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Himiko, 12.9 Billion Years Old Mysterious Sky Bubble

A mysterious object is recorded far away in space. Astronomers call it a primordial bubble that is named Himiko, after the queen of the ancient Japanese Kingdom who is equally mysterious. Well, at fromhiskitchentoherplate.wordpress.com you can get interesting articles like this.

It is so-called because the giant object was formed shortly after the universe was formed which began with the Big Bang. Its size is very large, in the form of gas whose mass is 40 billion times the mass of the sun and a diameter of half the Milky Way Galaxy.

It is also very old, about 12.9 billion light-years (light years equivalent to 9.5 trillion kilometers). The undisclosed structure of Himiko could provide an early picture of the formation of galaxies when the universe was very young and only around 800 million years old.

“I’ve never heard of another similar object formed at this distance,” said Masami Ouchi, a researcher from the Carnegie Institution, California, USA. The object may resemble a Lyman-alpha bubble that formed between 2-3 billion years.

Himiko formed at the end of the reionization epoch that lasted between 200 million and one billion years since the Big Bang. At that time, the universe was just being born and just forming stars and galaxies.

The bubble-like shape may be the ionized gas surrounding a giant supermassive black hole or a collection of cold gas. However, it could be that Himiko is the result of the collision of two young galaxies that fused, a single giant galaxy, or the site of a very active star formation.

Himiko was first recorded using the Subaru telescope in Hawaii in 2007. Ouchi and his team then made closer observations using the Keck / DEIMOS and Magellan / IMACS spectrographic instruments. From these observations, it detected the content of ionized hydrogen, the distance, and the age of the mysterious object.

“We are planning to carry out infrared observations with the Hubble space telescope to determine whether there are characteristics of merging objects or not,” said Ouchi. However, this can only be done after Hubble is repaired in the space shuttle Atlantis mission scheduled for next month.

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