Timeline of the Universe
This timeline attempts to show the best scientific estimates of the timings of past events and predictions of the approximate timing of hypothetical future events with cosmological significance. Some locally significant events of interest to members of Homo sapiens are also included. See estimates of the date of Creation for alternative views based on religious tradition. (Note: in this context, billion means 1,000,000,000).
The Big Bang
See also timeline of the Big Bang for the first 300,000 years after the Big Bang.
- 13.7 ± 0.2 billion years ago: Universe, which includes time and space, begins with Big Bang
The distant past
- 300 thousand years after the Big Bang, hydrogen nuclei capture electrons, forming the first atoms
- 600 million years after the Big Bang: formation of first galaxies, see Galaxy formation and evolution
- 5 billion years ago (~8.7 billion years after the Big Bang): formation of the Sun
- 4.5 billion years ago: formation of the Earth -- start of geologic timescale
- 3.5 billion years ago: first signs of single-celled life on Earth
- 600 to 500 million years ago: multicellular life evolves
The human era
- 40,000 years from now, Voyager 2 will approach another planetary system.
The far future
See also 1017 seconds for times further than 3 billion years into the future.