Five years ago, the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to three astronomers for their discovery, in the late 1990s, that the universe is expanding at an accelerating pace. Now, a team of scientists led by Professor Subir Sarkar of Oxford University’s Department of Physics has cast doubt on this standard cosmological concept.
The Big Bang Theory with its early period of exponential growth known as inflation is the prevailing scientific model for our universe, in which the entirety of space and time ballooned out from a very hot, very dense point into a homogeneous and ever-expanding vastness. This theory accounts for many of the physical phenomena we observe, but what if that’s not all there was to it?
The Royal Astronomical Society’s National Astronomy Meeting 2015 in Llandudno, Wales, 5—9 July
is the largest regular professional astronomy event in the UK and will see leading researchers from around the world presenting the latest work in a variety of fields. Kulvinder Singh Chadha reports from the conference.