Herschel's View of 'Lockman Hole'
Herschel's View of 'Lockman Hole'

A region of the sky called the "Lockman Hole," located in the constellation of Ursa Major, is one of the areas surveyed in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. All of the little dots in this picture are distant galaxies. The pattern of their collective light is what's known as the cosmic infrared background. By studying this pattern, astronomers were able to measure how much dark matter it takes to create a galaxy bursting with young stars.

Regions like this one are almost completely devoid of objects in our Milky Way galaxy, making them ideal for astronomers studying galaxies in the distant universe.

Image credit: ESA/Herschel/SPIRE/HerMES

Page Last Updated: July 28th, 2013
Page Editor: NASA Administrator