Can you imagine the Infinite?

Apr 02, 13 Can you imagine the Infinite?

The youth of the Damanhur Middle School interviewed Falco for Qui Damanhur Ragazzi, a self-produced journal made by the students themselves. Here is the first of a series of their questions and Falco’s answers. Enjoy!

Samuele (8th grade): In class we talked about the infinite. I find it hard to imagine. Can you imagine it and how?

Falco: There are various ways to understand it. Generally, we consider as infinite a space that is not deterministic and not determined. Where, for example, galaxies are still expanding in the universe, we imagine that in this dimension, space-time is formed gradually as the universe continues to expand. We are talking about a vastness that is not easily measurable. But that which is large and that which can be measured varies depending on the technology. Until 1950-60, people thought that the whole universe was our own galaxy. Then, they discovered another 100 billion galaxies, and each one of them is connected to other islands of galaxies in other clusters of suns, something that cannot be easily measured. For example, there are stars, blue giants, millions of times larger than our sun, blacks holes 1,000 million times larger than our galaxy, which contains 100 billion stars … These numbers are difficult to grasp, we don’t have the measures. At this time, the universe has a measured depth of 14.5 billion light years. Our galaxy is small, a kind of disk, 100 thousand light years wide, and 20,000 thick at the highest point.