Honolulu (Hawaii) -An international team of astronomers have confirmed that the energy in the Universe today is only about half of what it was two billion years ago and they are fading away gradually.
The findings, presented on Thursday at the ongoing International Astronomical Union’s 29th General Assembly in Honolulu (Hawaii) revealed that study showed that the universe is slowly dying.
Simon Driver, Head of the Galaxy And Mass Assembly (GAMA) team, said the findings revealed the extent to which the cosmos are apparently losing steam.
He said the team used as many space and ground-based telescopes.
Driver said this gave them the opportunity to measure the energy output of over 200,000 galaxies across as broad a wavelength range as possible.
He said an image released on January 9, 2014 showed the vibrant magentas and blues in the “Hubble’’ image of the barred spiral galaxy M83, revealing that the galaxy was ablaze with star formation.
“The galactic panorama unveils a tapestry of the drama of stellar birth and death.
“The galaxy, also known as the Southern Pinwheel, lies 15 million light-years away in the constellation Hydra,’’ he said.
Driver said the fact that the Universe was slowly fading has been known since the late 1990s, but recent findings showed that it was happening across all the wavelengths from the ultraviolet to the infrared.
He said this represented the most comprehensive assessment of the energy output of the nearby Universe.
“That means they can look at light from stars that are both young and old, as well as light that has been absorbed and then re-emitted by dust.
“So the new assessment of the Universe’s decline includes information from a huge variety of galaxies, including those hidden behind dust.
“The Universe will decline from here on in, sliding gently into old age.
“The Universe has basically sat down on the sofa, pulled up a blanket and is about to nod off for an eternal doze,” he said.
Driver said the study, was part of the GAMA project, the largest multi-wavelength survey ever put together.
He said it involved many of the world’s most powerful telescopes including the European Southern Observatory’s ground-based VISTA and VST telescopes at the Paranal Observatory in Chile and space telescopes like NASA’s GALEX and WISE and the European Space Agency’s Herschel.(Xinhua/NAN)