Scientists are getting worried about the potential threat posed by "overweight" galaxies snacking on their neighbors. Anyone got NBC's number? We've just had this great idea for a new season of The Biggest Loser.
According to New Scientist, scientists are tracking the growth of relatively new galaxies after discovering that they're... well, larger than expected:
Models suggest that if they snacked only on other galaxies, those ancient leviathans should have been just a fifth as massive as the biggest galaxies in similar clusters today that have had longer to eat their smaller neighbours. But instead the ancient galaxies appear to be roughly 90 percent as massive as their present-day counterparts.
"It could be the tip of the iceberg. It might mean the simulations [of the early universe] need to be significantly altered," says Chris Collins of Liverpool John Moores University in Birkenhead, UK.
Is everything we know about the way that the universe grew wrong? Or are some galaxies bigger than others (and some galaxies' mothers, bigger than other galaxies' mothers)? Time and science will tell. But that latter one has arguably been wrong before.
Overweight galaxies force-fed by dark matter tendrils [New Scientist]