39 ‘supermassive’ new galaxies found
DOZeNS of ‘supermassive’ galaxies have been found on the edge of the universe.
Astronomers have discovered 39 of the ancient galaxies, which have up to ten times the mass of our own Milky Way.
It is the first multiple discovery of its kind – and throws current assumptions about the universe into doubt, researchers say.
Scientists at the university of tokyo say the galaxies were formed in the two billion years following the Big Bang, which occurred 13.8billion years ago. each one creates a new star every couple of days – compared with one around every six months in the Milky Way.
the study, published in the journal Nature, also says that the galaxies are closely connected with supermassive black holes and the distribution of dark matter.
Dark matter is invisible as it emits no light. It is thought to make up around 85 per cent of the matter in the universe and is understood to be what binds galaxies together.
But the discovery of new, extremely dense ‘supermassive’ galaxies could alter scientists’ current understanding of dark matter, as they do not allow for it to operate as astronomers would expect.
Kotaro Kohno, from the university of tokyo, said: ‘Massive galaxies are intimately connected with the distribution of dark matter. theoretical researchers will need to update their theories.’