Greetings, If you are a fan of cosmology, Scientist like Sir Stephan Hawking’s, Carl Sagan and Sir Isaac Newton are your heroes And you like to know everything that has happened since Big-Bang, We have a treat for you. Lets learn about the Cosmic Calendar, A Graphical illustration of the beginning, Till now, Compressed and Adjusted according to times familiar by us humans.
The Briefest Introduction to the universe :
We know for a fact that our Universe is 13.8 billion years or 13,800,000,000 Years Old. The time that we know, started when the small ball of pure energy exploded, Resulting in the generation of 4 Master Forces of Universe, Namely : Electromagnetism, Strong Nuclear Force, Weak Nuclear force And Gravity.
The Big Bang also converted Energy into Matter (and Anti-Matter). The only time this phenomenon has happened in our universe.
Why 13.8 Billion Years, How can you say that when you weren’t there, Also how accurate are you ?
There are two Scientifically proven ways to calculate the age of our universe. We shall try to bring it down to the most basic level as humanly possible for your understanding.
We know for a fact that things inside our Universe cannot be older than the Universe itself, As it is the Pot for our Curry. This will help us in finding the Lower Age Limit. The oldest physical thing that we have detected is the star Methuselah, Which is 13.7 Billion Year Old, Give or take 800 Million Years. (Source)
We also have detected the Oldest Gamma Ray Burst, GRB 090423, Approximately 13.5 Billion Year old. This helps in establishing the belief that the universe must be at-least 13.7 Billion year old, Most possibly older, But not younger.
Another Way we can calculate the age of our universe is by observing the rate of its Expansion. We know its expanding, not collapsing :
In 1920’s, Edwin Hubble (Yes The Hubble Telescope is named after him) discovered that the Fuzzy, Cloud-like objects are actually very distant galaxies. His most remarkable discovery was that he saw All of the galaxies in the universe appeared to be moving away from our planet and each other.
Furthermore, the farther a galaxy was, the faster it was receding. This observation, which Hubble made in 1929, became the basis for what’s known as Hubble’s law, Which states : “…there is a relationship between the distance an object in the cosmos is from us and the speed at which it is receding.”
Using this fact and his ginormous collection of data, Hubble created what is a keystone of our understanding of Universe, “The Hubble Constant”, Which tells us that the speed at which the universe is expanding is 73.8 km/sec/Mpc. Using this value, we can find out a lot of stuff about our universe, Including the exact age.
Lets begin unraveling the cosmic calendar :
We shall start from January 1, Time is set to 0.00.00, And nothing exists yet. There are no planet, no star, Not even empty space. Lets see how everything went from being as small as an Atom to turn into the current universe. We have used this mathematical formula to convert a huge quantity of time in relatable quantity :
T(days) = 365 days * 0.100/13.797 ( 1- T_Gya/13.797 )
|Date||BYA (Billion Years Ago)||Event, From Oldest To Newest|
|1 Jan||13.8||Big Bang, as seen through cosmic background radiation.|
|14 Jan||13.1||Oldest known Gamma Ray Burst|
|22 Jan||12.85||First galaxies form.|
|16 Mar||11||Milky Way Galaxy formed.|
|12 May||8.8||Milky Way Galaxy disk (Complete Formation) formed|
|2 Sep||4.57||Formation of the Solar System.|
|6 Sep||4.4||Oldest rocks known on Earth.|
By September 6th, We have our little planet Earth. Its dead for now, but we know things will change. Lets see how time proceed :
Formation of Life (As we yet know it) on our planet Earth :
|Date||Bya (Billion Years Ago)||Event|
|14 Sep||4.1||First known remains of biotic life (discovered in 4.1 billion-year-old rocks in Western Australia).|
|21 Sep||3.8||First Life (Prokaryotes)|
|30 Sep||3.4||Photosynthesis, And the domination of Tree Life on Earth.|
|29 Oct||2.4||Oxygenation of Atmosphere due to Tree Domination.|
|9 Nov||2||First Complex (Complete) Cells (Eukaryotes)|
|5 Dec||0.8||First Multicellular Life. [Speculated : CyanoBacteria]|
|7 Dec||0.67||Simple Animals exist with one basic Sense, Sense of survival.|
|14 Dec||0.55||Arthropods or Exo-Skeleton based creatures. (ancestors of insects, arachnids. They looked like dung beetles.)|
|17 Dec||0.5||Fish and Proto-amphibians. (Marine life starts)|
|20 Dec||0.45||Plants get a foothold on Dry Land; Ordovician–Silurian extinction events AKA Marine Life Extinction (70% Extinct).|
|21 Dec||0.4||First completely formed Insects and Plant Seeds.|
|22 Dec||0.36||Amphibians (Vertebrate based Insects) and Late Devonian extinction (19% Families Extinct).|
|23 Dec||0.3||Reptiles, First ancestors of Alligators and Modern Insects.|
|24 Dec||0.25||Permian–Triassic extinction event (The Great Dying); 57% of all biological families and 83% of all genera die.|
|25 Dec||0.23||Diverse group of reptiles, Dinosaurs rule the planet earth.|
|26 Dec||0.2||First Mammals and Triassic–Jurassic extinction event|
|27 Dec||0.15||First Modern Birds.|
|28 Dec||0.13||Flowers and start of pollination, Evolution of insects into Bees.|
|30 Dec, 06:24||0.065||Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, 15Km Wide asteroid hits planet earth, wiping out all existence except Turtles and crocodiles. 75% Annihilation of species on planet earth.|
|30 Dec, 07:15||0.060||End of the Mesozoic Era, Dawn of the Cenozoic Era (New Life Era) that continues today.
By now, Earth is full of biodiversity, But where are we ? It would still be a couple of thousand year before our ancestors come into being.
Our Arrival, The Evolution of Human Species :
|Date / time||mya(Million Years Ago)||Event|
|30 Dec||65||Primates. (Mammals, First intelligent life started living in trees in Middle Africa.)|
|31 Dec, 06:05||15||Apes|
|31 Dec, 14:24||12.3||Hominids, Or Great Apes.|
|31 Dec, 22:24||2.5||Primitive Humans (Home-Erectus)and Stone Tools|
|31 Dec, 23:44||0.4||Domestication of Fire.|
|31 Dec, 23:52||0.2||Anatomically Modern Humans (Homo-Saipan’s)|
|31 Dec, 23:55||0.11||Beginning of Most Recent Glacial Period.|
|31 Dec, 23:58||0.035||Sculpture and Painting.|
|31 Dec, 23:59:32||0.012||Invention of Agriculture.|
Let “Our” History Begin :
Everything we know of our Past, lies within the last 28 Seconds of Cosmic Calendar, At 11.59.46 at the midnight of New Year’s Eve, Chalcolithic age began, Humans begin working with Copper, Smelting it upon our needs.
After one second, We have our first Alloy, Bronze. A magical mixture of Copper and Tin which could resist heat to a greater extent and was harder than anything we have encountered before, This gave humans a great technological advantage. Around this same time we erected the Stonehenge Monument, Our first ever artificial landmark.
At 11.59:48 PM, Our first great civilization with its own Laws begin in Egypt, A flick of eye later, Second great civilization began settling in Indus Valley.
Its 11.59:49 PM, Humans have invented the first Alphabets in Sumerian and the father of all invention is created, The Wheel. The Akkadin Empire sets its stronghold in Mesopotamia.
11.59:51 PM, Or in our familiar time 1754 B.C, We enacted the Code of Hammurabi, The first writing done by any government. Also, Life is flourishing around majors rivers, Niles and Ganges.
11.59:53 PM, Iron Age starts. Modern tools built for agriculture reshape how we worked in the fields. This metal also made our weapons harder, Making it much easier to kill other.
11.59:54 PM marks many great events. Gautam Buddha is born (5 Century B.C) in Nepal, India. Confucius (551 B.C) began emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships, justice, kindness, and sincerity. In Asia, Qin and Ashoka establish their empires. The Rig Vedas are completed and inscribed. Eukleides of Alexandria discovers Geometry and Archimedes lays down the basic Physics at 287 B.C.
At 11.59:55 PM, 27 B.C Roman Empire sets its stronghold in Italy. A little while later, In 4th Century, Jesus or Isa Ali-Aslam is born in Rome. This marks the start of last era in our Human History, The Anno Domini or Common Era (C.E).
11.59:56 PM : Muḥammad ibn ʿAbdullāh (Sallallahu alayhi wasalam) is born in 570 C.E in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The Mayan Civilization is at its strongest right now. Constantine of Constantinople begins his reign.
11:59:58 PM marks the rise and fall of many empires, Including the Mongol Empire and Maratha Empire. Christopher Columbus discovers America en-route to India. In 14th Century, European Renaissance begins. At 21 March 1685, Johann Sebastian Bach is born to provide the world with his music.
Its 11:59:59 PM, From the dawn of Modern History to you reading this article, Resides here, at this very instance. Wonderful Isn’t it ?
What happens at 12.00 AM and in Year 2 ?
Warning : Speculations Ahead, No Sources. Critics invited.
Science has provided us with mechanisms to predict the future with great confidence, History provides us with a template of descriptions. Using them both we have created what lies ahead in Year two of the cosmic calendar. Spoiler, You wont enjoy this bit.
|Date / time||kyr(Thousand years), myr (Million years), and Byr (billion years)||Event|
|1 Jan, 00:00:01||0.5 Kyr||Anthropocene Epoch (Human changes Earth drastically)|
|1 Jan, 00:00:23||10.0 Kyr||Antares star system explodes into a supernova|
|1 Jan, 00:00:50||20.0 Kyr||Chernobyl becomes safe for rehabilitation.|
|1 Jan, 00:00:57||20.0 Kyr||The Arecibo message reaches the M13 cluster (Sent in 1974.)|
|1 Jan, 00:01:54||50.0 Kyr||Niagara Falls erodes away.|
|1 Jan, 00:03:48||100.0 Kyr||Proper motion makes all constellations unrecognizable.|
|1 Jan, 00:11:24||300.0 Kyr||WR 104 explodes tar system explodes, Killing earth life by Gamma Ray.|
|1 Jan, 00:19:02||500.0 Kyr||Earth likely hit by 1 km asteroid, Happens every 50,000 Years.|
|1 Jan, 00:38:05||1.0 Myr||Pyramids of Giza erode away.|
|1 Jan, 04:34:17||7.2 Myr||Mount Rushmore erodes away.|
|1 Jan, 16:30||20.00 Myr||Eastern Africa splits apart.|
|2 Jan||50.00 Myr||Mediterranean Sea closes up due to Europe and Africa colliding.|
|3 Jan||100.00 Myr||Saturn loses its rings.|
|5 Jan||180.00 Myr||Earth’s day becomes one hour longer.|
|7 Jan||240.00 Myr||Solar System completes one galactic year.|
|8 Jan||250.00 Myr||Formation of possible new supercontinent.|
|16 Jan||600.00 Myr||Solar eclipses no longer possible.|
|17 Jan||700.00 Myr||Atmospheric CO2 levels too low for photosynthesis, all complex life die.|
|8 Feb||1.0 Byr||Earth’s oceans evaporate away.|
|1 Mar||2.0 Byr||All life on Earth dies.|
|18 Mar||3.0 Byr||Milky Way-Andromeda collision.|
|9 Apr||4.0 Byr||Sun expands into a red giant.|
|16 Apr||4.0 Byr||Global surface temperatures reach 1330 deg C, hot enough to melt lead|
|28 Jul||7.9 Byr||Sun destroys the Earth.|
|12 Aug||8.0 Byr||Sun becomes a white dwarf.|
|31 Dec||12.0 Byr||Solar System ceases to exist.|
Sweet dreams and good night.
How do you like our first post in science category ? We tried to cover the cosmic calendar with as much details as possible. If we forget anything, let us know via E-Mail. Please provide your review below. Fellow scientists and Critics are invited.