One of the densest clusters of galaxies in the universe is revealed

phys.org | 7/16/2018 | Staff
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A study published recently in the journal Nature Astronomy and which questions current models of structure formation in the universe is based on data obtained with the Gran Telescopio Canarias and among its authors is a team of researchers from the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC).

The structure of the universe can be compared to that of a sponge, often referred to as the cosmic web. Matter is concentrated along filaments which cross over each other, forming zones where most matter accumulates, and others where there is very little. At the densest points, galaxies group together, forming clusters. These systems, which can contain thousands of galaxies, are the most massive structures in the universe.

Web - Challenges - Astrophysics - Properties - Components

Studying the cosmic web is one of the current challenges in astrophysics. The properties of the main components of matter on these scales are not well known, so we use terms such as "dark matter" and "dark energy" The former makes up around 20 percent of the mass of the universe and is what keeps the structures bound by their own gravity—it acts a bit like glue. The second, on the other hand, makes up 75 percent of the universe and is related to the way in which the universe expands. The "normal" matter, the galaxies with their stars, gas, and dust, make up barely 5 percent of the mass of the universe, but they play the important role in tracing the forces and the properties of the dark matter and dark energies.

An international team led by Mauro Sereno of the University of Bologna (Italy), with participation by the IAC and by the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA), has located one of the densest clusters of galaxies in the universe. The study analyses, for the first time, the outer zones of the galaxy cluster PSZ2 G099.86+58.45...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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