Dark Matter Goes Missing in Oddball Galaxy

Dark Matter Goes Missing in Oddball Galaxy

In view of the proportion in different galaxies, a confined galaxy such as NGC1052-DF2 ought to have around a hundred times more dark matter than ordinary matter. Or, a cataclysmic event within DF2 such as an eruption of star formation could have cleared the galaxy of all its gas and dark matter. It's as if the universe is playing a trick on us by flipping the laws of physics on their head - dark matter should be there, but it isn't. Will they find more of these dark matter deficient galaxies?

They truly thought the dark matter was not only a discretionary part of galaxies, as said by van Dokkum. "So, finding a galaxy without it is unexpected". Confusing things further, the galaxy appears extremely similar to others that are almost entirely composed of dark matter. By following the movement of 10 inserted star clusters, the group could decide how much mass is tucked into the system.

In other words, the question arises: if a galaxy did not start from dark matter, which then gravitationally attracted common matter, how did it form? Hubble helped to accurately confirm the distance of NGC 1052-DF2 to be 65 million light-years and determined its size and brightness. If dark matter only served to explain the effect of the gravity from regular matter, it should still be visible in NGC1052-DF2. But dark matter theorists have relied heavily on the idea of "abundance matching", which links the masses of dark matter halos closely to the masses of the galaxies they surround.

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Speaking with Space.com, Pieter van Dokkum of Yale University explained that for a galaxy with a star mass of 200 million solar masses, the "normal" would be 80 billion solar masses of dark matter.

"I spent an hour just staring at the Hubble image", says van Dokkum, "This thing is astonishing: a huge blob that you can look through". Researchers were even more compared to a little bit stunned to discover a galaxy that has little to no dark issue at all. Luckily, their studies might be given an early boost as Hubble images of 23 other ultra-diffuse galaxies seem to suggest that three of them are similar to NGC 1052-DF2. The galaxy was then renamed NGC1052-DF2.

Van Dokkum and colleagues identified the galaxy, NGC 1052-DF2, using a low-budget setup called the Dragonfly Telephoto Array in New Mexico, which they designed from 48 commercial cameras and paparazzi-style lenses. Some of them appear to be normal galaxies that were stripped of most of their stars and gas by interactions with other members of the cluster, leaving them incredibly dark-matter rich.

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To imagine this process, you can visualize dark matter as a diffuse collection of individual particles-unlike ordinary matter, which clumps into stars and planets.

"Instead we saw the opposite, leading to this remarkable conclusion that there's actually no room for dark matter at all in this thing", van Dokkum says. To modern astrophysicists, galaxies are more notable for their dark sides: their hidden material that is only "seen" by its gravitational pull upon the shiny stuff it seems to vastly outweigh. This means that distant galaxies are visible through DF2. What scientists know about it is that it's an elliptically shaped galaxy, which they have named NGC1052-DF2. "It is completely unknown how it is possible to form such a galaxy". "But for now, I think the evidence for dark matter greatly outweighs the evidence against it". NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, manages the telescope.

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