The remote galaxy that is “dying out”: the discovery by INAF researchers
An impetuous outflow of ionized gas and carbon monoxide leaks from galaxy Xid2028, located at 9.6 billion light years from us, having a supermassive black hole in the centre. This outflow of leaking matter could result into the galaxy not having enough matter reserve to form new stars in about ten million years.
This discovery, published in the Astronomy & Astrophysics journal, was made by an international team of astronomers coordinated by Marcella Brusa, a researcher of the University of Bologna and associated to INAF-National Institute of Astrophysics, along with colleagues from INAF and Universities of Florence and Roma Tre.
The study was carried out by observations conducted by ESO’s ALMA telescope located in Chile and Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) located in Arizona. Thanks to the resolution of the images produced by ALMA, in particular, the team has revealed the emission of carbon monoxide in the central region of the galaxy, which suggests the presence of molecular gas confined to an area of 8 thousand light years from the centre.
“We can estimate that in ‘only’ 10 million years from now, the gas reserve could be completely depleted and the galaxy will stop forming stars” said Marcella Brusa, first study author.