Feeds

New snaps show dazzling young galaxies furiously spawning stars - 13 BILLION years ago

Luminous beauties found in Hubble's deepest ever pic of galaxy cluster

3 Big data security analytics techniques

The Hubble Space Telescope has captured the deepest image ever made of any cluster of galaxies, spying some of the youngest galaxies ever detected in space, including four bright young things as they appeared 13 billion years ago.

Long-exposure Hubble Space Telescope image of massive galaxy cluster Abell 2744 (foreground) and some of the faintest and youngest galaxies ever detected in space.

The ultra-bright young things were discovered in data from both Hubble and NASA's Spitzer 'scope and all four are rapidly forming stars, which is why they're shining so brilliantly. The brightest of the galaxies is making stars around 50 times faster than the Milky Way does today, despite the fact that the infant clusters are only a twentieth of the size.

Hubble has seen galaxies this young before, but none with objects that are 10 to 20 times more luminous than anything ever seen before.

"These just stuck out like a sore thumb because they are far brighter than we anticipated," explained Garth Illingworth of the University of California. "There are strange things happening regardless of what these sources are. We're suddenly seeing luminous, massive galaxies quickly build up at such an early time. This was quite unexpected."

Hubble was the telescope that first found the distant galaxies and its data allowed astroboffins to measure star-formation rates and sizes. Spitzer's information then allowed the astronomers to estimate stellar masses by measuring the total luminosity of the galaxies.

The snapshot comes from a Hubble project known as The Frontier Fields, which is the longest and deepest exposure to date of a cluster of galaxies that has imaged some of the faintest and youngest galaxies ever seen.

The galaxies are normally too faint to see, but Hubble was able to find them through gravitational lensing by focusing on a massive galaxy cluster called Abell 1689 in the constellation Ursa Major.

"Though these galaxies are very faint, their increased numbers mean that they account for the majority of star formation during this epoch," said team member Anahita Alavi, also of the University of California.

Abell 1689 revealed another massive galaxy cluster, Abell 2744 in the constellation Sculptor at the front of the image. Its immense gravity is being used as a lens to brighten and magnify the images of even more distant background galaxies.

The most distant of the stars appear as they did not long after the Big Bang and NASA hopes that the James Webb Space Telescope, currently in development, will be able to look even further back in time to how the Universe appeared only a few hundred million years after it was born.

Hubble's findings were described in a news conference sponsored by the American Astronomical Society (AAS). ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
So, just how do you say 'the mutt's nuts' in French?
Vital linguistic question interrupts LOHAN spaceplane mission
95 floors in 43 SECONDS: Hitachi's new ultra-high-speed lift
Guangzhou skyscraper denizens to hold on to hats
Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey
Science no match for religion, politics, business interests
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
STEALTHY NANOROBOTS dress up as viruses, prepare to sneak into YOUR BODY
Cloaking techniques nicked from viruses tackle roadblocks on way to medical frontier
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.