The Milky Way galaxy is a 260.00 light-years diameters disc mostly composed of unobservable dark matter. The dark matter can only be determined by analyzing the gravitational effects developed on the surrounding objects
Durham University states that the Milky Way is currently expanding by 1.9 million light-years, even though most of the expanding area consists of dark matter.
Alis Deason, the leading astrophysicist of the research team, carried on research to discover how far can the invisible matter can expand. The starting point of the study was calculating the actual size of the Milky Way by carefully considering the gravitational effect encountered in darker areas.
The 260.000 light-years disc is the home for planets, natural satellites, supernovae, black holes, stars, and numerous other cosmic objects. Even though this already sounds like an unbelievably big area, there still is a remaining part. It includes the dark matter that the researchers are analyzing at the moment.
Scientists remeasured the size of the Milky Way galaxy
It is incredibly complicated to determine with precision the width of Milky Way because the dark matter is an area invisible to the human eye, and the only way to analyze it is by making connections with the visible celestial objects.
One of the most important discoveries of the research is stating that the stars situated in the dark area are moving faster when a detectable matter is positioned close to them. After understanding this, the researchers have virtually run several other tests, manly focusing on Andromeda.
Andromeda is a galaxy situated in the vicinity of Milky Way, showing signs of gravitational interaction. These two galaxies will collide in the upcoming 4.5 billion years.
The research concludes that dark matter has only been analyzed in rapport with its gravitational interaction with other celestial matter. At the moment, it is said that dark matter is 27% of the universe, even though there are still many more subjects to study.