Continuing on with this weeks theme (I didn’t plan a theme for the week, it just happened that small stuff was happening, so I went for it.), I present the smallest galaxy found to date. Willman 1.
Discovered in 2004, by Beth Willman of New York University’s Center for Cosmology and Particle Physics, this tiny galaxy is about 120,000 light years away from our Galaxy and has about 500,000 solar masses. It also holds the distinction as being the third dimmest galaxy known.
It has been categorized as an extreme globular cluster or ultra low-mass dwarf galaxy.
There is of course competition for the title of Universe’s smallest.
This image from Keck shows about a thousand star in this mini-galaxy, but amazingly it has about 600,000 solar masses.
So, we have one small in mass and smaller is size, and one smaller in stars (with a lot of dark matter).
Which one do you think is the smallest?
– Ex astris, scientia –
I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney. As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities. Connect with me on Google +