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Cosmic question

Is Ann Arbor the center of the universe?

posted 1/18/2010

The answer may hinge on the existence of dark energy: the mysterious force that may or may not bind the cosmos together. U-M astronomer Philip Hughes admits dark energy is "an ad hoc and outrageous postulate" but says it's "just what is needed to explain the observed pattern of galaxies and to account for the geometry of space." U-M mathematician Joel Smoller disagrees. "No one has seen this stuff. It cannot be collected, and it does not change. It looks like a fudge factor."

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