NASA’s Earth orbiting Hubble Space Telescope has helped the scientists to observe the galaxies that are more than 13 billion years old.
This research has been accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.
With the help of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, scientists have found seven previously unknown galaxies that were formed a little after the birth of the universe. These are found in the redshift range of 8.6 to 11.9. Redshift refers to the change in the spectrum of light of a celestial body towards longer wavelengths, i.e. towards the red end of the spectrum, due to its motion away from the Earth. Higher the value of redshift, more will be the distance of that celestial object from the Earth. So, the galaxy found in the redshift value of 11.9 is considered as the record breaker in its farthest distance from Earth as it is thought to be formed just 380 million years after the formation of the universe.
“This discovery of a significant population of galaxies at redshifts greater than 8, coupled with our new analysis of the number and properties of galaxies at redshift 7 and 8, support the idea that galaxies assembled progressively over time,” Project co-leader Ross McLure (University of Edinburgh, UK), said in a statement.
“Our study has taken the subject forward in two ways,” Richard Ellis of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, said in a statement. “First, we have used Hubble to make longer exposures. The added depth is essential to reliably probe the early period of cosmic history. Second, we have used Hubble’s available color filters very effectively to more precisely measure galaxy distances.”
Although Hubble Space Telescope is nearly 23 years old but it helped to look at the edge of the universe. Astronomers are eagerly waiting for the working of James Webb Space Telescope that will start working in the later part of this decade and will help them to look even beyond the space and time.
Richard S Ellis, Ross J McLure, James S Dunlop, Brant E Robertson, Yoshiaki Ono, Matthew A Schenker, Anton Koekemoer, Rebecca A A Bowler, Masami Ouchi, Alexander B Rogers, Emma Curtis-Lake, Evan Schneider, Stephane Charlot, Daniel P Stark, Steven R Furlanetto, & Michele Cirasuolo (2012). The Abundance of Star-Forming Galaxies in the Redshift Range 8.5 to 12:
New Results from the 2012 Hubble Ultra Deep Field Campaign Submitted to Astrophys. J. Lett. on Nov. 7, 2012. arXiv: 1211.6804v1