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Sep 11, 2021

Largest virtual universe free for anyone to explore

Posted by in categories: alien life, computing, particle physics

Forget about online games that promise you a “whole world” to explore. An international team of researchers has generated an entire virtual universe, and made it freely available on the cloud to everyone.

Uchuu (meaning “outer space” in Japanese) is the largest and most realistic simulation of the to date. The Uchuu simulation consists of 2.1 trillion particles in a computational cube an unprecedented 9.63 billion light-years to a side. For comparison, that’s about three-quarters the distance between Earth and the most distant observed . Uchuu reveals the evolution of the universe on a level of both size and detail inconceivable until now.

Uchuu focuses on the large-scale structure of the universe: mysterious halos of dark matter that control not only the formation of galaxies, but also the fate of the entire universe itself. The scale of these structures ranges from the largest galaxy clusters down to the smallest galaxies. Individual stars and planets aren’t resolved, so don’t expect to find any alien civilizations in Uchuu. But one way that Uchuu wins big in comparison to other virtual worlds is the ; Uchuu simulates the evolution of matter over almost the entire 13.8 billion year history of the universe from the Big Bang to the present. That is over 30 times longer than the since animal life first crawled out of the seas on Earth.

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