In 1931, Belgian cosmologist named Georges Lemaître It shocked the astronomical world.
Perhaps, in his provocative paper, he reasoned that the vast expanse of our universe may have begun as a singular little point about 14 billion years ago. , this point probably exploded, eventually spreading to a huge realm called the universe.
If this is true, our universe didn’t always exist.It means it must have had a beginning.
Then, in 1965, one year before Lemaître’s death, scientists took advantage of the following discovery: cosmic microwave background Finally, we present undeniable evidence for this theory.
Today we call it the Big Bang.
And on December 31st, Vlaamese Radio-en Televisieomroeporganisatie (VRT), the national public broadcaster of the Flemish Community of Belgium, said: Brought back something pretty remarkable.
It is believed to be the only Lemaître video in existence.
Even better, this rare footage, aired in 1964, is an interview with a respected physicist who explores what he calls the “primordial atom hypothesis”: his iconic Big Bang theory. discussing the foundations of
VRT Archives member Kathleen Bartrem said, “It turned out that the film’s files had been misclassified and that Lemaître’s name was misspelled. “As a result, the interview went untraceable for years.” But one day, when a staff member was scanning some rolls of film, he suddenly recognized Lemaître in the footage and realized he had won the gold medal.
The interview itself is in French and can be viewed with Flemish subtitles if you prefer to watch it online, but in an effort to make the film more widely available, the expert said: Published a paper this month We provide an English translation of the approximately 20 minute clip.
Satya Goncho Goncho, a scientist at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, said, “Among all the people who came up with the cosmological framework we’re working on, what do they think about their research?” “There are very few records of how they spoke.” Berkeley Lab, which led the translation, said in a statement: “Hearing the phrasing and the way he speaks… feels like a peek into time.”
Reading the entire discussion is actually very trippy. It’s incredible to see what scientists have said about ideas that will ultimately change the course of history, physics, and even the human perspective.
It’s also very impressive how clear, compelling and modern the arguments sound – almost like a podcast.
here are some highlights
“A long time ago, before there was a theory of the expansion of the universe (about 40 years ago), we expected the universe to be static. We expected nothing to change.”
He continues to call such concepts a priori ideas. Evidence proving that the structure of space and time is truly static. But as Lemaître says (and we now know for sure), there are many supporting facts that Expansion of the universe.
“We realized we had to allow change,” he said. “But people who wanted nothing to change … in a way, would say, ‘We have to accept change, but we should change it as little as possible.'”
On this front, Lemaître points to the belief of astronomer Fred Hoyle. Fred Hoyle was a firm proponent at the time of the fact that our universe is “immutable” or static. was also the first to use the term ‘, but he did it in the following rhythm. ridiculeNevertheless, the name stuck.
This is not to say that no one supported the expansion theory.
Quite a few physicists have done so, including Albert Einstein and Edwin Hubble (yes, the name of the Hubble Space Telescope). In fact, it was Hubble who showed the scientific community why the universe must be expanding in all directions.he used a giant telescope in california 1929 It records how distant galaxies recede from us over time.
In connection with Hubble’s observations, a 1927 paper written by Lemaître ultimately helped to convince the majority of astronomers that our universe is completely expanding outwards. .
“Lumaître and others gave us the mathematical framework that underlies our current efforts to understand our universe,” said Goncho a Goncho.
For example, Goncho a Goncho points out how knowing the expansion rate of the universe can help us study elusive aspects of the universe. Mystery of dark energy.
Strangely enough, dark energy seems to be causing our universe to expand much more rapidly than it should, accelerating more and more over time.
The second half of Lemaître’s interview focuses on the philosophical and even religious implications of his theory rather than the scientific implications. In addition to being a renowned cosmologist, Lemaître was also a renowned Catholic priest.
For example, an interviewer asks him if the idea that the universe must have had a beginning has religious implications. In response, Lemaître simply says, “I am not defending the primordial atom for any religious ulterior motive.”
But at this point the cosmologist says further details on the topic can be found in another interview. toss.
In response, Lemaître basically touches on questions about the importance of when, why, and how the beginning of time occurred (religious or not). “Its beginnings are unimaginable and so different from the current state of the world that such questions do not arise,” he said.
Even if God exists in theory, he says he does not believe that the existence of God interferes with the scientific nature of astronomical theory.
“If a god holds up the galaxy, he acts like a god,” Lemaître said. “He doesn’t wield the power to deny everything. He’s not a Voltaire watchmaker who has to wind his watch from time to time… [laughs]. There! “