The mysteries of ultradiffuse galaxies

An international team of astronomers have shed light on a mysterious galactic phenomenon: elusive ultradiffuse galaxies. Ultradiffuse galaxies (UDGs) are dwarf galaxies whose stars are spread out over a vast region, resulting in extremely low surface brightness, making them very difficult to detect. An international team of astronomers have used simulations to detect a few … Continue reading The mysteries of ultradiffuse galaxies

Our galaxy probably isn’t that special

Is the Milky Way galaxy typical or special? Australian astronomers have tackled this question by taking a detailed cross-section of a galaxy very similar to our own – and the results suggest we’re more average than we thought. Like many other galaxies, the Milky Way is a spiral galaxy flattened into a disk shape. It … Continue reading Our galaxy probably isn’t that special

Young galaxy puts a spin on old models

From an arid and isolated plateau in the Atacama Desert, a radio telescope has spied a baby galaxy in the infant universe – and surprisingly, it’s rotating. Astronomers used the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile to peer back to a time when the universe was just seven percent of its current age, aiming … Continue reading Young galaxy puts a spin on old models

A ‘cosmic ring of fire’ from 11 billion years ago

Nearly 11 billion light years away lurks a super-rare type of galaxy that bears the scars of a galactic battle. Rather than the more common disc of stars the galaxy instead has a gigantic hole straight through the centre. And with the outskirts making stars 50 times faster than the Milky Way, it’s been dubbed … Continue reading A ‘cosmic ring of fire’ from 11 billion years ago

Early disc galaxy puts theories in a spin

Astronomers have found a massive rotating disc galaxy that formed just 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, when the Universe was only 10% of its current age. Galaxy DLA0817g is the most distant such galaxy ever observed and challenges traditional models of galaxy formation, Marcel Neeleman and colleagues write in a paper in the journal Nature. Nicknamed … Continue reading Early disc galaxy puts theories in a spin

Hungry galaxies grow fat on their neighbours

Galaxies grow large by eating their smaller neighbours, new research reveals.Exactly how massive galaxies grow so big is poorly understood, not least because they swell over billions of years. Now, a combination of observation and modelling from researchers, led by UNSW’s Anshu Gupta from Australia’s ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 … Continue reading Hungry galaxies grow fat on their neighbours

Do hungry galaxies eat their neighbours?

Exactly how massive galaxies attain their size is poorly understood, not least because it happens over billions of years. A combination of observation and modelling led by Australia’s ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions (ASTRO 3D) may have provided a clue, however. The scientists combined data from Australia’s Multi-Object Spectroscopic … Continue reading Do hungry galaxies eat their neighbours?

A monster galaxy found lurking in the shadows

Astronomers have accidentally discovered the footprints of a monster galaxy in the early Universe that has never been seen before. Like a cosmic Yeti, these galaxies have been regarded by the scientific community as folklore, given the lack of evidence of their existence. Now, for the first time astronomers in the US and Australia have … Continue reading A monster galaxy found lurking in the shadows

Astronomers react to black hole images

In one of the biggest scientific announcements of recent times, an international collaboration of astronomers and astrophysicists revealed overnight the first ever image of a black hole. The image, resembling a bright donut, shows for the very first time the Event Horizon – the point at which no light can escape the gravitational pull of … Continue reading Astronomers react to black hole images

In search of the ghosts of dead galaxies

Associate Professor Ivo Labbé is hunting dead galaxies from the dawn of time. These cosmic relics passed their active star-making years and mysteriously ‘died’ more than 12 billion years ago, when they should have had at least another 10 billion years of life. Labbé joined Swinburne’s Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing in 2018 to find … Continue reading In search of the ghosts of dead galaxies