A see-through galaxy questions the need for dark matter

30 March, 2018, 00:43 | Author: Jacqueline Daniels
  • Astronomers baffled by distant galaxy that doesn't have any dark matter

Similarly, MOND theorists expect to find the most significant observable effects of their modified laws in less massive galaxies like NGC 1052-DF2, and lesser effects in more-massive galaxies.

In view of the proportion in different galaxies, a confined galaxy such as NGC1052-DF2 ought to have around a hundred times more dark matter than ordinary matter.

Astronomers researching the Hubble Space Telescope observations discovered a galaxy lacking dark matter, NASA said in a statement.

Utilizing a group of lenses called the Dragonfly Telephoto Array, a team led by Yale University's Pieter van Dokkum investigated NGC1052-DF2. "It is literally a see-through galaxy", he added. The newly discovered galaxy is about the volume and size of the Milky Way but has 200 times fewer stars.

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The team tracked the motions of 10 bright star clusters and found that they were travelling way below the velocities expected. "Dark matter has been rolled into galaxy formation and evolution theories for decades now, but this discovery of a galaxy that seems dark-matter-free puts a damper on many of those theories". Researchers were even more compared to a little bit stunned to discover a galaxy that has little to no dark issue at all. The team determined nearly all of the galaxy's mass could be attributed to stars, which means there is nearly no dark matter, the release said. The result is typically the spiral arms or gaseous discs you can see in other galaxies. "But what would you get if there were no dark matter at all?" The ones in NGC 1052-DF2 are mysterious in and of themselves: Many are comparable in brightness to Omega Centauri, the single brightest globular cluster in the Milky Way. It wasn't long after that they realized it was missing one of the things that, according to all prior research, makes galaxies tick: dark matter. Or, van Dokkum speculates, perhaps this ultra-diffuse, dark-matter-free galaxy arose from two streams of gas that collided and compressed to form a scattering of stars. When the team of scientists studied their behavior, it was revealed that the stars account of the most of the mass of the galaxy.

Each of these would certainly have to be analyzed in information to identify if it can develop the distinctive attributes of NGC1052- DF2.

Dark matter's existence is inferred from its gravitational influence on visible objects, which suggests it dominates over ordinary matter by a ratio of 5:1.

The galaxy is about 65 million light-years away in the constellation of Cetus and is about the same size as the Milky Way. The final option the authors suggest is that it formed as a large, nearby galaxy drew in a tremendous amount of gas, creating star-forming eddies.

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"It is conventionally believed to be an integral part of all galaxies, the glue that holds them together and the underlying scaffolding on which they are built", said co-author Allison Merritt from the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, in Germany.

These ideas, however, still do not explain how this galaxy formed. They followed the motion of 10 star clusters to determine the mass of the galaxy. Three of them appear similar to NGC 1052-DF2.

For the study, the researchers used the NASA/European Space Agency's Hubble Space Telescope and several other observatories. Some physicists have postulated that there is no such thing as dark matter, however, and that what we perceive as giant, starlight-bending clumps of heavy, invisible material is actually something else that is profoundly misunderstood.

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