Astronomers have finally measured the distance of first observed Einstein ring – Ars Technica

A radio image of MG 1131+0456, the first observed Einstein ring, taken with the Very Large Array network of radio telescopes.VLA

Astronomers around the world may have lost access to their telescopes during the coronavirus pandemic, sheltering in place along with the rest of us, but that hasn’t kept them from advancing their field. Two astronomers used the shutdown to comb through existing datasets to hunt for a rare type of quasar and wound up rediscovering a so-called “Einstein ring” first observed back in 1987. They became the first to officially measure its distance from Earth, as reported in a recent paper published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

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