In the universe discovered huge void

07.04.2009

Text: Dmitry Safin

 

Region of space explored by the project 6dFGS. The appearance of broad black bands due to the fact that the observation prevented substance Milky Way (image obtained by trial authors).

An international team of scientists, who conducted one of the most extensive studies of the Universe (Six Degree Field Galaxy Survey, 6dFGS), announced the completion of the milestone. Initial analysis of the data showed some interesting results: Scientists have found to be the largest Void (space free from clusters of galaxies and stars) of all reported.

Region of space explored by the project 6dFGS. The appearance of broad black bands due to the fact that the observation prevented substance Milky Way (image obtained by trial authors).
For observations in the framework of the project 6dFGS UK Schmidt telescope was used, which is set in Australia, and therefore can only provide a display of some of the space, visible from the Southern Hemisphere. In total, the researchers examined 41% of the total area of the sky, determining the location of 110,000 galaxies that lie within 2 billion light-years from Earth.

Processing the information gathered will continue for quite some time, but now scientists are ready to announce that the area of greatest concentration of registered substances will be known Shapley supercluster, away from Earth for 600 million light-years. But among the detected voids stands a giant "empty" area with a diameter of about 3.5 billion light years.

The existence of the void of such epic proportions is difficult to explain in the framework of modern cosmological theories. Computer models predict that galaxies and their clusters should gradually approach each other, increasing the space separating them, but this process is not fast enough to ensure the formation of such a void for the time elapsed since the Big Bang.

According to scientists, refine existing models and to find the answers to many other questions will help a similar study conducted with the help of telescopes in the Northern Hemisphere. Work on the project has already started.

Prepared according to NewScientist.

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