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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CE425:

The red shift from distant galaxies has been interpreted as a Doppler effect from the universe expanding. However, it may instead be due to "tired light." Photons age and shift to the red after a very very long time.


  1. The tired light model does not account for time dilation observed in supernova light curves. A supernova that takes 20 days to decay will take 40 days to decay at a redshift of z=1.

  2. The tired light model does not produce the blackbody spectrum of the cosmic microwave background (CMB). The tired light model says that the CMB is highly shifted light from stars, but stars do not produce the perfect blackbody spectrum that we see in the CMB.

  3. The tired light model fails the Tolman surface brightness test [Lubin and Sandage 2001].

  4. There is no mechanism which can account for tired light. No known interaction can degrade a photon's energy without also changing its momentum.

  5. The Big Bang model explains other observations in addition to expansion red-shift and the cosmic microwave background.


Wright, Edward L., 1996. Errors in tired light cosmology.


  1. Lubin, Lori M. and Allan Sandage, 2001. The Tolman surface brightness test for the reality of the expansion. IV. A measurement of the Tolman signal and the luminosity evolution of early-type galaxies. Astronomical Journal (on-line preprint).

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created 2003-7-16