The James Webb Extend Telescope has recorded several extremely distant galaxies in the past 6 months. Astronomers think there is oxygen in one of them. This has been described as the farthest ever recorded detection of the precious chemical element.
The galaxy is named GHZ2/GLASS-z12, and the light detected by JWST comes from just 367 million years after the Big Bang. Lead author Tom Bakx of Nagoya University said in a statement on the subject, “It’s very exciting to be an observational astronomer. We’ve been able to track the status of observations in real time that will test the JWST results.” said.
The presence of oxygen reveals a lot about these distant galaxies. The first glowing stars in the universe consisted only of hydrogen and helium. Nuclear processes at their centers led to the formation of many other elements that dissipate and (in some cases) eventually explode as stars age and expand. Understanding these early stars in early galaxies is crucial to completing the current picture of galaxy evolution. Thanks to JWST and ALMA, we can begin to recognize these primitive objects.
Writer Jorge Zavala of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan also used the following statements about the discovery:
“The bright-line emission shows that this galaxy is rapidly enriching its gas reservoirs with elements heavier than hydrogen and helium. This gives us some clues about the formation, evolution and lifespan of first-generation stars. The small distinction we see between the emission of oxygen gas and stellars is that these early galaxies, It may also indicate that it was suffering from violent explosions that ejected gas from the galactic center into the galactic periphery and even beyond.”