The end of the age problem, and the case for a cosmological constant revisited

Lawrence M. Krauss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

The case for an open universe versus a flat universe with nonzero cosmological constant is reanalyzed, following new globular cluster dating results that now suggest a dramatically reduced lower limit on the age of the universe, which, for example, allow age consistency for a flat matter-dominated universe with a Hubble constant H0 ≤ 67 km s-1 Mpc-1. I incorporate not only the new age data but also updates on baryon abundance constraints and large-scale structure arguments. For the first time, the allowed parameter space for the density of nonrelativistic matter appears larger for an open universe than for a flat universe with cosmological constant, while a flat universe with zero cosmological constant remains strongly disfavored, in spite of the fact that it is now more consistent with the new age constraint. I argue that fundamental theoretical arguments favor a nonzero cosmological constant over an open universe. However, if either case is confirmed, the challenges posed for fundamental physics will be great.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-466
Number of pages6
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume501
Issue number2 PART 1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 10 1998

Keywords

  • Cosmology: theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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