Astronomers Have Discovered An Ancient Galaxy Even Older Than Milky Way

James Marshall
May 26, 2020

The Wolfe Disk galaxy is the new one that was discovered by the astronomers from the National radio astronomy observatory with the help of Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA).

This work was published Wednesday (May 20) in the journal Nature.

An artist's impression of the Wolfe Disk, a massive disk galaxy in the early universe. The unparalleled power of ALMA made it possible to see this galaxy spinning at 170 miles (272 kilometers) per second, similar to our Milky Way.

A giant, pivoting disc galaxy that originally framed simply 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, could overturn our comprehension of world arrangement, researchers propose in another examination.

How did the Wolfe Disk form?

During the early time, the Milky Way universe and other galaxies were like train wrecks that were undergoing a violent merger for the initial 6 billion years. "They seem to have undergone violent merging events, making it hard to form the attractive rotating disks like the Milky Way or the Andromeda galaxy. The Wolfe Disk appears to have grown via steady accretion of gas, rather than by merger events", he said.

Researchers found out that the object was a large, stable rotating disk, clocking in at a whopping 70 billion times the mass of our sun. "Most galaxies in the universe are detected via the emission from their stars or gas". And it is extraordinarily productive: creating stars at a rate ten times greater than ours. Neeleman and his team found the galaxy when they examined the light from a more distant quasar. The light from the quasar was absorbed as it passed through a massive reservoir of hydrogen gas surrounding the galaxy - which is how it revealed itself. The team then used ALMA observations to identify the galaxy that produces the absorption, and later new ALMA observations reported a detailed modelling of the rotation of the galaxy. "ALMA allows us to make new, unexpected findings with nearly every observation".

In the new perceptions, the circle shows up as it was the point at which the universe was simply 1.5 billion years of age, or 10% of its present age.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

Discuss This Article