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Dark Energy ~ Professor Bob Nichol (Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation, University of Portsmouth)

Dark energy is an unknown form of energy which is hypothesized to permeate all of space, tending to accelerate the expansion of the universe. Dark energy is the most accepted hypothesis to explain the observations since the 1990s indicating that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. Assuming that the standard model of cosmology is correct, the best current measurements indicate that dark energy contributes 68.3% of the total energy in the present-day observable universe. The mass–energy of dark matter and ordinary matter contribute 26.8% and 4.9%, respectively, and other components such as neutrinos and photons contribute a very small amount.(ref Wikipedia).  Professor Nichol will discuss the latest research into dark energy.

Joseph Justus Scaliger: Historian and Chronologer ~ David Pulley

Recording when an astronomical event occurs is the cornerstone of observational astronomy with the need that all observers, whereever they are on Planet Earth, use the same methodology leading to a precision and accuracy appropriate for the event being measured.  Today our measurements are recorded using a system devised by the French 16th century religous leader and scholar Joseph Scalinger.  His ideas were utilised in astronomy some 200 years later by William Herschel and these form our recording basis today.  However time is a complicated thing and nothing is as easy as it first seems.


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