Friday, May 23, 2008

Found: Missing Matter



Astronomers have found some matter that had been missing in deep space and say it is strung along web-like filaments that form the backbone of the universe.

The ethereal strands of hydrogen and oxygen atoms could account for up to half the matter that scientists knew must be there but simply could not see, the researchers reported on Tuesday.

Scientists have long known there is far more matter in the universe than can be accounted for by visible galaxies and stars. Not only is there invisible baryonic matter -- the protons and neutrons that make up atoms -- but there also is an even larger amount of invisible "dark" matter.

Now about half of the missing baryonic matter has turned up, seen by the orbiting Hubble space telescope and NASA's Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer, or FUSE.

Missing matter found in deep space
Maggie Fox
Reuters, Science Tue May 20, 3:17 PM

Posted at 06:13 AM in Science | Permalink


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