A record-breaking, oxygen-starved galaxy may be full of gigantic stars’ shrapnel

The most oxygen-poor star-forming galaxy ever found hints that the first galaxies to arise after the universe’s birth glittered with supermassive stars that left behind big black holes.

Such galaxies are rare now because almost as soon as a galaxy initiates star formation, massive stars produce huge amounts of oxygen, which is the most abundant element in the cosmos after hydrogen and helium. Astronomers prize the few such galaxies found close to home because they offer a glimpse of what conditions were like in the very early universe, before stars had made much oxygen (SN: 8/7/19).

The new galaxy’s oxygen-to-hydrogen ratio — a standard measure of relative oxygen abundance

→ Continue reading at Science News

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