February 3, 2010 | David F. Coppedge

Universe Has a Run-Down Feeling

There’s 30 times more entropy in the universe than thought, according to Dr. Charley Lineweaver at the Australian National University.  PhysOrg said that Lineweaver and a PhD student Charles Egan measured the entropy of the universe.  It looks like it is feeling pretty run down. 

“We considered all contributions to the entropy of the observable universe: stars, star light, the cosmic microwave background.  We even made an estimate of the entropy of dark matter.  But it’s the entropy of super-massive black holes that dominates the entropy of the universe.  When we used the new data on the number and size of super-massive black holes, we found that the entropy of the observable universe is about 30 times larger than previous calculations,” said Mr. Egan.
    “Contrary to common opinion, the maintenance of all the complicated structures we see around us — galaxies, stars, hurricanes and kangaroos — have the net effect of increasing the disorder and entropy of the universe.  But to be fair, their contributions are negligible compared to the entropy of super-massive black holes,” added Dr Lineweaver.

This has implications for how much more time life has to emerge.  Once the entropy grows to its maximum (the so-called heat death of the universe), all energy transformations will be impossible, and the same for life.  A good question is why the entropy started out so low – i.e., highly-ordered – at the beginning.

Hurry!  You only have billions of years left to evolve!  Whether evolutionists will yawn, or will question the measurements of the entropy of unobservable entities, remains to be seen.  Still, it’s a reminder that the universe will run down over time.  It will take something able to work outside the universe and time to stop the inevitable.  For three great Christian physicists who took part in the energy conservation revolution of the 19th century, see our biographies of Maxwell, Joule, and Thomson.

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Categories: Cosmology, Physics

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