Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Scientist: Rays Pierce Foggy Fabric of Universe

"The universe is more transparent than expected, questioning what we know of galaxy formation"

The topic discussed in this article involves a detailed look on high-energy light radiation coming from distant blazars ( galaxies with black holes whose flares point directly at Earth). This light cannot reach us due to infra-red radiation which is present after the formation of stars.

However, unlike previous expectations, two telescopes around the world discovered two such blazars ( 3C279 and 1ES 0502+675 - they need to start thinking about better names).
Because of these discoveries astrophysicists are questioning their theories on the amount of infrared light present in all the galaxies between us and the blazars.

One thing that is puzzling about this article is why one of the scientists believes that the lack of infrared is becoming a problem? Why is it a problem if we can now learn further how black holes, stars and galaxies are formed? It's a cosmic mystery.

New Scientist,
02 December 2009 by Rachel Courtland, Magazine issue 2737