Mapping Galaxies

20130718-130405.jpg
That?

Oh, that’s a 600-billion-billion-kilometre-wide chunk of the universe – or at least a simulation of it.

Astronomers working on the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) are attempting to map galaxies and hydrogen gas clouds in the universe by looking for the light of super-bright quasars, luminous objects that are thought to be powered by black holes devouring matter. Galaxies and gas clouds leave an imprint on this quasar light as it passes through them, which can be used to deduce their positions.

To make sense of these imprints, the BOSS team create simulations of quasar light passing though cosmos-spanning gas clouds and compare them with the real thing. The picture above shows a simulation of a cube of the universe 65 million light years across. The red blobs are clusters of galaxies, while the blue filaments show regions of low-density filled with clouds of gas.

Source: New Scientist

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s