Dan Hooper: What happened at the big bang?


From the big bang onwards you might think we know a lot about the universe’s first fraction of a second. But that just isn’t true. Why, for example, didn’t antimatter annihilate matter? Why haven’t we observed any dark matter particles yet? How does dark energy accelerate universe expansion? And why do theories of cosmic inflation lead inevitably to the conclusion that there should be an infinite or nearly infinite number of universes in existence?

For Dan Hooper, head of theoretical astrophysics at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Chicago, solving these questions involves radically rethinking what we think we know about the universe’s very early history.

Interviewed by Richard Webb, Executive Editor, New Scientist at the Royal Institution, London in Feb 2020.

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