|Title||The End of Everything (Astrophysically Speaking)|
|Type||Non Fiction – Science|
|Finished||August 9, 2022|
|View/Purchase (Non Affiliate)||Amazon|
How will the universe end? Will it collapse back in on itself in a reversal of the Big Bang (the Big Crunch theory)? Will it continue to expand even when all the stars are gone (the Heat Death theory)? Will there be a dark energy apocalypse (the Big Rip theory)? Or something completely different?
Katie Mack uses the end of the universe as the structure to explain many concepts in physics: black holes, cosmic expansion, entropy and more. One of the variables is dark energy; just a slight difference from our estimates can result in very different ends of the universe. This very approachable book opens these great theories to the common reader.
When I think of the universe, I think of a large beach ball that is expanding. If that were true, wouldn’t there be some part of the universe on the outside edge that would have an infinitely black nothingness on one side while the observable universe would be on the other side. But that model supposes a center. Mack tells us that “technically, the universe doesn’t have a center” [p 53] So I need to let go of my beach bal model.
While there is no center of the universe, we are at the center of our own observable universe. Given that, “cosmic expansion was harder to discover than you might think” [Page 54]
When you are in a universe that’s expanding the same way in every direction [as we are] it doesn’t look like expansion, per se, but rather like the odd phenomenon of everything else reaching from your… wherever you are.Page 53
The universe is so vast and parts of it so far away – and getting further away – that we will never be able to observe them. All we can see and study is the universe that is close enough that its light and energy can travel to us.
When I think of the universe, I think of a large beach ball that is expanding. If that were true, wouldn’t there be some part of the universe on the outside edge that would have an infinitely black nothingness on one side while the observable universe would be on the other side.
If you are a fan of short science books that help explain things to a non-science person, pick this up. It only takes a day or two to read.