ALMA finds huge hidden reservoirs of turbulent gas in distant galaxies

A team led by Edith Falgarone (Ecole Normale SupĂ©rieure and Observatoire de Paris, France) has used the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) to detect signatures of the carbon hydride CH+ in distant starburst galaxies. The group identified strong signals of CH+ in five out of the six galaxies studied, including the Cosmic Eyelash (eso1012). This research provides new information that helps astronomers understand the growth of galaxies and how a galaxy’s surroundings fuel star formation.