The Galactic Superwind
Date: 25 July
Subject: Now, the
High-velocity galactic outflows, driven by intense
bursts of star formation and black hole accretion, are processes invoked by
current theories of galaxy formation... From existing observational evidence...
it is unclear whether such outflows are localized to regions of intense star
formation just a few kiloparsecs in extent, or whether they instead have a
significant impact on the entire galaxy and its surroundings. Here we present
two-dimensional spectroscopy of a star-forming galaxy... This screen was
ejected from the galaxy during a starburst several 108 years earlier
and has subsequently swept up gas from the surrounding intergalactic medium and
cooled. This demonstrates the galaxy-wide impact of
The discovery of a galaxy-wide
superwind from a young massive galaxy at redshift z ≈ 3
R. J. Wilman, J.
Gerssen, R. G. Bower, S. L. Morris, R. Bacon, P. T. de Zeeuw and R. L.
Davies, Nature 436,
227-229 (14 July 2005)
Drs R J Wilman, J
Gerssen, R G Bower and S L Morris, Department of Physics, University of Durham, UK
Dr R Bacon, CRAL-Observatoire,
Dr P T de Zeeuw,
Leiden Observatory, The Netherlands
Dr R L Davies,
Astrophysics, University of Oxford,
Dear Learned Researchers,
Congratulations on your revelatory findings. Based on the true
structure of the observable universe, such galaxy-wide winds will be the norm,
with nary an exception in principle. Your continued investigations here will
only confirm the fact. In general, with improving instruments and observational
techniques, the superwind (emanating from all around the galaxy) should become
increasingly evident in all galaxies; the young and massive one here having
vividly given you the unambiguous signal.
To see how all these fit into the ultimate picture, do care
to check out The Cosmos,
The Galaxy and other
linked pages therein. Any critique of the model would be most gratefully
Wish you all the best in your endeavours to establish this
PS: The solar wind, the stellar wind, the star-cluster wind,
the galactic wind and the galaxy-cluster wind are all realities out there. The
ones still remaining to be discovered are calling out to competent and
dedicated teams of your calibre. Do heed their call!
found myself getting really angry," one cosmologist said after reading
[Sittampalam's] paper. "It must have hit some real insecurity."
Discover, April 2002; pages 66 to 71.
End of Letter
The above was forwarded that week to some university
professors for comment. Quite unexpectedly, a senior and well-known professor
at Princeton cared to respond. A paragraph
from my follow-up letter is given below (in red) since it refers to the most
important ramification of the discovery. Though given in the linked pages, its
worth the reemphasis here. Also appended is the postscript in reference to the
brick wall that is peer-review today!
Finally, a thought on the lately
reported galactic superwind. Here, more importantly, one should look at the
ramifications on the flip side of the breakthrough discovery. The backpressure
from the superwind, that is, directed toward the galactic center, would be
stupendous as it intensifies as the inverse square of radius. Thus, increased
speeds of orbital bodies about the galactic center and increased nuclear
reactions in the galactic hub the latter enhanced many orders of times more
than what classical gravity would have us believe become direct consequences.
Hence, clearly, there'll be no more need for recourse to dark matter and
black holes anywhere in our physical universe.
PS: Times when mainstream publication of anything (and
getting away with it!) was not much of a problem...
Newton's theory of gravitation was
a landmark in science but might easily have fallen foul of modern referees
demanding explanations. ... The idea of action at a distance could only be a
kind of magic. Forces were transmitted from one object to another only on
contact. So what would have happened if, in due course, the Royal Society had
sent the manuscript of the Principia out to referees in the modern manner? The
chances are that the exercise would have recruited a good many quizzical
referees' reports. Anybody can write the dialogue; "by what means, pray,
does the author fancy that this magic can be contrived over the great distance
between the Sun and Jupiter and without the lapse of time?" ...
Is the Principia publishable now? Editor, Nature 376,
385 (3 August 1995)
One difficulty is that general relativity
allows black holes to exist, with all the disbelief that that requires of the rest
of us. The most serious difficulty is that, after more than a quarter of a
century, there is still no way of reconciling Einstein's
theory of gravitation, his general theory of relativity, with quantum physics.
A generation of talented people, not so much an army as a company, has beaten
its head against that problem without much success...
Beyond Einstein's theory of gravitation? Editor, Nature 374,
759 (27 April 1995)
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