Updated:01/06/2021 14: 56h
¿How old is the Universe? Scientists have been debating the question for decades. And in recent years, to top it all, a new series of measurements had suggested that the Universe could be several hundred million years younger than the nearly 13.8 billion years attributed to it today. Now, new research published in a series of articles by an international team of astrophysicists has put things in their place and confirms that, indeed, the age of the Universe is what was thought.
13,770 million years, with a margin of error of only 40 million years. This is the result of the new measurement carried out by a team of astronomers using data from the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT), in Chile, from the United States National Science Foundation. The ACT research team is an international collaboration of scientists from 41 institutions in seven countries.
The new estimate coincides with that provided by the standard model of the Universe, and also with the measurements carried out by the Planck satellite of the European Space Agency, which calculated the age of the cosmos based on the observation of the vestiges of the Big Bang between the years 2009 and 2013. The results of the study have just been published in the « Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics».
The job has been a great relief to researchers, concerned about the discrepancy found in 2019, when a research team that measured the motions of galaxies calculated that the Universe was hundreds of millions of years younger than Planck’s team predicted. The discrepancy, in fact, suggested that it might be necessary to develop a new model to explain the Universe, abandoning much of the current theories. Furthermore, the scientific community viewed with great concern the possibility that one of the two sets of measurements could be wrong.
Fortunately, “we have now found an answer on which Planck and ACT agree,” says Simone Aiola, co-author of the article. And we can trust these difficult measurements to be reliable. “