may explain why we can see the galaxy EGS8p7, located 13.2 billion light years away from earth.  This galaxy, the farthest we have seen as of today, was formed about 600 million years after the Big Bang.  So since this ancient galaxy no longer exists, how can we still see the light that traveled 13.2 billion years to reach us?  Traveling at the speed of light, which is faster than any speed our earth can obtain, the light from EGS8p7 would have zipped past us billions of years ago, never to be seen again.  However, if you analyze EGS8p7 as being forever locked into the space-time fabric, then we may someday even discover the Big Bang, also embedded in the same fabric.  And the mystery about why we can still see or hear evidence of ancient galaxies is solved by the space-time fabric, which embraces everything that ever happened or ever will happen in our universe.  However, it makes for a strong case that we currently are in a contraction phase since we can see ancient galaxies just as if we were moving back in time.

Now we can start examining our universe as if it were one entity so that if we detect contraction where we are, the entire fabric of the universe is contracting.  And our universe must be closed by virtue of the fact that a fabric has an end.  The only questions remaining are:  (1) is our universe enclosed in a huge orbit and (2) does it both expand and contract?

It seems highly likely that our universe is enclosed in some type of geometrical figure.  If a system is closed, it must have edges.  And if it has edges, these edges must form some type of design that connects.  The second question is the tougher one.  Scientists believe that the universe has been expanding since the Big Bang and many cosmologists think that it will end in a Deep Freeze.  This theory seems ridiculous to me.

Our universe is most likely designed to last forever in a perpetual motion mechanism.  The red shift discovered by Edwin Hubble supports the theory of expansion.  However, the red shift may also support the theory of contraction.  For example if dark energy were to cause expansion and dark matter were to cause contraction of our visible universe, the galaxies would appear to be pulling away from each other in either case. In other words, the dark energy would propel galaxies away from each other, while the dark matter would cause galaxies to contract, shrinking uniformly.  Both expansion in distance and shrinking in size will cause a red shift.

If there were an original expansion of the fabric, then there should also be a contraction if you believe that our universe is a perpetual time machine.  This makes sense to me because if the past and future are in the same fabric, then going backwards in time is not only possible, but is likely.  From our perspective, we may go back to the Big Bang, but we may call it the Big Crunch.

Acceleration of Distant Galaxies

Scientists have observed that objects three times more distant are accelerating three times faster than nearby galaxies.  And this proportional increase seems to continue the further out we examine galaxies.  In other words, galaxies six times further out would have speeds six times more than our acceleration.

So what is causing the increased acceleration?  Well, if you believe only in the inflation theory which ends in a Deep Freeze, then you might argue that the galaxies near us are slowing down to speeds less than those of the past.  This would mean that the universe would eventually come to an end with the stars dying out and our universe coming to a halt.

However, the constant multiplications with the distance would quickly run past the speed of light.  Perhaps a doubling would be under that speed limit, but a tripling would be suspect and four and five times our acceleration speed would most likely exceed 186,000 miles per second.   There should be a point of diminishing returns on this increased acceleration, so that the multiplication would start slowing down somewhere in deep space, but this has not been observed.  The increased speeds through straight-line multiplication do not make sense.

But the inflation theory also makes no sense in a universe that has orbits in both the macro and micro world.  This inflation theory of entropy, if decreasing in so many multiples from early accelerations, would have slowed us down to nothing.  The stars would have already exhausted their hydrogen supply.  We would be in the Deep Freeze.  And this is not the case.

So what else might be causing this anomaly of rapid acceleration, going back in time?  If the space-time fabric could both expand and then contract, there would be no limitation by the speed of light because this speed limit only applies to objects.  And if we are now in a contraction stage, then from our perspective, distant galaxies might appear to be multiplying the speeds when it is really a duplication of speeds.  In other words, as the near galaxies contracted backwards, they would only have normal acceleration.  But the distant galaxies that were also contracting back in time would have layers of acceleration from the new acceleration added on to the past accelerations.

Further, as we viewed more distant galaxies, the speeds of objects measured in the space-time fabric could also be layered with multiple accelerations which exceeded the speed of light.  So that the six times could actually be caused by a shrinking space-time fabric, carrying the galaxies back towards the Big Bang.  Of course, these are theories that must be challenged by hard facts, but right now that is all we have.

The acceleration may stop where the space-time fabric reversed itself.  The multiplication of accelerations would not continue into the point where the ancient galaxies were in a space-time fabric that was expanding.  It would probably only go back to the point when the space-time fabric was shrinking.  It will be interesting to examine the multiplications that we discover in the future.

Moving Forward to the Past

If an astronaut could travel in space near the speed of light and he traveled to the closest star from our sun, which would be Proxima Centauri about 4.24 light years away, it would take the astronaut about 8.48 years to make the round trip.  When the astronaut returned, he would find that everybody had aged substantially.  In effect, he would have gone back in time by traveling at a faster speed than everybody that remained on earth.  From his wife’s perspective, he would have moved forward to the past.  While from his perspective, he would have come back to the future.

So, what does this tell us about movement after the early expansion of the Big Bang?  If all the matter were moving equally near the speed of light, then the relative time would remain the same as to each other.  Even though the matter might be moving back in time, everything would be moving back in time at an equal rate, so it would appear to be the same.

However, we know by the red shift effect that the stars and galaxies in the universe are not staying at the same speed.  In fact, their speed is increasing as they distance themselves from each other.  That can be either because they are shrinking away from each other or because they are expanding away from each other.

Which is more likely?  Well, from our perspective on earth, it seems to be more probable that the rapid acceleration of matter in the universe is causing it to be younger than we are on earth.  In effect, the faster the stars distance themselves from us, the farther back in time they go from us.  Time appears to reverse itself because of the tremendous speeds of the stars and galaxies as they shrink away from each other.

That astronaut who traveled to Proxima Centauri returned to an earth that had moved forward in time, while time had slowed down for him.  His wife became much older during his trip.  From the perspective of his wife, time had reversed itself for her husband astronaut.  Time really did not reverse itself, but it seemed that way through the wife’s eyes.

Thus, from our point of view on earth, time may appear to be reversing itself for all the other objects in the universe.  And it is more logical that from earth’s perspective, time would be going backwards for the rest of the universe.  This would be a shrinking of time for the rest of the universe that might comport with a compaction of matter in the universe.  Since scientists refer to a space-time fabric in the universe, it would make sense that the entire fabric with mass intertwined in its web is collapsing.

The Missing 96%

Scientists indicate that only 4% of the mass and energy in the universe is visible.  They infer the other 96% based on gravitational influence on the visible universe.  In other words, they calculate its existence using math to fill in the gaps.

What is this missing 96%?  Well, typically about 73% of the missing universe is called dark energy and about 23% of the universe is called dark matter.

Richard Panek’s new book, “The 4 Percent Universe,” explains how dark matter and dark energy were discovered.  Logically, the outermost stars of a galaxy would orbit more slowly than those stars closer to the center.  However, all the stars in a galaxy, no matter where they were located, circled the super massive black hole in the center of the galaxy at roughly the same speed.  If there were no dark matter and dark energy, the galaxies would be breaking apart.

Using models, scientists proved that a galaxy including only the visible portion (stars, planets, comets, asteroids, gas clouds, etc.) would disintegrate very quickly.  It takes a mass and energy force of about six times that of the visible portion to keep it intact.  That would match the approximate 23% deemed to be dark matter.

But what is dark matter?  A popular theory is that dark matter consists of exotic particles that don’t interact with regular matter, or even light, and so are invisible.  Yet their mass exerts a gravitational pull, just like normal matter, which is why they affect the velocities of stars and other phenomena in the universe.  However, try as hard as they might, scientists have yet to detect any of these particles, even with tests designed specifically to target their predicted properties.  Still, some scientists hope that experiments conducted at the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator in Geneva may solve the riddle.

But what is dark energy?  Dark energy appears to be even more elusive than dark matter.  It was discovered about 20 years ago when two teams of researchers were trying to figure out if the universe would keep spreading out forever or if it would eventually turn on itself in a “Big Crunch.”  Scientists measured the velocities of supernovas to determine how fast they were moving away from us.  They found out that the universe was accelerating its expansion.  This didn’t make sense since the gravity of the visible mass should have been slowing down the expansion.  There was a powerful force at work that was counteracting the force of gravity and was causing the visible universe to accelerate.  They called this force dark energy.

You might imagine that galaxies, galaxy clusters, and dust clouds look like filaments strung together like nerves inside the muscle mass of our bodies.  The 3% visible universe added to the 23%, consisting of black holes and a supermassive black hole in the center of the galaxy might form the structure of those filaments, while the muscle mass could be equated to the dark energy that holds the nerves in place.  In other words, dark energy could be all around us and perhaps inside us, holding everything that we know together like universal glue.  It may be similar to Einstein’s space-time fabric, except it might be considered to be the dark-light fabric, including dark energy, dark matter, and our visible universe all locked together in one universal fabric.

If most galaxies are rapidly moving away from each other, then are they expanding or contracting?  This is a fair question because either expansion or shrinking would cause the galaxies to appear to be moving away from each other.  If the galaxies were uniformly impacted by a dark energy that caused them to decrease in size, they would appear to be distancing themselves from each other just the same as if they were moving away from each other.

So, which is more likely?  If expansion were going on, it would be similar to inflating a balloon and watching the galaxies move away from each other.  But an increasing rate of expansion would be likely only if the majority of the dark energy were in the space uninhabited by our visible universe, drawing it toward it as it got closer to a huge reservoir of that dark energy.  Of course, dark energy also could be repelling the visible universe.  But whether it is pushing or pulling, it is only movement causing a repositioning of the same 4% of the visible universe.

However, the universe appears to be very consistent.  In other words, a rapid acceleration caused either by the push or pull of dark energy would have disrupted the homogeneous universe, stretching everything apart.  As the galaxies distanced themselves from each other, the dark energy might fill in the empty space, but this probably would dilute the effect on the expanding galaxies.  In effect, if the dark energy were also stretched to fill in the void, there would be less of it to push or pull the visible universe.  Our visible universe should be decelerating in speed.

But a contraction of our visible universe would simply make the same consistent universe smaller.  In other words, the matrix of the visible universe would remain uniform.  As between two galaxies, they would appear to be moving away from each other, but rather instead, they would be decreasing in size.

The law of conservation of mass and energy states that the total amount of mass and energy in the universe must remain constant.  So if the visible universe were shrinking, dark energy should be increasing.  The reduction in size of galaxies would cause a transformation to increase the percentage of dark energy.  In effect, over millions of years, the 4% of our visible universe should be 3% with either dark matter or dark energy gobbling up that 1%.  But this does not seem to be the case.  The ratio may have been the same since the Big Bang and is not changing.

This is analogous to the ratio of hydrogen, about 75%, to helium, about 23%, and the rest of the elements, about 2%.  It may not be a coincidence that it is about the same ratio as dark energy to dark matter to the visible universe.  As hydrogen burns, it is fused into helium, and subsequently into other elements.  However, many scientists believe that this ratio has remained constant since the Big Bang.

So what is going on that these ratios do not change?  That is a question for another article.  But there may be localized transformations of mass to energy, so that our sun is definitely losing its supply of hydrogen, turning it into helium, energy, and other elements.  And local galaxies may well be losing their mass, turning it into dark matter or dark energy.

As the dark matter and dark energy increased proportionately to these galaxies, this would have a more powerful impact.  In effect, there should be an acceleration of the shrinking of local galaxies, which is exactly what we see in the red shift among galaxies.