Article - Dark Energy : Space vacuum is no more a vacuum
The word "Dark Energy" brings to our mind an image of something like black magic or devil but it has nothing to do with these. Most of the energy we have on earth comes from the sun in the form of light and heat. It is visible and detectable energy. Some kind of energy that is invisible and mysterious is the dark energy. It is supposed to be the reason for the expansion of the universe (drifting away of stars and galaxies from each other).
Probably when we talk about the vacuum in the space it might not be so.There still may exist something that we are not able to perceive with our senses or instruments. Just like you cannot smell with your eyes, you need a nose. The Dark Energy Survey (DES) aims to study the expanding universe. It will use 4-metre Victor M. Blanco Telescope located at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) in Chile. If we are able to crack the exact nature and behaviour of this energy, it will surely change our concept of what we call energy and what we can do with it. It is abundant in the space comprising more than 70% of the universe itself. It is a potential fuel for artificial satellites we send in the far outer space to explore our neighbourhood. It may solve the energy problem for our probes into the space. They will be able to travel far without carrying any fuel. It will considerably revolutionise space travel. Or even someday the space travel would become as common as a bus or train travel. If higher intellectual life forms like ours exist on other solar systems, they might even know how to harness the energy and make use of it. These are just some enigmatic questions whose answers human race is to found.
So, space vacuum is no more a vacuum now. If you can't see it doesn't mean there isn't anything. The situation gets weirder when you are writing an article alone in your room, look around and think that there might be something or even someone else around you. Its just horrifying!!
- N K Sran