The Cosmic Optical Background: New Horizons Probes the Universe

Researchers have cleverly used data from the New Horizons mission to look at the light from distant galaxies. The universe is filled with galaxies light up the cosmos, but too faint to see with the naked eye. Can we measure it? How bright is it?

2268 Views | Published on 28th Apr, 2017

Researchers have cleverly used data from the New Horizons mission to look at the light from distant galaxies.

The universe is filled with galaxies light up the cosmos, but too faint to see with the naked eye. Can we measure it? How bright is it? These are questions that are important for understanding the nature of the universe, the inventory of stars, where galaxies are, what kind of structure the universe has and what astrophysical processes are in play. Measuring the light may even give clues on where Dark Matter is and what happens if and when it decays. A good place to observe this faint light might be from the outer solar system, away from the dusty inner regions of our own planetary system. Researchers have cleverly used data from the New Horizons mission (the mission to Pluto and beyond) to do just that!

Join Tony Darnell and Carol Christian during Afternoon Astronomy Coffee on April 27, 2017 at 3PM Eastern (Daylight) Time as they discuss with Michael Zemcov (Rochester Institute of Technology), Casey Lisse (Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab), Andrew Poppe (Space Sciences Lab, U. Berkeley) and Chi Nguyen (RIT) about this clever observation probing well beyond our solar system.