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Mat KaplanMay 8, 2014

Illustris: A realistic virtual universe

This is not your universe unfolding. This is another universe, or a good-sized piece of one, as simulated by Illustris, a software model developed internationally over many years. It took 8,000 processors running in parallel 3 months to build the model. Your desktop PC (if you still had one) would need over 2,000 years. Watch as individual galaxies form, interact with dark matter, gather in clusters, drift, collide and reform over 13.4 billion years, in a cube that is about 33 million light years across. And you thought your lunch today was awesome.

Illustris simulation of the universe

Illustris

Illustris simulation of the universe
Large scale projection through the Illustris volume, centered on the most massive galaxy cluster. Shows dark matter density overlaid with the gas velocity field.

Read more: pretty pictures, podcasts and videos, astronomy, animation

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Mat Kaplan

Planetary Radio Host and Producer
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