Observational constraints on the future lifetime of the universe

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We place bounds on the future lifetime of the universe based on present and future Type Ia supernovae and CMB observations, and explain features in the constraints on the past. We give a review of our work done in the last few years and present mainly our current work using a new Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) code. The resulting constraints exhibit features which have been observed by other groups previously, but which have not been explained so far. Using our new code, we are able to explain them and show that the new first-year data of the Supernova Legacy Survey (SNLS) prefer the cosmological constant, despite the fact that probability distributions for model parameters generically seem to favor dark energy models with non-trivial dynamics. We also calculate the future lifetime of the universe in a model derived from supergravity and discuss the proper interpretation of the results