• Question: How many particles in the universe?

    Asked by kennithkenniff to Aime, Akshat, Diana, Gemma, Judith on 23 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Judith McCann

      Judith McCann answered on 21 Jun 2011:

      Current predictions from astronomers puts the number of particles in the universe at somewhere between 10^72 and 10^87…

      So thats somewhere OVER 100 00000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 particles!

      “out there” is massive, as douglas adams said “Space is big. Really big. You just won’t believe how vastly hugely mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist, but that’s just peanuts to space.”

    • Photo: Gemma Sharp

      Gemma Sharp answered on 21 Jun 2011:

      It’s absolutely impossible to tell. We don’t know if the universe is infinite or not and it’s not possible to count all the particles!

      People can estimate the number based on the mass of the sun, how many hydrogen atoms make up the sun and how many suns there are likely to be in the universe, but it’s a really rough estimate at best.

    • Photo: Akshat Rathi

      Akshat Rathi answered on 23 Jun 2011:

      Judith is right about the numbers. But as Gemma pointed out it is very big range because no one is certain The fact that we can put a number on the total number of atoms proves that the matter in our universe is finite.