SETI bioastro: The Planck mission - learning how the Universe began

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From: Larry Klaes (
Date: Thu May 03 2001 - 08:30:39 PDT

Planck is an ESA mission which aims to find out how the Universe began,
or at least to bring us much closer to understanding how it all started.

A new section on the Planck web site, starting today, will contain
interviews with experts in the field of cosmology. The section opens with
two interviews.

In one, Andrew Lange of the BOOMERANG project explains
some of the BOOMERANG results and considers what contribution the Planck
mission will make to our understanding of the Cosmic Microwave Background
radiation. In another, British astronomer Joseph Silk tells us that "we
may never know whether the Universe is finite or infinite".

The goal of the new section is to explain what is currently known (and not
known) about the beginning of the Universe. It turns out that the Big Bang
model, although generally accepted nowadays, is by no means the end of the
story: what caused the Big Bang in the first place?

Through the interviews, the scientists will also 'translate' the often
confusing cosmological jargon: What do they mean by a 'flat' Universe? Is
the Universe finite or infinite, and can we ever know its size? And, what
is this 'dark energy' that we hear about?

More at:

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