* Died: August 16, 2019
He had been Donald H Menzel Professor of Astrophysics, Emeritus.
On the Faculty of Arts & Sciences, Department of Astronomy,
At Harvard University
60 Garden Street
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138
AIP Oral History
Articles: Arrow of Time, Cold Big Bang theory, Scientific American
Book: Cosmogenesis: The Growth of Order in the Universe Review
Encyclopdia of Thermodynamics
Homepage (Memorial page) (Patience please, very slow to load)
Information Philosopher Profile: David Layzer: The Origin of Information
Worldcat reference page
Most recent email: Monday, June 10, 2019, 7:29 AM
Dear Prof. Dr. David Layzer:
Prior to Saturday, June 8, 2019, I was unaware that Lemaître’s 1927 proposal
was for a cold start. It would be very helpful to see some primary sources
and secondary analyses about the progression to the now standard
“infinitely hot start.”
Today, I am still about where a high school student would be with knowledge
about the early days of astrophysics and cosmology. I am making progress,
but have a ways to go. My primary academic work was on the hocus-pocus
of the EPR and “moments of perfection.”
My statement about your work needs refinement. I tried to summarize
in one sentence why your cold start exploration in 1966 did not gain traction.
Is this following sentence reasonable? “1966: Harvard’s David Layzer
(right) began to re-explore the concept of a cold start, but he could
not account for the dynamics of the cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR).”
You certainly are the most informed person! You know.
Also, the next paragraph extends that somewhat: “In 1966 Harvard’s
David Layzer attempted to revive the concept of a cold start but he, too, did
not have any mathematics for exponential growth and the phase transitions
between notations so his cold start concept receded into the background.
Some believe that the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP)
observations from 2001 to 2010 should end all cold start speculations.”
You certainly are the primary source. What a very special opportunity
to get it right. I thank you for any corrections and insights that you add.
Yes, “Thank you.”
First email: Saturday, 8 June 2019 @ 11:44 AM
Dear Prof. Dr. David Layzer:
In 2011 I backed into a highly-ordered, cold start (near absolute zero) of the universe by applying base-2 notation to the Planck units (time, length, mass, charge) to create an outline of the universe — https://81018.com/chart/ — which is 100% mathematical and predictive.
Is it wrong? Most of our current scholars won’t weigh in. Perhaps everybody is afraid to be absurd to themselves. I think that “no response” lacks courage and intellectual integrity. Such a simple concept needs to be either appropriately shot down or further investigated.
Now, a simple doubling mechanism was found. It is associated with cubic-close packing of equal spheres, yet other doubling mechanisms have also been observed. Here the homogeneity and isotropy of the universe is a given within this emergent grid or matrix. There’s much more.
Might you be available for a quick telephone conversation about this simple model?
References & Resources
- Aguirre, Anthony N. (10 April 2000). “The Cosmic Background Radiation in a Cold Big Bang”. The Astrophysical Journal. 533 (1): 1–18. Bibcode:2000ApJ…533….1A. doi:10.1086/308660.
- Komatsu, E.; Smith, K. M.; Dunkley, J.; Bennett, C. L.; Gold, B.; Hinshaw, G.; Jarosik, N.; Larson, D.; Nolta, M. R.; Page, L.; Spergel, D. N.; Halpern, M.; Hill, R. S.; Kogut, A.; Limon, M.; Meyer, S. S.; Odegard, N.; Tucker, G. S.; Weiland, J. L.; Wollack, E.; Wright, E. L. (1 February 2011). “Seven-Year Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) Observations: Cosmological Interpretation”. The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series. 192 (2): 18. arXiv:1001.4538. Bibcode:2011ApJS..192…18K. doi:10.1088/0067-0049/192/2/18.
- http://www.cosmosportal.org/resources/view/136083/ (Odenwald, Sten)
- By 1927, Georges Lemaitre had attempted to understand the origin of atoms in nature by proposing that before the expansion of the universe started there existed a primeval atom consisting of all the matter in the universe crushed to nuclear densities. It formed a gigantic ball of nuclear liquid which existed in this state at very low temperature. The low temperatures were required to keep this cosmic atom from falling apart via thermal agitation. But this fluid broke-up anyway under mechanical instabilities, into a mist of microscopic particles. He estimated that only 260 binary divisions would be needed to convert the cosmic mass into atom-sized particles. This idea was pursued by Maria Meyer and Edwin Teller, but ultimately this idea couldn’t explain why the universe should expand, or where the light elements came from.
“…if matter existed as a single atomic nucleus, it makes no sense to speak of space and time in connection with this atom. Space and time are statistical notions that apply to an assembly of a great number of individual elements; they were meaningless notions, therefore, at the instant of first disintegration of the primeval atom…” — Georges Lemaitre.
- A variant on Lemaitre’s cosmology was proposed in 1966 by David Layzer, developed a short-lived alternate to Hot Big Bang cosmology by proposing that the initial state was near absolute zero. The motivation for proposing such an initial state, reminiscent of Lemaitre’s initial state. Through thermodynamic arguments, Layzer argued that rather than the universe starting in a high entropy state, it began in a very low entropy state near Absolute Zero. It was matter-dominated with little free radiation, and the conditions were favorable for the formation of galaxies via fragmentation. The famous Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation discovered by Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson in 1965 was produced much later when galaxies were forming in a dusty environment.
- Odenwald, Sten, Ph.D. (Contributing Author); Bernard Haisch (Topic Editor). 2009. “Universe: Cold Big Bang.” In: Encyclopedia of the Cosmos. Eds. Bernard Haisch and Joakim F. Lindblom (Redwood City, CA: Digital Universe Foundation). [First published January 13, 2008].