How will the expansion of the universe end?

On possible, but not soon change in the expansion of the universe

The expansion rate of the space of the universe is governed by three major factors: the density of matter in it, the curvature of space of the universe and the density of invisible (dark) energy of unknown nature. With the expansion, the density of matter decreases, and the latter two factors begin to dominate. Judging by the available observations, the three-dimensional space as a whole does not have a significant curvature, i.e. it is flat. In the case if it still is elliptical (spherical), and the density of dark energy decreases with time, the expansion can be replaced by contraction. If the density of the dark energy is growing rapidly, in the distant future the expansion will accelerate so that the sizes of previously gravitationally bound objects will start to increase, and then the electromagnetic interaction will not be able to keep atoms from breaking.

Possible future of the expanding universe

We have to figure out which of the three alternatives is implemented.


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