Scientists have discovered the universe’s largest galaxy which is approximately 3 billion light-years away.
What is Alcyoneus galaxy
Alcyoneus is a radio galaxy discovered using the Low-Frequency Array (LOFAR) network and the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer telescope. It is located about 3 billion light-years away in the constellation Lynx. It is the largest galaxy ever discovered, at around 5 million parsecs wide, though it was noted that it was “the largest known structure made by a single galaxy.” SDSS J081421.68+522410, the host galaxy, also contains a supermassive black hole weighing 400200 million solar masses. Aside from its size, the galaxy appeared to be “suspiciously ordinary.” It appears to be a stand-alone galaxy, with the nearest cluster 11 million light-years away. It was named after Alcyoneus, one of Heracles’ opponents in Greek mythology.
Another unsolved mystery is the existence of giant radio galaxies like Alyoneus. This massive galaxy, like many others, includes a host galaxy as well as massive jets and lobes erupting from the galactic center. Scientists believe these jets and lobes are a byproduct of a giant black hole. At the galactic nucleus. As a result, these massive galaxies are among the most fascinating we’ve discovered in space.
When the researchers discovered the largest galaxy known to date, they were looking for outliers in data collected by the Low-Frequency Array (LOFAR) in Europe. They removed the embedded radio sources from the images during their research. This aided in the detection of radio lobes and the correction of any visual distortions. According to the researchers, the result is the most sensitive search on radio lobes of galaxies they have ever assembled. This is also how they discovered Alcyoneus.
Researchers continued to manipulate the data surrounding the Alcyoneus after its initial discovery. It’s an attempt to learn more about the host galaxy and how radio galaxies work. The mass of the galaxy was also discovered during the research. The study found that the largest known galaxy is surrounded by a cosmic web with a mass more than 240 billion times that of the Sun. Furthermore, they believe the supermassive black hole at the center has a mass 400 million times that of the Sun.