The universe is expanding, but scientists can't agree on how fast it's happening. Picture credit: NASA via Unsplash.

Something weird is happening to the universe.

It’s expanding at two different speeds at the same time.

And it could lead to a whole new branch of science.

“The Hubble Space Telescope measures the rate of expansion of the universe at 72 km per second, per megaparsec,” explains Dr Adam Moss, a cosmologist at the University of Nottingham.

“The competing measurement comes from observations of cosmic microwave background – the radiation left over from the Big Bang – and this measures the rate of expansion at 67 km per second, per megaparsec.  

“It doesn’t seem like a big difference, but in terms of physics, it’s a huge discrepancy.”

If both measurements are proved to be correct – there is a one in a million chance that astronomers have got the measurements wrong – it throws our understanding of the universe into question, and scientists say we may have to rethink basic physics. 

Julian Onions, Chair of the Nottingham Astronomical Society says, “Whenever you think you know all there is to know, the universe throws something unexpected at you.”  

Watch the video below to find out more.