We are told by Howard Falcon-Lang, science reporter for BBC news, that the fate of the universe is now revealed by the galactic lens and that the universe will expand forever (19 August 2010):
Knowing the distribution of dark energy tells astronomers that the Universe will continue to get bigger indefinitely.
Eventually it will become a cold, dead wasteland with a temperature approaching what scientists term “absolute zero”.
Professor Priyamvada Natarajan of Yale University, a leading cosmologist and co-author of this study, said that the findings finally proved “exactly what the fate of the Universe will be”.
Hmmm. I thought that pulpit-splintering, Bible-whacking fundamentalists had settled that one along time ago. And I give about as much credit to each view.
Also, don’t miss this: “Tantalizing Clues as to Why Matter Prevails in the Universe: Surprisingly Large Matter/antimatter Asymmetry Discovered” from Science News Daily:
A large collaboration of physicists working at the Fermilab Tevatron particle collider has discovered evidence of an explanation for the prevalence of matter over antimatter in the universe. They found that colliding protons in their experiment produced short-lived B meson particles that almost immediately broke down into debris that included slightly more matter than antimatter. The two types of matter annihilate each other, so most of the material coming from these sorts of decays would disappear, leaving an excess of regular matter behind. This sort of matter/antimatter asymmetry accounts for the fact that just about all the material in the universe is made of the normal matter we’re familiar with.
Which doubtless explains the absence of really unusual events in my neck of the woods.