Big crunch

Published on: Mar 25, 2015

Cosmologists have been obsessed with figuring out how our universe will end for a while now, but it seems that they've finally come to a conclusion as to how it will all go down. I don't know if I should be happy or depressed honestly.

Seriously, how does someone deal with their daily job when all they do is try to figure out how everything that's ever existed is going to be annihilated? I suppose it doesn't matter how they do it, but some new information has pointed to a specific scenario known as the "big crunch."

While it may sound like something you would order at the drive-thru for Taco Bell, this crunch isn't the kind that makes your stomach grumble, more like the kind that destroys our universe.

The Ultimate Question: How Will it End?

We've spent the better part of a century now devoting some level of effort towards finding out how everything ends, despite the fact that we won't be around to say "Yes, I knew it!" One option suggested that the universe would expand until all the stars burn out and everything goes cold and dark.

Another option said that the Big Bang would be reversed and everything would collapse in on itself, and still another said that a rip would tear everything apart. Oh, and there's the one where quantum tunneling causes a bubble to form that expands and devours everything faster than the speed of light.

If you're feeling a little depressed, please allow this hilarious gif to cheer you up:

Feeling better? Okay, back to the end of all things. When dark energy was discovered cosmologists thought they had answered the question. This mysterious force (that we know very little about) is causing the universe to expand faster and faster which suggested that it would never collapse in on itself.

Two physicists in Physical Review Letters have brought forth new information to explain what dark energy truly is. They have put forth a model that showcases dark energy being the dominate force in the universe just before a "turnaround" that will cause it to collapse on itself, A.K.A the "big crunch."

"The fact that we are seeing dark energy now could be taken as an indication of impending doom, and we are trying to look at the data to put some figures on the end date," one of the physicists, Padilla, said during an interview with Phys.org.

The main purpose of the paper isn't to point out how or when the universe will end though, it's more about understanding the true nature of dark energy which could answer a lot of questions in physics overall.

Should I Be Crossing Off Items on My Bucket List Then?

As much fun as it would be to watch everyone go ballistic and start selling all of their possessions in the wake of a "big crunch" event, you don't need to worry yourself about this. In the grand scheme of things, yes, the universe may end much sooner than we thought. However, the "grand scheme of things" is in terms of billions of years.

Through this model, the physicists are hoping to dig deeper into the mysteries of the universe and help us understand in the here and now how it all works. Sometimes you have to skip to the end before you can figure out the rest I suppose.


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