68% Of The Universe Does Not Exist Because Dark Energy Is A Myth, Study Suggests

First Posted: Apr 04, 2017 03:10 AM EDT

The long-held theory that the universe’s rapid expansion is steered by an elusive force known as dark energy has been challenged by a recent study. Mysterious dark energy that is thought to make up 68 percent of the universe may not exist at all, a team of scientists have claimed.

According to a research team from Hungary’s Eötvös Loránd University, the standard models of the universe do not take account of its changing structure. If this point is considered, the need for dark energy disappears.

From the 1920s, researchers began to chart the velocities of galaxies that let them to conclude that the whole universe is expanding and that it started from an exceedingly small point. Astronomers found evidence of unseen dark matter in the second half of the 20th century by analyzing that something “more” was required to explain the movement of stars inside galaxies. The prevalent belief is that dark matter makes up 27 percent of the universe’s content, and ordinary matter amounts to only 5 percent.

Furthermore, in the 1990s, scientists had concluded that there was a third component that made up 68 percent of the universe, which is also the factor that drives the acceleration in the universe’s expansion -- dark energy. The researchers came to their conclusion after observing white dwarf stars explode in binary systems.

Now, the Hungarian researchers led by Gabor Racz have questioned the existence of dark energy and suggested an alternative explanation. According to the team of researchers, cosmology’s conventional models depend on approximations that do not take its structure into account. Moreover, matter is assumed to have a uniform density. They reconstructed the universe’s evolution with a computer simulation to model gravity’s effect on the distribution of millions of particles of dark matter.

"Our findings rely on a mathematical conjecture which allows the differential expansion of space, consistent with general relativity, and they show how the formation of complex structures of matter impacts the expansion," the researchers said, as reported by Huffington Post. "These issues were previously swept under the rug but taking them into account can explain the acceleration without the need for dark energy."

The study has been published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. If the findings of the new study are upheld, then it could have a crucial effect on models of the universe and direction of research in physics.

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