Countdown to rewriting the textbooks again - JWST launch imminent

Feel that - a mere half billion years in the past. But we’re stuck in time over here in this spacetime backwater, unless the tic tacs decide to clue us in.:stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

Fresh in the sense of the epoch it represents. We have to keep in mind what we’re seeing is galaxy formation at an earlier epoch of the lifetime of the universe and although the Cartwheel doesn’t look that way ‘now’, the science is in confirming the theory of galaxy formation in earlier epochs of the universe. It is fresh interstellar material from that perspective, hard science validation.


This stuff is just plain friggin cool. :sunglasses:

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The photo sure reminds me of Ezekiel’s…”a wheel in the middle of a wheel.” :sunglasses:

A good article on ring galaxies, including the Cartwheel from the recent Webb image:


What’s so mind boggling are the time scales required for these events.
We’re looking at this from such a minute perspective, and yet, are able to piece these puzzles together. Good read.

Indeed. The spacetime scales. IIRC we’re headed for an eventual crash with our neighbor Andromeda. A mere 25 Milky Way diameters away (2.5M ly).

Just for some more feel small info they said that the first deep field SMACS image was as if looking at a piece of sky the size of a grain of sand held at arms length.


When I was in grad school, the galactic interloper hypothesis was just that, a hypothesis based on simulations. I remember a lecture I presented to the Houston Astronomical Society as a grad student (man that was a fun experience, they loved it) where I explained the traditional ‘fork’ diagram for galactic evolution, complete with observational examples. Interlopers that disrupt typical galactic evolution … well that was just a theoretical playground. Now we see the payoff form JWST (with contributions from HST and previous missions) and there will be many more. It is so gratifying to see theoretical work done years ago validated.

Agreed; but I am just as interested (if not more interested) in learning about any observations that call into question previous theories.

Have there been any such potential observations thus far, I wonder.

Very cool! Here’s another good one along those lines - the author was thought to be positing silly stuff not that long ago. Not sure I’m entirely comfortable with some of the confident statements in the article, but on the other hand, much of it seems pretty obvious at this point - with 20-20 hindsight.:stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:


Interesting article; thanks for posting.

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I really like this YouTube channel and today’s topic are Ring Galaxies:


A slight diversion, but one I hope they find some answers to in my lifetime.

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Another good read and one that ties in nicely with my post down below.

Yeah - boggles the mind. And earlier in my life, I thought we had it all sorted!:stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

They might as well substitute “Dunno” for “Dark”. Seems like calling it “Matter” might be questionable as well.:man_shrugging:t2:

This gets into some of my questions about the “Why We Need to Study Nothing” piece - the areas unpopulated with stars are clearly NOT nothing, and clearly NOT “voids” in the traditional sense. I’m not sure how they calculate the density of these areas except by extrapolating from the lit up areas. It is one thing to deduce that galaxies have greater size and mass than we can see by their motions, and another to say “therefore…” about the rest of it.

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Yes that’s another huge unknown that proof exists but what it actually is? Hmmmmmmm.


More cool images today