8 May 08

Cosmological Graffiti

Cosmological graffiti I’ve been puzzling over this graffiti which is by the bike path underneath the freeway near the UCD Arboretum for some time now. Browsing through my copy of the Oxford Dictionary of Astronomy this evening an answer came to me. The upside-down V must be a capital lambda and the statement would be a reference to the cosmological constant.

This parameter was introduced by Einstein as a modification of the theory of general relativity because of his belief at that time that the universe was static. Later, after Hubble discovered that the universe was expanding, Einstein withdrew this modification and considered it to be his “biggest blunder”. Stepping forward into the late 1990s with the discovery that the expansion of the universe is accelerating, this parameter has now made its way back into contemporary cosmology, as something needs to counteract gravitation. What could be more theologically profound?

Hey, the physics building is only a half-kilometer away from from the graffiti.

Posted by at 12:15 AM in Astronomy | Link |
  1. :-)

    dale    8. May 2008, 22:07    Link

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