Washington, April 12: Providing clues to understanding cosmological questions like how fast the universe has been expanding since the Big Bang, a team of astronomers, including an Indian American, has identified two distinct types of supernovaes. A University of Arizo-led team of astronomers has discovered that certain types of supernovae, or exploding stars, are more diverse than previously thought. The findings hint at the possibility that the acceleration of the expansion of the universe might not be quite as fast as textbooks say.
The team discovered that type Ia supernovae, which have been considered so uniform that cosmologists have used them as cosmic “beacons” to plumb the depths of the universe, actually fall into different populations.
“We found that the differences are not random, but lead to separating Ia supernovae into two groups, where the group that is in the minority near us are in the majority at large distances — and thus when the universe was younger,” said Peter A. Milne, astronomer at University of Arizo. (IANS)