Remnants of galaxies in space make interesting objects of study for astronomers who want to understand how galaxies form, Now, a fossil galaxy was uncovered using the Mayall 4-meter Telescope.
A series of old survey images taken from this telescope were studied by a team. It hopes to help scientists better understand how galaxies form and solve dark matter and the mysteries of the universe.
Why is this discovery important?
According to the study’s lead author, Dr. Michelle Collins of the University of Surrey, they “discovered a new, extremely faint galaxy whose stars formed very early in the history of the universe. This discovery marks the first time a galaxy so weak has been discovered.” Found around Andromeda using an astronomical survey that was not specifically designed for the task.”
The dwarf galaxy is named “Pegasus V” and currently lies on the outskirts of our neighboring galaxy, Andromeda.
Emily Charles, a PhD student who was also part of the study, said that “the problem with these extremely faint galaxies is that they have very few bright stars that we normally use to identify them and measure their distances.” Gemini’s large 8.1-meter mirror allowed us to find fainter, older stars that allowed us to measure the distance to Pegasus V and determine that its stellar population is extremely old.”
The study’s findings were reported in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, and the discovery was made in collaboration with NSF NOIRLab and the International Gemini Observatory. The study is titled “Pegasus V – a newly discovered ultra-faint dwarf galaxy on the outskirts of Andromeda.”
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Staff, SX (2022b, 30 June). New fossil galaxy discovery may answer important questions about the history of the universe, physical.organization.