Galaxies Actively Forming in Early Universe Caught Feeding on Cold Gas

A team in Denmark examining archival data from the James Webb Space Telescope recently found a trio of distant galaxies that are in the process of gathering gas when the universe was only a few hundred million years old. Their detection and characterization are remarkable achievements that only Webb is currently capable of, thanks to its specialization in infrared light.

Expanding the Hunt for Hidden Dark Matter Particles

Theoretical models of dark matter predict that its signals can be detected using low-background radiation detectors. By looking for specific types of dark matter and finding no signal, scientists operating the Majorana Demonstrator experiment have significantly narrowed the characteristics of potential dark matter particles. The results will help design future experiments.

UC Irvine astronomers’ simulations support dark matter theory

Computer simulations by astronomers support the idea that dark matter – matter that no one has yet directly detected but which many physicists think must be there to explain several aspects of the observable universe – exists, according to the researchers, who include those at the University of California, Irvine.

Revelan detallada panorámica de 11 mil millones de años hacia el pasado del Universo

Astrónomos de diversas partes del mundo están realizando un análisis inicial de los datos del primer año de estudio del Instrumento Espectroscópico de Energía Oscura, que lleva a cabo un sondeo de 5 años para crear el mapa en 3D más grande que se haya hecho sobre el Universo. Utilizando el espectro de las galaxias cercanas y de cuásares distantes, los astrónomos reportaron que lograron medir la historia de la expansión del Universo con la mayor precisión jamás alcanzada, proporcionando un panorama sin precedentes sobre la naturaleza de la energía oscura y su efecto en la estructura a gran escala del Universo.

DESI Looks 11 Billion Years Into the Past to Reveal Most Detailed View Ever of the Expanding Universe

The Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument is conducting a five-year survey to create the largest 3D map of the Universe ever. Astronomers are now performing initial analysis of the survey’s first-year data. Using spectra of nearby galaxies and distant quasars, astronomers report that they have measured the expansion history of the Universe with the highest precision ever, providing an unprecedented look at the nature of dark energy and its effect on the Universe’s large-scale structure.

Webb Unlocks Secrets of One of the Most Distant Galaxies Ever Seen

Delivering on its promise to transform our understanding of the early universe, the James Webb Space Telescope is probing galaxies near the dawn of time. One of these is the exceptionally luminous galaxy GN-z11, which existed when the universe was just a tiny fraction of its current age. One of the youngest and most distant galaxies ever observed, it is also one of the most enigmatic. Why is it so bright? Webb appears to have found the answer.

Researchers discover tiny galaxy with big star power using James Webb telescope

Using first-of-their-kind observations from the James Webb Space Telescope, a University of Minnesota Twin Cities-led team looked more than 13 billion years into the past to discover a unique, minuscule galaxy that could help astronomers learn more about galaxies that were present shortly after the Big Bang.

Unveiling Networks of Stellar Nurseries in Nearby Galaxies

Janice Lee, Chief Scientist at the International Gemini Observatory, leads the JWST Treasury Survey for the PHANGS (Physics at High Angular resolution in Nearby Galaxies) collaboration to study how star formation affects the evolution of galaxies. These observations are providing new insights into how some of the smallest-scale processes in our Universe — the beginnings of star formation — impact the evolution of the largest objects in our cosmos: galaxies.

Old and new stars paint very different pictures of the Triangulum Galaxy

Scientists have discovered something unexpected about the Triangulum galaxy: In this satellite galaxy, a close companion of the much larger Andromeda galaxy, old and new stars occur in separate parts of the its structure, something not seen in galaxies like our own and so far not reporter for other satellite galaxies.


These are Hubble Space Telescope images of two massive clusters of galaxies. The artificially added blue color is translated from Hubble data that captured a phenomenon called intracluster light. This extremely faint glow traces a smooth distribution of light from wandering stars scattered across the cluster. Billions of years ago, the stars were shed from their parent galaxies and now drift through intergalactic space alone.

How superwinds help drive galactic development

Galactic superwinds – large outflows of gas created by a combination of supernova explosions and stellar winds – are closely connected to a galaxy’s earliest stages of development and evolution, including aspects like its size, shape, and even how many stars will eventually call it home.But while researchers have commonly observed these winds, very little is understood about the mechanism that drives them.

ALMA Witnesses Deadly Star-Slinging Tug-of-War Between Merging Galaxies

While observing a newly-dormant galaxy using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) and the Hubble Space Telescope (HST), scientists discovered that it had stopped forming stars not because it had used up all of its gas but because most of its star-forming fuel had been thrown out of the system as it merged with another galaxy. The result is a first for ALMA scientists. What’s more, if proven common, the results could change the way scientists think about galaxy mergers and deaths.

NASA’s Webb Delivers Deepest Image of Universe Yet

A flurry of bright white galaxies is stirring up this scene – captured in high resolution by NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. Known as galaxy cluster SMACS 0723, the group of galaxies is also bending and warping the light from more distant galaxies behind them, stretching and repeating their appearances. Webb’s near- and mid-infrared imaging – and highly detailed data known as spectra – will allow future researchers to finely catalog the precise compositions of galaxies in the early universe, which may ultimately reshape our understanding of how galaxies changed and evolved over billions of years.

ALMA gets front-row seat to an ongoing star-formation standoff in the Large Magellanic Cloud

While using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) to observe large star-forming regions in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), scientists discovered a turbulent push-and-pull dynamic in the star-forming region, 30 Doradus. Observations revealed that despite intense stellar feedback, gravity is shaping the molecular cloud, and against scientific odds, is driving the ongoing formation of young, massive stars. The observations were presented today in a press conference at the 240th meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) in Pasadena, California, and are published in The Astrophysical Journal (ApJ).

Undergraduate Researcher Captures Young Galaxy’s “Coming of Age” and Finds Evidence That Early Galaxies May Be Bigger and More Complex Than We Thought

Scientists using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA)— an international observatory co-operated by the US National Science Foundation’s National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO)—have observed a significant amount of cold, neutral gas in the outer regions of the young galaxy A1689-zD1, as well as outflows of hot gas coming from the galaxy’s center. These results may shed light on a critical stage of galactic evolution for early galaxies, where young galaxies begin the transformation to be increasingly like their later, more structured cousins. The observations were presented today in a press conference at the 240th meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) in Pasadena, California, and will be published in an upcoming edition of The Astrophysical Journal (ApJ).

Scientists Find Elusive Gas From Post-starburst Galaxies Hiding in Plain Sight

Post-starburst galaxies were previously thought to scatter all of their gas and dust—the fuel required for creating new stars—in violent bursts of energy, and with extraordinary speed. Now, new data from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) reveals that these galaxies don’t scatter all of their star-forming fuel after all. Instead, after their supposed end, these dormant galaxies hold onto and compress large amounts of highly-concentrated, turbulent gas. But contrary to expectation, they’re not using it to form stars.

ALMA Scientists Uncover the Mystery of Early Massive Galaxies Running on Empty

Early massive galaxies—those that formed in the three billion years following the Big Bang—should have contained large amounts of cold hydrogen gas, the fuel required to make stars. But scientists observing the early Universe with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) and the Hubble Space Telescope have spotted something strange: half a dozen early massive galaxies that ran out of fuel.

Scientists Observe Gas Re-accretion in Dying Galaxies for the First Time

A new study from scientists using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) suggests that previously displaced gases can re-accrete onto galaxies, potentially slowing down the process of galaxy death caused by ram pressure stripping, and creating unique structures more resistant to its effects.

Cosmic cartographers map the nearby Universe revealing the diversity of star-forming galaxies

A team of astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) has completed the first census of molecular clouds in the nearby Universe. The study produced the first images of nearby galaxies with the same sharpness and quality as optical imaging and revealed that stellar nurseries do not all look and act the same. In fact, they’re as diverse as the people, homes, neighborhoods, and regions that make up our own world.

36 Dwarf Galaxies Had Simultaneous “Baby Boom” of New Stars

Three dozen dwarf galaxies far from each other had a simultaneous “baby boom” of new stars, an unexpected discovery that challenges current theories on how galaxies grow and may enhance our understanding of the universe. Galaxies more than 1 million light-years apart should have completely independent lives in terms of when they give birth to new stars. But galaxies separated by up to 13 million light-years slowed down and then simultaneously accelerated their birth rate of stars, according to a Rutgers-led study published in the Astrophysical Journal.

Successful Start of Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) Follows Record-Setting Trial Run

A five-year quest to map the universe and unravel the mysteries of “dark energy” is beginning officially today, May 17, at Kitt Peak National Observatory near Tucson, Arizona. To complete its quest, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) will capture and study the light from tens of millions of galaxies and other distant objects in the universe.

Rutgers Expert Available to Discuss Supernova Discovery

New Brunswick, N.J. (April 21, 2021) – Rutgers University–New Brunswick astrophysicist John P. (Jack) Hughes is available for interviews on a supernova (exploding star) discovery published today in the journal Nature. The discovery, made with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, features…

Missing Baryons Found in Far-Out Reaches of Galactic Halos

Researchers have channeled the universe’s earliest light – a relic of the universe’s formation known as the cosmic microwave background – to solve a missing-matter mystery and learn new things about galaxy formation. Their work could also help us to better understand dark energy and test Einstein’s theory of general relativity by providing new details about the rate at which galaxies are moving toward us or away from us.

Rutgers Expert Available to Discuss James Webb Space Telescope Science

New Brunswick, N.J. (Feb. 22, 2021) – Rutgers University–New Brunswick Professor Kristen McQuinn is available for interviews on the upcoming launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, its potential scientific impact and the leap forward it will provide in our understanding of the…

Building a Giant 2D Map of the Universe to Prepare for the Largest 3D Map

Before DESI, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, can begin its 5-year mission from an Arizona mountaintop to produce the largest 3D sky map yet, researchers first needed an even bigger 2D map of the universe.

Rutgers Astronomer Receives Packard Fellowship for Innovative Young Scientists

New Brunswick, N.J. (Oct. 15, 2020) – Blakesley Burkhart’s childhood days spent volunteering at a science museum and watching the Discovery Channel and sci-fi shows sparked her love of science and fascination with the stars. “These were the beginning years…

Galaxy Simulations Could Help Reveal Origins of Milky Way

Rutgers astronomers have produced the most advanced galaxy simulations of their kind, which could help reveal the origins of the Milky Way and dozens of small neighboring dwarf galaxies. Their research also could aid the decades-old search for dark matter, which fills an estimated 27 percent of the universe. And the computer simulations of “ultra-faint” dwarf galaxies could help shed light on how the first stars formed in the universe.