Some of the massive discoveries in the universe of late are truly mind-bottling… boggling… I have no doubt that scientists are just beginning to scratch the surface of how massive stuff can actually be in the universe; but until the surface is scratched a little deeper, this is the biggest so far:
Scientists have found a cosmic supermom. It’s a galaxy that gives births to more stars in a day than ours does in a year.
Astronomers used NASA’s Chandra X-Ray telescope to spot this distant gigantic galaxy creating about 740 new stars a year. By comparison, our Milky Way galaxy spawns just about one new star each year.
The galaxy is about 5.7 billion light years away in the center of a recently discovered cluster of galaxies that give off the brightest X-ray glow astronomers have seen. It is by far the biggest creation of stars that astronomers have seen for this kind of galaxy. Other types, such as colliding galaxies, can produce even more stars, astronomers said.
But this is the size, type and age of galaxy that shouldn’t be producing stars at such a rapid pace, said the authors of a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature.
“It’s very extreme,” said Harvard University astronomer Ryan Foley, co-author of the study. “It pushes the boundaries of what we understand.”