Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   26 March

The universe is slowly dying but that’s no reason for concern: astronomers

YEREVAN, AUGUST 11, ARMENPRESS. The astronomers described the slow demise of the cosmos on Monday after examining vast regions of space through some of the world’s most powerful telescopes.

Armenpress informs, citing metro.co.uk, that in the past 2 billion years, space has lost almost half its starlight and it will lose far more in the next two. This ‘dimming’ of the universe comes as a result of a drop in the rate of new star creation.

Star formation peaked around 8billion years ago, but the universe’s supply of hydrogen and helium – which gives stars their shine – is being depleted, so the birth date is falling. ‘The universe is curling up on the sofa and becoming a couch potato,’ said Joe Liske, an astronomer at the European Southern Observatory in Garching, Germany and a participant in the study.

The cosmos will continue to fade over the next billion years or so. Then, only a weak glow will emanate from the sky. This dimming is aggravated by the expansion of the universe, which throws material apart exponentially. The research team used telescopes on Earth and in space to analyze light coming from galaxies as far as several billion light years away at different wavelengths. Will Sutherland from Queen Mary, University of London, said: ‘The universe is not going to go black any time soon. But it’ll fade. And then what you’re left with is little old red stars that shine away for a long time more.’

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