Welcome!

News Feed Item

AAS Meeting Highlights Several New Hubble Science Findings

WASHINGTON, Jan. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Hubble Space Telescope is providing a new perspective on the remote universe, including new views of young and distant galaxies bursting with stars. Scientists described the findings Tuesday in a news conference sponsored by the American Astronomical Society (AAS).

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO)

Highlighted in the briefing were three discoveries -- four unusually bright galaxies as they appeared 13 billion years ago, the deepest image ever obtained of a galaxy cluster, and a sampling of galaxies thought to be responsible for most of the stars we see today.

The ultra-bright, young galaxies, discovered using data from NASA's Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes, are bursting with star formation activity, which accounts for their brilliance. The brightest one is forming stars approximately 50 times faster than our Milky Way galaxy does today. These fledgling galaxies are only one-twentieth the size of the Milky Way, but they probably contain about 1 billion stars crammed together.

Although Hubble has previously identified galaxies at this early epoch, astronomers were surprised to find objects that are about 10 to 20 times more luminous than anything seen previously.

"These just stuck out like a sore thumb because they are far brighter than we anticipated," explained Garth Illingworth of the University of California at Santa Cruz. "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."

The galaxies were first detected with Hubble. Its sharp images are crucial to finding such distant galaxies and enabled the astronomers to measure their star-formation rates and sizes. Using Spitzer, the astronomers were able to estimate the stellar masses by measuring the total stellar luminosity of the galaxies.

"This is the first time scientists were able to measure an object's mass at such a huge distance," said Pascal Oesch of Yale University in New Haven, Conn. "It's a fabulous demonstration of the synergy between Hubble and Spitzer."

The result bodes well for NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, currently in development. Scientists anticipate using Webb to look even farther back in time to find young, growing galaxies as they existed only a few hundred million years after the universe began in theorized big bang.

An unprecedented long distance view of the universe comes from an ambitious collaborative project with Hubble called The Frontier Fields. It is the longest and deepest exposure obtained to date of a cluster of galaxies, and shows some of the faintest and youngest galaxies ever detected. The image contains several hundred galaxies as they looked 3.5 billion years ago.

Appearing in the foreground of the image is Abell 2744, a massive galaxy cluster located in the constellation Sculptor. The immense gravity in Abell 2744 is being used as a lens to warp space and brighten and magnify images of more distant background galaxies. The more distant galaxies appear as they did longer than 12 billion years ago, not long after the big bang.

The Hubble exposure reveals almost 3,000 of these background galaxies interleaved with images of hundreds of foreground galaxies in the cluster. Their images not only appear brighter, but also smeared, stretched and duplicated across the field. Because of the gravitational lensing phenomenon, the background galaxies are magnified to appear as much as 10 to 20 times larger than they would normally appear. Furthermore, the faintest of these highly magnified objects is 10 to 20 times fainter than any galaxy observed previously. Without the boost from gravitational lensing, the many background galaxies would be invisible.

The Hubble exposure will be combined with images from Spitzer and NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory to provide new insight into the origin and evolution of galaxies and their accompanying black holes.

Hubble also uncovered a substantial population of 58 young, diminutive galaxies that scientists long suspected were responsible for producing a majority of stars now present in the cosmos during the universe's early years.

Deep exposures in ultraviolet light, made with Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3, revealed a sampling of galaxies that existed more than 10 billion years ago, when the universe was roughly 3.4 billion years old. They are the smallest, faintest, galaxies seen in the remote universe to date. A census of galaxies existing at the time indicates these small, faint galaxies are 100 times more abundant in the universe than their more massive cousins.

"There's always been a concern that we've only found the brightest of the distant galaxies," said Brian Siana of the University of California at Riverside. "The bright galaxies, however, represent the tip of the iceberg. We believe most of the stars forming in the early universe are occurring in galaxies we normally can't see at all. Now we have found those 'unseen' galaxies, and we're really confident that we're seeing the rest of the iceberg."

Normally too faint for Hubble to see, these galaxies were revealed through gravitational lensing focused on a massive galaxy cluster known as Abell 1689 in the constellation Ursa Major. The cluster magnified light emitted by distant objects behind it, causing the newly discovered galaxies to appear bigger and brighter. If this sample is representative of the entire population at the time, then the majority of new stars formed in such small, unseen galaxies.

"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 at Riverside.

The astronomers were surprised to find the deeper they looked with Hubble, the more faint galaxies they found.

"Our goal with these observations was not to find a large number of galaxies, but to find much fainter galaxies," said Alavi.

For images and more information about the ultra-bright young galaxies, visit:
http://hubblesite.org/news/2014/05

To see more images and information about The Frontier Fields campaign, visit:
http://hubblesite.org/news/2014/01

For images and more information about Abell 1689, visit:
http://hubblesite.org/news/2014/07

For more information about the Hubble Space Telescope, visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/hubble

SOURCE NASA

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
ChatOps is an emerging topic that has led to the wide availability of integrations between group chat and various other tools/platforms. Currently, HipChat is an extremely powerful collaboration platform due to the various ChatOps integrations that are available. However, DevOps automation can involve orchestration and complex workflows. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Himanshu Chhetri, CTO at Addteq, will cover practical examples and use cases such as self-provisioning infra...
As DevOps methodologies expand their reach across the enterprise, organizations face the daunting challenge of adapting related cloud strategies to ensure optimal alignment, from managing complexity to ensuring proper governance. How can culture, automation, legacy apps and even budget be reexamined to enable this ongoing shift within the modern software factory? In her Day 2 Keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Aruna Ravichandran, VP, DevOps Solutions Marketing, CA Technologies, was jo...
"Storpool does only block-level storage so we do one thing extremely well. The growth in data is what drives the move to software-defined technologies in general and software-defined storage," explained Boyan Ivanov, CEO and co-founder at StorPool, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 16th Cloud Expo, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.
As Marc Andreessen says software is eating the world. Everything is rapidly moving toward being software-defined – from our phones and cars through our washing machines to the datacenter. However, there are larger challenges when implementing software defined on a larger scale - when building software defined infrastructure. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Boyan Ivanov, CEO of StorPool, provided some practical insights on what, how and why when implementing "software-defined" in the datacent...
Blockchain. A day doesn’t seem to go by without seeing articles and discussions about the technology. According to PwC executive Seamus Cushley, approximately $1.4B has been invested in blockchain just last year. In Gartner’s recent hype cycle for emerging technologies, blockchain is approaching the peak. It is considered by Gartner as one of the ‘Key platform-enabling technologies to track.’ While there is a lot of ‘hype vs reality’ discussions going on, there is no arguing that blockchain is b...
Blockchain is a shared, secure record of exchange that establishes trust, accountability and transparency across business networks. Supported by the Linux Foundation's open source, open-standards based Hyperledger Project, Blockchain has the potential to improve regulatory compliance, reduce cost as well as advance trade. Are you curious about how Blockchain is built for business? In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, discussed the b...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
Is advanced scheduling in Kubernetes achievable?Yes, however, how do you properly accommodate every real-life scenario that a Kubernetes user might encounter? How do you leverage advanced scheduling techniques to shape and describe each scenario in easy-to-use rules and configurations? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Oleg Chunikhin, CTO at Kublr, answered these questions and demonstrated techniques for implementing advanced scheduling. For example, using spot instances and co...
The cloud era has reached the stage where it is no longer a question of whether a company should migrate, but when. Enterprises have embraced the outsourcing of where their various applications are stored and who manages them, saving significant investment along the way. Plus, the cloud has become a defining competitive edge. Companies that fail to successfully adapt risk failure. The media, of course, continues to extol the virtues of the cloud, including how easy it is to get there. Migrating...
The use of containers by developers -- and now increasingly IT operators -- has grown from infatuation to deep and abiding love. But as with any long-term affair, the honeymoon soon leads to needing to live well together ... and maybe even getting some relationship help along the way. And so it goes with container orchestration and automation solutions, which are rapidly emerging as the means to maintain the bliss between rapid container adoption and broad container use among multiple cloud host...
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
The need for greater agility and scalability necessitated the digital transformation in the form of following equation: monolithic to microservices to serverless architecture (FaaS). To keep up with the cut-throat competition, the organisations need to update their technology stack to make software development their differentiating factor. Thus microservices architecture emerged as a potential method to provide development teams with greater flexibility and other advantages, such as the abili...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.