Polski
русский
Українська

NASA telescope discovers distant twin galaxy of the Milky Way, leaving scientists puzzled

Dmytro IvancheskulNews
The Milky Way has a distant and very old twin. Source: NASA/collage by OBOZ.UA

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has discovered the Ceers-2112 galaxy, which is surprisingly similar to our own, the Milky Way. It existed when the Universe was only 2 billion years old (now it is 13.8 billion years old).

This is stated in the study, the results of which were published in Nature. Ceers-2112 is so far away that its light took 11.7 billion years to reach us. This means that Earth-based astronomers saw it as it was in the distant past.

Ceers-2112 is a spiral galaxy with a bar (a membrane that runs through the center of some spiral galaxies - Ed.) of stars and gas, similar to the Milky Way. It is believed that this bar plays a role in supplying gas to the galaxy's core and in triggering the process of star formation.

However, as the researchers note, Ceers-2112 is not a typical spiral galaxy. It is the oldest ever observed galaxy, which emerged when the Universe was only two billion years old. This contradicts the conventional theory that spiral galaxies with a central bar are a late-stage phenomenon preceded by billions of years of cosmic evolution.

The researchers note that the discovery of the Milky Way twin raises new questions about how galaxies form and change over time.

They also note that this galaxy may force us to reconsider the role of dark matter in the Universe.

Even though dark matter is invisible, we can see its gravitational influence on the shape and behavior of galaxies. Dark matter was thought to be responsible for the formation and evolution of galaxies in the early Universe.

However, Ceers-2112 casts doubt on this theory as well. The study shows that the Ceers-2112 bar is mostly composed of ordinary matter, not dark matter. This is evidence that dark matter was not dominant in this young galaxy.

The authors of the paper believe that if they can understand the structure of this distant galaxy, it will be crucial for understanding the history of early galaxies and may lead to the discovery of new scenarios for their formation and evolution.

Luca Costantin, an astrophysicist at the Center for Astrobiology in Madrid and lead author of the new study, notes that the presence of a bar in Ceers-2112, for example, challenges current theoretical models that predict that the physical conditions of the early Universe would have prevented the formation of galaxies with bars altogether. Cosmological simulations try to recreate such systems in those epochs, and researchers must determine what physical component is missing from their models.

Earlier, OBOZ.UA shared that something super-powerful is distorting the disk of our Milky Way galaxy.

Subscribe to OBOZ.UA on Telegram and Viber to keep up with the latest developments.

Other News

'Complete fool!' The Olympic champion drove the Russian woman crazy with her words about Valiyeva

"Complete fool!" The Olympic champion drove the Russian woman crazy with her words about Valiyeva

Canadian ex-athlete speaks out about the scandal with the figure skater
How to make sunglasses not spoil your makeup: an easy way

How to make sunglasses not spoil your makeup: an easy way

Glasses with wide temples will put less pressure on the nose
Where was the trophy hidden? An interesting puzzle for the most attentive

Where was the trophy hidden? An interesting puzzle for the most attentive

This task is not as easy as it may seem