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Edge of the Universe


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Table of Contents

Prologue: Cosmology's Extraordinary New Frontiers 1 1 How Far Out Can We See?: Voyage to the Edge of the Known Universe 7 2 How Was the Universe Born?: Revealing the Dawn of Time 22 3 How Far Away Will the Edge Get?: The Discovery of the Accelerating Universe 39 4 Why Does the Universe Seem So Smooth?: The Inflationary Era 52 5 What Is Dark Energy?: Will It Tear Space Apart? 67 6 Do We Live in a Hologram?: Exploring the Boundaries of Information 82 7 Are There Alternatives to Inflation?: Extra Dimensions and the Big Bounce 96 8 What Builds Structure in the Universe?: The Search for Dark Matter 110 9 What Is Tugging on Galaxies?: The Mysteries of Dark Flow and the Great Attractor 125 10 What Is the "Axis of Evil"?: Investigating Strange Features of the Cosmic Background 137 11 What Are the Immense Blasts of Energy from the Farthest Reaches of Space?: Gamma-Ray Bursts and the Quest for Cosmic Dragons 148 12 Can We Journey to Parallel Universes?: Wormholes as Gateways 161 13 Is The Universe Constantly Splitting into Multiple Realities?: The Many-Worlds Hypothesis 174 14 How Will the Universe End?: With a Bang, Bounce, Crunch, Rip, Stretch, or Whimper? 188 15 What Are the Ultimate Limits of Our Knowledge about the Cosmos? 204 Acknowledgments 217 Notes 219 Further Reading 225 Index 229

About the Author

PAUL HALPERN, PhD, is Professor of Physics at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. He is the 2002 recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, awarded for research that ultimately resulted in the book The Great Beyond: Higher Dimensions, Parallel Universes and the Extraordinary Search for a Theory of Everything . He is also the author of Collider: The Search for the World's Smallest Particles and What's Science Ever Done for Us?: What The Simpsons Can Teach Us about Physics, Robots, Life, and the Universe.

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