Ancient blob named after Japanese queen by astronomer

This pixellated photo, taken last week, shows an object or event existing 12.9 billion years ago when the universe was young and we hadn’t even begun to exist. It’s unimaginably far away. “Only three other objects have been seen that are from deeper in time and space… what’s most remarkable about this blob is its size, about as big as the disk-shaped Milky Way. According to many theories of the universe, nothing was supposed to be that big at that time in the universe. The other objects from that period are far smaller.” The astronomer who discovered the object, Masami Ouchi, gave it the name Himiko after a shamanic queen from ancient Japan. This in itself is a strange phenomenon, especially considering the object is more commonly referred to as a blob. A blurry blob named after, of course, an ancient queen, which does make you feel there’s never anything new in the universe, where mysteries and the feminine will perpetually be conflated. I admit it is pleasing, though, to have the incomprehensibles of space and time represented by a few pixels named after a shamanic girl ruler.  “Ouchi said it also could be two colliding galaxies, or might have something to do with a black hole.” Photo by Ouchi, story via Discovery Channel, & thanks to Kate for finding it.

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2 Responses to “Ancient blob named after Japanese queen by astronomer”

  1. knitgirl Says:

    I think you just blew my mind….

  2. LB Says:

    Look, here’s more!
    http://kateoplis.tumblr.com/post/456805499/nasa-this-image-by-the-spitzer-space-telescope

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