Do you know the mysteries of the cosmos? Take the quiz!
What is dark matter? Where can we find the elusive "Goldilocks" planet? Take this quiz to see how much of the cosmos you still need to explore.start quiz
Question 1 of 20
What happened during the Big Bang?
... When the Big Bang occurred, the universe underwent a massive and sudden expansion.
Question 2 of 20
What occurs during the 62-million-year cycle of mass extinction?
... During mass extinction, 50 to 95 percent of Earth's species die.
Question 3 of 20
What is one possible effect of asteroid impacts, massive volcanic eruptions and gamma rays?
... All could lead to decreased global temperatures.
Question 4 of 20
Which is NOT a common explanation for the presence of dark matter?
... Hypotheses for the nature of dark matter include brown dwarfs, massive black holes and an unknown type of matter.
Question 5 of 20
In the last 7 billion years, what has likely happened to the massive galaxy cluster found by researchers using the South Pole telescope?
... The galaxy cluster is probably four times the size it was 7 billion years ago.
Question 6 of 20
Why might a "Goldilocks" planet be able to sustain life?
... A "Goldilocks" planet, which gets its name from the fact that it is niether too hot nor too cold, may have liquid water on its surface. Liquid water is considered necessary to sustain life.
Question 7 of 20
What was the nature of the Pioneer spacecraft anomaly?
... Over time, the Pioneer space probes began traveling away from the sun at slightly slower speeds than anticipated.
Question 8 of 20
Which statement describes how quantum physics might explain the Big Bang?
... Quantum physics does not rely on cause-and-effect; therefore, the Big Bang may have simply happened without an apparent cause.
Question 9 of 20
Why did Fred Hoyle refer to one theory of the creation of the universe as the "Big Bang"?
... Hoyle was mocking the theory, which he considered scientifically weak. The term eventually became the accepted name of the model.
Question 10 of 20
In 2008, what did scientists discover in lunar volcanic glass?
... Researchers from Brown University found water in samples of lunar volcanic glass.
Question 11 of 20
Which space agency did NOT sponsor the Cassini spacecraft?
... The Cassini project was assembled by NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency.
Question 12 of 20
What is formed when stars develop at different rates?
... A spiral galaxy is formed when stars develop at different times, causing them to spread in a spiral pattern.
Question 13 of 20
What did Dr. Jerry Ehman write on a computer printout from SETI receivers, expressing his surprise at seeing a potential signal from extraterrestrials?
... Dr. Ehman wrote "Wow!" as his immediate reaction to a surprising readout. The reading became known as the "Wow!" signal.
Question 14 of 20
What is baryonic matter?
... The understood atoms of the universe are known as baryonic matter.
Question 15 of 20
What is the multiverse theory?
... Multiverse theory suggests the possibility of multiple universes.
Question 16 of 20
What might cause Saturn's polar hexagon?
... Some scientists hypothesize that a jet stream moving much faster than the atmosphere can form a hexagon like the one seen on the surface of this gas planet.
Question 17 of 20
What is happening to the rate of expansion of the universe?
... Contrary to what we would expect, the expansion of the universe is not slowing down over time. It's speeding up.
Question 18 of 20
What percentage of matter in the universe is known to us?
... Less than 5 percent of the matter in the universe is composed of atoms with which we are familiar.
Question 19 of 20
Why does SETI look for signals resonating at 1420 megahertz?
... Hydrogen is the most common element in the universe, and it resonates at 1420 megahertz.
Question 20 of 20
Why did scientists want to discover the cause of the Pioneer anomaly?
... It was a small difference, but it should not have happened, given what we knew at the time about physics and the universe.
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