Dark Matter: The Big Bang’s Missing Link

Black holes – once again a candidate for dark matter. (Above: simulation of merging black holes. Click for animation)


“How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?”[1]
Sherlock Holmes

Holmes, the famed fictional detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle popularized that statement of logic, and highlighted the power of deductive reasoning for solving problems.  As fans of Sherlock Holmes know this adage is a key tool in the forensic tool kit for catching criminals.  Applied to science, it is also very helpful, but it cannot always be as conclusive with scientific theory as it is when narrowing the field of suspects in a crime. That is because of two ambiguous terms that science has a hard time precisely defining. Those are:

  1. Eliminate the Impossible
    This is a doubly difficult task for science, because it assumes you first have the knowledge to identify all possibilities, then secondly, have the ability to identify (via testing if it’s to be scientific) that which is  not possible. Only then can you know that you’ve eliminated the impossible. But when it comes to cosmology as physicist and creationist John Hartnett quips:

    “To make such a claim, you would have to know that you have ruled out all other possibilities. In such a case—remember this is not a laboratory experiment—you would have to be an all-knowing god.” [2]
    John Hartnett

  2. Whatever remains
    We tend to think that “whatever remains” is a single identifiable cause, but in fact, there could be multiple causes that make up “whatever remains”

So before coming out with any definitive statements,  scientists must be sure that they have carefully accounted for each of these two often difficult to identify variables. Unfortunately, that has  not been the case when it comes to  scientific speculation on Dark Matter. In that regard there are a lot of scientists jumping to the conclusion that dark matter exists, and is out there, waiting to be verified (in a lab) by scientists. Why is that? Let’s take a look at why scientists are so intent on proving that Dark Matter exists, and why it’s prudent to be skeptical about their whole approach to the existence of dark matter.

The Problem: The Universe is not behaving as (we think) it should

Scientists have identified peculiar behavior in the outer reaches of the universe. Not all galaxies are moving as they should. To visualize the problem, consider:

Have you ever watched the shadow of jets as they trace a path down a highway? At Chicago O’hare International airport for example, there are a number of runways that line up with highways, and from time to time you can see the shadow of a jet on the highway as it makes its approach. It’s always fascinating to me because when you see them in the sky – with no reference  to judge how fast they’re going – they seem to be moving in slow motion – almost hanging still in the air. But when you see the shadow on the ground you can see just how fast they’re going because the shadows are moving more than twice the speed of the cars going 60-70 miles an hour, so you know their approach speed is in excess of 120-140 miles an hour.

Now picture you’re in a jet flying at some 550-600 miles per hour. Below you catch a glimpse of the jet’s shadow on a highway and on the cars. And instead of zooming past them  at 10 times the speed of the cars as the shadow should, all the cars are keeping up with the shadow. None of the cars are getting passed. That means the cars are moving at 550 to 600 miles per hour – the same speed as the jet or 10 times faster than they should be. This is impossible. Even formula 1 race cars top out at around 225 mph. There is no way cars you see on the highway can keep pace with a cruising jet airliner. If you were to actually see and document cars that could, that would indicate that something is very, very wrong with our basic understanding of cars, highways and/or physics. This, essentially is what we see happening in the extreme reaches of the universe.

Scientists have documented through observations of hundreds of distant galaxies that they are moving 10 times faster than the current laws of physics say they should be.  If you’ve seen a representation of the movement of the planets around the sun in the solar system then you know that the inner planets move relatively quickly, and the further out from the sun that you go, the more slowly the planets move. The same is true for the movement of stars, planets and cosmic dust in distant  galaxies. If you observe the speeds of those objects in the galaxies, the further out from the center of the galaxy they are, the slower they should be moving. But that is not the case. The objects in the distant reaches of the spiral arms of the galaxies are moving at the same speed as the inner objects. According to both Newton and Einstein, that should not be. As physicist Alex Filippenko explains:

“Newton and Einstein both say the more mass you have, the more gravitational pull it will have. And the further it is from the center, the slower it should travel in orbit because the gravitational pull is weaker.”[3]
Alex Filippenko

So how are scientists currently solving that problem? Theoretical physicist Michio Kaku explains:

“The only way to resolve this paradox of galaxies which spin 10 times too fast is to assume that there is a halo, a halo of invisible matter surrounding the galaxy, keeping the galaxy whole.”[4]
Michio Kaku

Note Kaku’s answer points to another problem of galaxies moving too fast. If they’ve been spinning that fast, for what the big bang supposes is billions of years, they should have flung themselves apart by now, long ago losing the beautiful spiral shape. So the assumption is dark matter is both holding them together, and causing the unexpected high speed. That assumption is shared by most if not all big bang believing physicists. But is that really the “only” way to resolve the problem? Kaku is drawing a conclusion and as we saw above, for his conclusion to be valid, he needs to have: 1. Ruled out other impossible options and 2. identify all remaining options. But have scientists done that? For reasons identified below, the answer is clearly “no.”

New Particle or New Physics?

With such reasoning, though it is faulty, the hunt for dark matter has been on for some forty years. Initial early candidates included MACHOs (massive astrophysical compact halo object) – things made of ordinary matter that are hard to see such as black holes, neutron stars and brown dwarf stars. When they ruled our those regular matter objects (not enough of them), they started looking at exotic particles. Things such as the hard to detect Neutrinos (not enough, and too light)  and then the property changing Axions (unstable, but dark matter is stable so not a good fit).  Having ruled those out too, and no longer having a suitable candidate made of  ordinary matter, they had to turn to something less ordinary and more exotic (though some would say imaginary): a new particle to add to the collection of particles in the standard model of particle physics. They called this new particle a WIMP (Weakly interacting Massive Particle) and it has surprising properties, some which seem  magical:

  • Found everywhere and abundantly in the universe
  •   “Weakly” interacting so hard to detect/Undetectable
       (Doesn’t reflect light, doesn’t radiate light)
  •   Has mass, but doesn’t interact with mass except through gravity
       ( In theory billions are passing through your body right now)
  • Not moving too fast (not moving at the speed of light like photons)
  • All particles have an intrinsic property called spin – which includes a direction and speed. This particle might have an unusual spin value
  • Capable of clumping like dust

So scientists know what they’re looking for. And thousands of scientists[5] using a number of different detection methods have been searching for over 40 years and all have come up empty.  (Since side bars are hard to fit on a blog page I’ve put this side bar on various attempts to identify dark matter in this note here [6]) Perhaps instead of looking for a new particle, they should be looking for a new theory.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it

Santaya’s maxum appears appropriate here. In the late 1800’s scientists were faced with a similar problem. They noticed that the orbit of Mercury was not the uniform orbit that traced over itself as expected, but rather it moved forward slightly – or precessed as they call it. At that time, they made the mistake of doing what they’re doing now: they invoked unseen and thus “dark” matter – either in the form of an unseen planet (Vulcan) or like today’s search some unseen unknown type of matter – to explain the movement of the orbit away from what was expected.

That was all before Einstein’s Theory of Relativity updated Newton’s law of gravity, and in so doing, more precisely defined how gravity worked. With Einstein’s new equations, scientists were able to resolve the problem of Mercury’s precession without the need for Dark Matter.  So what was needed then was not a new unknown, unseen substance (or planet), but a new or better theory.  This looks precisely like the situation we’re in today with unexplained motion of distant spiral galaxies. As physicist and creationist John Hartnett suggests, perhaps what’s needed now is what was needed then – not a new particle or substance, but a new theory. [7]

Why are Physicists so intent on finding a New Particle instead of  New Theory?

There is an intense search to find the “missing” dark matter that has the feel of evolutionists searching for the “missing” evolutionary links. (Also known as transitional forms.) Why do evolutionists need to find the missing links? Because it is required for Darwinian evolution. Without them Darwinian evolution cannot be true. So if missing links are never found (and undisputed links haven’t been) then evolution cannot be true. Likewise for cosmology and the big bang theory. Without dark matter, the big bang theory cannot be true. Why? Because as I explain here and here, the big bang theory cannot explain the formation of stars without dark matter. And obviously, without the formation of stars, you have no galaxy, no planets, no life, and you and I wouldn’t exist. So the big bang requires dark matter to exist to remain a viable theory. Or as Hartnett puts it:

Because the universe itself supposedly constructed galaxies and clusters from only matter under the influence of gravitation, it follows that there must be an enormous content of invisible matter that cannot be seen.[8] (emphasis added)
John Hartnett

So it all becomes clear now. Many scientists hold to philosophical materialism  – the belief that only matter exists; there is no God. So they are unwilling to consider another theory because another theory could sound the death knell for their preferred cosmology: the big bang theory.  But if scientists are truly after the truth, what should it matter if they learn the big bang theory isn’t true, as long as they discover the truth? Just as they learned that the Newtonian gravitational “pull” was the incorrect way to view gravity (for details, see here),  what should it matter if dark matter exists or not – so long as we understand the true reason why distant galaxies are moving 10 times faster than expected? Which leads us to another conclusion: big bang cosmologists are not after the truth, they are after theories that will support their materialist philosophy which is anchored by the big bang theory. 

This practice of scientists hiding from the truth has been demonstrated by the fact that not only are cosmologists drawing conclusions about the cosmos based on philosophy, not evidence; but on top of that, they are trying to conceal the fact that their conclusions are based on philosophy, not evidence.  Physicist George Ellis, Emeritus Professor of applied mathematics at the University of Cape Town in an interview put it this way:

“People need to be aware that there is a range of models that could explain the observations,” Ellis argues. “For instance, I can construct you a spherically symmetrical universe with the earth at its center, and you cannot disprove it based on observations.” Ellis has published a paper on this. You can only exclude it on philosophical grounds. In my view there is absolutely nothing wrong in that. What I want to bring into the open is the fact that we are using philosophical criteria in choosing our models. A lot of cosmology tries to hide that.”[9]
George Ellis

Take a moment to let what Ellis is saying sink in: he can provide a theory that disproves the big bang theory – and you cannot disprove this theory based on observational evidence. In other words, we can completely throw out the big bang, use Ellis’ model and this new model would explain everything we observe, no big bang theory needed. Is Ellis really saying that? Yes because  the big bang requires the cosmological principle to be true. The cosmological principle states “Viewed on a sufficiently large scale, the properties of the universe are the same for all observers.”[10] This means that the universe must be homogenous (smooth, evenly distributed), and  isotropic (looks the same in every direction), with the earth not being at the center of it. If  those conditions are not true, then the big bang theory is not true. As John Hartnett explains:

 “…Those equations [The Friedmann/Lemaitre solution to Einstein’s field equations which describe the big bang expanding universe] for them to be valid require the universe to be homogeneous and isotropic. If that’s not the case, then those equations are invalid.”[11]  (emphasis added)
John Hartnett

Yet Ellis is saying he can construct a model that does not look the same to all observers – it looks like a sphere with the earth in the center. A sphere with  earth in the center is not homogenous.  Thus if Ellis’ model is true, the Big Bang theory can’t be true. How do big bang theorists refute Ellis’ model? Not by evidence, because they can’t, the evidence does not contradict his theory. Thus it’s only on philosophical grounds, or as I’d put it – religious grounds that they can reject it. They believe so strongly in big bang cosmology, they refuse to consider anything else.

Non-(new)particle Dark Matter Explanations

There  are at least two explanations for the motion of distant galaxies that do not require a new particle added to the standard model of particle physics.

One features a spherical symmetrical universe (such as what Ellis described).  Proposed by Israeli theoretical physicist Moshe Carmeli, it also requires an expanding universe as the current Friedmann/Lemaitre model does.  But as Hartnett points out, Carmeli’s model can explain the motion of distant galaxies moving 10 times faster than expected without the need for dark matter.[12] (Nor does it require dark energy for that matter.) It explains the motion of the galaxies by the motion of space itself.

Another, from a recent proposal from a NASA scientist proposes that dark matter is actually “…made of black holes formed during the first second of our universe’s existence…[13]  Alexander Kashlinsky,  an astrophysicist at NASA Goddard speculates:

 “If this is correct, then all galaxies, including our own, are embedded within a vast sphere of black holes each about 30 times the sun’s mass.”[14]
Alexander Kashlinsky

If this is true, then scientists would have justified their idea of dark matter. Is this a problem for me? No, for two reasons: 1. Unlike materialist scientists I actually am interested in the truth – where ever it lies, because as one theologian said “All truth is God’s truth.”  And 2) If this is the case, they have solved one big bang problem only to run into another brick wall for the big bang:  Since black holes arranged in a spherical structure around galaxies imply matter that was originally not homogenous, this proposal flies in the face of the cosmological principle which, as noted above is required by big bang cosmology. How do black holes with roughly equivalent masses, conveniently wind up arranged in a spherical structure? Looks like the work of a fine tuner.  Thus if this turns out to be true, big bang apologists have some explaining to do, because the cosmological principal which the big bang hangs on, will have been broken. But given their history, I have no doubt that big bang theorists will come up with some add on story to explain why the cosmological principle is really not violated. My guess: the story will be along the lines of  some modification to the supposed inflationary period that also solves another mass distribution problem for the big bang: the horizon problem.


So what should be clear is, it is not the case that there are no other possible solutions to the distant galaxies moving to fast problem.  (Note Carmeli’s theory is merely a possibility, it is not proven). It is the case that there are solutions that fly in face of big bang assumptions, thus disqualifying the big bang theory – and making such theories a target of elimination for big bang proponents.

So what we see is that when physicists say “the only possible solution is dark matter” what they mean is, it’s the only possible solution – within the bounds they are willing to consider. And the only theory within the bounds they’re willing to consider is the Big Bang theory and its various and numerous add-ins – like  inflation and dark matter. Indeed there are so many add-ins to fix problems where the big bang does not fit observations, that many physicists have objected to both the big bang, and the mindset that says only big bang research will be done. (See the “Open letter the the scientific community” originally published in New Scientist, May 22, 2004 here.)

And so we’re back to my contention that materialist cosmologists are not after truth, what they’re looking to do is prop up the big bang theory. And though the solution could quite conceivable lie outside of what is allowable in the big bang theory, big bang cosmologists are unwilling to consider such possibilities.  Is that the mark of a scientist seeking truth, or of a religious adherent defending their faith at whatever cost?

Thus for scientists, this is not a mere matter of finding a missing piece to complete a theory, or the quest to discover truth. For big bang adherents, its a matter of life or death for the theory that is the backbone of their secular theology – a theology that preaches a universe that created itself uncaused, and formed the intricate, fine tuned goldilocks[15] galaxy we live in through the power of gravity.  Yet the gravity we can account for is insufficient to do what is claimed. What’s a resourceful religious adherent not bound by the dictates of a Holy God to do to keep the faith alive? What else? Make it up, and hope they can find some evidence that reality matches their hypothetical fantasy known as the big bang theory, while silencing or ridiculing any dissenters. That, unfortunately has become for cosmology business as usual. Because they refuse to admit that in the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

Duane Caldwell | posted 5/30/2016 | printer friendly version


  1 Sherlock Holmes, The Sign of the Four, 1890, p. 111 Ref. from Wikiquotes, accessed 5/22/2016,  https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Sherlock_Holmes

  2. John G. Hartnett, Why is Dark Matter everywhere in the cosmos?, CMI March 15, 2015, http://creation.com/why-dark-matter-everywhere

  3. Alex Filippenko ref. from The Universe Episode Dark Matter/Dark Energy alternate title “Dark Matter”, Documentary, 2008

  4. Michio Kaku, The Universe Episode Dark Matter/Dark Energy , Documentary, 2008

  5. There are “thousands” of scientists working in underground labs (to filter out cosmic rays) looking for dark matter. (Space’s Darkest Secret, Documentary, 2015)

  6. Some of those searching  for dark matter, and the techniques they’re using (in no particular order)

Dan Bauer, Fermilab, Sudan National Laboratory, Sudan, Minnesota Fermilab has reconfigured an iron ore mine into a research facility where they are running the “Cryogenic Dark Matter Search” (CDMS) about a half mile under ground. They’ve designed a dark matter detector consisting of a germanium (a dense metal packed with atoms) and silicon chip about the size of a hockey puck frozen to just above absolute zero with built in temperature detectors. Bauer explains, “If a dark matter particle comes through and hits a nucleus, it will actually change the temperature of the crystal very slightly. And so we’re looking for that tiny change of temperature in the crystal to signal that a dark matter particle has passed by.” The Universe episode “Dark Matter”, documentary, 2008

Proj Juan Collar of the University of Chicago in Sudberry, Canada Collar has been searching for dark matter WIMPs for 30 years by listening for a certain type of bubbles. Speaking of his detection equipment, he explains: “We put a liquid in there – a rather special liquid. What we call a super heated liquid – it makes it sensitive to radiation. So when particles strike the liquid…they produce bubbles. The number of bubbles tells us about the nature of the particle that interacted.” (Space’s Darkest Secret, Documentary, 2015)

Prof  David Charlton, University of Birmingham Director, Atlas Detector, CERN Since they’re looking for a new particle, one would expect they would run an experiment at the LHC (Large Hadron Collider) at CERN in Switzerland. The Atlas detector  has a 100 million detectors which produces the equivalent of a digital photograph, 40 million times a second. Scientist smash protons together, record the event, then troll through the data, looking for the signature of dark matter (an imbalance in the momentum of the collision signifying the loss of an unknown particle.) (Space’s Darkest Secret, Documentary, 2015)

Prof. Katie Frieze, University of Michigan Frieze is building a dark matter camera to track where dark matter particles are coming from. The camera would use “quadrillions” of DNA strands attached to a thin gold plate. The dark matter would collide with an atom of gold, knock it forward through stands of DNA breaking them in sequence and thus leaving a trace of the particle’s trajectory. (Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman episode Is there a shadow Universe?”, documentary, 2014 )

Prof. Dan Hooper, University of Chicago Hooper uses the Fermi Gamma Ray detecting telescope in orbit to look for dark matter particles in space that may have collided with matter, resulting in a release of gamma rays. Hooper is looking for a radiation burst in space with a particular signature believed to be indicative of a dark matter particle collision with regular matter. (Space’s Darkest Secret, Documentary, 2015)

Prof. Leslie Rosenberg, University of Washington Rosenberg is looking for a special type of WIMP – the theoretical, never before seen Axion. His experiment – the ADMX (Axion Dark Matter Experiment) uses a super conducting magnet to create a strong field  that would push the Axions out of the magnetic field to a nearby waiting detector. (Space’s Darkest Secret, Documentary, 2015)

  7. John Hartnett, Starlight, Time and the New Physics, Australia: Creation Book Publishers, 2007  also Starlight, Time and the New Physics, CMI DVD Documentary, 2009

Hartnett describes the New Physics and in so doing explains the difficult problem of distant starlight, and the high galactic speeds without the need for dark matter.

  8. John Hartnett, Why is Dark Matter everywhere in the cosmos? (A product of the Dark Side), CMI, March 31, 2015, http://creation.com/why-dark-matter-everywhere

  9. George Ellis interviewed by W. Wayt Gibbs, referenced from Costner, Lita Gen. Editor, Evolutionists say the Oddest Things, Powder Springs GA: Creation Publishers, 2015 p. 110

  10. William Keel, astronomer  referenced from Cosmological Principle, Wikipedia, accessed 5/26/2016, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmological_principle
. John Hartnett, In the Middle of the Action, CMI DVD Documentary, 2009

  12. For an overview of what Hartnett calls Carmelian physics see Starlight, Time and the New Physics, CMI DVD Documentary, 2009

  13. Alexander Kashlinsky in NASA Scientist Suggests Possible Link Between Primordial Black Holes and Dark Matter, NASA article, May 24, 2016 http://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/nasa-scientist-suggests-possible-link-between-primordial-black-holes-and-dark-matter

  14. Kashlinsky, NASA Scientist Suggests Possible Link

  15. The “Goldilocks” zone is used to describe the fine tuning of many parameters of a planet capable of supporting life, that like Goldilock’s porridge, is “not too hot, not too cold” (not to close or far from an appropriate star) along with a host of other requirements such as having liquid water, being the right size,  protected by a magnetic field, etc.

A team of NASA scientists led by Alexander Kashlinsky suspects dark matter is made of black holes formed during the first second of our universe’s existence. (Above simulated picture of merging black holes) Click for animation http://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/nasa-scientist-suggests-possible-link-between-primordial-black-holes-and-dark-matter

Credit: SXS Lensing  



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