The evolution of compact elliptical galaxies that burned out when the universe was 3 billion years old has been mapped out by astronomers at the Dark Cosmology Center at the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark. "We at last show how these compact galaxies can form, how it happened, and when it happened. This basically is the missing piece in the understanding of how the most massive galaxies formed, and how they evolved into the giant ellipticals of today," said study leader Sune Toft. NASA's Spitzer and Hubble telescopes and the European Space Agency's Herschel Space Observatory were used for the study.

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