Skip to comments.Newfound Blob is Biggest Thing in the Universe
Posted on 07/30/2006 8:22:20 AM PDT by Excuse_My_Bellicosity
An enormous amoeba-like structure 200 million light-years wide and made up of galaxies and large bubbles of gas is the largest known object in the universe, scientists say.
The galaxies and gas bubbles, called Lyman alpha blobs, are aligned along three curvy filaments that formed about 2 billion years after the universe exploded into existence after the theoretical Big Bang. The filaments were recently seen using the Subaru and Keck telescopes on Mauna Kea.
The galaxies within the newly found structure are packed together four times closer than the universe's average.
Some of the gas bubbles are up to 400,000 light years across, nearly twice the diameter of our neighboring Andromeda Galaxy. Scientists think they formed when massive stars born early in the history of the universe exploded as supernovas and blew out their surrounding gases. Another theory is that the bubbles are giant gas cocoons that will one day give birth to new galaxies.
The finding will give researchers new insight into what the structure of cosmos looks like at the largest scale.
"Something this large and this dense would have been rare in the early universe," said study team member Ryosuke Yamauchi from Tohoku University.
"The structure we discovered and others like are probably the precursors of the largest structures we see today which contain multiple clusters of galaxies," Yamauchi said.
A comparison of a Lyman alpha blob and the Andromeda Galaxy. In the upper right corner is an image of the Andromeda Galaxy, scaled as if were at the same distance as the blob. The red circle indicates a bubble like structure discovered for the first time with the Subaru telescope observations. Credit: University of Tokyo Kiso Observatory
what kind of gas
Isn't that special; you, too, can live in a metagalactic blob.
It's hydrogen mostly. Just a proton and if it is lucky an electron.
Wish that I had an alien girlfriend out there.
Made up of liberals who have passed over...
This blob is bigger!
Those circles seem to say:
"YOU ARE HERE ->"
Afterbirth of the big bang?
You knew someone had to :~)
This sprang to mind:
A truly entertaining movie!
Then how do you explain Michael Moore?
Looks you made another amazing discovery of your own: a Ted-Kennedy-near-the-water (just been swimming) sighting! Better check for reports of missing females in the area!
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.