March 16, 2015
(ANTIMEDIA) It’s been a decade since astronomers discovered additional dwarf galaxies; galaxies that have only billions of stars instead of hundreds of billions.
Right under our noses, at least nine Dwarf Galaxies that are filled with Dark Matter were found to be orbiting the Milky Way. They are about a million times less massive than the Milky Way, and about billion times less bright.
Once again, our perception of the universe has been shattered. Time and time again we are shown we only know the smallest fraction of all that is out there, and I think that’s a truly beautiful thing.
The Dwarf Galaxies were found near Large and Small Magellanic Cloud. The findings were published in a recent edition of the Astrophysical Journal.
According to a Washington Post article– “The objects were found using data recovered by the Dark Energy Survey, a five-year effort to photograph a large portion of the southern sky in unprecedented detail supported by over 120 scientists around the world. In fact, two separate research groups made the discovery independently using the data, and released their reports jointly.”
“The discovery of so many satellites in such a small area of the sky was completely unexpected,” Sergey Koposov, the study’s lead author said in a statement. “I could not believe my eyes.”
“Dwarf satellites are the final frontier for testing our theories of dark matter,” Vasily Belokurov said, one of the study’s co-authors. “We need to find them to determine whether our cosmological picture makes sense. Finding such a large group of satellites near the Magellanic Clouds was surprising, though, as earlier surveys of the southern sky found very little, so we were not expecting to stumble on such treasure.”
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