Astronomers discover a 'magnifying glass' in space that acts like a time machine
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
8/1/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
Astronomers have discovered a virtual magnifying glass in space that allows them to look farther back in time than they normally can, to an age when the universe was young and contained less mysterious dark matter.
Images which reveal the galaxies in question. They may look like pixels, however by examining light in fine detail with sensitive instruments astronomers can reveal a lot of basic knowledge about the objects.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Astronomers Kennith Wong and Sherry Suyu of Academic Sincia Institute of Astronomy in Taiwan have discovered a massive, distant elliptical galaxy in Hubble Space telescope images. By chance, behind that galaxy is another one, far older and more ancient that what we normally can see, even with the most sensitive instruments. We are able to see the galaxy behind the giant elliptical because the elliptical in the foreground acts as a magnifying glass.
Massive objects in space can distort the light from objects behind them, allowing them to serve as magnifying glasses. This effect is known as gravitational lensing and it was proposed theoretically decades before it was observed.
St. Dominic de Guzman, patron saint of astronomers.
Today, astronomers use this phenomenon to peer at distant objects deep in space, but there's a catch: we can't move the magnifying glass, so we're stuck seeing whatever we can see through the lensing effect and nothing more.
Still, objects like the massive elliptical galaxy are key to making observations of the early universe.
Behind the elliptical is a small spiral galaxy which is just forming -or at least it was just forming about 10.7 billion years ago. Another curious feature of space is that it takes time for light to travel. In this case, the light from the forming spiral took 10.7 billion years to reach observers on Earth. Since the universe formed about 13.7 billion years ago, the galaxy which astronomers see appears as it did not long after the universe formed.
These observations are important because they provide information about how the universe may have been formed.
The most interesting observation is that the ancient, small spiral does not have the same quantity of dark matter as modern galaxies do. This suggests that dark matter forms and accumulates over time. Dark matter is an unknown form of mass which is thought to bind entire galaxies together by gravity. Scientists only know what dark matter does, but not what it is.
Why is the ancient spiral deficient in dark matter compared to modern galaxies? It's a mystery that requires more research.
Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for OCTOBER 2017
Workers and the Unemployed. That all workers may receive respect and protection of their rights, and that the unemployed may receive the opportunity to contribute to the common good.
A former Google engineer plans to start his own religion, and he is designing the god to lead it. Anthony Levandowski, a former Google ... continue reading
A young Russian man is sticking to his story that he first told as a child. Boriska Kipriyanovich, 20, claims he once lived on Mars and ... continue reading
Pope Francis' call to the International Space Station shows there is no conflict between the faith and science (Full Transcript) Watch
Pope Francis spoke with the crew of the International Space Station on Thursday. The Holy Father asked each of the crew how the experience ... continue reading
September 23 is a worrisome date for millions of people who believe that a massive planet will affect the Earth as it passes by in space. ... continue reading
Scientists plan to send a signal into deep space to see if aliens are out there. However, experts warn we could endanger humanity by doing ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- Intro to Novena to Our Lady of Guadalupe for a New Culture of Life HD ...
- Pope condemns death penalty and possession of nuclear weapons
- ISIS threatens Pope Francis, Catholics with disturbing propaganda images
- Daily Readings for Tuesday, November 21, 2017
- St. Gelasius: Saint of the Day for Tuesday, November 21, 2017
- Who is serving in the President's Cabinet? Here's the list
- Islamic State threatens Pope Francis in gory propaganda ad HD Video
- Daily Reading for Thursday, November 23rd, 2017 HD
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017 HD
- Atheist plans to build a Robot God for other Atheists to worship HD
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, November 21st, 2017 HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
The California Network
Inspiring streaming service
Learn the Catholic way