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Fossil cloud from the Big Bang is found by astronomers



Part of the Big Bang, still floating in space, could change the way researchers investigate the formation of stars and galaxies.

Ph.D. Student Fred Robert and Professor Michael Murphy from Swinburne University of Technology in Austria have discovered a fossil cloud that can be traced back to the Big Bang.

The cloud illuminates a particular glow of materials that fall into a supermassive black hole.

What makes this cloud special

"We targeted quasars in which earlier researchers had seen only shadows of hydrogen rather than heavier elements in lower-quality spectra," said Robert. "This enabled us to quickly discover such a rare fossil with the precious time on the twin scopes of Keck Observatory."

The pair used the world's most powerful optical telescope, the WM Keck Observatory, in Maunakea, Hawaii cloud is metal-free. What sets this gas cloud apart from others in the universe is that it has gained 1

.5 billion years of knowledge and has barely changed since then.

"If it has heavy elements at all, it must be less than 1 / 10,000. th the proportion that we see in our sun, "Robert said. This is extremely low; The most convincing explanation is that it is a true relic of the Big Bang.

The cloud is so unique that it was not even polluted by exploding stars. Its low metallic contents raise questions about the origin.

The details, however, are minimal at present, until the researchers reveal their full results in the [monthlynews] of the Royal Astronomical Society in a month.

This is the third fossil cloud that has been explored since the discovery of the first in 2011. Professor Michele Fumagalli of Durham University found the first cloud, and Professor John O'Meara of St. Michael's College found the second one Robert and Murphy found this one.


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