cosmology

From Science, Nov. 12, 2019: Three years ago, a team of particle astrophysicists appeared to nix the idea that a faint glow of gamma rays in the heart of our Milky Way galaxy could be emanating from dark matter. But the conclusion that the gamma rays come instead from more ordinary sources may have been too hasty, the team reports in a new study. So the dark matter hypothesis may be alive and well after all. Fermilab scientist Dan Hooper is quoted in this article.

From Gizmodo, Nov. 6, 2019: Scientists analyzing data from a defunct satellite say we should all consider that our universe might be round, rather than flat. The consequences, they explain in a new paper, could be crisis-inducing. Fermilab scientist Dan Hooper weighs in on this tension in cosmology.

When the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope high in the Chilean Andes becomes fully operational in 2022, its 3.2-gigapixel camera will collect the same amount of data — every night. And it will do so over and over again for ten years. The sky survey will collect so much data that data scientists needed to figure out new ways for astronomers to access it.

From In the Moment, Oct. 31, 2019: In this 42-minute podcast, Fermilab scientist Dan Hooper talks about particles, relativity and the origins of our universe, outlining our growing understanding of the conditions in which our universe began, highlighting what we know about the first few seconds after the Big Bang and how several astronomers and mathematicians throughout history helped us determine that the universe was expanding.

Berkeley Lab’s Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument aimed its robotic array of 5,000 fiber-optic “eyes” at the night sky Oct. 22 to capture the first images showing its unique view of galaxy light. It was the first test DESI with its nearly complete complement of components. Fermilab contributed key elements to DESI, including the corrector barrel, hexapod, cage and CCDs. Fermilab also provided the online databases used for data acquisition and the software for the instrument’s robotic positioners.

Did you ever sit under the clear night sky and wonder “does it go on forever?” The size of the universe has long been a question that has puzzled scientists, philosophers and theologians, without a clear answer … until recently. In this 16-minute video, Fermilab scientist Don Lincoln leads you through what modern science can say about the size of the universe.

Ground-based experiments designed to study the cosmic microwave background have gotten larger and more sophisticated over time. Now, nearly 200 scientists who have up until this point worked on different competing CMB experiments have joined forces to propose a fourth-generation experiment, the largest ground-based one yet, called CMB-S4.

Early Tuesday morning, three physicists—James Peebles, Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz—were rewarded for decades seminal contributions to advancing science with a phone call from Stockholm. This year’s Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded “for contributions to our understanding of the evolution of the universe and Earth’s place in the cosmos.”

When LIGO and Virgo detected the echoes that likely came from a collision between a black hole and a neutron star, dozens of physicists began a hunt for the signal’s electromagnetic counterpart.

There’s something strange out in space. Scientists know it’s there, but not what it is. We know about visible stars and planets, gas and dust, swirling around our beautiful spiral galaxy. The stars are all rotating about the center. It takes a long time. The last time the Solar System was in this part of its orbit was at the time of the Triassic-Jurassic extinction, 200 million years ago, at the beginning of the 50 million-year reign of the dinosaurs. But the rotation is puzzling. Something more is pulling us in and stopping the galaxy flying apart.