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Galaxy formation

Analysis and Comment (6)

The Andromeda galaxy and its companions is challenging the very foundations of cosmology. The Andromeda galaxy and its companions is challenging the very foundations of cosmology. Adam Evans/Wikimedia Commons

Cosmic dance challenges our understanding of the universe

Deep images of the sky reveal that the universe contains billions of galaxies. Some, such as our own Milky Way, are immense, containing hundreds of billions of stars. Most galaxies, however, are dwarfs…
The black hole at the centre of NGC 1277 galaxy is one of the largest ever discovered. The black hole at the centre of NGC 1277 galaxy is one of the largest ever discovered. NASA /ESA/Andrew C. Fabian/Remco C. E. van den Bosch (MPIA)

‘Overmassive’ black hole holds the mass of 17 billion suns

Astronomers have discovered a new, enormous black hole that could change our understanding of how galaxies evolve. Holding the mass of 17 billion suns, the black hole at the centre of the NGC 1277 galaxy…
The James Webb Space Telescope will search for stars in the dawning universe. The James Webb Space Telescope will search for stars in the dawning universe. BOBXNC

Hubble, Webb and the search for First Light galaxies

When the Obama administration announced its proposed NASA budget in February, astronomers worldwide breathed a sigh of relief. Despite significant cuts in other areas, funding for the James Webb Space…
Most galaxies – including ours – host a hungry monster. Most galaxies – including ours – host a hungry monster. allthecolours

Black hole noms: planetary treats for the galactic monster

What do black holes eat? And do supermassive black holes have fiercer appetites? Let’s remind ourselves of the facts. Lurking at the centre of the Milky Way is a monster, a giant black hole with a mass…
Finding quasars will help us understand how galaxies were formed. Finding quasars will help us understand how galaxies were formed. NASA

Back to where we started: tracing the origins of galaxies

Today, the University of Melbourne’s Professor Stuart Wyithe was awarded the 2011 Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year for his work on the origin of galaxies. The multi-award winning…
Viewed from afar, the Milky Way might appear similar to the galaxy known as NGC 7331. Viewed from afar, the Milky Way might appear similar to the galaxy known as NGC 7331. R. Jay GaBany/NASA

Explainer: a beginner’s guide to the galaxy

Where are we within our galaxy? How did our galaxy form? How did it evolve over the aeons? Astronomers have been asking these questions for the past century, and have recently begun discerning the answers…

Research and News (4)

Research Briefs (9)

Strings of galaxies found in voids

Galaxies arranged in delicate strings have been discovered in the huge, empty regions of the universe called voids. A research…

Dark matter core challenges theories

The collision of several, massive galaxy clusters has left behind a clump of dark matter, potentially challenging existing…

Stars run out of gas

Fewer stars are forming in the universe than ever before because the gas is starting to run out. Distant (and hence older…