Tuesday, April 6, 2010

News: Earliest Known Galaxies

Wanna see a cool baby picture? Here it is...

Picture courtesy NASA, ESA, G. Illingworth and R. Bouwens (University of California, Santa Cruz), and the HUDF09 Team

I know you may be wondering: "What am I looking at?" The galaxies located inside those boxes are the oldest galaxies ever imaged. This was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in August 2009. The universe is 13.7 billion years old. These galaxies started forming just 500 million years after the big bang. That pushes back the date for the start of galaxy formation by about 1.5 billion years. Cool, huh?

You can read a news article with more detail on this on the National Geographic web site: "Earliest Known Galaxies Spied in Deep Hubble Picture."

I don't mean to sound snarky (really, I don't), but it's stuff like this that makes me wonder how prominent leaders in the young-earth movement like Answers in Genesis' astronomer, Jason Lisle, can claim there is "no evidence" for an ancient universe. "No evidence"? Really? I just wish guys like him would be honest and say, "There is no credible scientific evidence for a young universe, but I hold this position because I have a precommitment to a particular interpretation of the Bible." I'd honestly respect that. But telling people that there is "no evidence" for an ancient universe is, in my opinion, a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

This might be a good time to re-post the link to the "An Evaluation of Evidence for the Age of the Universe" document on the Reasons To Believe web site.

1 comment:

Sheryl said...

I totally agree with you about young earth proponents. It would so much more realistic if they just went with the Bible interpretation aspect and stopped trying to concoct evidence to support their views. That kind of approach and "science" gives Christianity a bad name. It is so frustrating that they don't see what damage they are doing to both their credibility with non-believers and ours! It also makes me sad when I talk with intelligent, but not scientifically literate people who believe things like the speed of light is not constant or people co-existed with dinosaurs based on all the propaganda the "creation scientists" put out.