Wednesday, January 13, 2010

earliest and most distant galaxies ever seen

Astronomers announced in a series of papers over the fall and in a news conference last week that Hubble had recorded images of the earliest and most distant galaxies ever seen, blurry specks of light that burned brightly only 600 million to 800 million years after the Big Bang.

...The new galaxies, along with other recent discoveries like the violent supernova explosion of a star only 620 million years after the Big Bang, take astronomers deep into a period of cosmic history known as the dark ages, which has been little explored. It was then that stars and galaxies were starting to light up vigorously in larger and larger numbers and that a fog of hydrogen that had enveloped space after the Big Bang fires had cooled mysteriously dissipated. of many astronomers who have been working with the observations, said, “We’re reaching the beginning where galaxies formed for the first time.”

...The most distant, he said, was about 600 million years after the Big Bang. The universe is about 13.7 billion years old, cosmologists agree, meaning that the light from these galaxies has been on its way to us for 13 billion years.
so juicy. keep reading.

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