Dark Big Bang: A mysterious twin to the traditional Big Bang
A team of scientists suggests that a mysterious "Dark Big Bang" may have occurred during the early evolution of the cosmos.
If true, that alternative Big Bang flooded the universe with gravity waves and dark matter particles, and we may be able to detect it today, according to the researchers behind the proposal.
It might also finally help to solve the mystery of dark matter, which is thought to make up the vast majority of the mass in the cosmos but has remained elusive ever since it was first proposed.
An alternative Big Bang
Though early cosmological models explain a great deal about the earliest evolution of the universe, we do not understand the mysterious substance known as dark matter, which is thought to make up the majority of the mass in the known universe.
Big Bang models typically assume that the same process that lead to the early rapid expansion of the universe also led to the proliferation of dark matter throughout the cosmos.
Now though, a team of scientists has proposed a radical new idea in a paper available in preprint server arXiv. They suggest that the Big Bang was not an isolated event and that it had a mysterious dark twin: the Dark Big Bang. This would mean that dark matter evolved over a completely separate trajectory to the rest of the universe.
In their new paper and according to Universe Today, the researchers suggest that a quantum field remained after the traditional Big Bang that did not decay away. After the universe began to expand and cool, however, that extra quantum field eventually transformed and triggered the formation of dark matter.
The Dark Big Bang may have left behind a detectable signature
The advantage of that new proposal is that we would not need to amend any standard existing models of Big Bang Nucleosynthesis to explain dark matter.
The new proposal may also help to explore and ultimately validate theoretical models of dark matter, as it makes it easier to track calculations that impact the Dark Big Bang model. In one example, the team was able to determine that, if there was a Dark Big Bang, it would have had to occur within the first month of our universe.
Based on their analysis, they also believe that a Dark Big Bang would have released a unique signature of strong gravitational waves that should still be detectable in the present-day universe.
As such, experiments today, such as pulsar timing arrays, could be used to help prove whether a Dark Big Bang did take place at all, or if it can go on the growing list of ambitious theories that look to explain the most prominent, but also most mysterious matter in the universe.