Riddle of Einstein’s ‘blunder’

An idea that genius Albert Einstein called his “biggest blunder” may be true after all, astronomers believe.
Superbrain Einstein, who drew up the general theory of relativity in 1915, thought he had also found a formula called a “cosmological constant” to help explain how the universe is expanding.
But he later retracted it.
Now a team including UK astronomers has found that his formula works if they allow for invisible “dark energy” in the universe that Einstein never knew about.
They carried out observations of distant supernovae, or exploding stars, using the biggest telescopes on moutaintops around the world, the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics reports.
Dr Isobel Hook, of the University of Oxford, said: “So far our results are consistent with Einstein’s cosmological constant. Now we know he may have been closer to the truth than he realised.”

Paul Sutherland

Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.
Paul Sutherland

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Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.

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