A recent ultra-deep survey by the Subaru telescope—located in Hawaii and run by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan—revealed seven of the earliest galaxies ever. Over 13 billion light-years distant, they appeared as unimaginably faint pinpricks of light.
In fact, they were visible only after Subaru focused on a tiny patch of sky for over 100 hours of exposure.Born only 700 million years after the big bang exploded everything into existence, these galaxies are among the earliest things ever observed and are among the first evidence of organization within the universe.
LAE galaxies are prolific star-producers, and their extreme age offers insight into the evolution of the universe. However, astronomers aren’t sure if the ones captured by Subaru were newly formed or if they’d been present and were only made visible by a thinning of the cosmic gas that initially obscured them.