Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Australian Researcher Discovers Galaxies Of Gas

Date:
July 22, 2003
Source:
CSIRO Australia
Summary:
Any dictionary will tell you that a galaxy is a vast collection of stars, floating deep in space. But this definition may need revision following new research by an ANU graduate student who has discovered galaxies that consist mostly of gas, rather than stars.

Any dictionary will tell you that a galaxy is a vast collection of stars, floating deep in space. But this definition may need revision following new research by an ANU graduate student who has discovered galaxies that consist mostly of gas, rather than stars.

In research to be presented to the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union in Sydney today, Brad Warren will reveal his discovery of twenty gassy galaxies, which have very few stars.

"When you look for gas [in these galaxies] the signal just booms in," Mr Warren said. "But when you look for stars, all you see is a barely recognisable smudge."

The galaxies are vast discs of hydrogen, tens of thousands of light years across, weighing more than a billion suns, with a tiny number of barely visible stars in their centre.

For an unknown reason, they have not transformed their rich source of hydrogen gas into masses of stars like their brilliant, twinkling counterparts.

"Hydrogen is the most common element in the Universe and it forms the building blocks for stars," Mr Warren said.

"Most galaxies, like our own Milky Way, have transformed most of their gas into stars but the galaxies we have discovered have held back and we are not sure why.

"Discovering this missing link will give us important insights into how, when and why galaxies, such as our own, formed."

Although the existence of gassy galaxies has been documented in the past, it is the first time they have been discovered with such prominent discrepancies between the amount of hydrogen gas and stars.

"This research throws up a further challenge in the ongoing quest to discover the secrets of the Universe," Mr Warren said.

Mr Warren, from the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, collaborated with fellow ANU researcher, Dr Helmut Jerjen, and Dr Baerbel Koribalski, from CSIRO's Australia Telescope National facility.

The team used three of Australia's most powerful telescopes for their research - the Parkes Radio Telescope; the Australia Telescope Compact Array near Narrabri and the University's 2.3 metre telescope at Siding Spring Observatory, Coonabarabran.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by CSIRO Australia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

CSIRO Australia. "Australian Researcher Discovers Galaxies Of Gas." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 July 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030722074827.htm>.
CSIRO Australia. (2003, July 22). Australian Researcher Discovers Galaxies Of Gas. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030722074827.htm
CSIRO Australia. "Australian Researcher Discovers Galaxies Of Gas." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/07/030722074827.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Space & Time News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks from Space Station

Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks from Space Station

AP (July 22, 2014) A Russian Soyuz cargo-carrying spacecraft undocked from the International Space Station on Monday. The craft is due to undergo about ten days of engineering tests before it burns up in the Earth's atmosphere. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong

NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong

AP (July 21, 2014) NASA honored one of its most famous astronauts Monday by renaming a historic building at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. It now bears the name of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. (July 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Neil Armstrong's Post-Apollo 11 Life

Neil Armstrong's Post-Apollo 11 Life

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Neil Armstrong gained international fame after becoming the first man to walk on the moon in 1969. But what was his life like after the historic trip? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, July 18, 2014

This Week @ NASA, July 18, 2014

NASA (July 18, 2014) Apollo 11 yesterday, Next Giant Leap tomorrow, Science instruments for Europa mission, and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins