20 May 2021

How will the universe end?

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How will the universe end?
With looking at the night sky, we are amazed that how it seems endless! But what will sky look like the billions years from now? A group of scientists called "Cosmologist" spend their time thinking about that very question. The end of the universe is intimately linked to what the universe contained. Over 100 years ago Einstein proposed the theory of "General Relativity" formed of the equations that helps us understand the relationship between what the universe is made of, and its shape. It turns out that the universe could be like a ball or sphere, we call this "Positively Curved" (closed) or it could be shaped like a saddle, we call this 'Negatively Curved" (open) or it could be flat. That shape determines how will the universe live and die. We now know that the universe shape is very close to flat. However the components of the universe can still effect on its eventually fate. We can predict how the universe will change with time, if we measure the amount or density of energy of the various components in the universe today.
So, What is the Universe made of ?!
The universe contains all the things that we can see, like stars, gases and planets. We call these things ordinary matter or baryonic matter. Although we see these all around us, the total energy density of these components is actually very small (around 5 percent of the total energy of the universe). So, now let's talk about what the other 95 percent is. Just under 27 percent of the rest of the energy density of the universe is made up of what we call "Dark Matter" . Dark matter is only very weakly interactive with light. Which mean it doesn't shine or reflect light in the way the stars and planets do. But, in every other way it behaves like ordinary matters. It attracts things gravitationally. In fact, the only we can identify this dark matter is through its gravitational interaction. How things move around it and how it bends light, as it curves the space around it. We have yet discovered a speck of dark matter. But, scientists all over the world are searching to discover this matter or matters and the effects of dark matter on the universe.
But the sum of these is not still 100 percent. There remaining 68 percent of the energy density of the universe is made up of "Dark Energy" which is even more mysterious than dark matter. This dark energy doesn't behave like any of the substances we know at all! It acts more like an anti-gravity force. We say that it has gravitation pressure, which ordinary matters and dark matter do not. Instead of pulling universe together, as we are expect the gravity to do, it seems the universe is expanding apart at the ever - increasing rate. The leading idea for dark energy is that is a cosmological constant. That means it has strange property that expands as the volume of space increases to keep its energy density constant. So as the universe expands, as it is doing right now, there will be more and more dark energy. On the other hand, dark matter and baryonic matter don't expand with the universe and become more diluted (Their density will decrease). Because of the property of the cosmological constant, the feature universe become more and more dominated by dark energy become colder and colder and expanding faster and faster. Eventually the universe will run out of gas to form the stars and the stars themselves will run out of fuel and burn out and leaving universe with only black holes on it. Over the time, even these black holes will be disappeared and leaving the universe that is completely cold and empty. That is what we call "Heat Death Of The Universe". While it may sounds depressing, living in the universe that will ends its lifetime cold and devoid of life. The end fate of our universe actually has a beautiful symmetry to its hot fiery beginning. We call accelerating end state of the universe, the "DE Sitter" phase, named of the Dutch math teacher "Willem De Sitter". However we also believe that the universe had another phase of de sitter expansion in the earliest time in its life. We call this "Early Period Inflation". When shortly of the big bang the universe expanded extremely fast for a short period.
So, the universe will end as the same state as it began, accelerating. We live at the extraordinary time in the life of the universe, where we can start to understand the universe journey and view the history that show itself to all of us in the sky.
Compile & Translator: Amir Ali Esmaeilpour
Editor: Faegheh Ebrahimpour

Read 80 times Last modified on 09 Jun 2021

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