Planck Cosmic Microwave Background with Cold Spot inset


Debate on Universe’s Cold Spot Heats Up

A new galaxy survey suggests that a supervoid isn’t responsible for the Cold Spot seen in the cosmic microwave background — the oddity may have a far more ancient origin.

KIDS Dark Matter Map


Not-So-Clumpy Dark Matter Poses Cosmological Challenge

Astronomers analyzing a new sky survey have found that the distribution of dark matter in the modern universe is smoother than predicted from observations of a far younger universe.

dust polarization emission at galactic poles


Dust Makes Cosmic Inflation Signal Iffy

A new analysis of Planck data bolsters the claim that the polarization signal heralded as evidence for cosmic inflation is from dust instead.


Shadow of a Supervoid

Scientists might have discovered the source of the mysterious Cold Spot in the Cosmic Microwave Background: an enormous supervoid.

Planck map with cosmic infrared background


Big Bang Inflation Evidence Inconclusive

New analyses suggest that observations heralded as evidence for the universe’s brief growth spurt don’t conclusively show what researchers thought they did.

Milky Way's magnetic field

Milky Way

Planck's Magnetic Map of Our Galaxy

The ESA's Planck mission has released one of the most detailed maps of the Milky Way's magnetic field.

B-mode discovery telescope


Direct Evidence of Big Bang Inflation

Researchers with an experiment based at the South Pole have discovered the long-sought "smoking gun" for inflation. The signal was hidden in polarization patterns in the cosmic microwave background and confirms physicists' audacious theory of how the Big Bang happened.

BICEP-2 detector at the South Pole


"Proof of Inflationary Universe" to be Announced

Rumors are flying that the long-sought "smoking gun" for inflation has been found in polarization patterns in the cosmic microwave background. If so, it would confirm the inflation theory for how and why the Big Bang happened.


Planck Spacecraft Shut Down

After four years of exquisite observations, the latest mission to study the universe's earliest light has been shuttered. But this end is a happy one and comes with a significant cosmological legacy.

Space Missions

Planck: Best Map Yet of Cosmic Creation

Planck mission scientists have released the first half of their observations of the cosmic microwave background. The results are a stunning confirmation of today's standard model for how the universe formed and grew. But they also raise some head-scratchers.


WMAP Refines "Precision Cosmology"

With seven years of data, the WMAP cosmology satellite has refined the age of the universe and other key cosmic parameters. The results strengthen the "standard model" of inflationary cosmology.


Dark Energy's Early Fingerprints

Studying the effect of galaxy clusters on the background radiation from the early universe, University of Hawaii astronomers have added to the pile of evidence for dark energy.

Big nothing in space


Cold Evidence for a Cosmic "Texture"?

A ripple in the cosmic background radiation hints at an irregularity in spacetime. . . maybe.

Astronomy & Observing News

Mapping the Big Bang

Results from NASA's MAP satellite strengthen the new cosmology.