For Further Exploration: The Big Bang


Kruesi, L. “Cosmology: 5 Things You Need to Know.” Astronomy (May 2007): 28. Five questions students often ask, and how modern cosmologists answer them.

Kruesi, L. “How Planck Has Redefined the Universe.” Astronomy (October 2013): 28. Good review of what this space mission has told us about the CMB and the universe.

Lineweaver, C. & Davis, T. “Misconceptions about the Big Bang.” Scientific American (March 2005): 36. Some basic ideas about modern cosmology clarified, using general relativity.

Nadis, S. “Sizing Up Inflation.” Sky & Telescope (November 2005): 32. Nice review of the origin and modern variants on the inflationary idea.

Nadis, S. “How We Could See Another Universe.” Astronomy (June 2009): 24. On modern ideas about multiverses and how such bubbles of space-time might collide.

Nadis, S. “Dark Energy’s New Face: How Exploding Stars Are Changing our View.” Astronomy (July 2012): 45. About our improving understanding of the complexities of type Ia supernovae.

Naze, Y. “The Priest, the Universe, and the Big Bang.” Astronomy (November 2007): 40. On the life and work of Georges Lemaître.

Panek, R. “Going Over to the Dark Side.” Sky & Telescope (February 2009): 22. A history of the observations and theories about dark energy.

Pendrick, D. “Is the Big Bang in Trouble?” Astronomy (April 2009): 48. This sensationally titled article is really more of a quick review of how modern ideas and observations are fleshing out the Big Bang hypothesis (and raising questions.)

Reddy, F. “How the Universe Will End.” Astronomy (September 2014): 38. Brief discussion of local and general future scenarios.

Riess, A. and Turner, M. “The Expanding Universe: From Slowdown to Speedup.” Scientific American (September 2008): 62.

Turner, M. “The Origin of the Universe.” Scientific American (September 2009): 36. An introduction to modern cosmology.


Cosmology Primer: Caltech Astrophysicist Sean Carroll offers a non-technical site with brief overviews of many key topics in modern cosmology.

Everyday Cosmology: An educational website from the Carnegie Observatories with a timeline of cosmological discovery, background materials, and activities.

How Big Is the Universe?: A clear essay by a noted astronomer Brent Tully summarizes some key ideas in cosmology and introduces the notion of the acceleration of the universe.

Universe 101: WMAP Mission Introduction to the Universe: Concise NASA primer on cosmological ideas from the WMAP mission team.

Cosmic Times Project: James Lochner and Barbara Mattson have compiled a rich resource of twentieth-century cosmology history in the form of news reports on key events, from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.


The Day We Found the Universe: Distinguished science writer Marcia Bartusiak discusses Hubble’s work and the discovery of the expansion of the cosmos—one of the Observatory Night lectures at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (53:46).

Images of the Infant Universe: Lloyd Knox’s public talk on the latest discoveries about the CMB and what they mean for cosmology (1:16:00).

Runaway Universe: Roger Blandford (Stanford Linear Accelerator Center) public lecture on the discovery and meaning of cosmic acceleration and dark energy (1:08:08).