Scientists used a supercomputer to simulate the creation and evolution of 8 million virtual universes, each containing 12 million galaxies — and in the process, they discovered something new about the universe we actually live in.
Kristin Houser | Futurism
Galaxies use hydrogen gas to form stars, but some galaxies stop creating new stars even though they still have plenty of hydrogen gas. Previously, scientists attributed this to a combination of factors.
For one, they thought the supermassive black holes at the centers of the galaxies might be producing too much energy for the hydrogen to cool to star-forming temperatures, with supernovae explosions adding to the inferno.
Dark matter could play a role, too, as its gravitational pull on the hydrogen gas would cause its temperature to rise.
“As we go back earlier and earlier in the universe, we would expect the dark matter to be denser, and therefore the gas to be getting hotter and hotter,” researcher Peter Behroozi said in a press release. “This is bad for star formation, so we had thought that many galaxies in the early universe should have stopped forming stars a long time ago.”