Dark Energy Survey

Before the Dark Energy Survey began in August 2013, scientists spent months testing the Dark Energy Camera, putting it through its paces. Now, catalogs of galaxies and stars derived from the data collected during the Science Verification season have been released to the public.

Members of the Dark Energy Survey have partnered with the LIGO experiment in the hunt for gravitational waves. They’re the DES-GW group. DES-GW will use the Dark Energy Camera to help LIGO search for the source of the gravitational waves it detects.

Scientists on the Dark Energy Survey, using one of the world’s most powerful digital cameras, have discovered eight more faint celestial objects hovering near our Milky Way galaxy. Signs indicate that they, like the objects found by the same team earlier this year, are likely dwarf satellite galaxies, the smallest and closest known form of galaxies.

Scientists on the Dark Energy Survey have released the first in a series of dark matter maps of the cosmos. These maps, created with one of the world’s most powerful digital cameras, are the largest contiguous maps created at this level of detail and will improve our understanding of dark matter’s role in the formation of galaxies.

Scientists on two continents have independently discovered a set of celestial objects that seem to belong to the rare category of dwarf satellite galaxies orbiting the Milky Way. A team of researchers with the Dark Energy Survey, headquartered at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and an independent group from the University of Cambridge jointly announced their findings today.

Pictured above are many types of galaxies captured by the Dark Energy Camera. At least five are easy to spot: the edge-on spiral on the right side, the pair of colliding spirals at the bottom center, a big spiral in the top-left and an elliptical on the far left.

El Gordo

A splatter of red, denoting galaxies, lies at the center of this image and extends toward the lower left. This is the remnant of a cosmic collision. Eons ago, one group of galaxies plunged into another at millions of miles per hour, leaving a wreckage in its wake. The galaxy cluster El Gordo is all that remains of this raucous event.