Gamma rays are helping scientists understand the best-hidden secrets of what lies far beyond our atmosphere.
New developments are being made daily through the observation of these rays. Because of this, it’s never been easier to learn about this intriguing form of light energy. So, immerse yourself in the spectacular nature of gamma rays and discover how they’re helping us understand the shape of our universe.
What are gamma rays?
Before we delve into gamma rays and what they tell us about the Universe, it’s crucial to discuss what they are. First, light—or electromagnetic radiation—takes on many forms.
There are the visible light rays, which provide sunlight and illuminate our homes. Then, there are forms of radiation like infrared and ultraviolet rays that elude our vision. These and a host of other light forms comprise what we commonly refer to as the electromagnetic spectrum.
And essentially, gamma rays are another form of light that fall into this category. What makes gamma rays distinct is their origins. You see, gamma radiation results from spectacular cosmic events such as matter falling into black holes, stars going supernova, and celestial objects colliding at incomprehensible speeds.
Thus, this form of electromagnetic radiation is essentially the high-energy residue left over from these celestial cataclysms. By collecting gamma rays, astronomers have been able to uncover some seriously fascinating things about the far reaches of our universe.
What can they tell us about the cosmos?
Gamma-ray astronomy is still a relatively new vocation, so developments continue to evolve. And in the last few years, scientists have been able to make remarkable observations about the “violent” universe by studying gamma radiation.
In their findings, scientists could trace gamma radiation back to distant galaxies. This disproved a popular theory that gamma rays originate from a halo of stars around our solar system. They were also able to obtain the most accurate measurements of light travel to date.
Plus, scientists were able to back Einstein’s theory of space and time moving smoothly and continuously by observing the movement of gamma rays. Specially designed gamma telescopes have played a significant role in helping astronomers “box in” dark matter.
This particular development is helping us understand what dark matter is comprised of. So, when we talk about gamma rays and what they tell us about the universe, it’s fair to say they can reveal a lot.
Gamma-ray astronomy continues to reveal some of the universe’s most intimate secrets. By exploring these exotic objects, scientists can explore the far reaches of space, search for new physics, test theories, and perform experiments that would be impossible in an Earth-bound lab. Hopefully, this quick guide provided insight into this exciting and almost divine form of electromagnetic radiation.