Universe may not be expanding forever! Instead it will collapse in a “big crunch”.
There is one particular theory for dark energy which suggests that Universe will not be expanding forever. Instead it will collapse. Now a new study has picked up on this one and suggested that t could happen much sooner than anyone expected – although still on the order of billion years away.
End of the Universe has been haunting cosmologists for nearly a century. They have been obsessed with the question of whether gravity will be behind the collapsing of the Universe, something as a reverse version of the Big Bang – Big Crunch Theory. Or the Universe will expand forever.
When the dark energy was discovered, it seemed to settle the question. If the Universe is expanding and this process is faster than it was before, because a powerful force is overcoming gravity, then how could it ever reverse?
Instead of waiting for the collision, the dispersion could happen faster and faster until the galaxies and starts lose touch with each other.
Two physicists, Nemanja Kaloper from the University of California, Davis, and Antonio Padilla of the University of Nottingham, have attempted to answer the unanswered – what is the dark energy. Their paper was published in the Physical Review Letters and suggests that dark energy will dominate the Universe right before the “turnaround” leading to eventual collapse. The date cannot be set as there are some thing that have the major role, like natural choice for the strengths of forces, but it can be sooner than anyone expected.
“A single, technically natural choice for the slope ensures that the collapse is imminent and is preceded by the current stage of cosmic acceleration,” write physicists Nemanja Kaloper from the University of California, Davis, and Antonio Padilla of the University of Nottingham.
Their solution is very elegant but it is not quite clear whether they are talking about Universe that we line in right now, because it is way to early.
The work published in the Physical Review Letters relies on previous paper by the same physicists. In this paper they tackled the question of why observations of the size of the cosmological constant are wildly out of keeping with modeled results. As they said, the result is very simple reformulation of General Relativity. The energy exists everywhere (vacuum energy density) in the Universe. This energy does not contribute to the curvature of the Universe but instead it influences gravity.
Under their model, the lifespan of the Universe is predicted by the speed at which vacuum energy changing. The authors said, that the value of 10-39 is accurate with the observation of expansion right now. Padilla said, that this numbers are just beginning and that they have to look into this closely in order to set a date. But for now it could kick in in a few tens of billions of years. Maybe sooner.
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