Astronomers find galaxies creating stars at furious pace
A team of astronomers has discovered a new type of galaxies, although they are very old – formed less than a billion years after the Big Bang – to create stars more than a hundred times faster than our Milky Way.
The team made the discovery by accident while studying the quasars, which are supermassive black holes that sit in the great center of the galaxy, which were increased.
They were trying to study the formation of stars in the galaxies that harbor these quasars.
“But what they found in four separate cases were nearby galaxies that form stars at a dizzying pace, producing a hundred solar masses of new stars per year,” said Roberto Decarli of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany .
The results were published in the journal Nature.
“Most likely this is not a coincidence to find these productive galaxies near quasar bright,” said Fabian Walter, also of Max Planck.
“Quasars are believed to form in regions of the universe where the density of large-scale material is much higher than the average. The same conditions must also encourage galaxies to form new stars at a much higher speed,” Walter noted.
“What fast-growing galaxies we’ve discovered are in fact mass precursor views of galaxies in the early years, it takes more work to see how they are shared,” said Eduardo Banados, Carnegie Institution in Washington, DC.
The team also found what appears to be the earliest known example of two galaxies undergoing a fusion, which is another important growth mechanism of the galaxy.
The new observations provide the first direct evidence that these fusions have taken place even in the early stages of galaxy evolution, less than a billion years after the Big Bang.