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Cosmology

Looking for the big picture?

It doesn’t get any bigger than cosmology: the science of how the universe began and developed. What is it made of? How is it structured? What is its eventual fate, billions of years in the future? Supercomputer models and observations from ever-larger telescopes on the ground and in space have transformed cosmology into a predictive science, providing evidence that the universe is expanding at an ever-increasing rate, propelled by a mysterious pressure called “dark energy.” The Hayden Planetarium Space Show Dark Universe explores this new age of cosmic discovery.

Blog Post Behind This Week’s News about the Big Bang Wondering what this week’s breaking story about the Big Bang theory means for our knowledge of our universe? Astrophysicist M... Blog Post Help NASA Find a Planet A new citizen-science tool invites the public to help search for nearby worlds, including a possible undiscovered planet in o... Video Exploring the Dark Universe: Dark Matter Curator Mordecai-Mark Mac Low on dark matter. Blog Post Detonating White Dwarfs as Supernovae New model explains how inspiraling dead stars can explode at a rate high enough to match the number of Type Ia supernovae see... Video Our Expanding Universe What's stretching space at an ever-faster pace? Article How Did the Universe Begin? Find out how the Big Bang Theory came to be. Educator Materials Profile: Georges Lemaître, Father of the Big Bang When a Catholic priest—cosmologist first proposed that the universe began as a "primeval atom," it seemed preposter... Article Space and Time Do you know how to describe where you are in the fourth dimension? Or what it would take to turn a rabbit into a black hole?... Audio Podcast: What is Relativity, and Why Should You Care? You don’t have to be an Einstein to understand his theories of relativity.   Gravitational Waves Detected LIGO detectors open a new window on the universe. Blog Post Watch for Rare Recurrent Nova Begins Thanks to the work of Museum researcher Dr. Ashley Pagnotta, amateur astronomers are watching a distant star that's due to er... Educator Materials Newton's Laws of Motion and Gravity Applied to Meteorites Did it all start when an apple bopped Isaac Newton on the head? This activity explores some of the ways his fundamental laws... Article Article: The Big Questions What is the Universe’s arrangement today? What did it look like at its birth? And how did we get from then to now? These are... Video Many Star Types Host Planet-Building Material Planet-forming particles swarm an unlikely star host. Educator Materials Profile: Carl Sagan and the Quest for Life in the Universe Cosmos, Contact, Icarus and Billions and Billions—from TV and movies to professional journals and best-selling books, Carl Sa... Audio Frontiers Lecture: One Second After the Big Bang Join Christopher Tully, professor of physics at Princeton University, as he discusses a new experiment and its potential to c... Audio Frontiers Lecture: Gravitons, Exotic Higgs Bosons, Or Nothing At All In this podcast, particle physicist James Beacham discusses what we’ve learned about gravitons, Higgs bosons, dark matter, an... Audio SciCafe: When Black Holes Collide Barnard College professor and astronomer Janna Levin shares her scientific research on the first recordings of a gravitationa... Audio Frontiers Lecture: Gravitational Waves - Messengers from the Warped Universe In this podcast, physicist Nergis Mavalvala discusses how we search for gravitational waves and decode the information they c... Educator Materials Case Study: The Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation At this distance in time and space, can we prove that the universe was created with a single explosion? See how scientists ha... Article Meet the Universe's Main Attraction... Gravity Find out why a ball thrown in the air will return to the ground. Educator Materials Profile: Vera Rubin and Dark Matter For every visible star in the observable universe, there are nine masses that are invisible and unidentified. Learn more abou... Audio Frontiers Lecture: In Search of the True Universe Astrophysicist and scholar Martin Harwit addresses current challenges in astrophysics and the understanding of our Universe i... Video 2016 Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate: Is the Universe a Simulation? From sci-fi idea to serious debate. Audio Frontiers Lectures: Searching for the Oldest Stars In this podcast, join MIT astronomer Anna Frebel for a firsthand account of the science of stellar archaeology. Video Cosmic Microwave Background: The New Cosmology The Universe's oldest light is cosmologists' window to the past.