Report: Tough Eons Ahead As Universe’s Development ‘Arrested’

More bad news in today’s New York Times. According to a report by Dennis Overbye, after 10 billion years of record-setting growth, the universe’s expansion has slowed down:

After bulking up rapidly in the first 10 billion years of cosmic time, clusters of galaxies, the cloudlike swarms that are the largest conglomerations of matter in the universe, have grown anemically or not at all during the last five billion years, like sullen teenagers who suddenly refuse to eat.

‘This result could be explained as arrested development of the universe,’ said Alexey Vikhlinin of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who led a multinational team using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory to weigh galaxy clusters from far across space. The group reported the results in a telephone news conference on Tuesday and in two papers that will appear in The Astrophysical Journal.

Dr. Vikhlinin suggests the culprit might be “dark energy.”

How this five billion-year slow-down will impact already hurting individual investors, retirees, and homeowners and if a government bail-out is in order is unclear at this point.

Report: Tough Eons Ahead As Universe’s Development ‘Arrested’