First year Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe results: implications for cosmology and inflation
The Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe ( WMAP ) is currently mapping the temperature and polarization anisotropies of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation on the full sky at five microwave frequencies. We summarize the major scientific results from the analysis of the first-year WMAP data, released on 11 February 2003: (1) the WMAP data alone fits a standard cosmological model, giving precise determinations of its six parameters; (2) the universe was reionized very early on in its history; (3) a joint analysis of WMAP data with smaller scale ground-based CMB experiments and large-scale structure data yields improved constraints on the geometry of the universe, the dark energy equation of state, the energy density in stable neutrino species and the inflationary paradigm.
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