“If we look back at a time when the universe was just over a billion years old, we see that time seems to pass five times slower,” explains the study’s lead author, Geraint Lewis of the Sydney Institute of Astronomy at the University of Sydney. “If you were out there, in this nascent universe, a second would seem like a second to you, but from our location, more than 12 billion years in the future, that primordial time appears to be moving slowly.”
“Thanks to Einstein,” Lewis continues, “we know that time and space are intertwined, and that since the dawn of time in the Big Bang singularity, the universe has expanded. This expansion of space means that our observations of the early universe should appear much slower than how time flows today. In this study, we show that Until about a billion years after the Big Bang.”
Previously, astronomers demonstrated this phenomenon by going back about half the age of the universe using supernovae (massive stellar explosions) as their standard clocks. But supernovae, though very bright, are difficult to observe over the enormous distances needed to look into the early universe. By observing quasars, this time horizon has been pushed further back, confirming that the universe appears to be accelerating as it ages.
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