Researchers found [an amount] of water so large that it could provide each person on Earth an entire planet’s worth of water--20,000 times over...*not quite correct. See embeetee's comment.
The water is in a cloud around a huge black hole... and the waves of energy the black hole releases make water by literally knocking hydrogen and oxygen atoms together.
That one cloud of newly discovered space water vapor could supply 140 trillion planets that are just as wet as Earth is... The new cloud of water is enough to supply 28 galaxies with water...
...a distance of 12 billion light years. That means they were also looking back in time 12 billion years*, to when the universe itself was just 1.6 billion years old. They were watching water being formed at the very start of the known universe, which is to say, water was one of the first substances formed, created in galactic volumes from the earliest time.
24 July 2012
Water in space
When I was growing up, the conventional wisdom was that life might be unique on earth because there was probably no water in "outer space." That paradigm sure has changed, as explained at Fast Company: