The universe keeps dying and being reborn, claims Nobel Prize winner

The universe keeps dying and being reborn, claims Nobel Prize winner

Sir Roger Penrose claims our universe has been through multiple Big Bangs, with more coming.

Roger Penrose, the 2020 Nobel Prize winner in physics, claims the universe goes through cycles of death and rebirth. There have been many Big Bangs, according to the scientist, with more on the way. Penrose claims that black holes hold clues to the existence of previous universes.

Sir Roger Penrose, a mathematician and physicist at the University of Oxford who recently shared this year’s Nobel Prize in physics, believes our universe has gone through numerous Big Bangs, with another one coming in our future.

Penrose received the Nobel for his working out mathematical methods that proved and expanded Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity, and for his discoveries on black holes, which showed how objects that become too dense undergo gravitational collapse into singularities – points of infinite mass.

As he accepted the Prize, Penrose reiterated his belief in what he called “a crazy theory of mine” that the universe will expand until all matter will ultimately decay. After that, a second Big Bang will create a new universe.

“The Big Bang was not the beginning,” Penrose said to The Telegraph. “There was something before the Big Bang and that something is what we will have in our future.”

What proof does the physicist have for this theory he dubbed “conformal cyclic cosmology” (CCC) that goes against the current Big Bang dogma? He claimed to have discovered six “warm” sky points (called “Hawking Points”), each around eight times the diameter of the Moon. Professor Stephen Hawking, for whom they are named, proposed that black holes “leak” radiation and eventually evaporate. Because this might take longer than the duration of the universe we live in (13.77 billion years), finding such holes is extremely unlikely.

Penrose (89), who worked with Hawking, believes that we can see “dead” black holes left by former universes or “aeons.” This, if proven correct, would validate Hawking’s theories.

The physicist’s 2020 research, published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, provides evidence of “anomalous circular spots” in the CMB that have higher temperature. The spots were discovered using data from the Planck 70 GHz satellite, which was confirmed by up to 10,000 simulations.

Hot spots in Planck CMB data. Credit: ESA and the Planck Collaboration

Penrose’s 2018 paper identified radiation hot spots in the CMB that could be caused by evaporating black holes. In a 2010 paper, Penrose and Vahe Gurzadyan of Armenia’s Yerevan Physics Institute discovered support for cyclic cosmology in the CMB’s uniform temperature rings. The scientists proposed at the time that the rings were produced by gravitational wave signatures from colliding black holes in a universe before ours.

These views are controversial among cosmologists, with some pointing to the difficulty of converting an infinitely massive universe in one eon to a super-small one in the next. This would necessitate making all particles lose mass as the universe gets old.

Check out Penrose’s most recent paper, titled “Apparent evidence for Hawking points in the CMB Sky” here.

Check out Penrose’s thoughts on the quantum-level origins of our awareness for another fascinating theory.

Roger Penrose – Did the Universe Begin?
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