Universe’s Oldest Galaxies

Yesterday the Sydney Morning Herald ran a piece from Bloomberg called “Hubble ‘Time Machine’ sees universe’s oldest galaxies” the gist of which was that the Hubble had seen these galaxies, the light of which had taken about 13 billion years to reach us. Now they estimated that this was around 600 to 900 million years after the Big Bang which kind of set everything in motion.

As I understand, the speed of light is an absolute in Universal terms. By my reckoning then, that means that these galaxies must have been around 900 million light years away from where the Big Bang actually occurred. That is the maximum distance, they may have been closer.

Now, this is where the whole thing screws up in my head. If they are 900 million light years away from the Big Bang, and it took 13 billion light years for the light from them to get to us, then the closest we can be to where the Big Bang occurred would be, oh, 12.1 billion light years.

This is where I have a problem. This means that assuming there was a Big Bang, we missed out on it as we were already too far away from it to be affected by it.

Me ‘ead ‘urts!

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