1122 GMT December 17, 2017
But, models of the Universe also shows there should be twice as much ‘ordinary matter’ compared to what has been observed so far, express.co.uk wrote.
Two separate teams found the missing matter, which has confirmed some assumptions about the Universe.
Ralph Kraft at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Massachusetts said: “Everybody sort of knows that it has to be there, but this is the first time that somebody — two different groups, no less — has come up with a definitive detection.
“This goes a long way toward showing that many of our ideas of how galaxies form and how structures form over the history of the Universe are pretty much correct.”
The two groups were led by Hideki Tanimura at the Institute of Space Astrophysics in Orsay, France and Anna de Graaff at the University of Edinburgh.
Hideki Tanimura said: “The missing baryon problem is solved”.
The matter is made of particles called ‘baryons’ which link galaxies together through filaments of hot, diffuse gas — the faintest portions of what is know as the ‘cosmic web’.
Because the gas is so weak and not hot enough for X-ray telescopes to spot nobody has been seen before.
Richard Ellis at University College London said: “There’s no sweet spot — no sweet instrument that we’ve invented yet that can directly observe this gas. “It’s been purely speculation until now.”
The groups had to find another way to conclusively show that the threads of gas was really there.
The teams used a phenomenon called the Sunyaev-Zel’dovich effect that occurs when light left over from the big bang passes through hot gas.
As the light travels, some of it scatters off the electrons in the gas and leave a patch in the microwave background.
In 2015, the Planck satellite made a map of this effect throughout the observable Universe.
Because the gas between galaxies is so wispy, the impressions they cause are too small to be seen directly on Planck’s map.
The teams selected pairs of galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey that were expected to be connected.
They stacked the Planck signals for the areas between the galaxies which made the faint signals more detectable.
Both teams found definitive evidence of gas filaments between galaxies.
Tanimura’s group found they are almost three times denser than the mean for normal matter in the Universe.
De Graaf’s group found they were six times denser, which confirmed that the gas in these areas are dense enough to form filaments.
Tanimura said: “We expect some differences because we are looking at filaments at different distances.
“If this factor is included, our findings are very consistent with the other group.”