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A. Kashlinsky, R.G. Arendt, J. Mather, S.H. Moseley (GSFC)
Spatial fluctuations of the diffuse infrared background measured with the Spitzer Space Telescope deep imaging at near-IR are found to be significantly in excess of random instrument noise. Individual galaxies have been removed down to faint levels leaving predominantly high-z contributions to the diffuse light fluctuations from cosmological sources. The remaining diffuse light fluctuations are not consistent with possible instrumental effects, nor with zodiacal light or Galactic foregrounds, and are significantly higher than what is expected from the remaining ordinary galaxy populations. The signal can be explained by emissions from massive Population III stars, the first stars in the Universe at epochs lying at z\gtrsim 10. The measurements of the fluctuations constitute evidence of an era dominated by the massive Population III stars and set fundamental constraints on the history of their emission production.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.