It may look like cells under the microscope, but what you see is a map of the sky of hundreds of thousands of undetected galaxies, some of which have black holes that "never stop eating".
The new discovery was conducted by a team of more than 200 astronomers from around the world, who examined data from the Low Frequency Array (LOFAR), a network of telescopes operated by the Dutch Institute of Radio Astronomy.
"What we're starting to see with LOFAR is that, in some cases, clusters of galaxies that do not merge can also show this show, albeit at a very low level that was previously undetectable. "Annalisa Bonafede from the University of Bologna and INAF, said in a statement. "This discovery tells us that, in addition to fusion events, there are other phenomena that can trigger particle acceleration on a very large scale."
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LOFAR examined 300,000 sources, noting that "almost all are galaxies," radio signals having traveled "billions of light-years before reaching the Earth," and revealed that they emitted jets of visible material at radio wavelengths. .
Philip Best, a researcher at the University of Edinburgh, said: "LOFAR has a remarkable sensitivity, which allows us to see that these jets are present in all the most gigantic galaxies, which means that their Black holes never stop eating. "
Much remains to be done to understand all the images taken from the entire northern sky, which should reveal some 15 million radio sources.
"Imagine some of the discoveries we could make along the way," said ASTRON Executive Director Carole Jackson. "I can not wait to be there."
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The results were published in a special edition of the journal Astronomy and astrophysics.