A mysterious glow of infrared light was seen across the sky recently by NASA`s Spitzer Space Telescope. This new study and data collected was led by Alexander "Sasha" Kashlinsky of NASA`s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.
According to Wikipedia, the Spitzer Space Telescope (SST), formerly the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) is an infrared space observatory launched in 2003. It is the fourth and final of the NASA Great Observatories program.
"The infrared background glow in our sky has been a huge mystery," said Asantha Cooray of the University of California at Irvine (UC Irvine), lead author of the new research published in the journal Nature. "We have new evidence this light is from the stars that linger between galaxies. Individually, the stars are too faint to be seen, but we think we are seeing their collective glow."
Cooray alongside colleagues researched data from Bootes Field, which is a larger portion of the sky equal to the size of 50 full Earth moons. By researching the larger scale, Cooley was able to better analyze the background infared light and its pattern.
"We looked at the Bootes field with Spitzer for 250 hours," said co-author Daniel Stern of NASA`s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif.
"The team concluded the light pattern of the infrared glow is not consistent with theories and computer simulations of the first stars and galaxies. Researchers say the glow is too bright to be from the first galaxies, which are thought not to have been as large or as numerous as the galaxies we see around us today. Instead, the scientists propose a new theory to explain the blotchy light, based on theories of "intracluster" or "intrahalo" starlight," says NASA
For more information about Spitzer, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/spitzer