Gravitational Redshift & Hubbles Law

“In physics, light or other forms of electromagnetic radiation of a certain wavelength originating from a source placed in a region of stronger gravitational field (and which could be said to have climbed “uphill” out of a gravity well) will be found to be of longer wavelength when received by an observer in a region of weaker gravitational field. If applied to optical wave-lengths this manifests itself as a change in the colour of the light as the wavelength is shifted toward the red (making it less energetic, longer in wavelength, and lower in frequency) part of the spectrum.”

and yet

“Hubble’s law Is the name for the astronomical observation in physical cosmology first made by Hubble himself; that, (1) all objects observed in deep space (interstellar space) are found to have a doppler shift observable relative velocity to the earth, and to each other. And, (2) that this doppler-shift measured velocity, of various galaxies receding from the Earth is proportional to their distance from the Earth and all other interstellar bodies. In effect, the space-time volume of the observable universe is expanding (from a smaller past to a larger future); and Hubble’s Law is the direct physical observation of this process, as it unfolds.[1]”

I do understand Doppler Redshift, and am fairly well-acquainted with the electromagnetic spectrum and radio-wave propagation theory through a previous career. My question is, is there just a fundamental assumption that the redshift Hubble observed was due to all stars and galaxies rapidly moving away from us rather than being caused by distributed gravitational effects (i.e. that what we think is the rate of expansion of the universe actually reflects our local position within the gravitational potential of the universe), or is there some piece of observational evidence I’ve managed to overlook that rules out Gravitational Redshift in this observation and confirms Doppler Redshift?

In all, to me it seems unscientific that popular “science” today embraces, with a fundamentalist zeal, the theory that the whole universe originated from a singular point, and that there’s literally nothing out there beyond what we can see with our telescopes (i.e. the physical universe in our theories is determined by our observational equipment, and in fact every time a better telescope is made the astronomers are forced to push back their projected “birth date” for the universe because every time we find that every time we manage to look farther, there’s more there, in direct contradiction to the theory on which we base our understanding of the origin of all matter, energy, and physical laws), rather than acknowledge that there are other known reasons for the shifting of light frequencies than the Doppler-like redshift and admit that if the redshift of different galaxies is caused by gravitational redshift then the big bang theory is just one of many theories and that in fact we have little idea of where we truly come from or where we’re going. Hoyle’s theory of all elements beyond helium being forged within extremely hot stars is still our model for creation of elements, and Hoyle never accepted an expanding universe theory. There are competing scientific theories that seem, to me, more acknowledging of the realities of our limited intellect, our limited technology and thus limited knowledge about the universe. A single-theory system of science seems, to me, about as good for scientific progress as a single-party political system. To prevent misunderstanding, I’d like to make it clear that my issue is one of a frozen, fundamentalist, commercialized science preventing real research and development from occurring through impartial investigation of all theories and not one of religious creationism versus empirical observational theories.

In fact, the following seems to be absolutely “begging the question”:

“There is a distinction between a redshift in cosmological context as compared to that witnessed when nearby objects exhibit a local Doppler-effect redshift. Rather than cosmological redshifts being a consequence of relative velocities; instead, the photons increase in wavelength and redshift because of a feature of the spacetime through which they are traveling that causes space to expand.[21]”

Apparently the Redshift effect observed by Hubble did not even correspond directly to the Doppler-style Redshift effect, but rather than examine other potential causes he theorized that this was because it was caused by the expansion of space-time. How do we know about this expansion of space-time that is causing the non-Doppler redshift? It’s evidenced by the non-Doppler Redshift…

Soundly circular, IMHO. An effect is observed, the observer theorizes a cause based on the observation of that effect, then supports his causal theory with the observation of the aforementioned effect. How is it not possible that there could be different cause, since this particular effect is observed nowhere else and we really have nothing to relate the observation to? Especially when the only direct “evidence” of the proposed cause is the unique observational evidence it was concocted to explain.

Because the observer is a different observer. Conservation of energy means the energy of that light hasn’t changed, so nor has the frequency or the wavelength.


There’s a parallel between the expansion of the universe and gravitational redshift. It’s a “scale change”.

What you’ve perhaps overlooked is pair production. An electron is made out of light, and you’re made of electrons. And protons and neutrons, but a neutron undergoes beta decay in circa 15 minutes to a proton, an electron, and an antineutrino. And protons can be annihilated with antiprotons to typically produce gamma photons. It might not sound very important, but it means you are, in simple terms, “made of light”. Thus when you suffer a change in gμv or a change in c, you don’t notice it locally.

Interesting stuff. We should talk. I’m happy enough with the expansion of the universe (I have my reasons) but not with singularities. And there are certainly some issues in physics and cosmology. The recent Horizon program was pretty good:

Why don’t you be honest and admit that you have some sort of pet theory that you think has been forced out of the scientific community? You already have all the parts of the conspiracy theory narrative.

However, if you really are interested in learning something about the science, then you need to move to written sources beyond wikipedia. There are a number of errors in the sections that you have pasted above. The foremost is the use of “Doppler” shift. The cosmological redshift is not a Doppler shift, though it is somewhat related. Some of your wikipedia quotations have this correct and some of them do not. To really understand how this cosmological redshift works, one has to learn the basics of general relativity; not much, but some. A good astronomy text for 1st year college students should explain at least a bit.

It is an assumption that the cause of redshift is due to some physical principle (namely expansion) rather than some peculiar set of initial conditions (namely that the entire universe is specially arranged around our position). The currently favoured cosmological assumption is supported by the fact that the science built from it explains the variation in the relationship between redshift and distance that we see in the universe, it explains the relative abundance of different light elements throughout the universe, and it also explains other features of the universe. There aren’t any similar explanations to be found from the idea that we are at the centre of a strangely coordinated universe.

This has never happened in the history of cosmology. While estimate of what is sometimes called the “age of the universe” have varied, it has never been simply due to seeing farther. The history of the field is documented in a number of different, easily accessible works.

Excuse me, did I call at at a bad time?
If you’re going to treat me as if I were a noxious pest starting - literally - with your first sentence of correspondence with me, next time just don’t bother.

Sound cordial enough?

Did you even read my post through, or just start and get annoyed that it didn’t agree with your personal religious beliefs then move directly to the ad hominem attacks? Do you have any thoughts on the actual topic, or just about what a moron I am personally?

Oh, sorry - I almost missed the relevant statement amidst the wash of dismissive bile:

That’s my understanding at this time as well. I was hoping to get a lead to actual information that would enhance my understanding of the issue, but confirmation of my current understanding is always welcome. Thank you. I could do without the personal stuff next time though.

What I’m really curious about is where the assumption came from and how gravitational redshift would be completely ruled out without discussion.

Sorry - you came off pretty insulting, PhysBang.
Maybe I just read you wrong.

the internet is filled with lots of physics cranks that like to try to sucker people in with what seem like legitimate questions but that are merely a precis to the presentation of their own pet theory. In lieu of research or evidence, these cranks offer conspiracy theories about science. Your descriptions of science–“fundamentalist zeal”, “frozen, fundamentalist, commercialized”–fits this picture. If this is not you, then great! Now we can move on to real questions.

The assumption came from the ways that we can describe the universe using the general theory of relativity (GR). GR can be insanely complicated and easily get beyond the reach of our ability to calculate. Fortunately, it is something that we can use with approximations, so we can look for less complicated models of physical situations and use those with a fair degree of accuracy. For example, we can calculate the orbits of the planets with the assumption that there is no mass outside of the solar system and things work out well. In cosmology, we start with making assumptions of what is really important at the scale of the universe.

Einstein first worked on a simplification of the universe that was homogeneous and isotropic, a universe where there is no difference in density from place to place and there is no difference looking in any direction. Clearly this isn’t the case, but Einstein thought that it was true on the largest scales. Einstein also imagined a universe where everything (at least at the level of galaxies) stayed in place, not moving around like our solar system. Pretty soon other scientists realized that this stability wasn’t likely given the physics of GR and they convinced Einstein after a couple of years of correspondence.

Soon other people developed other models of the universe for use in GR. The vast majority of these models assume that the universe is homogeneous and isotropic at the scale important to the universe at large, but they have abandoned that everything must stay in place. Except for a few, all of these systems are part of one large class of systems, the Friedmann-Lemaitre-Robertson-Walker (FLRW) models. These models relate the overall motion of the universe, an expansion or a contraction, through the laws of gravity laid out by GR, to the overall density of matter and energy in the universe. One great thing about the FLRW models is that there are ways to observe the overall movement of the universe: this expansion or contraction can be tracked by looking at the distribution of galaxies in the universe, it can be tracked by looking at redshift, and it can be predicted by looking at the overall density of matter and energy in the universe. This gives us many ways to gather evidence for the theory and see if it is more or less correct.

If we were to assume that we are at the centre of some sort of gravity well, then we would expect certain things. We might expect a certain pattern in the clustering of galaxies as they go out toward the more dense region (at the edge of some sphere?). It might be that one could cook up some sort of theory that would explain the observations that we do have. But this theory would also have to explain why the universe looks so much like a FRLW model universe. We have measurements of a number of different aspects of the universe that all point to a very specific type of FLRW model. These are aspects of the universe that are independent, aside from their dynamics as governed by GR. It would be very strange if all these things look to be coordinated by a FLRW model but are really coordinated by some alignment of the universe into some spherical region of extreme gravity centred on the Earth. Plus we would also have to come up with a new theory for the origins of galaxies and light elements, since the existing theories mesh well with the FLRW models but seemingly would not with the gravity sphere theory.

I don’t think that something like the gravity sphere theory (as I think of it) was ever taken seriously, but I wouldn’t be surprised to find that somebody has worked out the details. It just seems, given the evidence, really unlikely, if only because it requires us to come up with some reason as to why the universe would look so much like some other type of universe in pretty good detail.

Beware of zealots promoting myths, Azazoth. Have a read of Einstein’s 1920 Leyden Address and pay close attention to this:

“According to this theory the metrical qualities of the continuum of space-time differ in the environment of different points of space-time, and are partly conditioned by the matter existing outside of the territory under consideration. This space-time variability of the reciprocal relations of the standards of space and time, or, perhaps, the recognition of the fact that ‘empty space’ in its physical relation is neither homogeneous nor isotropic, compelling us to describe its state by ten functions (the gravitation potentials gμν)…”

This is Einstein talking about a gravitational field in terms of inhomogeneous space. Imagine you could ask Einstein what sort of gravitational field exists in homogeneous space. The answer he’d give, would be: none. And whilst he did get some things wrong with his cosmology, he’s not wrong about this. right.

Farsight is a walking example of a zealot in the service of mythology. He admittedly doesn’t know how to do the mathematics of GR and this is why he constantly presents falsehoods about the theory (falsehoods that serve to sell his book). GR uses tensor algebra to represent the relationship between mass and energy on the one hand and the geometry of spacetime on the other. This algebra represents in simple form a complicated relationship that, when more fully expressed, is described by a number of different functions. The various models used in gravitational theories (including contemporary cosmology) simplify what we need to describe so that we don’t need to use all these functions. Einstein used a homogeneous and isotropic model, as do others, as part of this simplification. It just happens that this simplification works out really well.

Anyone who says that Einstein did not use a homogeneous and isotropic cosmological model is either a liar or mentally ill. It’s that simple.

But Einstein said what he said: a gravitational field is inhomogeneous space. It’s that simple. All the flimflam and abuse in the world doesn’t make it any different.

No, he said, according to the text at the link you provided, “This space-time variability of the reciprocal relations of the standards of space and time, or, perhaps, the recognition of the fact that “empty space” in its physical relation is neither homogeneous nor isotropic, compelling us to describe its state by ten functions (the gravitation potentials g[sub]μν[/sub]), has, I think, finally disposed of the view that space is physically empty.” You like to cherry-pick quotations from Einstein that you like, and here you try to cherry-pick only part of a sentence. In context, we have to understand that Einstein is referring to the way that the geometry of spacetime reflects the contents of spacetime through the mathematics of GR. As he concludes in the end, “Recapitulating, we may say that according to the general theory of relativity space is endowed with physical qualities; in this sense, therefore, there exists an ether.” It also says in the link you provided, that the ideas presented in this address were never developed by Einstein ever again. Like almost all your claims about Einstein littering the internet, your claims here are laughably bad and easily shown to be false.

One who does not take the time to learn the mathematics of GR–mathematics that Einstein worked long and hard on–may very well misunderstand the content of the theory. GR relates the geometry of spacetime to its contents; models of the contents of the universe can be used to simplify the geometry and then can use the mathematics of GR to relate the simplified contents to a correspondingly simplified geometry. One such simplification is the simplification of homogeneity used by Einstein, before and after the 1920 address, that makes use of GR to produce cosmological models for the way that gravity governs cosmological dynamics.

I don’t have a particular theory in mind, but through a career in radio & satellite communications and the few college classes & labs I’ve sat through dealing with astronomy or physical sciences touching on cosmology, certain things about the existing models have repeatedly struck me as rather unscientific. I’ve spent a small bit of time researching these oddities over the past decade and a half (though my primary personal interests are history, law, and philosophy), but am no expert on the topic.

When Einstein, first proposed an observational physics model it was rejected as absurd. Likewise, the theories of those who rejected Einstein were considered absurd by the early Copernican & Baconian theorists. The Copernican thinkers in turn were considered to be nothing but troublemakers by the Ptolemaic School (very similar to how one is regarded today when one challenges conventional wisdom). Before that, Ptolemaic geocentric, flat-earth models ousted previously existing, non-geocentric, round-earth models in some places. If 5000, or even 500 years from now, scientists are studying the universe from within a framework of FLRW models it will be a novel circumstance in human history, and while it appeals to our egos to believe that we are wiser than previous generations in terms of clinging to outmoded ideas, it’s highly unlikely.

This obviously isn’t an invalidation of existing models, but is something important to bear in mind when rejecting theories out of hand. Actually, I would never even attempt to dis-prove the standard/traditional cosmological model any more than most prudent scientists would try to dis-prove the existence of god. In fact - the FLRW models probably cannot be dis-proven (in theory they can, yes, but not, I believe, in practice - see my issue with “exceptions” and suspensions of physical laws below). Change seems to come to us more often as the result of proposal of new, more convincing models, than invalidation of existing ones (which requires taking on an establishment with overwhelming manpower and existing resources in terms of media outlets, educational facilities and other institutions).

You must be aware that as much as observational evidence “points to FLRW models”, those models have been adjusted over time to incorporate that observational evidence. It’s not as if the predictions were made in the 1920s then confirmed, without substantial adjustment of the model, 50 or 90 years later. They’ve been adapting theory to fit observation day by day. As they should be. But on that basis we can’t certify a theory as “predictive” for currently predicting something which it was tailored to incorporate ex post facto. The term “prediction” in discussion of theory can be somewhat misleading, as a theory being predictive does not necessarily mean that the theory predicted an observation before it was ever made, only that currently the theory predicts that if you observe a process a certain observation will result. When actual new evidence is observed that substantially challenges the basis of the traditional model we try to make it fit. If, in the end, no existing force or process can be found that accommodates the observation, rather than consider a substantially different version of the model or wholly new model that fits existing observation more closely, we assume exceptions and physics-defying circumstances into the existing model that incorporate the invalidating observations as “special circumstances.”

For instance, one argument (of many) against steady state models is the plentiful deuterium we find which would have to be created in an ongoing process, essentially out of thin air. This is regarded as another small strike against steady state theories. “Standard cosmological model” theories triumph in this aspect by proposing that the deuterium was created in the moments after the big bang when the universe was in a super-hot, relatively compressed state. To me this is no triumph though because the standard models have been forced to adopt a doctrine that literally suspends the operation of known natural laws in the moments after the big bang to make many observations fit the traditional (FLRW) model.

In other words, if the standard models are being permitted to assume conditional suspensions of laws to make their theory work, then other models should receive the same permissive attitude. In such a climate, with enough work, any theory can predict the amount of deuterium we find by assuming a condition (either now or in the distant past) under which known laws are suspended, then, over time, build a function or set of functions which predicts the observations we’re making almost perfectly. So the supposed triumph of the standard models seems, to me, a bit of a joke. Standard models are allowed ignore physics in certain circumstances because we know the theory is right and if the laws of physics don’t support it, they must not apply in certain circumstances. The Big Bang was just magical and obviously something so big and bangin’ is probably responsible for actually creating the rules and thus shouldn’t have to conform to them. Rules are universally suspended for the most fundamental element of the standard model - the big bang itself. In the moments immediately after the big bang the laws of physics themselves were different (because this is the only way the FLRW models can accommodate certain observations; with functions that defy physical law), but if competing models were to account for fundamental shortcomings in their models through equivalent lawless philosophy, would it be accepted?

Please consider this in the wider historical context of our neo-baconian scientific establishment.
Should we allow such exceptions for any model and still consider the model sound and predictive to the point that it shouldn’t be challenged and that challengers should be viewed with a degree of disdain similar to that afforded holocaust deniers? I, personally, think not. If the standard models cannot account for unexpected observations without suspending the rules, it doesn’t mean we need to abandon the model entirely, but we should be reasonable enough to at least admit that the model is fundamentally flawed and cannot predict all phenomena without the occasional suspension of natural law, and deal with it from there so that humanity has the full story and can make a properly informed decision. For example to work towards a new, more well-rounded model, or even a hybrid model incorporating elements of the existing traditional models.

At worst it means that no model completely accounts for the universe we are experiencing, that our reason, our tools, and our existences as tiny, semi-conscious phenomena scurrying about the perimeter of this small gravity well prohibits us, to some degree, from entirely comprehending the nature of our surroundings (though obviously not from concocting certain functional models based on our limited observations).

I realize that challenges to Hubble’s Law and the standard model’s shopped CMB maps are common heresies that anger some, but I was under the impression that science welcomed heresy (being born, itself, of several very deep heresies) and permitted for the co-existence of multiple competing theories representing divergent models so long as they could provide a basis for practical application at some point along the line (as Hoyle’s steady state model, for example, admittedly did in terms of yielding concrete predictions and being the basis for the stellar model of elemental synthesis which the expanding universe models eventually adopted from him, though he himself never accepted expanding universe models as valid). I find it unfortunate for us that, in practice, our scientific establishment seems to actively and aggressively discourage challenges to existing models.

I mean - this forum is supposed to be for discussion and debate, yet even an informal challenge of traditionally accepted models is responded to with hostility. Even such informal debate of conventional wisdom is prohibited by our traditionalist attitudes, which have not changed in the past 100 years.

It’s no surprise though that our scientific community would lapse in such traditionalist attitudes though, and it’s nothing to do with lack of character, it’s more about human social institutions and the inevitable stagnation they suffer over time. Professional astronomers (and other professional scientists) typically cannot afford to indulge in investigation of non-standard theories, even to seriously investigate the potential of non-standard models from an impartial perspective. To do so they would risk ridicule by the broader community of peers for even taking it seriously, and thereby endanger their grants, endowments, or salaries. Since this is a direct threat to their way of life and their family’s standard of living, if not to the very food they eat, they can’t be considered “impartial researchers” exactly. There is a vested interest for all professional scientists to tow the party line in certain areas where proponents of the traditional model have extreme reactions when challenged.

Your reaction to my challenge of Hubble’s Law illustrates this - had we both been researchers subsisting on a university salary determined by a strict budget or lab or observatory funded with public monies, it’s likely that your overtly hostile reaction and knee-jerk implications regarding my level of education and capabilities of comprehension would have been echoed by much of the other faculty. And god forbid you were my department chair - my days employed in your program would certainly be numbered. Without even the benefit of being heard out, my entire career and the well being of my family would presently be in jeopardy for the sin of questioning the official version of Truth. For heresy, in essence. There is little reward and much risk involved for professional scientists to challenge fundamental aspects of traditional models. An astronomer whose life work has been his science would lose everything if he were labeled as a fringe theorist for spending a few years to neutrally examine alternatives to standard theories with the same zeal used to examine theories that feed into traditional models. Meanwhile non-professional scientists are considered completely unqualified to comment on on reality. Hence your suggestion that I should go find some curriculum-approved textbooks to memorize things from, rote, rather than directly surveying studies, project reports, and experiment abstracts directly and forming my own conclusions about what they indicate (I know - I’m as hopeless as a christian who believes he can study the bible on his own without a professional priest to help him interpret it and tell him what it all means).

I think you’ll agree though, that it was probably instrumental to Einstein’s novel approach to physics that he was not a professional scientist until later in life and then only became one as a result of his controversial ideas finally being validated rather than as a result of his attending university and learning well the party line of the existing standard model of the time.

You see - I’m not pushing pet theories or making allegations of conspiracy, as you believe. I am critical of self-perpetuating, formalized belief systems masquerading as proper science. I’m fully open to being dis-proven, but I can’t accept conditional suspensions of natural law and tailoring of observational data to conform with theory as proof of anything but an establishment’s determination to cling desperately to its institutionalized belief structure.

-Hubble’s redshift turns out to be non-Doppler - that’s ok, it’s actually a special kind of redshift only caused by the phenomenon it confirms.
-The CMB map turns out to be more and more anisotropic as our imaging resolution improves - that’s ok, it’s just more and more foreground contamination (let’s not even discuss where foreground ends and background begins or who decides which microwave types in the mid-ground are appropriate to include in a map and which aren’t); whatever is making the CMB maps anisotropic is clearly some form of contamination because we know the universe is isotropic and any observations to the contrary must be flawed or due to special circumstances. My prediction is that CMB map anisotropy will eventually have to be generally admitted, but will be chalked up to yet another highly speculative process which “occurred in the first intense moments after the Big Bang,” as this seems the most convenient way for traditional theorists to assimilate seriously challenging observations - incorporate them into an already widely accepted zone of suspension of natural law.

It’s just not proper science, and not very convincing either.

I’m interested in seeing competing models developed in greater depth, but here we return to the conundrum of professional science. There’s no funding for projects, labor, & equipment to adequately explore alternative models to the extent we do traditional ones.

Anyway - to get back on track with my initial line of inquiry.

I think you misunderstood my meaning in suggestion of gravitational causes for redshift in distant galaxies that increases (nearly evenly) with distance from our observational position. I’m not assuming anything special at all about our vantage point here. I’m only suggesting that the observed redshift may reflect the gravitational potential of the surrounding universe, relative to our observational perspective. This theory also adequately accounts for a roughly isotropic CMB map, as the uneven distribution would reflect galaxies and other features so far away that their EM radiation at our point of observation is shifted past infrared into microwave.

Isn’t this more reasonable than proposing an unknown, mysterious cause for the redshift without even considering a known source that’s obviously applicable? All EM radiation moving towards us clearly has, at its rear, a field of gravity caused by all stars and galaxies more distant and direct behind it from our point of observation.

The only reason I even enter into this discussion of gravitational redshifting in relation to Hubble’s law is that it is a clear example of how standard model theories don’t seem to investigate every known possibility before making counter-intuitive jumps of logic which demand unscientific explanations and suspension of natural law.

Look at the CMB maps. We don’t assume that the infrared features we observe at the edge of our visible light range are an after-glow left over from the big bang. We understand that they are galaxies so distant from us their EM radiation has redshifted out of the visible spectrum and into the infrared. Carry this exact same process of reason further (I’m not proposing anything that isn’t based on existing observations). As you continue to redshift EM radiation, what comes after infrared? Microwave (After that, radio wave). Since the CMB is beyond (from our vantage) the infrared galaxies, wouldn’t it stand to reason that it may be caused by even more distant galaxies?

The microwave portion of the bandwidth is very wide compared to the visible portion, meaning that the area from which galaxies could be seen only in microwave by us would be relatively vast compared to the area of galaxies we can perceive visually, and would potentially yield a semi-isotropic “field” of microwave radiation at the edge of our visibly observable universe. This same (infinite, relatively infinite, or finite but incomprehensibly great) vastness of unseen matter signaling to us only in the microwave might also constitute a gravitational field behind any visible star substantial enough to redshift any EM radiation over time regardless of the direction it moves. This is totally outside of accepted models which steadfastly refuse to even consider alternative causes for distance-related redshift or even acknowledge that alternatives may exist, but it predicts both the special distance-related redshift as well as the CMB without resorting to any special cases whatsoever and relying entirely on known physical processes.

I’ve seen no discussion of gravity in relation to Hubble’s Law. None, not even the most dismissive treatment. It’s as though gravitational redshift does not even exist. Again - I feel it is unscientific to discount known possible alternatives to a theory without even a cursory mention.

Likewise, there’s no discussion of possible distant galaxies redshifted into the microwave in the debate over CMB anisotropy. None. Only more and more contortionist attempts to make the CMB maps isotropic to fit the standard models. I wonder if FLRW models hold that EM radiation can only redshift to infrared then hits a wall of “mysterious energy” or something that magically keeps it from shifting microwave (both categories being human distinctions and not divides within the spectrum of EM radiation).

It would be impossible to meaningfully estimate the amount of surrounding mass (and gravitational potential) beyond a given star since we can only see so far, but reversing the equation to treat the mass behind the star works every time because the required amount of mass can be assumed since it would be impossible to disprove that such quantity of invisible mass exists (besides, we could always follow tradition and conjecture some mysterious dark energy or assume a novel new physical principal to compensate for any significant discrepancy in the numbers). Though maybe the redshift could be correlated with the CMB behind a given light-source to see if there is a relationship. Even a rough relationship should sufficiently confirm the existence of distant galaxies visible in microwave only and that would confirm the potential for those shifted even below the microwave, opening the possibility of sufficient mass behind observable stars to account for universal redshift. I don’t believe this puts us at any special center any more than expansion theories based on stars apparently retreating from us do.

I don’t think any special conditions are required for gravity to account for Hubble’s Redshift, but there were for Hubble to suggest something other than known causes of redshift as the cause. Gravity should at least be properly discounted though before proceeding to alter the entire universe to explain it.
To my knowledge, it has not been.
Why not?

Am I crazy? Sure. That’s not news. But I’d still love to know why the known phenomenon of gravitational redshift is discounted in Hubble’s redshift without even being considered before acceptance of a wild speculative theory. To me - that’s crazy^_^

Look, since I seem to know something about this subject, you’ll just reject anything I say because I am part of the “Establishment”. If you want answers to your questions, they are out there. You’ll find them if you read. After all, you are the open-minded one.

If you mean that there is some kind of shell of mass beyond what we can see causing the redshift, then it just won’t work.

If you have some kind of spherical shell of mass the gravitational field inside is canceled out.

If you took some material of the proper density and made a sort of hollow earth out of it, something with a spherical cavity inside, but with the same radius as the Earth. If you stood on the surface of this thing it would be gravitationally just like standing on Earth. But if you were to tunnel into the cavity you would just be weightless and float around in there.

This is probably why no one really talks about this effect because it would be no effect at all.

I hope this helps.

Fair enough.

I was hoping for leads on new data and thought this might be a good venue to seek informal discussion & exchange on the issue.

I’ve looked at a couple dozen papers on related topic and they all either skirt the issue or completely disregard it. I discussed the issue of assuming that infrared signals beyond visible range were redshifted galaxies but that microwave signals beyond those were something different with a friendly astronomy professor of mine once who also part-timed at JPL (I was living in LA at the time), hoping to get more insight from someone inside the establishment, and when she finally confirmed that she comprehended my issue she just kind of looked at the board in silence for a while then admitted that she’d never really considered an alternative explanation for observed CMB. I found that a little disturbing. For whatever reason, no one seems to care.

Doesn’t it intrigue you in the slightest? Aren’t you at least curious about why certain key assumptions are made without discussion of likely alternatives (despite such alternatives potentially presenting divergent models of the known universe)?

That’s the thing about science, It’s pretty darn good at telling us what the alternatives really are. Sometimes an alternative theory isn’t really an alternative.

Like in this case, the reason that nobody ever proposed this theory for the red shift of distant galaxies is that it wont work. At least not if you want gravity to do the explaining for you.

I’m not saying to give up on your theory, like maybe you can find some distribution of mass that would come up with the same results as the standard explanation for the redshift in the Hubble theory. But the thing with science is you actually have to do it.

What key assumptions are being made without discussion of likely alternatives ? I would be interested in those.

Azazoth, you should check out Hilton Ratcliffe at He’s a cosmologist in South Africa, with a book entitled The Static Universe which has a foreword by Patrick Moore. I don’t concur with his views here, but you should find them interesting.

Thank you, I’ll check it out.

I was recently pointed to this article in Scientific American others reading this thread may find interesting:

[i]This early formation challenges the popular hierarchical model of galaxy evolution, which assumes that the first galaxies to appear were relatively tiny. According to this hypothesis, only through the merging of these smaller entities did larger galaxies slowly develop. The model does not predict the four massive galaxies that Andrea Cimatti of the Italian National Institute of Astrophysics and his colleagues observed with the Very Large Telescope in northern Chile. The assumed age of these mature galaxies (one of which is located at the center of the image above) implies that they formed when the universe was just two billion years old.

Because the hierarchical model has been so successful at explaining other observations, such as how galaxies cluster, scientists are unlikely to abandon it. Instead, they may rethink their understanding of how gas turns into stars. “Some new ingredient is required to make more stars form earlier in the big galaxies,” Glazebrook comments. “But what that ingredient is, we don’t yet know.” --Michael Schirber [/i] … s-in-young

I feel that this is a fair example of why I think blind adherence to the traditional cosmological model can unintentionally lead to practicing bad science. Though other models predict many of the same things, abandoning or substantially revising it is not an option ever tabled even when observations run counter. Instead the “empirical hurdle” gets effectively swept under the rug.

They’re literally admitting that rather than running comparative analyses of competing versions of the existing model and other front-running alternative models (and/or hybrids thereof) to find some that could better handle the new evidence along with the old, a “new ingredient” will be cooked up within the existing traditional model to allow for the new facts without any change of the broader traditional model to reflect it.

I guess this approach to observations which contradict the model in some small but substantial way would probably not be a big deal if it only ever happened once, but if the nature of the institution permits of it once it will probably permit of it further. There arises a danger of falling into a routine of eternally patching holes instead of building a better boat that fully integrates our new understandings, malscience piles upon malscience until eventually what was an institution of honest empiricism becomes a confusing mess of excuses and cliched dodges as misleading and dysfunctional as the previous paradigm it, itself, once displaced - a one-school scientific institution.