Scientists discover radio signals from galaxy 9,000,000,000 light-years away

Boffins have discovered radio signals from a star-creating galaxy 9,000,000,000 light-years away from Earth.

The galaxy, named ‘SDSSJ0826+5630’, sent the signal that has a specific wavelength called the '21 cm line'.

It's also known as the hydrogen line, and is the electromagnetic radiation spectral line with a frequency of 1420.

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As hydrogen is spread out across our universe, it's a good way to identify the location of galaxies, The Mirror reported.

It means that astronomers are able to look into the secrets of the early universe, as the galaxy was around when the universe was just 4.9 billion years old.

Cosmologist and co-author of a study on the detection, Arnab Chakraborty, told "It's the equivalent to a look-back in time of 8.8 billion years."

It's the first time that a radio signal of this type has been detected at such an enormous distance.

Chakraborty said: "A galaxy emits different kinds of radio signals. Until now, it’s only been possible to capture this particular signal from a galaxy nearby, limiting our knowledge to those galaxies closer to Earth."

In India and Montreal, researchers were able to capture the signals with the help of a Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope.

The discovery was announced this week in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society journal.

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The faint signal was able to be spotted at such a record-breaking distance due to the naturally occurring phenomenon known as gravitational lensing.

Co-author Nirupam Roy said: "Gravitational lensing magnifies the signal coming from a distant object to help us peer into the early universe."

In this case, the signal was bent by the presence of another galaxy and magnified, allowing the telescope to pick it up.

Researchers used the signal to measure the gas composition of the distant galaxy it was coming from.

The researchers discovered that the atomic mass of the gas content of this galaxy is nearly twice the mass of the stars visible to us.

It represents a new opportunity to understand the cosmic evolution of stars and galaxies.

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