The amazing finding could help scientists figure out how early stars and galaxies evolved.
Scientists have zeroed in on some tiny, compact galaxies called “green pea” galaxies, and they could help unlock some of the secrets of the universe.
Such active, star-forming galaxies are located between 1.5 and 5 billion light-years from Earth and are similar to galaxies that were formed shortly after the Big Bang, which is what makes them such promising objects for study, according to an International Business Times report.
Scientists want to find out if such galaxies are emitting radiation that could strip hydrogen, which is what galaxies were doing 13 billion years ago in the very early stages of the universe.
The questions scientists are trying to answer are fundamental to the universe. The Big Bang resulted in a tremendous expansion and the creation of hydrogen and helium, and then something happened that resulted in the hydrogen heating up in a process called ionization, leading to the visible universe era. This happened within a billion years of the Big Bang, and this new research, from Stanford University’s Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology, says scientists are studying these “green pea” galaxies to learn more about how the first stars and galaxies formed the structure of the universe.
A total of 5,000 green pea galaxies have been discovered using the Sloan Survey out of 1 million galaxies registered. The researchers then used the Hubble Space Telescope to detect UV radiation to see if these green peas were emitting radiation. They found a galaxy, J0925, about 3 billion light years from Earth that was emitting radiation, which is an exciting first step to understand reionization in the early universe and further helping scientists refine theories about how stars and galaxies evolved.
The next step will be to use Hubble to make more observations of J0925 and other galaxies to further confirm these observations and develop the theories surrounding them.