Scientists have discovered 300,000 new galaxies
The massive data has given astronomers a chance to study supermassive blackholes present in and around these galaxies.
"If we take a radio telescope and we look up at the sky, we see mainly emission from the immediate environment of massive black holes. With LOFAR we hope to answer the fascinating question: where do those black holes come from?" said Huub Röttgering from Leiden University, The Netherlands.
Further, the telescope can help researchers understand the phenomenon of magnetic fields better. "Measuring magnetic fields in intergalactic space can be difficult, because they are very weak. However, LOFAR measurements have allowed us to measure the effect of cosmic magnetic fields on radio waves from a giant radio galaxy that is 11 million light years in size. This work shows how we can use LOFAR to help us understand the origin of cosmic magnetic fields," said Shane O'Sullivan, University of Hamburg.
The researchers aim to study the entire north sky with over 15 million radio sources in the near future. "Among these there will be the first massive black holes that formed when the Universe was only a 'baby', with an age a few percent of its present age," said Rottgering.
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