Cosmic Times

Cosmic Times

Age of the universe:
6 billion years
Size of the universe:
4 billion light years

Origin of Everything: Hot Bang or Ageless Universe?

Illustration of the matter-density history of the Universe according to the evolutionary theory and big bang theory

Has the Universe always existed, or does it have a beginning, middle and an end? It's difficult to imagine a deeper mystery than this. However, this topic was recently discussed at the meeting of the National Academy of Sciences in Pasadena, California.

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Hoyle Scoffs at "Big Bang" Universe Theory

Fred Hoyle

British cosmologist Fred Hoyle has thrown down the gauntlet with regards to where and when all the Universe's elements were created. In a recent radio broadcast he criticized a competing theory, presented by Ukrainian-born American physicist George Gamow. He labeled Gamow's theory as a ridiculous "big bang."

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It's a Star! It's a Nova! It's Super-Nova!

Kepler supernova remnant

There's more than one sort of "new" star in the heavens, say astronomers. The evidence has been building for decades that novae – those stars which light up suddenly to great brightness, then fade away – actually come in at least two distinct classes. On one hand there are ordinary novae and on the other there are truly Super-Novae.

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"Yardsticks" in Neighbor Galaxy Double Universe's Size

Hale telescope

Walter Baade, an astronomer at the California Institute of Technology, says the Universe is twice as large as we thought. He has used the giant 200-inch reflecting at Mount Palomar to measure the scale of the Universe.

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Death of a Genius

Albert Einstein

The world has just lost its greatest scientific mind. Albert Einstein died in his sleep on April 18th from complications of a gall bladder infection. He was 76. There is no doubt that this rumpled, white-haired, pipe-smoking professor looked deeper into the nature of the Universe than any other man. In death he joins a select few – such as Newton, Copernicus, Archimedes and Pythagoras – as a giant in science whose genius changed the course of history.

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Radio 'Ear' on the Universe Being Built

Jodrell Bank's Mark 1 radio telescope under construction

Construction continues for what will be Earth's largest steerable radio antenna for studying radio waves from space. The huge, 250-foot-wide metal dish of the Mark 1 radio telescope being built at Jodrell Bank in England is designed to be fully adjustable.

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Image of the 1955 Cosmic Times poster

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A service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Andy Ptak (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA/GSFC