Anna I. McPherson Public Lecture 2018
A public talk by Dr. Alan Guth
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The physicist who first developed the idea of «cosmic inflation» — the theory that the Universe underwent a period of rapid expansion shortly after the Big Bang.
Open to everyone, no knowledge of physics assumed.
Inflationary cosmology gives a plausible explanation for many observed features of the universe, including its uniformity, its mass density, and the patterns of the ripples that are observed in the cosmic microwave background. Beyond what we can observe, most versions of inflation imply that our universe is not unique, but is part of a possibly infinite multiverse. I will describe the workings of inflation, the evidence for inflation, and why I believe that the possibility of a multiverse should be taken seriously.