Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity walked hand in hand with the Big Bang theory, but recently resurfaced manuscripts show that the physicist debunked this idea and believed that the universe expanded steadily and eternally. Although he abandoned the idea and never brought it up again, a document stored at the Albert Einstein Archives in Jerusalem shows that he was always reluctant to accepting that the universe was created during one explosion. The manuscript which is believed to have been written in 1931 was championed by astrophysicist Fred Hoyle approximately 20 years after, but the theory was never recognized as possible.
Albert Einstein’s lost theory shows that the physicist debunked the Big Bang theory and initially thought that the universe did not start to “shrink” after the explosion, but to expand. When finding the manuscript, Cormac O’Raifeartaigh, physicist at the Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland stated that he “almost fell out of his chair” when he realized that what he was reading was not what he thought he was, because it was mistakenly classified as a draft of another paper that belonged to the physicist. The content of that document debunked the Big Bang theory and showed that Einstein was a firm believer in an eternally expanding universe before accepting the idea of the explosion.
New Theory Revived
Twenty years after the famous physicist wrote and dropped the idea that the universe could be more than an initial explosion, there was Fred Hoyle, a British astrophysicist who strongly believed that space could be in a constant expansion, but at the same time its density remains roughly the same. Although the idea was rejected, after discovering Einstein’s alternative theory, it could finally be proved that Hoyle might have been right.
The British astrophysicist believed that elementary particles pop up from space and fill the extra room created by the expansion of space. The “steady state” of the universe was also present in Einstein’s long-lost manuscript, which is believed to have been written during a trip to California in 2931, mainly because he used an American note paper. According to the translation, the physicist believed that “for the density to remain constant new particles of matter must be continually formed,” which confirmed Hoyle’s findings.
Cosmologist James Peebles of Princeton University in New Jersey believes that Einstein’s lost theory represents “a rough draft commenced with excitement over a neat idea,” but it was soon abandoned.
A new document shows that the physicist debunked the idea of Big Bang theory and initially believed that, in an expanding universe, the density of the matter must be constant. The “steady state” was revived in 1998, when two groups of astronomers concluded that the universe has not slowed down its expansion since the Big Bang; on the contrary, it accelerated its expansion, which meant that Einstein’s cosmological constant was right.
O’Raifeartaigh and his team submitted a paper about the physicist’s lost theory to the European Physical Journal, which could change the way experts view the universe. Until further notice, the Big Bang theory remains universally accepted, but after Albert Einstein, Fred Hoyle and contemporary astronomers debunked the idea that the universe appeared after an explosion, the story could be rewritten.
By Gabriela Motroc