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Astronomers Found A Large Number Of Dwarf Galaxies In The Early Universe Through Relativity

First Posted: Nov 23, 2016 04:20 AM EST
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For the first time, a team of astronomers discovered a large population of distant dwarf galaxies, which could shed light on the productive period of the formation of stars in the universe billions of years ago.

Published in the Astrophysical Journal, a team of researchers at the University of California, Riverside, unveiled the findings that could add to the growing knowledge about dwarf galaxies, the smallest, vaguest and dimmest galaxies in the universe. Despite being elusive, they are thought to be important to understanding the history of the universe.

Role Of Dwarf Galaxies

The astronomers used the Wide Field Camera 3 on the Hubble Space Telescope to snap deep images of three clusters of galaxies.

The previous body of knowledge has shown that dwarf galaxies played a pivotal role in the reionization era, the time when the early universe was formed from being dark and opaque to bright and transparent.

Though these distant dwarf galaxies are important, they have remained vague and faint even for the world's best telescopes, as reported in a press release by the University of California, Riverside.

Using Relativity To Detect The Dimmest Galaxies

With more than 2 trillion galaxies present in the observable universe, this cosmos is much larger than previously thought. Though these distant galaxies are hard to detect and study, it has now become easier thanks to relativity.

According to the scientist, Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, a huge and massive object like a galaxy, when it is located along the line of sight to another distant material, it could act as a natural lens.

An effect called gravitational lensing could help, the Forbes reports. The light from a distant galaxy can be deflected if a closer galaxy is between the Earth and the distant one.

In October 2018, when the James Webb telescope will be launched, it would pave way for easier viewing of the vague and distant galaxies.

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