Using “Thesan,” a group of scientists have created the most detailed and comprehensive simulation of an early age in our world to date. Simulations of the so-called reionization – by which the universe became transparent – were calculated by the SuperMUC NG supercomputer of the Leibniz Computer Center in Garching near Munich. The result is the most accurate and comprehensive picture of the age of an area 300 light-years away of the early universe. This should answer important questions in cosmology. It’s a “bridge into the early universe,” says MIT’s Aaron Smith, who was involved in the development.
The Reionization Epoch is the period in the history of the universe when the first stars and galaxies turned gas into hot, re-ionized plasma. The electrons were separated from the hydrogen nuclei (protons). This process resulted in the universe as it presents itself to us today. The so-called dark ages, which followed the era in which background radiation appeared, ended with re-ionization. Only since reionization has the universe become transparent. Many questions about the process remain unanswered and Thesan must now help answer them. The simulation is named after the Etruscan goddess of dawn, The Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics explains (MPa).
thesan The institute explains that they can now show how galaxies affect the gas around them during this period. In addition to the interactions between light and gas, it is also possible to determine how cosmic dust behaves in this environment. When developing the simulation, the team was able to benefit from the experience of one of the most comprehensive simulated universes ever: IllustrisTNG that had accumulated petabytes of data. The data from Thesan is also scheduled to be published now so that the entire research community can benefit from it. The team still believes it will take years to analyze it on its own. They put their work in specialized article In the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
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