3 December 2014
Extra outcomes from the Planck collaboration are coming in, this time from convention in Italy. There’s been loads of pleasure constructing as much as this new launch, notably given a number of the unresolved points within the normal mannequin of cosmology.
One in every of these points is the strain between the sooner WMAP information and the Planck information concerning the typical temperature of the universe. Early indications have been that they differed by about 1.5%, which isn’t large, however was regarding given the precision of each information units. The brand new evaluation finds they agree inside 0.3%, which is inside the uncertainty vary of Planck. So, nothing new or attention-grabbing there.
One other consequence places additional constraints on parameters for darkish matter. The brand new outcomes are exact sufficient to eradicate some darkish matter fashions. Again in April of this yr there was an enormous announcement that the AMS detector on the area station had detected a attainable darkish matter sign. The daring declare wasn’t substantiated by the info, and because of this it met with fairly a little bit of criticism. The brand new Planck information confirms that the AMS declare was mistaken. Once more, that is what most of us anticipated.
The one attention-grabbing factor in regards to the new outcomes regards what wasn’t talked about. What about BICEP2 and the difficulty of whether or not its sign was because of interstellar mud or proof of early cosmic inflation? To date there’s been no announcement. In reality, within the launched graphs on the fluctuations of the cosmic background, and the smallest scale fluctuations aren’t proven. That’s the place mud turns into a problem. Simply how a lot of a problem stays to be seen.
However at bigger scales the Planck information matches principle astoundingly properly. In fact WMAP matched it exceptionally properly too. Planck simply added a bit extra precision to what we already knew. So for now it appears fairly ho-hum. Nothing actually new to see, no sensational headline to be discovered.
However I simply can’t see it that means. As a result of this newest information confirms that we perceive the origin and evolution of the universe rather well. A bunch of people standing on a rock have come to grasp the cosmos. Our principle works, and it retains working. That is a completely astounding achievement.