SETI [ASTRO] Astronomers Find The Most Distant Radio Galaxy


Larry Klaes (lklaes@bbn.com)
Mon, 07 Jun 1999 16:08:56 -0400


>X-Authentication-Warning: brickbat12.mindspring.com: majordom set sender to owner-astro using -f >Date: Sat, 5 Jun 1999 21:05:14 GMT >From: Ron Baalke <BAALKE@kelvin.jpl.nasa.gov> >To: astro@lists.mindspring.com >Subject: [ASTRO] Astronomers Find The Most Distant Radio Galaxy >Sender: owner-astro@brickbat12.mindspring.com >Reply-To: Ron Baalke <BAALKE@kelvin.jpl.nasa.gov> > >Public Affairs Office >Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory > >Contact: Stephen Wampler >Phone: (925) 423-3107 >E-mail: wampler1@llnl.gov > >EMBARGOED UNTIL June 3, 1999 9:20 am CDT > >NR-99-06-01 > >ASTRONOMERS FIND THE MOST DISTANT RADIO GALAXY > >LIVERMORE, June 3 -- A team of astronomers, led by researchers from the >Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, will >announce today that they have discovered the most distant radio galaxy >found to date. > >This find is also believed to represent the most-distant black hole >discovered so far. Black holes are massive star-like objects that only flare >with light when they engulf nearby stars. > >Since 1963, quasars -- rather than radio galaxies -- had been thought to >be the home of the most distant black holes in the universe. The discovery >will be reported today by Livermore astrophysicist Wil van Breugel at the >American Astronomical Society meeting in Chicago, Ill. > >Van Breugel's team included two graduate students who have worked at >Livermore -- Carlos De Breuck, of Leiden Observatory in The Netherlands, >and Daniel Stern, of UC Berkeley -- as well as Adam Stanford of UC Davis; >Huub Rottgering and George Miley, both of Leiden Observatory; and Chris >Carilli of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in New Mexico. > >The newly-discovered radio galaxy, TN J0924-2201, was found toward the >southern constellation Hydra at a distance of nearly 11 billion light years >from Earth. > >Radio galaxies emit radio waves that are thought to be powered by beams >emanating from super-massive black holes. The nearest and first known >radio galaxy, Cygnus A, was discovered nearly 50 years ago. The newly- >discovered radio galaxy is 200 times more distant, 30 times more luminous, >and was born when the Universe was still young, van Breugel said. To date, >nearly one thousand radio galaxies have been identified. > >The discovery of TN J0924-2201 was made possible by using several >newly-available tools to astronomers, including deep radio surveys, large >optical telescopes and infrared detectors, van Breugel said. > >"The new, large optical telescopes allow astronomers for the first time to >begin exploring the 'Dark Ages,' when the Universe was very young and the >first stars and black holes were born. Radio galaxies may lead the way," >said van Breugel, who leads a group studying the early Universe at LLNL's >Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics. Lawrence Livermore >National Laboratory is managed by the University of California for the >U.S. Department of Energy. > > -end- > >IMAGE CAPTIONS: > >[Image 1: http://www.llnl.gov/PAO/photos/Astronomy1cap.html] > >This graphic is an infrared false color image of the most distant radio >galaxy, TN J0924-2201 (faint wispy feature at center). At a redshift >(which is a measure of distance in our expanding Universe) of 5.19, the >radio galaxy is very young and still forming through merging of smaller >galaxy components. This photograph, made with one of the W.M. Keck >Observatory's twin 10-meter (400 inch) telescopes on Mauna Kea, Hawaii, >was presented to the American Astronomical Society meeting in Chicago, >Ill. on June 3, 1999. > >[Image 2: http://www.llnl.gov/PAO/photos/Astronomy2cap.html] > >This graphic is an infrared false color image of the most distant radio >galaxy, TN J0924-2201 (faint wispy feature at center), with the radio >source structure outlined as contours. At a redshift (which is a measure >of distance in our expanding Universe) of 5.19, the radio galaxy is very >young and still forming through merging of smaller galaxy components. >This photograph, made with one of the W.M. Keck Observatory's twin >10-meter (400 inch) telescopes on Mauna Kea, Hawaii, was presented to >the American Astronomical Society meeting in Chicago, Ill. on June 3, >1999. > >



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