Big bang nucleosynthesis in crisis?

N. Hata, R. J. Scherrer, G. Steigman, D. Thomas, T. P. Walker, S. Bludman, P. Langacker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

145 Scopus citations


A new evaluation of the constraint on the number of light neutrino species (N) from big bang nucleosynthesis suggests a discrepancy between the predicted light element abundances and those inferred from observations, unless the inferred primordial He4 abundance has been underestimated by 0.0140.004 (1) or less than 10% (95% C.L.) of He3 survives stellar processing. With the quoted systematic errors in the observed abundances and a conservative chemical evolution parametrization, the best fit to the combined data is N=2.10.3 (1) and the upper limit is N<2.6 (95% C.L.). The data are inconsistent with the standard model (N=3) at the 98.6% C.L.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3977-3980
Number of pages4
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number22
StatePublished - 1995

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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