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Study Suggests Early Universe Galaxies Resembled Bananas

SpaceStudy Suggests Early Universe Galaxies Resembled Bananas

**Study Suggests Early Universe Galaxies Resembled Bananas**

What does a newborn galaxy look like? For decades, the assumption among astrophysicists and cosmologists was that newly formed galaxies would bear resemblance to the spherical and disk-like structures observed in the present-day universe. However, the latest analysis of images captured by the James Webb Space Telescope paints a contrasting picture. According to a team of astronomers, the images unveil a rather surprising revelation – newborn galaxies appear as bananas, pickles, cigars, or surfboards, challenging conventional beliefs about their morphology.

**A Shift in Perspective**

Viraj Pandya, a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University and the lead author of the upcoming paper “Galaxies Going Bananas”, presents this unexpected conclusion at the American Astronomical Society meeting in New Orleans. This revelation, if confirmed, holds the potential to redefine the current understanding of galaxy formation and evolution. Moreover, it may offer valuable insights into the enigmatic nature of dark matter, a predominant yet invisible component of the universe.

**Shaping the Early Galaxies**

The data builds upon earlier observations from the Hubble telescope that suggested the resemblance of the earliest galaxies to pickles. This revelation, though significant, is met with a degree of skepticism due to the inherent complexities associated with measurements of distant, faint, and small celestial bodies. The research team scrutinizes images of galaxies within the Extended Groth Strip, obtained through the Cosmic Evolution Early Release Science survey, aiming to extend the observations to other portions of the cosmos.

**Unveiling the Mysteries of Galaxies**

Galaxies, often termed as the city-states of the cosmos, constitute an astronomical ensemble comprising an estimated two trillion entities, each potentially housing up to a trillion stars. However, these galaxies represent only a fraction of the cosmic expanse. The presence of dark matter, an elusive component exceeding the mass of atomic matter by fivefold, plays a crucial role in engendering and fostering the growth of galaxies.

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**The Dark Matter Connection**

It is postulated that galaxies were conceived from fortuitous irregularities in the density of matter and energy during the epoch of the Big Bang. As space expanded, these condensed areas of dark matter served as gravitational loci in which normal matter coalesced, eventually igniting into stars and galaxies. The Webb telescope, equipped with advanced infrared sensors, endeavors to delve into this foundational and enigmatic era, gazing at the furthest and hence, earliest, galaxies.

**Reimagining Galaxies**

The analysis by Dr. Pandya’s team focuses on the three-dimensional forms of galaxies, derived from statistical assessments of their two-dimensional representations. Contrary to the anticipatement of spherical or disk-like shapes, early galaxies manifest as elongated structures, with some exhibiting multiple luminous clusters akin to pearls on a necklace. This atypical morphology challenges the prevailing notions of galaxy evolution and their transit into the present-day elliptical and disk-shaped forms.

**The Enigma of Dark Matter**

The prevailing conjecture espouses that dark matter comprises clusters of exotic subatomic remnants from the Big Bang, around which conventional matter coalesced, giving rise to stars and galaxies. However, despite extensive simulations, experiments, including those at the Large Hadron Collider, have failed to substantiate the existence of particles of cold dark matter. Consequently, attention has veered towards alternative proposals, encompassing a gamut of “dark” particles mediating through imperceptible “dark” forces.

**Paving the Way Forward**

The prospect of fuzzy dark matter, characterized by axions acting as waves rather than particles, stands as a tantalizing avenue. The inherent waviness of axions accords them the potential to form filamentary structures instead of the anticipated spherical configurations. This could revolutionize the understanding of galaxy formation and reshape the discourse on particle physics and cosmology.

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The remarkable suggestion that early universe galaxies resemble bananas, pickles, or cigars signifies a paradigm shift in the understanding of galaxy formation and evolution. The tantalizing prospects of fuzzy dark matter resonate with the ongoing efforts to decipher the enigmatic nature of the cosmos. These revelations may not just redefine the course of astronomical research but also usher in a new era of cosmological understanding, transcending the boundaries of conventional astrophysics.

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