Portal:Cosmology

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The Cosmology Portal

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Cosmology is the study of the origin, evolution, and eventual fate of the universe. Physical cosmology is the scholarly and scientific study of the origin, evolution, large-scale structures and dynamics, and ultimate fate of the universe, as well as the scientific laws that govern these realities. Religious cosmology (or mythological cosmology) is a body of beliefs based on the historical, mythological, religious, and esoteric literature and traditions of creation and eschatology.

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Dark matter is one of the greatest mysteries in modern astrophysics. It is a kind of matter that accounts for gravitational effects that appear to be the result of invisible mass. Dark matter cannot be seen directly with telescopes; evidently it neither emits nor absorbs light or other electromagnetic radiation at any significant level. It is otherwise hypothesized to simply be matter that is not reactant to light.[1] Instead, the existence and properties of dark matter are inferred from its gravitational effects on visible matter, radiation, and the large-scale structure of the universe. According to the Planck mission team, and based on the standard model of cosmology, the total mass–energy of the known universe contains 4.9% ordinary matter, 26.8% dark matter and 68.3% dark energy. Thus, dark matter is estimated to constitute 84.5% of the total matter in the universe, while dark energy plus dark matter constitute 95.1% of the total content of the universe.

Trivia

Did you know...

  • ... that space is flexible, and has been expanding at a measurable rate since the beginning of time?
  • ... that most of the atoms in our bodies were created in stars through fusion?
  • ... that the Earth isn't flat, but the universe is? Based on Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity, there are three possible shapes that the Universe may take: open, closed, and flat. Once again, measurements by WMAP on the CMBR have revealed a monumental confirmation – the Universe is flat.
  • ... that the average density of visible matter in the universe is about 10−30 g/cm3?
  • ... that the Earth is neither the center of the Universe nor the galaxy, because the universe has no center?
  • ... that considering only the largest structures, the Universe is made up of filaments, voids, superclusters, galaxy groups and clusters? By combining galaxy groups and clusters, we come up with superclusters. Some superclusters in turn form part of walls, which are also parts of filaments.

People

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Edwin Powell Hubble was an American astronomer who played a crucial role in establishing the field of extragalactic astronomy and is generally regarded as one of the most important observational cosmologists of the 20th century. Hubble is known for showing that the recessional velocity of a galaxy increases with its distance from the earth, implying the universe is expanding. Known as "Hubble's law", this relation had been discovered previously by Georges Lemaître, a Belgian priest/astronomer who published his work in a less visible journal. There is still much controversy surrounding the issue, and some argue that it should be referred to as "Lemaître's law", although this change has not taken hold in the astronomy community.

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  1. ^ Trimble, V. (1987). "Existence and nature of dark matter in the universe". Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics. 25: 425–472. Bibcode:1987ARA&A..25..425T. doi:10.1146/annurev.aa.25.090187.002233. 
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