Scientists have shown what the early universe looked like. Details about the project are published in the scientific journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
Astrophysicists used a large set of simulations to show what was happening in the universe during the appearance of the first galaxies and reionization. During this process, neutral hydrogen atoms in space turned into positively charged or ionized hydrogen. This allowed light to spread throughout the universe.
The epoch of reionization took place about 13 billion years ago, and this process has always been difficult to reconstruct. The problem is the complex chaotic interactions between gravity, gas and radiation. Therefore, colossal computing power was used to implement the idea and many scientists took part. Among them are specialists from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics.
“Most astronomers don’t have laboratories to conduct experiments. The scales of space and time are too large, so we can only conduct experiments on computers,” explains Rahul Kannan, an astrophysicist at the Center for Astrophysics and one of the project participants. “But we can use the basic equations of physics and a lot of data to model what happened in the early Universe.” .
The simulation shows the gradual change of the universe from complete darkness to light. The project was named Thesan after the Etruscan goddess of the dawn.