Cosmic Inflation: How It Gave the Universe the Ultimate Kickstart (Infographic)

Infographic: How the cosmic force of inflation enlarged the early universe.
Inflation is the mysterious force that blew up the scale of the infant universe from sub-microscopic to gargantuan in a fraction of a second. (Image credit: By Karl Tate, Infographics Artist)

In 1980, to explain the conditions observed in the universe, astrophysicist Alan Guth proposed cosmic inflation. The term inflation refers to the explosively rapid expansion of space-time that occurred a tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang. In another tiny fraction of a second, inflation slowed to a more leisurely expansion that continues to this day and is accelerating.

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at:

Karl Tate contributor

Karl's association with goes back to 2000, when he was hired to produce interactive Flash graphics. From 2010 to 2016, Karl worked as an infographics specialist across all editorial properties of Purch (formerly known as TechMediaNetwork).  Before joining, Karl spent 11 years at the New York headquarters of The Associated Press, creating news graphics for use around the world in newspapers and on the web.  He has a degree in graphic design from Louisiana State University and now works as a freelance graphic designer in New York City.