Cosmic Background: Measurements of the Spectrum
Reasonable assumptions about the matter density of the universe lead to the conclusion that the photons now entering radiometer horns or spectrometers last interacted with matter at a redshift of ∿1500, i.e. only ∿200,000 y after the “origin” of the universe.
In contrast, redshifts of visually identified objects in the universe are ≲4 corresponding to epoch ∿109 y after creation. Antiquity of the relict radiation therefore provides a unique opportunity of direct investigation of the early universe.
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