The Big Bang….the moment that Universe came into being. In a moment of fire and fury, the Universe expanded, and cooled for billions of years, to form stars and galaxies. Up until this point, scientists do not know what came before the Big Bang. The law of gravity, thermodynamics, and magnetism have shaped all of the matter to form the complex structures that we see today. Astrophysicists have devoted their entire lives to study the complexity of the Universe and how the Big Bang plays a part in it.
To help emphasize the timeline of the Big Bang, I found this video as a good visual representation of what could have happened the moment right after the Big Bang. I hope you enjoy the video representation as much as I have!
Source: The Verge
How do scientists know that the Big Bang occurred? The Big Bang was said to have occurred almost 13.82 billion years ago, further back then we are able to see. However, one key piece of evidence is not the event itself, but the traces it left behind. The Big Bang released vast amounts of energy into the Universe, creating small traces of energy that we now know to be called the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB). First proposed by Ralph Alpherin, it was later discovered in 1965, by accident, by Bell Telephone Laboratories researchers Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson. Both Penzias and Wilson detected this signal when they could not figure out why they were getting interference in their radio receiver. It wasn’t until Princeton scientists, Robert Dicke and Dave Wilkinson, realized that Wilson and Penzias discovered the CMB and both teams submitted papers to the Astrophysical Journal on the discovery. Both Wilson and Penzias were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics.
The mystery of the Big Bang is both awe-inspiring, nostalgic, and a captivating theory to consider. Most of this stems from the fact that there is so much that we do not know about the origin of the Universe. Consider this for a moment, a light year is measured at a distance of 6 trillion miles. Now consider that our own solar system, Sol, is 0.001891 light years wide, or 11.346 billion miles. Finally, consider the Milky Way Galaxy, which is about 100,000 light years, or 6 x 10^17 miles wide. Keep in mind, our galaxy is only one of billions of galaxies in the Universe. It’s mind-blowing how large the Universe is when we are only but a tiny speck in the cosmos. Could a consciousness, that is so vast, be able to create the laws of gravity to shape the Universe as we know it? We may never know the answer to this question. But we do know this, the Universe will continue to captivate those who have the curiosity to look and witness the greatest painting in the known universe.
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