Cosmic dust definitely clouded Big Bang researchers' findings

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Cosmic dust definitely clouded Big Bang researchers' findings

Earlier this year, researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and the BICEP2 telescope in Antarctica were thought to have found evidence of gravitational waves produced during the first moments of the big bang. The discovery was heralded as one of the most important discoveries of our era -- unfortunately, the results were contaminated. While going through peer-review, astronomers began to wonder if cosmic dust may have skewed the results. Now the verdict is in: it did, but that doesn't necessarily mean the theory is false.

A report sourcing data from the European Space Agency's Planck satellite explains that there was too much dust in the original researcher's view of the sky to guarantee that what they saw was really gravitational waves, but that doesn't mean they didn't measure any waves. The theory still makes sense in its own right, but now that researchers are aware of the effects of the cosmic dust on observing evince of it, it's just harder to verify. Basically, more time and research is needed. That's a little frustrating, sure, but hey -- that's science.

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