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Cosmology

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Andromeda galaxy

Edwin Hubble’s observations of stars in the Andromeda galaxy (shown) demonstrated that the universe was vastly bigger than Albert Einstein realized. Nevertheless, Einstein’s paper applying his general theory of relativity, published a century ago, became the foundation for the modern science of cosmology.

hydrogen signatures of galaxies

SLUGGISH STARS  A hydrogen signature reveals the structure of six galaxies (top, bright regions appear red) observed with the Very Large Telescope in Chile. The signature also shows the velocities (bottom) of stars in the galaxies (blue regions are moving toward the telescope; red areas, away). Stars farther from the galactic center unexpectedly appear to move more slowly than stars closer in.

illustration of galaxy dust

DISTANT DUST  Observations from an array of telescopes in Chile show that a distant, young galaxy (illustrated above) is filled with dust probably produced by the first supernova explosions in the universe.

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