M. KORNMESSER / LARS LINDBERG CHRISTENSEN / ESA / HUBBLE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY M. KORNMESSER / LARS LINDBERG CHRISTENSEN / ESA / HUBBLE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Animation showing the birth of the first stars and quasars from the primordial universe. The view pulls back to show an extremely bright quasar behind clouds of dust left behind by the explosive deaths of the first stars, and then reveals the Hubble Space Telescope studying the objects. This references a 2002 Hubble Space Telescope study of the spectra of some of the most distant (and therefore oldest) quasars, which detected signs of iron in the quasars' spectra. This result means that the first stars were born and died as early as just 200 million years after the Big Bang, and also that the stars formed before the quasars themselves. Quasars are a type of extremely bright active galaxy that were common in the early universe, implying that they are a normal evolutionary stage of all galaxies.
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