In this article I’m going to try and articulate most of what I’ve understood from watching a number of Science Documentaries.
The Big Bang, our beginning was caused by a violent explosion much like a supernova of a star that also created the seeds of our universe. Einstein’s equation
E=MC2 you can create matter from energy but in this process you also create anti-matter which if it comes into contact with matter will annihilate and form back into energy again, so the equation works both ways.
This is known as “Vacuum Energy”
Vacuum energy can be explained this way: If you had an ordinary plastic bottle and you sucked out all the air inside it would crumble because the vacuum pulls on the walls of the plastic bottle, the universe however if you use the same analogy has walls which won’t budge to the pressure so inside this Vacuum energy then creates matter and anti matter which quickly then annihilate each other, scientists have been able to do this in a lab and even recently somehow store some of the dark matter.
For what we know there’s no anti-matter in our universe and since it should be the same quantity as matter it should have annihilated our universe or moved away if you could think of the area of contact as a plane and they both moved away from each other in opposite directions possibly even accelerated by the energy of the new energy being formed by the two coming into contact.
Matter still consists of 4% of everything in our universe, most of it is Hydrogen and as the chart above shows the remaining “Heavy Elements”, the remaining elements is a small fraction of the total pie of actual matter.
The Big Bang created only hydrogen, this cloud of gas that condensed after the universe cooled down from a temperature even hotter than the core of a star coalesced and formed balls of gas, gravity took over after this using this to draw in more gas, growing bigger, getting more of a gravitational pull slowly forming what would become a star.
The Eagle Nebula
In nebula’s like the one above stars form when after amassing enough matter that the pressure creates heat in the core and ignites the hydrogen. This then starts the nuclear reactor core of the star that starts converting Hydrogen into Helium using nuclear fusion fusing the two elements. This process continues until it forms Iron, before this the nuclear fusion is trying to force the star to explode but gravity keeps it in check, Iron however then absorbs the energy, the first heavy element, it tips the scale to gravity, it’s the star killer. It doesn’t fuse to form another element so the nuclear reaction stops, gravity forces the core to shrink and without nuclear reaction it cools. In less than 1/4 of a second it goes supernova.
With a loss of pressure from core, the unsupported regions surrounding the core plunge inward at velocities up to 100,000 km/s. The material crashes into the now-rigid core, enormous temperatures and pressures build up, and the layers bounce upward. A shock wave forms, which accelerates and, within a few hours, explodes from the surface of the star rushing outward at thousands of km/sec.Source: http://abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/ast122/lectures/lec18.html
It ejects it out core material and in a fraction of a second creates elements heavier than Iron like Gold, we are made from Star Dust. Smaller stars leave behind Neutron Stars as the core with very dense material and immense gravity, bigger stars cores collapse even further to form black holes.
With everything inside a black hole crushed to a singularity, and our current physics not able to understand what happens inside a black hole we can for now only make educated guesses.
Dark Matter 3D Map
We also don’t know what Dark Matter is, it doesn’t interact with photons therefore is undetectable using current instruments. We only discovered it by it’s gravity effect, at first astronomers would try to map the speed of stars in a galaxy, since all of them spin around the galaxy and at the center there’s a massive black hole. There are fast spinning galaxies which don’t have enough gravity to keep it together, unless there was an unaccounted for mass creating additional gravity keeping it together. Also as others tried to simulate the creation of stars, galaxies on a computer the matter never coalesced to form the stars, there simply wasn’t enough gravity, in an attempt to tweak the variables and add some additional gravity the stars and gravity formed nicely.
Dark Energy on the other hand was coined to explain what was found when scientist using what they know from the big bang’s expansion expected the expansion to slow down and then revert back into cycles of big bang’s and big crunch’s but after measuring the current speed of galaxies they found that galaxies are moving away from us faster than the speed of light, the reason for the huge speed is space is expanding, that’s the constant of Dark Energy.
The universe is destined for a cold death where Dark Energy equally distributed in space will pull apart everything held by gravity except black holes which will decay slowly to death.
There is a chance though that our universe is not the only one out there, and our laws of physics are not the same in the other universes, some would be missing the key physics ingredients to form stars but might form something else entirely. We are nowhere near detecting or even planning how to move to another universe but to this might add another possible answer to the Fermi Paradox which asks if we exist and in less than 10,000 years of development actually around 2,000 if you consider the Dark Ages a civilization that’s been going strong for millions or even a billion years should be “too advanced” to fathom.
Here’s my take on the Fermi problem: one of the main thing all intelligent lifeforms fear is death, to a degree. We should then likely expect these beings to be immortal, my take on their immortality would be biological immortality where they can die from serious injury and maybe some forms of diseases. One thing though with an immortal race is sustaining such a race would require more, likely even as you continue to live for an eternity you might become less attached to your body and opt for a digital body for the mere fact you become less vulnerable.
Also all sentient beings look for a purpose so an immortal all the more will seek to fill their time with meaningful endeavors, since the universe is generally inhospitable to life, life as we know it would have to evolve in the habitable zone; the planet is close enough to it’s parent star to allow liquid water to exist on the surface, not too close to boil it away or too far away to be in eternal freezing point.
We would have to venture out to non-habitable zones, spend resources to make it habitable for life and then move on to the next interesting planet. We wouldn’t need to go too far to find enough resources to sustain our civilization many times over though, beyond that curiosity not greed would fuel more exploration. A minimalistic civilization would then likely not explore more than a few of it’s neighboring stars and then make a point of looking for curiosities that cannot be found there like a black hole, or the mega black hole at the center of our galaxy.
This civilization would likely also have made advancement in AI, unlike the more popular current AI that mimic our behavioral nuance there can be one designed to be a scientist, cold and calculating. To be a scientist you don’t need to have any emotions about the subjects in fact indifference might let you deduce the underlying reasons better. An AI that is indifferent even to what it’s been taught as truth like the law of gravity might be able to deduce that in certain situations the laws of gravity become broken and not side with the taught truth. This AI might be useful lab partner to the scientist, a good critic, useful to gather and fact check data and with the scientist or alone lead to new discoveries.
If you want to know of all possible lifeforms that could exist on earth you don’t really need to look for all earth-like planets with lifeforms, you might be able to not only simulate all prior and existing lifeforms on earth, you could take the well understood evolution of lifeforms and be able to parse DNA to a lifeforms and assess all possible rewriting of DNA to new lifeforms if they pose a defect or a new possibly useful trait. We could revive the dinosaurs in simulations without ever needing to actually bring them back to life, we could have the recipe without ever needing to bake the cake a useful thing we have found that there’s a productive version of being lazy.
In this realm of possibilities you could even see the need of understanding a behavior of a creature, if the simulation can even same as a person create a self aware being none the wiser surrounded by sims who are convincingly smart enough to fool the self aware creature. All this with the added benefit you can pause, rewind and start it’s lifespan as you wish with even the option of introducing new scenarios of interest to the test subject to see how it would react. All this and you can stop you can stop the simulation and resume it at anytime and to the sim it would be a continuous uninterrupted time.
We are very interested in the idea of meeting aliens, mainly because we are pretty confident they’re going to be more advanced than us, if they don’t spell doom for us they will likely then transform us for the better, even if they shared a bit of their advanced tech it would still benefit us greatly. On the other hand if they were just as advanced as us then they really don’t have anything to offer except their experience and their genetic material.
The advanced ones might not be visible to us because they simply choose not to be, they might intentionally use communication methods that are next to impossible to detect to protect their home planet from unwanted visitors, if an unwanted guest comes with negative intentions, one will survive and we would be none the wiser. Even a civilization that enjoys destroying other civilizations for their own reasons wouldn’t likely go around broadcasting here we are simply because even a predator knows it’s not an effective method, those who know better will have enough time to evacuate, those with a grudge like an even more advanced civilization that came after them maybe after responding to a distress call would find it easier to hunt them down and avenge the others and at least make moving around in the vicinity safer.
A coalition of advanced sentient beings would also be less likely because the coalition might end up needing resources, resources you simply don’t dig up and present but work on to make it useful for both parties. A civilization also with problems that needs assistance likely won’t need this assistance once but it would be a continued support, something if old and current history teaches us, the host with time becomes less reciprocative to this one sided affair.
Much the same way we might feel we are connected and would go above and beyond for the good of others, in reality cities prove the more people you stack together, the less people feel and actually become connected. Even bodies that are tasked with ensuring human rights like the UN in the end even where there’s violations being done mostly sends warnings, before the coalition decides to intervene usually the damage is done and they only move to prevent further loss of life. In that context convincing a planet to invest in another war would only likely diminish the need to be in the coalition especially if as a civilization you know and are sure you can fend off all the risks you’ve seen so far and really don’t need the coalition’s help, you just joined as a formality. The might have been a coalition worthy of facing any threat from the universe or outside but each like the US and UK with time became confident of it’s own strength.
If all you need to understand all possible lifeforms in the universe is coming to contact with a number of other sentient life forms and observe them passively, collect as much information as possible and you not only then know possible ways their evolution could go, you also aware of their past. All you’d need is drones to collect the information and from there on update you on worthy news. The extinction of the sentient being observed might not even be worthy of intervention to the observer because they’ve seen that happen to many times and grown cold to this.
There’s one more thing that’s peculiar; quantum entanglement where you entangle two quantum particles so that if you measures a property of one of them like it’s spin and the first for example turns out to be “up” instantly the other will be “down” regardless of the distance between the two, practically allowing information to be shared between the two faster than the speed of light. This might become the mode of communication for the intelligent life forms and they might decide to use this to observe a black hole.
Anything that falls past the Event Horizon of a black hole cannot escape it’s gravity, even light.
The exception is when a black hole is eating a star and gets more matter than it can swallow at a time so it spews the excess hot gas as a pulsar. The advanced civilization might find a way around this if they haven’t already in a simulations and with their current tech using the entangled particles. If they can passively watch the state of the entangled particle as the other goes past the event horizon they might be able to get some vital clues on what goes on in a black hole.
If you find the best lab isn’t in the field but in a simulation since it offers even more diversity than real life all you need is data and the right kind of data you’d be more inclined to gather more data and explore less in person. One more thing this advanced civilization might discover is there’s a more interesting universe than this one, one where they can more of gods than in this one, there simply might be an age where an advanced civilization becomes mature enough to leave it’s birth universe.