Doing Without Dark Energy

Galaxy cluster image from the Hubble Space Telescope.
“Dark energy,” a mysterious force that counters gravity, has been proposed to explain why the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. Mathematicians at UC Davis and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, argue for an alternative. Galaxy cluster image from the Hubble Space Telescope.

Cosmological models start from a “Friedmann universe,” which assumes that all matter is expanding but evenly distributed in space at every time. Mathematicians Blake Temple and Zeke Vogler at the University of California, Davis, and Joel Smoller at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, worked out solutions to General Relativity without invoking dark energy. They argue that the equations show that the Friedmann space-time is actually unstable: Any perturbation — for example if the density of matter is a bit lower than average — pushes it over into an accelerating universe. Read more at UC Davis News.

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