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Fate of the Universe


Part 1: 
  1. Explain Einstein's Theory of Relativity. 

  2. What does the term "space-time" refer to?

  3. What did most scientists belive about the universe at the time when Einstein came up with his theory of relativity?

  4. What did Einstein have to do to his formula to get other scientists to accept it? What did he call his "fudge factor"?

  5. Using the interactive simulation, provide definitions for the three important parameters used to investigate the fate of the universe. 
    a. Omega
    b. Hubble Constant
    c. Lambda
    6. Use the sliders for each of the three parameters to create different universes.
        a. What happens to the fate of the universe if you increase Omega (hold the other parameters constant)?
        b. What happens to the fate of the universe if you increase H (hold the other parameters constant)?
        c. What happens to the fate of the universe if you increase Lambda (hold the other parameters constant)?


Part 2:
Read the article (in the attachments section at the bottom of this page) and answer the questions. 

7. What two physical characteristics will determine the fate of the universe?

8. What force makes space curve and slow down?

9. What force makes space expand?

10. How does density play a role in the fate of the universe?

11. There are three possible fates of the universe. Complete the chart to describe what happens in each scenario.

Universe Possibility

Name (big chill, etc.)

Geometry (shape)

Comparison to critical density (<, >, =)

Open

 

 

 

Closed

 

 

 

Flat

 

 

 


12. Would a universe starting out with MORE matter than critical density ever expand enough so that the density dropped BELOW critical density? Explain why or why not.

13. How is research changing the way the universe is viewed?

14. Do you think it is worth it to spend money studying the shape of the universe? Why or why not?

15. If you knew the fate of the universe, would it change the way you live your life? Explain.

 


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ĉ
Lynée Beck,
Apr 18, 2011, 12:00 PM
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