the septenary (diapholom) wrote,
the septenary

edgar allan poe & the anthropic principle

The nucleosynthesis of carbon-12

Fred Hoyle invoked anthropic reasoning to make a remarkable prediction of an astrophysical phenomenon. He reasoned from the prevalence on earth of life forms whose chemistry was based on carbon-12 atoms, that there must be an undiscovered resonance in the carbon-12 nucleus facilitating its synthesis in stellar interiors via the triple-alpha process. He then calculated the energy of this undiscovered resonance to be 7.6 million electron-volts.[33][34] Willie Fowler's research group soon found this resonance, and its measured energy was close to Hoyle's prediction.

 Cosmic inflation

Main article: Cosmic inflation

Page criticized the entire theory of cosmic inflation as follows.[35] He emphasized that initial conditions which made possible a thermodynamic arrow of time in a universe with a Big Bang origin, must include the assumption that at the initial singularity, the entropy of the universe was low and therefore extremely improbable. Paul Davies rebutted this criticism by invoking an inflationary version of the anthropic principle.[36] While Davies accepted the premise that the initial state of the visible Universe (which filled a microscopic amount of space before inflating) had to possess a very low entropy value — due to random quantum fluctuations — to account for the observed thermodynamic arrow of time, he deemed this fact an advantage for the theory. That the tiny patch of space from which our observable Universe grew had to be extremely orderly, to allow the post-inflation universe to have an arrow of time, makes it unnecessary to adopt any "ad hoc" hypotheses about the initial entropy state, hypotheses other Big Bang theories require.

 String theory

String theory predicts a large number of possible universes, called the "backgrounds" or "vacua." The set of these vacua is often called the "multiverse" or "anthropic landscape" or "string landscape." Leonard Susskind has argued that the existence of a large number of vacua puts anthropic reasoning on firm ground: only universes whose properties are such as to allow observers to exist are observed, while a possibly much larger set of universes lacking such properties go unnoticed.

Tags: eureka

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