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New Study Recommends That, The Universe might tear itself apart until there is nothing left

When discussion comes to the end of the Universe, most physicists consider it will slowly get colder and fade out of existence, almost about, 2.8 billion years from now. But it might not be so simple to imagine. Calculations have revealed that dark energy could become the reason of Universe to slowly tear itself apart until there's nothing left. And now a new study has delivered a closer analysis of what that fate might appear.

Vadim Sadovski/

It is not the first time that this probability of the Universe tearing itself apart has been suggested. Our current Calculations of the Universe is that almost 68% of its energy is dark energy, an unknown force that's slowly accelerating the extension of the Universe. Based on that, the most general suggestion among physicists about how the Universe will end contains our galaxies and stars progressively moving further apart, until they are too distant and cold to act together anymore, and the Universe gradually dies.

That probability is called as the 'Big Freeze', or the heat death of the Universe.

But over the past couple of years, scientists have come up with an alternative possibility. What if dark energy does not work the way we believe it to? Instead of producing a balanced expansion of the Universe, the expansion might rush over time, causing the Universe to ultimately tear itself apart. That situation is called the 'Big Rip' and it would involve dark energy to work in a way we have not seen as yet, and take on a method where it gets thicker as the Universe expands.

But just because we have never seen dark energy do that before, does not mean we can rule it out, and up to now, researchers have not been able to show that this fate is not possible. To get a improved understanding of what that 'Big Rip' might appear, a team of scientists from the Technical University of Lisbon in Portugal has now calculated three possible forms: the Big Rip; the Little Sibling of the Big Rip; and the Little Rip.

All of those possibilities are pretty parallel, but they vary slightly in the way stuffs come apart. As the names recommend, the Big Rip includes the Universe tearing itself apart very shortly, while the littler forms have things happening more slowly. 

One of the scientists, Mariam Bouhmadi-López told Rebecca from New Scientist. “Things which are similar are our galaxy, and all galaxies, would be torn apart, the whole thing goes wrong."

In order to see which of these three situations was more possible, the team calculated the latest map of the universe based on explanations from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Inquiry and the Planck satellite. What they were looking for parts of the Universe with differences in gravity. In some parts of the Universe, Such as our galaxies, dark matter and regular matter are more intense. This can lead to discrepancies in gravity and could affect the rate at which dark energy works.

By learning these clusters of matter, the team was able to get a clue of which kind of rip the Universe might be headed for. Their decision? The Little Rip, in which the Universe would gradually come apart. Their results have not been peer-reviewed as yet, so there's much more confirmation to be done before we take that guess too seriously.

For now, this is just additional possible situation thrown out there for scientists to dig holes in with more information. And the paper is now available online at for other scientists to take a look at. But what's most valuable about this study, even if it turns out to be an incorrect guess, is that the team has stressed a bunch of things we can look for in upcoming time in order to get knowledge of which outcome our Universe is headed to.

Robert Scherrer from Vanderbilt University, one of the researchers who first completed the Little Rip concept, but was not part of this study, told New Scientist,"They have been able to complete some observational signs that are not the same in these models, and in the near future we will be able to use that.”

And the good update is that, even if the Universe does end its story by tearing itself apart, we have got a long time to get ready or come up with new theories. According to Boyle, the Little Rip situation will not come about for another 100 billion years. Just last month, scientists interrogated the accelerating extensionof the Universe, so we still have a lot to study, as well as figuring out what dark energy really is. But it is only through new calculations like this one, and additional testing and observations that we will realize more.

You can read the complete paper here.



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