The Webb telescope discovers superb large galaxies from the early universe

(CNN) – Astronomers used the James Webb Area Telescope to return in time to the early days of the universe, they usually found one thing sudden.

The area observatory has found six large galaxies that existed between 500 and 700 million years after the Huge Bang that created the universe. In response to a brand new examine revealed Wednesday within the tutorial journal natureThe invention utterly contradicts current theories in regards to the origin of galaxies.

“These objects are a lot bigger than anybody anticipated,” says Joel Lega, co-author of the examine and assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Penn State College. “We anticipated to seek out solely younger, younger galaxies presently, however we found mature galaxies like our personal in what was beforehand understood to be the daybreak of the universe.”

The telescope observes the universe in infrared gentle, invisible to the bare eye, and is ready to detect the faint gentle of historic stars and galaxies. By searching into the distant universe, the observatory can basically look again in time about 13.5 billion years in the past (scientists have decided that the universe is about 13.7 billion years previous).

“The revelation that the formation of large galaxies started a lot earlier within the historical past of the universe upends what many people thought was established science,” Lega says. “We’ve informally known as these beings the Universe Shatterer, and thus far they’ve lived as much as their identify.”

Galaxies are so large that they contradict 99% of fashions representing the oldest galaxies within the universe, which suggests scientists need to rethink how galaxies type and evolve. Present idea means that galaxies started as small clouds of stars and dirt that grew bigger over time.

Webb took photos of all six large galaxies. Considered one of them (decrease left) may include as many stars as our personal Milky Approach, however it’s 30 occasions extra compact. Credit score: NASA/ESA/CSA/I.Lab

“We first seemed on the very starting of the universe and had no concept what we had been going to seek out,” Lega mentioned. “It seems that we’ve discovered one thing so sudden that it creates issues for science. It calls into query the total image of the formation of the primary galaxies.”

Survey of the primary galaxies

Leja and her colleagues started analyzing Webb’s information, together with the telescope’s first high-resolution pictures, as quickly as they had been revealed in July. The galaxies appeared as massive factors of sunshine, and the workforce was stunned to see them. A lot in order that they thought they’d made a mistake in decoding the info.

A journey into the cosmos like by no means earlier than, with one of the best pictures of 2022 from the James Webb Telescope

“After we bought the info, everybody began investigating and these enormous issues got here out in a short time,” Lega mentioned. “We began doing modeling and making an attempt to determine what it was, as a result of it was so huge and glossy.

My first thought was that we had made a mistake and that we might discover him and transfer on with our lives. However we haven’t discovered that bug but, regardless of making an attempt many occasions.”

One technique to decide why galaxies are rising so rapidly, Lega mentioned, is to take a spectroscopic picture of the galaxies, which includes splitting the sunshine into totally different wavelengths to determine the totally different parts, in addition to figuring out the precise distance of the galaxies. The spectroscopic information will present a extra detailed view of the galaxies and their spectacular dimension.

“The spectrum will inform us immediately whether or not or not these items are actual,” Lega mentioned. “It’ll present us its dimension and its dimension. The humorous factor is we now have all these items that we hope to be taught from James Webb and this one was nowhere close to the highest of the record. We discovered one thing we had by no means considered asking the universe, and it occurred so much sooner than I may have imagined, however right here we’re.” That.”

It’s additionally doable that the galaxies recognized with Webb’s information are literally one thing else fully.

“That is our first look thus far, so it’s essential that we open our minds about what we’re trying ahead to,” Lega mentioned. “Though the info means that these are probably galaxies, I feel there’s a actual risk that a few of these objects may transform hidden supermassive black holes. In any case, the quantity of mass we detected signifies that the recognized mass in stars in these The interval of our universe is as much as 100 occasions bigger than we beforehand thought. Even when we minimize the pattern in half, it’s nonetheless a tremendous change.”