Reply to post: Re: This is why i love science

Version 0.1 super-stars built the universe – and they lived all the way over there, boffins point


Re: This is why i love science

It might be an inaccurate reading of the article or an even more inaccurate understanding of the science but I don't understand where the 'challenge' is - at least in the sense of this discovery being something that challenges what people know.

As I understand it, these stars pretty much had to exist at some point as the heavier elements we see around us every day are the product of fusion inside stars, but the big bang generated elements only as heavy as Beryllium. Thus, the earliest stars could only have been composed of these lighter elements as there simply wasn't anything else there to use.

I took this discovery as a confirmation of a widely held and accepted prediction which, if false, would cause people to go back to the drawing board to figure out how heavier elements were first generated. (And indeed re-think the big bang.)

To me, then, the really pleasing thing is how several (already multinational) teams of scientists working around the globe have coordinated themselves towards this goal. I find this all the more impressive and affirming because the observation was not some great leap but a confirmation of something already long assumed (again, unless I am mistaken).

Thousands of hours of observation and coordination and patience and diligence applied to making sure that we what we think we know is actually the truth.

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