Planck evidence for a closed Universe and a possible crisis for cosmology

Abstract

The recent Planck Legacy 2018 release has confirmed the presence of an enhanced lensing amplitude in cosmic microwave background power spectra compared with that predicted in the standard Λ cold dark matter model, where Λ is the cosmological constant. A closed Universe can provide a physical explanation for this effect, with the Planck cosmic microwave background spectra now preferring a positive curvature at more than the 99% confidence level. Here, we further investigate the evidence for a closed Universe from Planck, showing that positive curvature naturally explains the anomalous lensing amplitude, and demonstrating that it also removes a well-known tension in the Planck dataset concerning the values of cosmological parameters derived at different angular scales. We show that since the Planck power spectra prefer a closed Universe, discordances higher than generally estimated arise for most of the local cosmological observables, including baryon acoustic oscillations. The assumption of a flat Universe could therefore mask a cosmological crisis where disparate observed properties of the Universe appear to be mutually inconsistent. Future measurements are needed to clarify whether the observed discordances are due to undetected systematics, or to new physics or simply are a statistical fluctuation.

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ETA : Also @ New Scientist article