The scientific community has argued about the possible age of the universe for decades. Previously, the widely accepted range was between 12 and 14 billion years. Now, it seems like experts have finally come to a common compromise. They managed to agree on the date of birth of the universe – now it is officially believed that it originated 13.77 billion years ago.
This was facilitated by research at the observatory over the Atacama Desert in Chile. Thanks to its results, researchers have taken a fresh look at the oldest light that outer space still emits. Observations included a complex of so-called cosmic homeopathy.
These methods suggest the ability to more accurately calculate the age of the universe. Observing all the principles of correct calculation, astronomers have found that the age of the universe should be about 13.77 billion years with possible corrections of 40 million years in each direction.
And although the discussion of astrophysicists on this issue is still ongoing, experts say that the preliminary estimate of the age, which was given earlier, practically coincides with the data obtained by the standard model of the Universe.
And besides, there are coincidences with measurements that were made by the satellite systems of the European Space Agency. They were able to identify and calculate the time of occurrence of the radiation remnants from the moment of the Big Bang. These studies were carried out between 2009 and 2013.
The latest data was obtained using the Atacama Cosmology Telescope. The power spectra of the cosmic microwave background were measured at certain frequencies. According to astrophysicist Steve Choi, thanks to new calculations, a figure has been identified that is optimal for the date of birth of the Universe.
This oldest light also called an “afterglow”, appeared about 380,000 years after the Big Bang. This coincides with the time of the formation of the first atoms in the universe.
See the current best image of the early universe above together with a short explanation in the caption. Currently, scientists are trying to further reverse the condition of the image to see how the universe appeared in its earliest days. For now, this is the only possible way to learn more about the period after the Big Bang.
Obtaining this image, as well as determining the approximate age of the universe could be key for the understanding of how it all began. It could also lead to new discoveries on how the universe may end billions of years from now, whether it will actually happen, and if it does – when.
All this is fascinating and all but it points me to a different question. Was there anything before the Big Bang and more specifically – what was it? How did the universe simply form 13.77 billion years ago? What caused this moment in time?
Was there a different universe before that and did it look the same way? An answer to why the early universe expanded and forced the Big Bang would be the absolute mind-bending treasure for each one of us who wants to know everything about space. Although I cannot imagine how this may be discovered, science does surprise us every day, right? There have been certain simulations and theories about this period in time but nothing conclusive.
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• Childers, T. (2019, November 11). We May Finally Understand the Moments Before the Big Bang.
• Choi, S. K. (n.d.). The Atacama Cosmology Telescope: A measurement of the Cosmic Microwave Background power spectra at 98 and 150 GHz.
• Glaser, L. (2021, January 04). Astronomers agree: Universe is nearly 14 billion years old.
• Malewar, A. (2021, January 05). Astronomers agreed that the universe is nearly 14 billion years old.
• New View of Nature’s Oldest Light Adds Twist to Debate Over Universe’s Age. (2021, January 04).