- writer, Alejandro Milan Valencia
- roll, BBC Information World
A standard homework train was to mannequin our photo voltaic system.
Because of this train, we all know that the photo voltaic system is a gaggle of planets revolving across the massive golden star. However in these fashions, the solar was stationary and floating within the colossus.
Nevertheless, for many years astronomers have identified that the photo voltaic system, and particularly our galaxy, the Milky Approach, hurtles by way of the huge expanse of the universe at a velocity of about 600 kilometers per second.
It has additionally been identified for a very long time that this journey has a vacation spot.
Discoveries made within the Nineteen Seventies by a gaggle of astronomers decided the existence of a “superpower” whose supply could be the vacation spot of the journey the galaxy is at present making. This pressure was known as the Nice Attractor.
cosmologist Paul Sutter, professor of astrophysics at Stony Brooks College in New York, explains to BBC Mundo (BBC Spanish service).
And regardless of the unbelievable velocity at which our galaxy is touring, it’s seemingly that it’ll not attain the vacation spot set by the Nice Attractor.
“We are going to by no means attain our vacation spot as a result of in a couple of billion years, the accelerating pressure of darkish power will destroy the universe,” Sutter explains.
Darkish power, as NASA explains, is a mysterious pressure permeating the universe and accelerating the growth of the universe.
This interprets to galaxies shifting additional and additional away from one another, till in billions of years the construction of the universe as we all know it at present is destroyed.
Due to this fact, understanding the consequences of the good attractor is related to efforts to grasp the construction of the universe.
“Throughout the examine of the universe, it is extremely necessary to know the way it’s organized, why it’s organized from constructions of sure sizes, and understanding every of them and their measurement helps so much on this endeavor,” says Carlos Augusto, a Colombian astrophysicist who works on the Bogotá Planetarium, for BBC Mundo.
How was it found
As area exploration has superior, thanks largely to the launch of the Hubble telescope within the second half of the twentieth century, astronomers have confronted the problem of organizing every thing they see indirectly.
Some form of maps started to be drawn up, and, after all, one of many key factors was to seek out out the place our photo voltaic system and galaxy are situated within the universe.
“Across the Nineteen Seventies, we started to check the movement of our photo voltaic system, the movement of our galaxy, and in contrast it to the movement of different close by galaxies, and every thing appeared to be shifting in the identical path because the growth of the universe,” Souter explains.
“Nevertheless, astronomers are starting to note one thing curious: There appears to be a mysterious pattern behind this expansionary movement, as if all of the galaxies near us are additionally heading in the direction of the identical point of interest,” he provides.
For a lot of astronomers, this “pattern” needed to do with flaws in observations or different components that led to a misreading of the data they obtained.
However telescopes have been enhancing their expertise, and round 1986, science was in a position to decide that the closest galaxies, together with our personal, have been heading in a standard path.
“With these new instruments, astronomers may decide not solely that we have been shifting towards a focus of matter, but additionally how briskly we have been doing it. In different phrases, they have been in a position to set up with certainty what it was,” notes Molina.
On this sense, though it can’t be decided precisely, one of many fundamental theories factors to the truth that the Nice Attractor is a big construction of darkish matter situated inside a supercluster of galaxies often called Laniakea It has the power to draw galaxies in a radius of roughly than 300 million light-years.
Darkish matter is one other mysterious part of the universe.
It’s a form of unobservable matter, and one can solely sense its existence because of the gravitational impact it exerts on issues within the universe.
This huge focus of matter dragging galaxies was known as the Nice Attractor, situated about 200 million light-years from Earth.
One of many causes Sutter is devoted to finding out extra of the Nice Attractor is that regardless of advances in astronomical remark, this superstructure stays a thriller.
“One of many large drawbacks to studying extra in regards to the Nice Attractor is that it’s situated in a really inconvenient place: proper on the opposite facet of our galaxy,” he says.
“Once we attempt to observe there may be plenty of noise: many stars and planets and nebulae within the center that don’t enable a extra full evaluation of this pressure that draws us.”
It’s not a black gap
Sutter and Molina clarify that the Nice Attractor shouldn’t be a black gap, declaring that it’s a gravitational anomaly.
“It’s a very totally different pressure and there’s no connection to black holes within the universe,” Sutter says.
The actual fact is that by having the ability to decide this, it was additionally attainable to ascertain that there are different comparable anomalies in different elements of the universe that will have an analogous operate: galactic clouds.
“Realizing this helps us with a basic job of understanding the universe: how it’s made of those constructions that we categorize or organize in line with their gravitational potential,” says Molina.
For Molina, “mapping” the universe is completed by studying extra about how these areas work together with different forces, resembling gentle or gravity.
“Realizing this construction permits us to check how processes resembling interplay with gentle – or lack of it – or its depth happen in comparable constructions in different galaxies within the universe,” he provides.
One other necessary facet is that it permits us to check the “future” of our area setting.
“Realizing how briskly our galaxy is shifting and the place it’s heading permits us to consider or examine facets of the way it will behave sooner or later,” Sutter notes.
Nevertheless, whereas we all know from these developments the vacation spot of this galactic journey, we additionally know that Earth or our photo voltaic system could not be capable of see the tip.
“There’s one other very robust pressure within the universe that we name darkish power, and it’s the precise reverse of gravity: as a substitute of pulling, it pushes,” says Sutter.
“So after we truly strategy the Nice Attractor inside a couple of million light-years from now, this darkish power, which we all know so little about, will impact that journey, which can very seemingly be the destruction of every thing we all know.” The scientist concluded.