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Early universe expansion slowdown observed

Posted on Thursday, 22 November, 2012 | Comment icon 3 comments

Image credit: NASA/ESA/ESO

The expansion of the universe may be speeding up now but it appears that this wasn't always the case.

Around 15 years ago astronomers used observations of supernovae to determine that the expansion of the universe was accelerating. The remarkable discovery raised a great number of questions about the future of the cosmos, would the expansion ever slow down and what was causing it to expand at an ever growing rate ? New measurements have now helped to fill in one piece of the puzzle - approximately 11 billion years ago the universe's expansion had actually been slowing down.

What this means is that at some point in the past, the slowdown stopped and the acceleration began. Could it be that the mysterious Dark Energy thought to pervade empty space becomes stronger the more the universe expands ?

"New measurements have captured the universeís expansion when it was slowing down 11 billion years ago, before a mysterious entity called dark energy took over and began spurring the cosmos to expand faster and faster."

  View: Full article

 Source: Science News

  Discuss: View comments (3)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by ROGER on 24 November, 2012, 3:01
You know , thinking on this grand a scale makes my little , water filling brain HURT.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Atentutankh-pasheri on 26 November, 2012, 16:58
I am not convinced that we know enough even to say that universe is expanding. We have have had hi-tech instruments for only a very short period of time, and what we observe, even over a period of a century, is a very very brief snapshot of what happens, or more correctly, happened. Yes, red shifts, blue shifts, manual shifts , auto etc etc. But if universe began with a singularity, then it would expand away from this point, maybe not in a progressive manner, perhaps with bulges in the expansion in this or that direction, but there would still be a general point of origin. Where is this? in wh... [More]
Comment icon #3 Posted by FlyingAngel on 4 December, 2012, 22:19
Slow down until all expansion, then become a Big Implosion. Like your heart is pumping with blood.

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