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To go backward in time, start at the far right side of this Cosmic Web poster, which represents the universe as it is today, scattered with galaxies. As you move to the left, you see earlier stages of the universe in which dark matter—a mysterious substance astronomers can detect only indirectly—was structured as webs and filaments. Before that, closer to the Big Bang, dark matter was dominated by tides and voids. (Image courtesy of Miguel Angel Aragon Calvo, Julieta Aguilera, Mark Subbarao)

The Best Science Visualizations of the Year

Browse through the winning images that turn scientific exploration into art

Layered Compound

Ti2ALc2
(Image courtesy of Babak Anasori, Michael Naguib, Yury Gogotsi, Michel W. Barsoum)

It's not a sandstone cliff in Utah or the backdrop for a “Looney Tunes” Roadrunner cartoon. This People's Choice winner in the photography division—yes, it's a photograph—shows a layered compound called Ti2ALc2, from a family called MXene.

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