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Articles on Cosmology

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Programmers will find ways to harness the massively distributed global internet. Night Owl City

Can the mother of all supercomputers save us from Big Brother?

Today I’m annoyed at Facebook. Among the amazingly witty and touching postings from my friends and Amnesty International are “pages you might like” and advertisements for things I don’t need, especially…
Despite ongoing research, we still know little about the universe’s earliest moments. tychay

‘Melbourne researchers rewrite Big Bang theory’ … or not

Earlier this week, headlines in several major newspapers screamed: “Melbourne researchers rewrite Big Bang theory”. You might think this is a reference to a new script for a popular TV show, but as a cosmologist…
The Big Bang theory and the existence of God are ideas often grappled with when thinking about how the universe was created. DamienHR

The origin of the universe: is there a role for God?

Last week’s Global Atheist Convention and debates between prominent atheists and theologians in the Australian media has seen arguments about the existence of God getting a thorough airing. In my view…
Collectively, these dishes would have the power to detect signals from the earliest years of the universe. AAP/West Australian Government

Supercomputer readies scientists for world’s most powerful telescope

A new University of Western Australia supercomputer that is 10,000 times faster than the average office PC could help scientists to develop the data processing capacity for the world’s largest telescope…

Milky Way’s black hole devouring asteroids

X-ray flares from the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Milky Way may be caused by the regular vaporisation of…
Two “new” black holes, in relatively nearby galaxies, are the largest ever found. tsand

Scary monsters (and supermassive black holes)

Black holes have long been the staple of science fiction, being monstrous beasts with a gravitational pull that prevents even light from escaping. As well as being useful plot devices, offering mechanisms…
“Infinite” is where we get to when we reach the limits of our understanding. truly0utrageous

Black holes might exist, but let’s stay sceptical

Peruse the astrophysical literature and you could be forgiven for thinking black holes exist. But do they really? What makes a black hole special is its event horizon: a no-return gateway to an unknowable…
Most galaxies – including ours – host a hungry monster. allthecolours

Black hole noms: planetary treats for the galactic monster

What do black holes eat? And do supermassive black holes have fiercer appetites? Let’s remind ourselves of the facts. Lurking at the centre of the Milky Way is a monster, a giant black hole with a mass…
If the signs are right, fundamental equations of cosmology may need altering. waljoris

Is life on Earth due to a quirk in the laws of physics?

A radical discovery by my colleagues and I – reported this week in Physical Review Letters – could help explain why it was possible for life (at least as we know it) to develop on Earth, but not in other…
Finding quasars will help us understand how galaxies were formed. NASA

Back to where we started: tracing the origins of galaxies

Today, the University of Melbourne’s Professor Stuart Wyithe was awarded the 2011 Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year for his work on the origin of galaxies. The multi-award winning…

Black hole jets revealed

The innermost parts of a black hole’s active jets have been revealed for the first time. The observation, by NASA scientists…
A universe composed differently could still support complex life. Susan NYC

Peer Review: The Fallacy of Fine-Tuning

Welcome to Peer Review, a series in which we ask leading academics to review books written by people working in the same field. Here Geraint Lewis, Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Sydney…

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