Cosmic Queries: The Multiverse

Hypothesized disks in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) from the early universe, indicating that another bubble universe had collided with our universe. Image credit: Perimeter Institute. Caption credit and image source: http://www.kurzweilai.net/is-our-universe-a-bubble-in-the-multiverse.

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About This Episode

Itching to know more about the multiverse? You’re not alone! Join us when Neil deGrasse Tyson and theoretical physicist and cosmologist Paul Steinhardt answer fan-submitted questions about cosmology chosen by co-host Chuck Nice. We’re not promising anything, though, because while there are plenty of intriguing questions, there aren’t many definitive answers when it comes to quantum physics and trying to understand how the universe moved from a quantum state to a classical one governed by general relativity. Join us anyway, as we explore concepts like cosmic inflation, quantum tunneling, and whether gravity is extra-dimensional. Neil and Paul discuss whether the perception of time would be consistent across the multiverse, and whether reality and gravity are granular. Find out about the difference between the Big Bang and the Big Bounce. Compare the concept of parallel universes with that of an ekpyrotic “meta-universe” that had no singularity at its birth, where space and time have existed forever, and where quantum fluctuations at the start of this cycle have given birth to causally separated regions that, though they can never know about each other due to distance and the limitations of the speed of light, are nonetheless connected by the fabric of spacetime.

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