The most powerful digital camera in the world began searching for dark energy




That night, and for hundreds of nights next five years, a team of physicists and astronomers from around the world will use the capabilities of the most powerful in the world of digital cameras, to find out why the expansion of the universe is accelerating, rather than slowing down due to gravity, and explore the mystery of dark energy – the power , which is believed to cause accelerated.

In the process of observation, scientists have to get color pictures 300 million galaxies and 100,000 galaxy clusters, to open 4,000 new supernovae, many of which were formed at a time when the universe was less than half.

“We expect that this huge galactic map of the universe will find evidence of the existence of dark energy and will describe its nature on a cosmic scale,” – says Ofer Lahav, of University College London, the head of the scientific committee of DES. – “Even more of a challenge for the DES will determine for sure: if the acceleration of the universe is dark energy or something else entirely.”

Aug. 31 search of dark energy (Dark Energy Survey, DES) has officially begun. Scientists from the search team will systematically divide the sky into eight parts (5,000 square degrees each) for an unprecedented show detail. Begin your search was the culmination of 10 years of planning, construction and experiments of scientists from 25 institutes from six countries.

“Search for dark energy to shed light on some of the most important questions about our existence,” – said James Siegrist, Deputy Director for High Energy Physics in the American energy management sciences. – “In five years, we will be much closer to the answer, and we will have more knowledge about the universe.”

“Since the beginning of the job search more than 200 employees put into practice,” – said the director of DES Josh Freeman. – “This is the most exciting time for cosmology, when we survey the limits of the distant universe and to draw conclusions about the fundamental nature of matter, energy, space and time.”

Recall that not long ago was born into the world is an interesting work, according to which the space has some building blocks .

The main research tool is Dark Energy Camera, 570-megapixel digital camera, built at Fermilab in Batavia and installed on a 4-meter Victor M. Blanco telescope, located in the Andes, Chile. The camera includes five lenses with a well-defined shape, which together provide a clear picture across the visual field.

Dark Energy Camera – the most powerful research tool of its kind, able to catch the light every shot from more than 100,000 galaxies 8 billion light-years away.


“Start searching for dark energy – important milestone. Dark Energy Camera in conjunction with the Blanco telescope at CTIO greatly deepen our understanding of the forces that control the expansion of the universe. ”

The data collected will be processed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois in Urbana, and then made available to the scientific and civil society.

The observations can not directly detect dark energy. However, the study of the universe’s expansion and growth of the large-scale structure over time will provide scientists with accurate data, which will draw some conclusions about the properties of dark energy.


Counting of galactic clusters. At the time, as gravity pulls together and forms a mass of galaxies, dark energy stretches them apart. Dark Energy Camera will be released 100,000 galaxy clusters billions of light years away. Counting the number of galaxy clusters at different points in time will shed light on this cosmic competition between gravity and dark energy.

Measurement of supernovae. supernova – a star that explodes and becomes bright as an entire galaxy of billions of stars. By measuring how bright they appear on Earth, we can determine how far away they are. Scientists use this information to determine how the universe expanded rapidly since then, as the exploded star. Search for 4000 reveal these supernovae that exploded billions of years ago in galaxies billions of light years from Earth.

Study of bending of light. When the light from distant galaxies meets the dark matter in the cosmos, he goes around the matter, resulting in an image on the telescope galaxy is distorted. Search explores the forms of 200 million galaxies reveal the cosmic tug of war between gravity and dark energy, and the formation of dark matter in different parts of space.

The use of sound waves to create a large-scale expansion cards in time. When the universe was less than 400,000 years, the interaction between matter and light to send a series of sound waves, which spread at the speed of 2/3 of the light. These waves left a definite imprint on the way galaxies spread in the universe. Search measure the position of 300 million galaxies in space and find the fingerprint, and is based on it will display the history of cosmic expansion.
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