Astronomers are discovering the most distant “dark age” galaxy so far


Since the advent of modern technology, the greatest minds in the world have begun to correctly grasp what has been termed a “big bang”.

According to a report in the magazine Express“The current cosmic models in general speak of the universe that began with the Big Bang, about 13.8 billion years ago.

However, astronomers are still not sure what the nascent universe looked like during this early period, which he dubbed the cosmic “dark age”.

But after pushing advanced tools to their limits, astronomers are now rewarded with discovering the oldest and farthest galaxy ever observed.

It is known that the cosmic dark ages began 370,000 years after the Big Bang, and continued for another billion years.

But after pushing advanced tools to their limits, astronomers are now rewarded with discovering the oldest and farthest galaxy ever observed.

The only sources of light during this period were either photons, which are still detectable today as a cosmic wave background, and emissions from neutral hydrogen atoms, and the expansion of the universe means that the light of these photons has been shifted to such an extent that they are largely invisible to astronomers.

This effect is known as “redshift”, and it is not unlike the Doppler effect, in which the wavelength of light is lengthened – or “shifted” – toward the red end of the spectrum as it passes through the rapidly expanding universe.

Read also: Astronomers close to the world’s first stars after the “Big Bang”

And the objects approaching our galaxy, cause the opposite effect. This causes the wavelength to shorten, and move toward the blue end of the spectrum, in a phenomenon known as a “blue shift”.

Astronomers have long used these effects to accurately calculate the distance of galaxies and the expansion rate of the universe.

New results obtained with the help of the Keck I telescope in Hawaii confirm that GN-z11 is the farthest – and therefore the oldest – galaxy so far.

Professor Nobunari Kashikawa of the University of Tokyo, one of the main authors of the study, said in a statement: “From previous studies, it appears that GN-z11 is the most distant galaxy that can be discovered, at 13.4 billion light-years.

The researchers examined the lines of carbon emissions emanating from GN-z11, located in the ultraviolet range as it left the galaxy, before dramatically changing the infrared end of the scale by the time it reaches Earth.

This large redshift indicates that this galaxy was around 13.4 billion years ago – only 400 million years after the Big Bang, and thus, GN-z11 is so far away that it actually defines the boundaries of the observable universe.

Although this galaxy was already observed by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, the Keck Observatory has now only been able to make accurate measurements.

Professor Kashikawa added, “The Hubble Space Telescope has detected traces many times in the GN-z11 spectrum. However, even Hubble cannot solve the UV emission lines as well as we need.”

So we resorted to a more modern ground-based spectrometer, a line-emission measuring instrument, called MOSFIRE, installed on the Keck I telescope in Hawaii. ”

However, astronomers will have to wait a while longer before more observations confirm that GN-z11 is indeed the most distant galaxy ever observed.

Astronomers expect such research to speed up rapidly when next-generation telescopes, such as James Webb, begin work.

Ultimately, these tools will allow astronomers to study the incomprehensible “Dark Age” period, with unparalleled accuracy.


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