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Yale Astronomers Use Gravitational Lensing to Probe Elusive Dark Energy

10/13/2010 06:39PM

Yale Astronomers Use Gravitational Lensing to Probe Elusive Dark Energy

A team of astronomers at Yale has used Abell 1689, a massive galaxy cluster, as a cosmic magnifying lens to study the nature of dark energy for the first time. When combined with existing techniques, their results significantly improve current measurements of the mass and energy content of the universe. The way in which the images were distorted from gravitational lensing gave the astronomers clues as to the geometry of the space that lies between the Earth, the galaxy cluster and the distant galaxies.


Comments:

  • IGastaldo [Ivan Gastaldo]
  • 10/14/2010 05:03AM
Quote from the last paragraph...<br>"The result confirms previous findings that the nature of dark energy likely corresponds to a <b>flat universe</b>. In this scenario, the expansion of the universe will continue to accelerate and the universe will expand forever."<br><br>The idea of a FLAT UNIVERSE escapes me completely... (or maybe I misunderstood?)<br>I fully understand the Universe expansion and acceleration, but I have a hard time with the "flatness"....
  • ks1u [George Blahun]
  • 10/14/2010 08:47AM
Hello Ivan. When I first heard this it made my head want to explode. However, there is actually a good explanation at Wikipedia for this belief, which now makes sense to me.<br><br>George<br><br>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shape_of_the_Universe<br>