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article imagePhysicists to conduct first observational test of the multiverse

By Andrew Moran     Aug 3, 2011 in Science
London - Theoretical physicists in Great Britain are now conducting tests for the very first time to find evidence of multiple alternative universes, otherwise known as a multiverse. A team of cosmologists will search the cosmic microwave background radiation.
Theoretical physicists have put forward the idea that we live in a multiverse – an ocean of bubbles that form new universes every time they collide. The multiple alternative universes may seem like science fiction – bestselling author Michio Kaku has explained that this Copernican revolution would have been ridiculed as early as the 1990s.
The most alluring premise of the theory is that these “pocket universes” could contradict the general laws of nature and may actually be anti-universes – the idea that a universe could be the opposite of what we know (I.E. time moving backward, death before life, left equals right, etc.).
After the theory has been heavily debated and discussed, physicists are now putting the theory into practice and are now attempting to discover evidence of a multiverse, according to a press release.
The details were first published in the two research papers Physical Review Letters and Physical Review D. The authors explained that researchers must first find signatures of multiple universes by searching for disk-like patterns in the relic heat radiation that was left over from the Big Bang, also known as as the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation.
“The work represents an opportunity to test a theory that is truly mind-blowing: that we exist within a vast multiverse, where other universes are constantly popping into existence,” said co-author of the research papers and PhD student at the University College London (UCL), Stephen Feeney.
The team is looking to be the first to find proof of a multiverse because their predecessors have not been able to figure out methods that would show signs of bubble universe collisions. It is believed that the disk-like patterns could be located anywhere in the sky.
“It’s a very hard statistical and computational problem to search for all possible radii of the collision imprints at any possible place in the sky,” said co-author researcher from UCL Dr. Hiranya Peiris. “But that’s what pricked my curiosity.”
Although the research is the first of its kind and quite exciting, Dr. Daniel Mortlock, co-author from Imperial College London’s Department of Physics warns, that it’s easy to “interpret interesting patterns” from data received and that the first results will not be conclusive enough to definitively determine if a multiverse does indeed exist.
For more on this compelling theory and information, the following books and videos are helpful:
- The Physics of the Impossible by Michio Kaku
- In Search of the Multiverse by John Gribbin
- Many Worlds in One: The Search for Other Universes by Alex Vilenkin
- Parallel Worlds by Michio Kaku
- A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
More about Life multiverse, Physicists, Physical Review Letters and Physical Review D, Theoretical physics, Universe
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