Astronomers just saw farther back in time than they ever have before


The Washington Post reports: To look through the lens of a telescope is to peer back in time.

The light we view through it has spent hundreds, millions, even billions of years crossing the vastness of space to reach us, carrying with it images of things that happened long ago.

On Thursday, astronomers at the Hubble Space Telescope announced that they’d seen back farther than they ever have before, to a galaxy 13.4 billion light years away in a time when the universe was just past its infancy.

The finding shattered what’s known as the “cosmic distance record,” illuminating a point in time that scientists once thought could never be seen with current technology.

“We’ve taken a major step back in time, beyond what we’d ever expected to be able to do with Hubble,” Yale University astrophysicist Pascal Oesch, the lead author of the study, said in a statement. [Continue reading…]

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