NASA's Hubble Telescope Stumbles Across A New Galaxy

NASA's Hubble Telescope Stumbles Across A New Galaxy

NASA's Hubble Telescope Stumbles Across A New Galaxy

The collection of stars at the edge of the area was analyzed and deemed that they were not part of the cluster contained in the Milky Way, but a small galaxy which is nearly 30 million light-years away. But, having studied the brightness and temperature of the observed stars, the experts understand that they were not a constellation at all, but were approximately 2300 times farther apart.

Though it might be hard to imagine, astronomers stumbled on this galaxy by accident. WFIRST is a telescope specifically created to scan large chunks of the sky with the same resolution as Hubble, so there's a much better chance images from WFIRST could help us find even more sneaky galaxies once it's launched early next decade.

So with Bedin 1 found, it's one down, 1,999,999,999,999 to go. The galaxy is about 30 million light-years away, is classified as a dwarf spheroidal galaxy and has been nicknamed Bedin 1, after the principal investigator. In a celestial game of "Where's Waldo?", Hubble's sharp vision uncovered a never-before-seen dwarf galaxy located far behind the cluster's crowded stellar population.

The Hubble Space Telescope has discovered thousands of galaxies throughout its lifetime, but many of those galaxies are billions of light-years away, in the most distant parts of our visible universe. The researchers published their findings in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters. In the Local Group of Galaxies, scientists have spotted 36 dwarf spheroidal galaxies, and 22 of them are satellite galaxies of our Milky Way.

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The 13.1 billion-year-old galaxy has been named Bedin 1, and according to NASA it is a "living fossil" from the early universe. There's no telling just how many other tiny galaxies are hiding behind star clusters just waiting to be found. It measures only around 3000 light-years at its greatest extent - a fraction of the size of the Milky Way.

Instead, those scientists discovered something else: an entire galaxy hiding behind this cluster of stars in our galaxy.

Scientists using the Hubble telescope have discovered a new dwarf galaxy. Future telescopes with a large field of view, such as the WFIRST telescope, will have cameras covering a much larger area of the sky and may find many more of these galactic neighbours.

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