Back in 2014, physicists on a collaboration known as BICEP2 thought they had detected gravitational waves. Those claims quickly evaporated when it became clear that they had really seen patterns from cosmic dust. But they haven’t given up the hunt. An upgraded version of the experiment, BICEP3, began taking new data…
You’ve heard it before: In space, no one can hear you scream. That’s because sound doesn’t move through a vacuum, and everyone knows that space is a vacuum. The thing is, that’s not completely true.
A pair of engineers say it's possible to detect the signatures of spacecraft traveling at relativistic speeds, and we can do so using current technologies. The trouble is, their new analysis also suggests that moving through space at ludicrous speed is more hazardous than previously thought.
A new assessment of the Cosmic Microwave Background shows that the oldest stars ignited 150 million years later than previously thought. It's a realization that's forcing cosmologists to rethink the 13.8 billion year history of the Universe.
As far as universal limits go, the speed of light gets all the glory. But did you know there is a different speed limit for particles? It's called the GZK limit, and some people think it has already been exceeded. Which has some pretty weird implications for the laws of the universe.
The entire universe was once hotter than the surface of the Sun. What became of the light emitted by that hot universe?
This image reveals something bizarre about our early universe. On a large scale, there are greater temperature fluctuations to the right of the gray line than to the left. Could we be seeing the bruise from an early smashup with another universe? Some physicists think so.
This week, the Planck Satellite team announced major findings from over a year of observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), or the radioactive sludge that lingers in our universe from the beginning of time, right after the Big Bang. And while there's a lot to digest, I wanted to give you some high points…
For the past five hundred years, we've been looking out at the universe and assuming that we, with our little planet and our little solar system, were nothing special. And then we sent out a probe to measure the cosmic microwave background. It gave us some data that makes it seem like we might be a bigger deal than…
After hydrogen and helium, lithium is the lightest and simplest element in the universe. It should have been everywhere right after the Big Bang...but the data shows a mysterious shortage. The explanation may point to an unlikely dark matter candidate.
Back in late 2010, astrophysicists spotted two gargantuan, gamma-ray emitting bubbles mysteriously coming out of the galactic center. Now the bubbles have an equally baffling companion: a strange haze of microwaves that extends through the galaxy, and "defies explanation."
While the faster-than-light neutrinos are grabbing all the physics-shattering attention, there's another strange, unexplained anomaly that might be about to rewrite our understanding of the cosmos. It's all because the universe isn't as monotonous as it should be.
This is a map of the entire universe, specifically of the cosmic microwave background radiation that formed as a remnant of the Big Bang. And the circled region is where the CMB is so cold that it defies easy explanation.
Ask scientists a question, and you might get amazing answers. Consider this video, which poses three head-scratchers: what happens to electrons at absolute zero, whatever happened to the light from the Big Bang, and are you any good at sports?