David Shiga writes "What gruesome fate awaits our universe? Some physicists have argued that it is doomed to be ripped apart by runaway dark energy, while others think it is bouncing through an endless series of big bangs and big crunches. Now, scientists have combined these two ideas to create another option, in which our universe ultimately shatters into billions of pieces. Each shard would then subsequently grow into a whole new universe. The model could solve the mystery of why our early universe was surprisingly well ordered."