The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Universe...will we see the birth ?  (Read 3364 times)

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Universe...will we see the birth ?
« on: 15/03/2004 20:00:04 »
Space....it's well big, with really big stuff in it yep ?...good, after seeing the fantastic Hubble pictures that take us on a time trip to way before last Wednesday,......do you think it will ever be possible to see so far back that we can literally see the dawn of the Universe ?..or is there some kind of physics/astronomical/cosmological rule which we always prevent us from doing so ?...I really hope NASA sorts Hubble out as I understand that they have  now cancelled service mission 4.

'Men are the same as women...just inside out !'


 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Universe...will we see the birth ?
« Reply #1 on: 15/03/2004 23:17:29 »
At one time there were plans for a follow-on to Hubble that would improve the view quite a bit.  I haven't heard lately about the plans and if they are going forward.  I've also heard that Hubble is not going to be serviced and will probably operate until sometime in 2007 (that's a guess).

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

Offline gsmollin

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 749
    • View Profile
Re: Universe...will we see the birth ?
« Reply #2 on: 16/03/2004 03:38:28 »
Theoretically, we have already seen as far back as we can. When we measure the cosmic background radiation, we see the end of the astronomical road. We can't see further, because behind this radiation lies an opaque universe. At about 300,000 years, the universe cooled enough so that protons and electrons combined to form neutral hydrogen. Before this combination (which is called recombination for some inexplicable reason), the hydrogen was hot enough to be ionized, and it scattered radiation, like a fog. After recombination, radiation decoupled from matter, and the universe became transparent. The cosmic background radiation is the last scattering surface, and it is a wall between us and the distant past.

Not that there isn't plenty of good stuff to see after the universe's 300,000 birthday. After that, the universe cooled and became a very dark place until the first stars formed much later. It is this era of first star and galaxy formation that is the object of the Hubble's successor. It will use a segmented mirror and adaptive optics, and will be as much of an improvement over Hubble, as Hubble was over ground-based telescopes.
 

Offline neilep

  • Withdrawnmist
  • Naked Science Forum GOD!
  • *******
  • Posts: 20602
  • Thanked: 8 times
    • View Profile
Re: Universe...will we see the birth ?
« Reply #3 on: 16/03/2004 04:04:22 »
Thanks gsmolin....It'll be fantastic to see the Cosmos through the lens of Hubbles successor.....perhaps one day, we'll devise a way to even be able to see through or scan the early Universe too......don't think I'll be around to see it but hey !!...it's something to be Optimistic about, isn't it John ?

'Men are the same as women...just inside out !'
 

Offline tweener

  • Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1144
    • View Profile
Re: Universe...will we see the birth ?
« Reply #4 on: 16/03/2004 14:54:16 »
Optimistic?  What's that?

----
John - The Eternal Pessimist.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: Universe...will we see the birth ?
« Reply #4 on: 16/03/2004 14:54:16 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums
 
Login
Login with username, password and session length