The observable universe contains at least ten times the amount of galaxies previously thought to exist, according to a new census performed by a team of international astronomers. Using data largely from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescopes, the team of scientists estimated that there are more than a trillion galaxies in the depths of space; they used the same data to create a 3D map of the known universe. By observing the transmission of light from far-away parts of the universe, the scientists also discovered that the early universe—more than 13 billion years ago—contained even more galaxies than it does today. “Finding more galaxies in the past implies that significant evolution must have occurred to reduce their number through extensive merging of systems,” lead researcher Christopher Conselice, a professor of astrophysics at the University of Nottingham, said in a statement.
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