Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




TIME AND SPACE
First Hundred Thousand Years of Our Universe
by Lynn Yarris
Berkeley CA (SPX) Aug 09, 2013


The microwave sky as seen by Planck. Mottled structure of the CMB, the oldest light in the universe, is displayed in the high-latitude regions of the map. The central band is the plane of our galaxy, the Milky Way. (Courtesy of European Space Agency).

Mystery fans know that the best way to solve a mystery is to revisit the scene where it began and look for clues. To understand the mysteries of our universe, scientists are trying to go back as far they can to the Big Bang.

A new analysis of cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation data by researchers with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has taken the furthest look back through time yet - 100 years to 300,000 years after the Big Bang - and provided tantalizing new hints of clues as to what might have happened.

"We found that the standard picture of an early universe, in which radiation domination was followed by matter domination, holds to the level we can test it with the new data, but there are hints that radiation didn't give way to matter exactly as expected," says Eric Linder, a theoretical physicist with Berkeley Lab's Physics Division and member of the Supernova Cosmology Project. "There appears to be an excess dash of radiation that is not due to CMB photons."

Our knowledge of the Big Bang and the early formation of the universe stems almost entirely from measurements of the CMB, primordial photons set free when the universe cooled enough for particles of radiation and particles of matter to separate. These measurements reveal the CMB's influence on the growth and development of the large-scale structure we see in the universe today.

Linder, working with Alireza Hojjati and Johan Samsing, who were then visiting scientists at Berkeley Lab, analyzed the latest satellite data from the European Space Agency's Planck mission and NASA's Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), which pushed CMB measurements to higher resolution, lower noise, and more sky coverage than ever before.

"With the Planck and WMAP data we're really pushing back the frontier and looking further back in the history of the universe, to regions of high energy physics we previously could not access," Linder says. "While our analysis shows the CMB photon relic afterglow of the Big Bang being followed mainly by dark matter as expected, there was also a deviation from the standard that hints at relativistic particles beyond CMB light."

Linder says the prime suspects behind these relativistic particles are "wild" versions of neutrinos, the phantomlike subatomic particles that are the second most populous residents (after photons) of today's universe. The term "wild" is used to distinguish these primordial neutrinos from those expected within particle physics and being observed today. Another suspect is dark energy, the anti-gravitational force that accelerates our universe's expansion. Again, however, this would be from the dark energy we observe today.

"Early dark energy is a class of explanations for the origin of cosmic acceleration that arises in some high energy physics models," Linder says. "While conventional dark energy, such as the cosmological constant, are diluted to one part in a billion of total energy density around the time of the CMB's last scattering, early dark energy theories can have 1-to-10 million times more energy density."

Linder says early dark energy could have been the driver that seven billion years later caused the present cosmic acceleration. Its actual discovery would not only provide new insight into the origin of cosmic acceleration, but perhaps also provide new evidence for string theory and other concepts in high energy physics.

"New experiments for measuring CMB polarization that are already underway, such as the POLARBEAR and SPTpol telescopes, will enable us to further explore primeval physics, Linder says.

Linder, Hojjati and Samsing are the authors of a paper describing these results in the journal Physical Review Letters titled "New Constraints on the Early Expansion History of the Universe." Hojjati is now with the Institute for the Early Universe in South Korea, and Samsing is with the DARK Cosmology Centre in Denmark.

This research was primarily supported by the DOE Office of Science.

.


Related Links
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab)
Supernova Cosmology Project
Understanding Time and Space






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





TIME AND SPACE
International Team On Keck Observatory Strengthens Big Bang Theory
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Jun 10, 2013
An international team of scientists using the most powerful telescope on Earth has discovered that the moments just after the Big Bang happened more like the theory predicts, eliminating a significant discrepancy that troubled physicists for two decades. The discovery will be published in the international journal Astronomy and Astrophysics on June 6. One of the most important problems in ... read more


TIME AND SPACE
NASA Selects Launch Services Contract for OSIRIS-REx Mission

Environmental Controls Move Beyond Earth

Bad night's sleep? The moon could be to blame

Moon Base and Beyond

TIME AND SPACE
NASA launches new Russian-language Mars website

Big ice may explain Mars' double-layer craters

Full Curiosity Traverse Passes One-Mile Mark

Curious craters on Mars said result of impacts into ancient ice

TIME AND SPACE
College of Law launches doctorate in space law

Study: Teleportation would have a slight time-to-transmit problem

NASA technologist makes traveling to hard-to-reach destinations easier

First Liquid Hydrogen Tank Barrel Segment for SLS Core Completed

TIME AND SPACE
China launches three experimental satellites

Medical quarantine over for Shenzhou-10 astronauts

China's astronauts ready for longer missions

Chinese probe reaches record height in space travel

TIME AND SPACE
Japanese Cargo Spacecraft Docks with ISS

NASA's Firestation on way to ISS

Weekly recap from the International Space Station expedition lead scientist

NSBRI Wants Ideas To Support Space Crew Health and Performance

TIME AND SPACE
Next Ariane 5 is readied to receive its dual-satellite payload

Russia to restart Proton rocket launches after crash

Japanese rocket takes supplies, robot to space station

SpaceX Awarded Launch Reservation Contract for Largest Canadian Space Program

TIME AND SPACE
Astronomers Image Lowest-mass Exoplanet Around a Sun-like Star

New Explorer Mission Chooses the 'Just-Right' Orbit

'Blinking' stellar system may yield clues to planet formation

Pulsating star sheds light on exoplanet

TIME AND SPACE
New 'weird' material may be new class of solids, researchers say

Large Area Picosecond Photodetectors push timing envelope

Seeing depth through a single lens

Altering organic molecules' interaction with light




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement