The building blocks of the universe

  • J. John Anslyn


I review the state of knowledge of the composition of the universe for a non-specialist audience. The universe is built up of four components. These  are radiation, baryonic (ordinary) matter, dark matter and dark energy. In this article, a quick outline of the theory of Big Bang nucleosynthesis is  presented, and the origin of the elements is explained. Cosmology requires the presence of dark matter, which forms most of the mass of the  universe, and dark energy, which drives the acceleration of the expansion. The dark sector is motivated, and possible explanations are stated.

Contribution: As part of this special collection on building blocks, the building blocks of the universe are discussed and unsolved problems and  proposed solutions are highlighted.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2072-8050
print ISSN: 0259-9422