Stretched Light : Cosmology's Major Idiocy

Feb 9, 2023
"The universe is expanding, and that expansion stretches light traveling through space in a phenomenon known as cosmological redshift."

"As light travels towards us from the distant galaxies, it is stretched over time by the ever expanding space it is travelling through. The longer it travels, the more the wavelengths are increased (reddened)."

On the other hand, cosmologists teach that space inside galaxies and galactic clusters does not expand at all. They reject the scenario in which expansion inside galaxies and galactic clusters does occur but is overcome by gravitational attraction. According to their models, even the slightest gravitational attraction blocks any expansion:

"Space DOES NOT Expand Everywhere...Is the space inside, say, a galaxy growing but overcome by the gravitational attraction between the stars? The answer is no. Space within any gravitationally bound system is unaffected by the surrounding expansion."

Sabine Hossenfelder: "The solution of general relativity that describes the expanding universe is a solution on average; it is good only on very large distances. But the solutions that describe galaxies are different - and just don't expand. It's not that galaxies expand unnoticeably, they just don't. The full solution, then, is both stitched together: Expanding space between non-expanding galaxies...It is only somewhere beyond the scales of galaxy clusters that expansion takes over."

How does stretching of light occur if part of space is expanding and the other part is not expanding? Light is stretched as it travels in the space between galactic clusters, then stretching stops as the light enters a cluster, then stretching continues as the light leaves the cluster, etc. Idiotic, isn't it? Unfortunately, idiocies can be universally accepted and even worshiped:

George Orwell: "In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it. Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality, was tacitly denied by their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common sense. And what was terrifying was not that they would kill you for thinking otherwise, but that they might be right. For, after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable? If both the past and the external world exist only in the mind, and if the mind itself is controllable what then?"

The following quotation should ring an alarm for cosmologists:

Richard Feynman: "I want to emphasize that light comes in this form - particles. It is very important to know that light behaves like particles, especially for those of you who have gone to school, where you probably learned something about light behaving like waves. I'm telling you the way it does behave - like particles. You might say that it's just the photomultiplier that detects light as particles, but no, every instrument that has been designed to be sensitive enough to detect weak light has always ended up discovering the same thing: light is made of particles." QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter p. 15

Whether Feynman is correct is not a matter of discussion here. I am just drawing the attention to a crucial implication. The concept of VARIABLE wavelength of light


is preposterous if "light is made of particles". That is, the particle model of light implies that the wavelength can only be an invariable proportionality factor in the formula

(speed of light) = (wavelength)(frequency)

And the formula says that, if the wavelength is constant, the redshift known as "cosmological" (or "Hubble") is due to the speed of light slowing down as photons travel through vacuum, in a non-expanding universe (CMB is, accordingly, very very slow, highly redshifted light). This is not a totally unacceptable idea:

"Some physicists, however, suggest that there might be one other cosmic factor that could influence the speed of light: quantum vacuum fluctuation. This theory holds that so-called empty spaces in the Universe aren't actually empty - they're teeming with particles that are just constantly changing from existent to non-existent states. Quantum fluctuations, therefore, could slow down the speed of light."
Feb 9, 2023
The formula

(speed of light) = (wavelength)(frequency)

can accommodate two axioms:

Axiom 1: The speed of light is constant (Einstein 1905).

Axiom 2: The wavelength of light is constant (depends only on the nature of the emitting substance and is constant otherwise).

Axiom 1 killed physics (I have been trying to explain this for decades).

Axiom 2 can resurrect this branch of science (if it's not too late) and become the fundamental axiom of future, Einstein-free physics. Corollaries of "The wavelength of light is constant":

Corollary 1: Any frequency shift entails (is caused by) a proportional speed-of-light shift.

Corollary 2: If the emitter and the observer travel towards each other with relative speed v, the speed of light relative to the observer is c' = c+v, as posited by Newton's theory.

Corollary 3: Spacetime and gravitational waves (ripples in spacetime) don't exist. LIGO's "discoveries" are fakes.

Corollary 4: Light falls in a gravitational field with the same acceleration as ordinary falling bodies - near Earth's surface the accelerations of falling photons is g = 9.8 m/s^2. Accordingly, there is no gravitational time dilation.

Corollary 5: The so-called cosmological (Hubble) redshift is due to the speed of light gradually slowing down as light travels through vacuum, in a non-expanding universe.

Corollary 6: The dark sky in the Olbers' paradox can be explained by two facts. 1. Low-speed, high-redshifted light (known as CMB), coming from very distant sources, is invisible. 2. Beyond a certain distance, the star light does not reach us at all (its speed is reduced to zero).
I can't agree with your corollaries.

1. Change in frequency does not effect the speed of light. The speed of light may be altered depending on the medium it passes through.

2. The speed of light is constant. See:

3. Gravitational waves are distortions in the fabric of space and time caused by the movement of massive objects, like sound waves in air or the ripples made on a pond's surface when someone throws a rock in the water. But unlike sound waves pond ripples, which spread out through a medium like watter, gravitational waves are vibrations in spacetime itself, which means they move just fine through the vacuum of space. And unlike the gentle drop of a stone in a pond, the events that trigger gravitational waves are among the most powerful in the universe. See:

4. The same property of an object, specifically its mass, determines both the force of gravity on it and its resistance to accelerations, or inertia. Said another way, the inertial mass and the gravitational mass are equivalent. That is why we the free-fall acceleration for all objects has a magnitude of 9.8 m/s/s, as we will show in the following example.

light seems to travel in straight lines, unaffected by gravity. Of course, light can bend when it passes through the interface between two media — think of light refracting as is passes from air into water, which is the phenomenon that causes a straw in a glass of water to appear kinked at the interface. But that bending is not gravitational; it’s electromagnetic.

However, light does bend when travelling around massive bodies like neutron stars and black holes. This is explained by Einstein’s theory of general relativity.

We are all familiar with massive objects being influenced by gravity. For instance, think of a planet orbiting the sun. As the planet moves, a centripetal force acts on it, which curves the motion. Without gravity, the planet would travel in a straight line. General relativity puts a different perspective on the situation. Instead of describing the object as moving along a curve in a flat spacetime, the object is described as moving along special “lines” in a curved spacetime. The curves are a consequence of gravitation. The spacetime curves are called geodesics, and they generalize the notion of straight lines to curved spacetime.

Light also travels along geodesics (called null geodesics), and so paths of light are also curved by gravitational force, despite the light not having any mass.

In general relativity, gravity affects anything with energy. While light doesn't have rest-mass, it still has energy --- and is thus affected by gravity.

If you think of gravity as a distortion in space-time (a la general relativity), it doesn't matter what the secondary object is. As long as it exists, gravity affects it.

There is some more cutting-edge research related to this answer. There is reason to believe that light itself curves spacetime in the same way that massive objects do. This is sometimes referred to as the self-gravitation of light. The idea is that an electromagnetic wave has a non-zero energy-momentum tensor, and should therefore curve spacetime, albeit in a small and strange way. In this way, the equations of general relativity imply that the spacetime curvature created by propagating light should influence the propagation of that light itself. See:

5. Light, by virtue of having no rest mass but still carrying both energy and momentum, can never slow down as it travels through the Universe; it can only travel at the speed of light. Whereas an object with mass will always move slower than the speed of light — since accelerating it to the speed of light would require an infinite amount of energy — light itself must always travel at the same speed: c, or the speed of light in a vacuum.

Only when it's not in a vacuum, i.e., when it passes through a matter-containing medium, does light slow down. This slowing affects different frequencies (or colors) of light by different amounts, just as how white light passing through a prism will split into different colors at different angles, because the amount that light slows down is dependent on the individual energy of the photons. Once it goes back into a vacuum, however, it resumes moving at the speed of light. The only difference is that the light, having passed through a medium, is now blurred.

All known elements emit and absorb particular wavelengths of light, which is part of the electromagnetic spectrum. By studying the wavelengths of light (as indicated by ‘lines’ within the electromagnetic spectrum) emitted by an object in space, astronomers can get a range of information. One thing they examine is the change in position of lines in the spectrum from a star—this can tell astronomers how far away the star is, whether it is moving towards or away from us and how fast it is moving.

When looking at the radiation emitted by distant stars or galaxies, scientists see emission spectra ‘shifted’ towards the red end of the electromagnetic spectrum—the observed wavelengths are longer than expected. Something causes the wavelength of the radiation to ‘stretch’. But rather than an actual change in the wavelength, this phenomenon was something similar to the Doppler effect—they only appear stretched relative to the observer. The further away an object is, the greater the shift.

Something causes the wavelength of the radiation (emitted by faraway stars and galaxies) to 'stretch'. But this lowered frequency does not slow in the vacuum of space. Light only slows in the area of enormous mass which has a greater coefficient of gravity.


6. "In a homogeneous Universe, infinite in space and time, every line of sight will end on the surface of a star. So why is the sky dark at night?"

This is the question posed by Heinrich Olbers in 1826, although the problem had been around since 1577. This essay examines the various solutions proposed over the last five hundred years and reveals the cosmological significance of a dark night sky. The story of Olbers Paradox is the story of our evolving view of the Universe.

The first serious mathematical analysis of the solution was carried out by the Swiss mathematician Jean Phillipe Loys de Chesaux in 1744. Drawing on the work of Edmund Halley (who performed a similar analysis to de Chesaux but unaccountably reached the same conclusion as Digges) de Chesaux constructed a series of large imaginary concentric shells of uniform thickness with the observer located at the centre. If the thickness of each shell is much smaller than the radius (the distance to the observer) then the number of stars in any shell is proportional to it’s volume which is proportional to the square of it’s radius, but the light received at the centre from any star is inversely proportional to the square of the radius. In this way he showed that the proportion of sky covered by stars is the same for every shell. De Chesaux then added shells out to a distance of 3 thousand trillion (!) light years and showed at this ‘background’ distance the sky became fully covered by stars (approximately 1 x 1046 of them). As the whole sky is 180,000 times larger than the sun’s disk, the total starlight falling on the Earth should be 180,000 times more intense than sunlight. Perhaps overcome by the enormity of the problem de Chesaux then feebly suggested that there is some interstellar absorbing medium which attenuates the starlight - before, no doubt, going to lie down in a darkened room.

The definitive treatment of Olbers Paradox came in 1901 when Lord Kelvin published a paper ‘On Ether and Gravitational Matter through Infinite Space’ he showed that according to the standard (Victorian) model of his time the galaxy contained insufficient stars to cover the night sky. He then went further and showed that even if the stars stretched away through space, filling an infinite Universe, the visible stars would still fail to cover the sky. He did this by calling on his previous work showing that stars cannot shine indefinitely - the stars lifetime is limited by it’s available energy resources - and making the crucial step of thinking of distances to stars in terms of light travel times. Ole Roemer had shown the speed of light was finite in 1676, so it seems astounding now that no-one had made this connection.

The Victorian single galaxy model of the Universe was discarded in favour of the multi-galaxy model, and in 1916 Einstein’s theory of general relativity was completed. In 1922 the Russian physicist Alexander Friedmann found a set of solutions to Einstein’s equations that allowed for an expanding Universe and in 1929 Edward Hubble showed that the Universe was indeed expanding. The idea of an infinite static Universe had to be abandoned, and suprisingly Olbers Paradox played a part in determining a new model of the Universe.

Hermann Bondi’s dramatic solution to Olbers’ Paradox - that the darkness of the sky is due to the expansion of the Universe had widespread appeal but in 1965 the discovery by Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson of the cosmic microwave background radiation, made clear that we live in a big bang Universe that originated in a hot, dense state. Our Universe is not bathed in solar-intensity radiation not because of the red shift, but because the Universe is young. Stars have been luminous for only 10 billion years and not enough starlight has been emitted to make the night sky bright. Lord Kelvin’s solution is the correct one, for if the night sky is dark in a static Universe it is even darker in an expanding Universe due to the (small) red shift effect.


The noise of a siren or a car speeding past sounds higher in pitch the closer it gets to you and lower as it moves away. This is called the Doppler effect, where waves, in this case sound waves, change in frequency and wavelength as the source moves towards you (higher frequency, shorter wavelength) or away from you (lower frequency, longer wavelength). There is no actual change in sound; the car isn’t making a different noise. It just sounds different due to the car’s movement relative to you.

This apparent change in wavelength can also be observed for the visible light emitted by stars or galaxies.

If a star is moving towards Earth, it appears to emit light that is shorter in wavelength compared to a source of light that isn’t moving. Because shorter wavelengths correspond to a shift towards the blue end of the spectrum, this is called blueshift. In contrast, the light from a star moving away from us seems to shift towards longer wavelengths. As this is towards the red end of the spectrum, astronomers call it redshift.

Diagram illustrating redshift

Top: the light spectrum of an object at rest. Bottom: the light spectrum of that object moving away from you. Notice how the lines shift towards the red end of the spectrum.

The degree of shift can also give astronomers information about how fast the object is moving relative to us. A faster-moving object has a greater shift in wavelength.

Using various measures to establish how far away the galaxies were, Edwin Hubble (and those that followed him) found that their velocity was always proportional to their distance. The ratio of the two became the famous ‘Hubble constant’ and represents the expansion rate of the universe. But is the expansion rate really constant? Apparently not … and that’s where dark energy comes in.

Redshift is also the name of the factor z indicating the relative change in wavelength due to the Doppler shift for a receding galaxy.

The Doppler equation used for sound calculations cannot be used in this situation. This is because galaxies are receding (moving away) at such high speeds that relativistic effects need to be considered in calculations.

The following equation is used to calculate redshift:

Screenshot 2023-03-15 at 00.12.59.png

If a distant galaxy emits a characteristic spectral line of 91 nm (ultraviolet light at the 'Lyman limit') but when observed on Earth it appears to be 640 nm (red) we can calculate the red shift using this equation:

Screenshot 2023-03-15 at 00.14.21.png

There is no need to convert nanometres to metres as units cancel top and bottom.

For slowly moving galaxies, redshift is the ratio of the velocity of the galaxy to the velocity of light.

Screenshot 2023-03-15 at 00.18.58.png

Note that the velocity of c does not change.