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No. 98: Mar-Apr 1995

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Arp banished, but not redshift anomalies

Several years ago, H. Arp, a noted American astronomer, moved to Europe to continue his research because, in part, of the hostility of American astronomers to his discoveries. The problem was (and still is) that Arp found galaxies that seem to be physically interacting and, therefore, at the same distance from earth, but yet have radically different or "discordant" redshifts. Since redshifts are supposed to be a measure of distance from the earth, an anomaly comes into focus. This anomaly; that is, the credibility of the redshift distance scale, challenges the ideas of an expanding universe and the Big Bang itself.

Freed from the shackles of American scientific correctness, Arp continues to find embarrassing facts about the cosmos. For example, take galaxies NGC 450 and UGC 807, with redshifts of 1863 and 11600 km/s respectively:

"Six lines of evidence are presented showing that the two discordant redshift galaxies are interacting. One would have to invoke an enormous conspiracy of galaxies to avoid this conclusion. Yet, if accepted, this case alone brings into question the interpretation of cosmological red-shift for all galaxies."

(Moles, M., et al, including Arp; "Testing for Interaction between the Galaxies NGC 450 and UGC 807," Astrophysical Journal, 432:135, 1994.)

But discordant redshifts are not limited to distant galaxies.

"In the Milky Way, the so-called "K-effect" shows that hot, young stars seem to be exploding away from us in every direction (i.e., they have an excess redshift right here in our own galaxy). If this had been heeded when first discovered, the expansion of the universe might never have been promulgated."

(Arp, H.; "Companion Galaxies: A Test of the Assumption that Velocities Can Be Inferred from Redshifts," Astrophysical Journal, 430:74, 1994.)

Both of the above quotations are from abstracts written by T. Van Flandern in his Meta Research Bulletin, 3:51 and 3:40, 1994, respectively.

More on discordant redshifts can be found in our catalog: Stars, Galaxies, Cosmos. It is described here.

From Science Frontiers #98, MAR-APR 1995. 1995-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987