Articles on Cosmology

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Artist’s impression of the collision of two neutron stars, the source of the latest gravitational waves detected. National Science Foundation/LIGO/Sonoma State University/A. Simonnet

At last, we’ve found gravitational waves from a collapsing pair of neutron stars

Astronomers have finally confirmed the source of the latest detected gravitational waves was the collission of a pair of neutron stars, what they'd been searching for all along.
Part of the new map of dark matter made from gravitational lensing measurements of 26 million galaxies in the Dark Energy Survey. Chihway Chang/University of Chicago/DES collaboration

What a new map of the universe tells us about dark matter

We still can't see the dark matter thought to make up about a quarter of the universe, but at least now we have a map of its structure.
The Andromeda Galaxy, just part of a finely tuned universe. Flickr/NASA, ESA, J. Dalcanton, B.F. Williams, and L.C. Johnson (University of Washington), the PHAT team, and R. Gendler

Book review: Do we live in A Fortunate Universe?

A new book explores some of the big questions of why the universe exists and why it seems fine-tuned for life.
There are two broad ways to measure the expansion of the universe. One is based on the cosmic microwave background, shown here, along with our own galaxy viewed in microwave wavelengths. ESA, HFI & LFI consortia (2010)

From dark gravity to phantom energy: what’s driving the expansion of the universe?

The universe is expanding faster than expected, but we don't know what's driving it. Here are a few of the possible explanations, from dark energy to a modification of general relativity.
When two black holes collide, the resulting gravitational ripples can be felt across the cosmos. Henze, NASA

Gravitational waves discovered: the universe has spoken

The detection of gravitational waves is the final confirmation of Einstein's theory of general relativity, and opens up a new window into the cosmos.
A painting from Botha’s Shelter in the Ndedema Gorge in the Drakensburg, said to be home to a rich tapestry of San art and life. Wits University Press

An enigmatic theme in San rock paintings is finally unlocked

Formlings are representations of flying termites and their underground nests. They are associated with botantical subjects considered by the San to have great spiritual significance.
Dark matter is notoriously hard to detect, but a new experiment might finally shed light on this mysterious substance. Dirk Dallas/Flickr

How we plan to bring dark matter to light

A new detector built deep underground in a gold mine will hopefully unravel the mystery of dark matter.
Like a cosmic roulette wheel, we exist because of a very lucky combination of factors. NASA/JPL-Caltech

We are lucky to live in a universe made for us

If some of the laws of physics were only infinitesimally different, we would simply not exist. It almost looks like the universe itself was built for life. But how can that be?

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