A search for the light of the first stars;

The enigma of the near-infrared background

Prof. Toshio Matsumoto

Abstract

    The first stars of the universe have attracted the strong interest of astronomers, as the first stars could re-ionized the universe and must be key objects to delineate the dark age of the universe. It has been thought that the first stars are very massive and luminous, however, it is difficult to detect individual stars even with JWST. To overcome the faintness of individual stars, we have tried to observe the near-infrared background to detect the integrated red-shifted light of the first stars. This is a challenging observation, since there exist bright foreground and backgrounds, however the space probes, COBE, IRTS, AKARI and Spitzer succeeded in detecting excess sky brightness and fluctuation that can not be explained with known foreground emission sources. In addition to these results, I will present the recent result of the sounding rocket experiment, CIBER, and its implications for the study of the first stars.

< Back >