The Big Bang theory tells the story of the beginning of the Universe, our cosmic home for the last 13.8 billion years. But what is the story of its end? I’ll share what modern astrophysics tells us about the ultimate fate of the cosmos, and what each possibility would entail if there were people there to see it.
Dr Katherine (Katie) Mack is a theoretical astrophysicist who studies a range of questions in cosmology, the study of the universe from beginning to end. She currently holds the position of Assistant Professor of Physics at North Carolina State University, where she is also a member of the Leadership in Public Science Cluster. Throughout her career she has studied dark matter, the early universe, galaxy formation, black holes, cosmic strings, and the ultimate fate of the cosmos. Alongside her academic research, she is an active science communicator and has been published in a number of popular publications such as Scientific American, Slate, Sky & Telescope, Time.com, and Cosmos Magazine, where she is a columnist. You can find her on Twitter as @AstroKatie.