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A Heavenly Glow

There’s new info from space.

NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope may have detected the infrared glow from the very first generation of stars, a new study reports. If confirmed, the work would reveal the structure of the universe a few hundred million years after the big bang, when the galaxies that exist today were just beginning to take shape.

Astronomers have already detected light from even earlier times, when the universe was a mere 370,000 years old. It was then that radiation first escaped from a scalding primordial soup of matter and energy, and it still suffuses space today in the form of the cosmic microwave background radiation.

But infrared light also floods space in what is called the cosmic infrared background radiation. “It is a repository of the emissions of all the stars that have ever existed in the universe,” says the study‚Äôs lead author, Alexander Kashlinsky at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, US.

The discovery immediately prompted a response from Elmer Dinkley, director of the Intelligent Design Institute Of Toledo.  “These here scientist folk are willing to believe any old thing that comes along, aren’t they?  I mean, it’s obvious to me and all other non-heathen sinners that the glow in these pitchers is the divine light being cast by angel’s wings.  Seriously folks, stars from like a trillion bajillion years ago?  Pretty tough, considering the universe ain’t but 6,000 years old.  I mean, I suppose these here stars were already around when Adam and Eve were running around with the dinosaurs, right?  Sheesh, come on now.”

Posted by Lee on 12/29/05 at 12:45 PM in Science and Technology • Permalink

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