a galaxy

CSIRO scientists have stared into the soup that spawns stars and galaxies, using the Australia Telescope Compact Array near Narrabri in NSW.

Astronomer Dr Bjorn Emonts (CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science) and his team used the Compact Array to study a massive, distant group of star-forming 'clumps' or 'proto-galaxies'. This structure, called the Spiderweb, lies more than ten thousand million light-years away and in a few million years from now will likely give birth to an entire galaxy worth of stars.

Another team lead by Dr Manuel Aravena (European Southern Observatory) identified and measured carbon monoxide and hydrogen in two incredibly distant galaxies. They were able to draw conclusions on the relatively young star systems even though there are several entire galaxies between us and them, by using their gravitational fields as a lens to focus the gaseous information.

The latest research marks another successful international collaborative effort between CSIRO and global authorities.