Home Science Space Galaxies are refueling less: Have less gas

An August 2011 research project from CSIRO in Australia has found that the Universe is forming fewer stars than in the past because galaxies has less gas in which to make stars.

Dr. Robert Braun, the chief scientist from CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science (CASS), and colleagues compared galaxies in the universe, both near to our Milky Way galaxy and far, far away from it.

Using the CSIRO Mopra radio telescope (Coonabarabran, New South Wales), the astronomy team discovered that younger galaxies have less molecular hydrogen gas than galaxies that formed long ago.

Dr. Braun states, "But most of the original gas '” about 70% '” remains locked up, having been turned into things such as white dwarfs, neutron stars and planets.'

And, "So the molecular gas is used up over time. We find that the decline in the molecular gas is similar to the pattern of decline in star formation, although during the time interval that we have studied, it is declining even more rapidly."

For more on this story, please read the CSIRO media release from August 22, 2011 called 'Galaxies are running out of gas'.

Dr. Braun concludes in the article, "The drop-off in both gas availability and star formation seems to have started around the time that Dark Energy took control of the Universe.'




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William Atkins

William Atkins completed educational degrees in science (bachelor’s in physics and mathematics) from Illinois State University (Normal, United States) and business (master’s in entrepreneurship and bachelor’s in industrial relations) from Western Illinois University