A recent research suggests that the shape of the Universe is a closed sphere rather than a flat or an open surface.
Scientists have been studying our universe for a long time. There have been several theories and discussions regarding the shape of the ever-expanding universe. However, finally, a recent study has revealed the true shape of the universe – and it’s not a flat or open surface – it’s a closed sphere.
This means if we travel in one direction for far too long, we’d end up where we started.
Taking cue from Einstein’s theory of relativity, space can bend into different shapes. Hence, scientists assume that the Universe must either be flat, open or closed.
The flat surface is the easiest to comprehend. This means a beam of light would travel till infinity. Flat is how we experience space in our everyday lives.
On the other hand, an open surface is more complicated as compared to a flat surface. An open surface would be saddle-shaped. A beam of light would bend across the curvature in such a universe.
However, in a closed universe, a beam of light would eventually return to its origin.
To determine the shape of our universe, scientists can utilize the phenomenon called ‘Cosmic Microwave Background’ (CMB). CMB is the electromagnetic radiation that remains from the Big Bang. It is also called ‘Relic Radiation’.
For the purpose of the latest study, the scientists measured the fluctuations in the CMB using data from the European Space Agency’s Planck space observatory.
Fluctuations in CMB are due to the dark matter or dark energy of the universe. Though they can’t be measured but scientists have an approximation of how much they exist.
During the study, researchers found stronger gravitational lensing of the CMB than what was expected. Perhaps, they had a clue to the shape of the universe.
In light of these findings, the most obvious scientific explanation about the shape of the universe is that it is closed. It was such a dramatic revelation that scientists referred to it as ‘Crisis for Cosmology’.