The most ancient spiral galaxy confirmed


The most ancient spiral galaxy confirmed
Spiral galaxy A1689B11 sits behind a large cluster of galaxies that acts as a lens, producing two magnified photographs of the spiral galaxy in numerous positions within the sky. Credit: James Josephides

The most historic spiral galaxy found thus far is revealing its secrets and techniques to a workforce of astronomers at Swinburne University of Technology and The Australian National University (ANU), a part of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in All Sky Astrophysics in Three-D (ASTRO Three-D).

The galaxy, referred to as A1689B11, existed 11 billion years up to now, simply 2.6 billion years after the Big Bang, when the universe was just one fifth of its current age. It is thus essentially the most historic spiral galaxy found thus far.

The researchers used a strong approach that mixes gravitational lensing with the cutting-edge instrument the Near-infrared Integral Field Spectrograph (NIFS) on the Gemini North telescope in Hawai’i to confirm the clbadic and spiral nature of this galaxy. NIFS is Australia’s first Gemini instrument that was designed and constructed by the late Peter McGregor at The ANU.

Gravitational lenses are nature’s largest telescopes, created by large clusters composed of 1000’s of galaxies and darkish matter. The cluster bends and magnifies the sunshine of galaxies behind it in a fashion much like an strange lens, however on a a lot bigger scale.

“This technique allows us to study ancient galaxies in high resolution with unprecedented detail,” says Swinburne astronomer Dr Tiantian Yuan, who led the badysis workforce.

“We are able to look 11 billion years back in time and directly witness the formation of the first, primitive spiral arms of a galaxy.”

Co-author, Princeton University’s Dr Renyue Cen, says: “Studying historic spirals like A1689B11 is a key to unlocking the thriller of how and when the Hubble sequence emerges.

“Spiral galaxies are exceptionally rare in the early universe, and this discovery opens the door to investigating how galaxies transition from highly chaotic, turbulent discs to tranquil, thin discs like those of our own Milky Way galaxy.”

Dr Yuan says the examine reveals some stunning options of A1689B11.

“This galaxy is forming stars 20 times faster than galaxies today – as fast as other young galaxies of similar mbades in the early universe. However, unlike other galaxies of the same epoch, A1689B11 has a very cool and thin disc, rotating calmly with surprisingly little turbulence. This type of spiral galaxy has never been seen before at this early epoch of the universe.”

Explore additional:
Hubble shows a dwarf spiral galaxy

More data:
The most historic spiral galaxy: a 2.6-Gyr-old disk with a tranquil velocity area.

Provided by:
Swinburne University of Technology

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