Could Dark Energy Just Be Frozen Neutrinos?
Date: Sunday, July 17, 2016 @ 19:50:27 EDT
From the Motherboard site: by Michael Byrne.
Dark energy is arguably the best mystery in astrophysics. Here we have an uneasy placeholder for almost all of the energy in the universe—energy that, as you read this, is working hard to shred the universe itself. Energy that will not be satisfied until all of existence is a featureless black void. Dark energy also has the bonus selling point of being a fairly new idea, tracing back to the late-1990s discovery that the universe is not just expanding, but is also accelerating in its expansion. At every moment, the universe gets both bigger and emptier (more space, same amount of stuff).
What's doing this or, better, why it's happening is unsettled, to put it mildly. The general answer is that quantum physics insists that empty space has energy—vacuum energy—but what, exactly, that means is TBD. In a paper posted this week to the arXiv pre-print server, a group of cosmologists from the University of Barcelona make an interesting case for dark energy being linked to so-called frozen neutrinos, or neutrinos that may have become coupled to dark energy as the universe began to cool circa a million years following the Big Bang. These neutrinos, which had before been hauling ass around the universe at near-light speed, were suddenly arrested, passing on their kinetic energy (energy of motion) to the dark energy field in the process...
Full article: http://motherboard.vice.com/en_uk/read/could-dark-energy-just-be-frozen-neutrinos