'Largest galaxy cluster in early universe found'

Mindy Sparks
October 20, 2018

The astronomers examined Hyperion, the largest galaxy cluster of early Universe ever recorded to date, with the Visible Multi-Object Spectrograph which, as the scientists explained, is "like a time machine in the middle of desert showing us how the universe looked when it was just a third of its current age".

They used the VIMOSinstrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope in Paranal, Chile to identify a huge proto-supercluster of galaxies forming in the early Universe, just 2.3 billion years after the Big Bang.

The difference, the team hypothesise, is that superclusters closer to us have had more time to, well, pull themselves together, so to speak - to more tightly gravitationally bind their galaxies into discrete clumps.

The huge proto-supercluster was found using the VIMOS instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope.

An worldwide team of astronomers have stumbled upon the largest and oldest galaxy supercluster found to date, measuring more than four quadrillion solar masses.

'These are galaxies very far from us, nearly at the beginning of the universe, and allow us to understand better how the universe evolved from the Big Bang until the present day, ' Miefke said.


The formation, dubbed Hyperion, is a giant complex blob of several filaments of galaxies and dark matter.

The team discovered the "titanic" proto-supercluster, nicknamed Hyperion after a Titan in Green mythology, in the constellation Sextans the Sextant using a combination of new observations and archival data.

The team of boffins who clocked the supercluster, we're told, is led by Olga Cucciati of the Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica in Bologna, Italy, along with Lemaux, and the group includes Lori Lubin, a professor of physics also at UC Davis in the US. These are normally more well structured with clear concentrations of mass, whereas Hyperion is more uniformly distributed.

But, given a few more billion years, Hyperion is expected to evolve into something such as the Virgo Supercluster that contains our own galaxy - a super structure that is thought to be a lobe of an even greater supercluster called Laniakea. A proto-cluster named Colossus had already been found contained with Hyperion, but at the time astronomers were not aware of its association with the cosmic titan.

"Understanding Hyperion and how it compares to similar recent structures can give insights into how the Universe developed in the past and will evolve into the future", Cucciati said.

"The unpacking of this space titanium helps to reveal the history of these massive structures".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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