An international team of astronomers, including several French researchers, has just completed a precise measurement of the distance to five distant galaxies using the ESA Herschel Space Observatory together with ground-based data from the interferometer operated by the Institute for Millimetric Radioastronomy (IRAM)1 . The research team has shown that the light from these galaxies has travelled for around ten thousand million years before reaching Earth. In order to obtain these results, the team developed an entirely new technique, making use of the 'gravitational lens' effect for the first time in the sub-millimetric domain2 . Such a gravitational lens provides a form of magnifying glass on a cosmic scale that can be detected by Herschel. Until now very difficult to observe, these distant and rapidly evolving galaxies are a key component in improving our understanding of the history of the galaxies in our Universe. These results were published in the journal Science on November 5, 2010.
The Detection of a Population of Submillimeter-Bright, Strongly-Lensed Galaxies:
Mattia Negrello, R. Hopwood, G. De Zotti, A. Cooray, A. Verma, J. Bock, D. T. Frayer, M. A. Gurwell, A. Omont, R. Neri, H. Dannerbauer, L. L. Leeuw, E. Barton, J. Cooke, S. Kim, E. da Cunha, G. Rodighiero, P. Cox, D. G. Bonfield, M. J. Jarvis, S. Serjeant, R. J. Ivison, S. Dye, I. Aretxaga, D. H. Hughes, E. Ibar, F. Bertoldi, I. Valtchanov, S. Eales, L. Dunne, S. P. Driver, R. Auld, S. Buttiglione, A. Cava, C. A. Grady, D. L. Clements, A. Dariush, J. Fritz, D. Hill, J. B. Hornbeck, L. Kelvin, G. Lagache, M. Lopez-Caniego, J. Gonzalez-Nuevo, S. Maddox, E. Pascale, M. Pohlen, E. E. Rigby, A. Robotham, C. Simpson, D. J. B. Smith, P. Temi, M. A. Thompson, B. E. Woodgate, D. G. York, J. E. Aguirre, A. Beelen, A. Blain, A. J. Baker, M. Birkinshaw, R. Blundell, C. M. Bradford, D. Burgarella, L. Danese, J. S. Dunlop, S. Fleuren, J. Glenn, A. I. Harris, J. Kamenetzky, R. E. Lupu, R. J. Maddalena, B. F. Madore, P. R. Maloney, H. Matsuhara, M. J. Michalowski, E. J. Murphy, B. J. Naylor, H. Nguyen, C. Popescu, S. Rawlings, D. Rigopoulou, D. Scott, K. S. Scott, M. Seibert, I. Smail, R. J. Tuffs, J. D. Vieira, P. P. van der Werf, J. Zmuidzinas. Science. 5 novembre 2010.
Researcher l Alain Omont l T 01 44 32 80 71 l
Pierre Cox l T 04 76 82 49 53 l
Denis Burgarella l T 04 91 05 69 71 l
Helmut Dannerbauer l T 01 69 08 67 93 l
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CEA press contact l Stéphane Laveissière l T 01 64 50 27 53 l
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