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Friday, July 27, 2018

Big Bang telescope

Big Bang telescope finale marks end of an era in cosmology

With the end of Europe’s major Planck mission, researchers are moving to smaller projects studying different aspects of the cosmic microwave background.

Davide Castelvecchi PDF version
An oval map filled with patterns of red and blue pixels, on a black background.
A map of the Universe’s cosmic microwave background radiation, and its polarization, measured by the Planck satellite.Credit: ESA/Planck Collaboration
A transformative  era in cosmological science ended this week when the European Space Agency’s Planck telescope released its final maps of the early Universe. Planck was the last in a line of three major space telescopes to study the cosmic microwave background (CMB), the faint afterglow of the Big Bang, resulting in the most precise measurements yet of the age, geometry and composition of the cosmos. With space agencies in Europe and in the United States hesitant to fund a follow-up CMB-focused satellite, Planck looks set to be the last space telescope to study the CMB for many years — marking a big change for cosmologists./.../

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