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Contact: Lynn Chandler
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Early Glimpse of the Cosmic Infrared Background

Caption: Scientists from the LIBRAE team acquired an early glimpse of the cosmic infrared background (CIB) using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope as a proof of concept. These panels, about 1 degree across, show the same region in the constellation Boötes. Top: Spitzer's initial infrared view, including foreground stars and fainter galaxies, seen at a wavelength of 4.5 microns. Bottom: Masking out all of the resolved stars and galaxies (grey) reveals the CIB, which is smoothed and enhanced in this view. The known remaining galaxy populations cannot account for the large-scale structure seen in the CIB. LIBRAE will identify the nature and epochs of the new populations responsible for this structure.

Credit: Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/GSFC

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