Galaxies

Category archives for Galaxies

“For the first time we can learn about individual stars from near the beginning of time. There are surely many more out there.” -Neil Gehrels We’ve come incredibly far in our quest to learn how the Universe came to be the way it is today. We can see out in space for tens of billions…

“For the first time, astronomers have outlined and named the network of galaxies that includes the Milky Way, adding a line to our cosmic address and further defining our place in the universe.” -Douglas Quenqua There’s been a longstanding puzzle in astrophysics that’s finally coming to a head. For nearly a century, we’ve known that…

“Speculating and predicting what lies beyond the boundary is fascinating. Finding out is even more fascinating.” -Wallace H. Tucker When two galaxy clusters collide, there are a slew of cosmic certainties you can bet on: all the galaxies will miss one another, the intracluster gases will collide and heat up, and X-rays will be emitted.…

“The history of astronomy is a history of receding horizons.” -Edwin Hubble Over its more than 25 year lifetime, the Hubble Space Telescope has shown us what the Universe truly looks like. It’s done so in a myriad of ways, from planets to stars – dying and forming – to galaxies to gravity’s effects to…

“The discovery that young galaxies are so unexpectedly bright–if you look for this distinctive green light–will dramatically change and improve the way that we study Galaxy formation throughout the history of the Universe.” -Matthew Malkan Galaxies come in many different colors today: white, blue or red, mostly, depending on the populations of stars inside. But…

“Every philosophy also conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a hideout, every word also a mask.” -Friedrich Nietzsche If you want to see all the way back to the Big Bang — to the cosmic microwave background — that means looking back through billions of light years worth of space. While individual point sources…

“You may hate gravity, but gravity doesn’t care.” –Clayton Christensen If all we had were galactic rotation curves — like those measured by Vera Rubin — we would know that something was wrong with our picture of the Universe, but we wouldn’t know how. Two equally good explanations, that there was either a flaw in…

“Science progresses best when observations force us to alter our preconceptions.” -Vera Rubin When you look at a galaxy in the night sky, it’s easy to imagine that it’s just a system of masses like our Solar System, except on a larger scale. Instead of a single, central mass, you have many stars responsible for…

“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.” -Edgar Allan Poe No matter where you look in the night sky, a powerful enough telescope appears to reveal points of light. Even if you find a region with no stars in the Milky…

“I’ll never, ever be full. I’ll always be hungry. Obviously, I’m not talking about food.” -Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Only a very small percentage of galaxies have active supermassive black holes. While the black holes themselves are common, they only rarely feed, gaining a huge influx of matter to accelerate and send jets and other…