Mysterious ‘supervoid’ 1.8 billion light-years wide, could be the biggest object ever discovered in the universe.
Above: Two CMB anomalous features hinted at by Planck’s predecessor, NASA’s WMAP, are confirmed in this 2013 Planck data. Credit ESA
Astronomers led by Dr. Istvan Szapudi of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, using data from Hawaii’s Pan-STARRS1 (PS1) telescope located on Haleakala, Maui, and NASA’s Wide Field Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite, may have found an explanation for the existence of the Cold Spot.
Top image: The Cold Spot area resides in the constellation Eridanus in the southern galactic hemisphere. The insets show the environment of this anomalous patch of the sky as mapped by Szapudi’s team. The angular diameter of the vast supervoid aligned with the Cold Spot exceeds 30 degrees and is marked by the white circles. Credit ESA Planck Collaboration
Szapudi claims that may be “the largest individual structure ever identified by humanity.”
If the Cold Spot originated from the Big Bang, it could be a rare sign of exotic physics. The standard cosmology, the Big Bang theory and related physics, cannot explain it.
The researchers have published their findings in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.