Friday, August 31, 2018

Astronomers Map 'Unstoppable' Starburst Galaxy

Article Written By: Kyle Tam


 Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in northern Chile have created the sharpest and clearest map yet of a distant starburst galaxy.
 Dubbed an 'unstoppable monster', galaxy COSMOS-AzTEC-1 contains star-forming regions not located within its galactic centre. In this galaxy stars form around 1,000 times faster than in our Milky Way. In comparison, starburst galaxies typically form stars at a pace some 100 times faster than in our home galaxy.
  "A real surprise is that this galaxy seen almost 13 billion years ago has a massive, ordered gas disk that is in regular rotation instead of what we had expected, which would have been some kind of a disordered train wreck that most theoretical studies had predicted," said Min Yun, a team member at UMass Amherst.
 "How these galaxies have been able to amass such a large quantity of gas in the first place and then essentially turn the entire gas reserve into stars in the blink of an eye, cosmologically speaking, was a completely unknown question about which we could only speculate. We have the first answers now."

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Image: Artist concept of COSMOS-AzTEC-1 via National Astronomical Observatory of Japan/ALMA

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