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Deflecting light from the Big Bang
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Deflecting light from the Big Bang

October 3, 2013
This artist’s impression shows how photons in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB, as detected by ESA’s Planck space telescope) are deflected by the gravitational lensing effect of massive cosmic structures as they travel across the Universe. Gravitational lensing creates tiny, additional distortions to the mottled pattern of the CMB temperature fluctuations. A small fraction of the CMB is polarised; one component of this polarised light, B-modes, have been given an additional signature by gravitational lensing. This imprint has been found for the first time by combining data from the ground-based South Pole Telescope and ESA’s Herschel space observatory. Copyright ESA and the Planck Collaboration