Scientists announced today that they had found the first direct evidence of the dramatic expansion that created the known universe, known as cosmic inflation, or the “bang” in the Big Bang. Thought to have occurred in the first instants of existence, nearly 14 billion years ago, it caused the universe to expand beyond the reach of the most powerful telescopes.
In 1979, a physicist named Alan Guth came up with the theory of cosmic inflation, and theorized that such an event would create ripples in space-time called gravitational waves. But their existence remained hypothetical. Today, a team of researchers said that they had detected these gravitational waves, using a telescope near the South Pole.
“This is huge,” Marc Kamionkowski, a researcher at Johns Hopkins University who was not involved in the discovery but who predicted how these gravitational wave imprints could be found, told Scientific American. “It’s not every day that you wake up and find out something completely new about the early universe.” He added that the results looked good, although they would need to be verified by others to hold up.
So big stuff, but if you thought this article was about a sitcom, I’m sorry to burst your bubble.