Science

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In 1929 Edwin Hubble made an astonishing discovery. He pointed out that galaxies outside the Milky Way are moving farther away from us. Furthermore the speed of this moving galaxies is proportional to their size. This discovery led to the most widely accepted theory regarding the birth of the universe, the big bang. This theory states that at the beginning of time, the universe was just a single point in space. The exact process that determined the big bang is still unknown. However we now know that the universe is almost 14 billions years old, it is composed of countless galaxies, each one containing hundreds of billions of stars and even more planets. Taking these numbers into account it is quite arrogant to assume that we are the only intelligent life forms in the universe. However there is no clear evidence to state otherwise therefore we must only rely on ourselves to elucidate the mysteries of the universe.

According to the big bang theory, the universe was initially in a hot and dense state. Immediately after the big bang the universe suffered an extremely powerful expansion called “inflation”. Everything that happened in first 10−11 seconds is speculative since it cannot be tested using present technologies. However the next stage of the process was the formation of protons and neutrons. From this point on the process was somehow slower. It took about 379 000 years for the first atoms to be created. While the matter was randomly scattered across the universe, denser regions of it attracted other nearby matter and therefore became even denser creating different types of celestial bodies and structures. This is the most logical theory that we have so far regarding the birth of the universe. However the theory is based on a lot of assumptions such as the universality of physical laws. Furthermore many important questions remain unanswered. Perhaps the biggest enigma is the energy that powered the creation of the universe.

Although a lot of mysteries remain unsolved regarding the big bang theory, nowadays we have the advantage of studying a relatively young universe. Due to the continuous expansion of the universe, its structure will be very different one trillion years from now and future astronomers from our galaxy will not benefit from the evidence that we have nowadays. When the universe will be one hundred times older than it is today, our galaxy will blend with Andromeda and will create a brand new galaxy with a completely different structure. It is impossible to predict how advance future technologies will work but it is safe to assume that the older and wider the universe will be the more difficult it will be to study its creation.

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