A gravitational lens refers to a distribution of matter (such as a cluster of galaxies) between a distant source (a background galaxy) and an observer, that is capable of bending (lensing) the light from the source, as it travels towards the observer. This effect is known as gravitational lensing and is one of the predictions of Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity.
Hubble just never ceases to surprise. The latest astronomical find discovered using the ever resourceful space telescope is a never before encountered double ring pattern known as an Einstein ring. This very rare pattern is the result of a peculiar optical alignment in which three galaxies are perfectly aligned with each other, like beads on [...]
NASA scientists have announced they have discovered the farthest object discovered so far in the Universe, a 13.3 billion old galaxy or a mere 420 million years after the Big Bang. That’s not to say that its 13.3 billion light years away from Earth, since the Universe has expanded greatly since then and the actual [...]
The first galaxies formed very fast after the Big Bang – in cosmic time, that is. It’s estimated that the earliest ones appeared some 500 million years after the Big Bang, a period about which researchers know very little. How they observed it Even though they are typically very bright, such galaxies are quite hard [...]
According to a recent study published by researchers from the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC), our galaxy may be ‘infested’ with nomad planets, which wander aimlessly instead of orbiting a star. Furthermore, the study concluded there may actually be 100,000 times more “nomad planets” in the Milky Way than stars. If this [...]
Whenever a massive object, with an equally massive gravitational pull, like black holes or galaxy clusters, falls between an observer, say a telescope, and a distant target in the background to be observed, than a gravitational lens is formed. Light emitted from the distant object gets twisted by the massive object, and ends up distorted [...]
The Hubble telescope has captured through an innovative technique, which harnessed light bent from a distant galaxy in a optical lens-like manner, a direct image of a disk of matter surrounding a black hole. The disk, made out of gas and dust, slowly swirls around a giant black hole’s center gradually getting consumed. Powered by [...]