If you think that the question “what is the biggest structure from the Universe?” has an answer that is easy to guess, the truth may shock you. And we don’t know yet for sure what that truth is, as nobody roamed around the whole Universe for finding an irrefutable answer.
But instead, we can bet that the winning prize doesn’t necessarily go to a giant star or a galaxy. One good candidate is the newfound amount of hot gas located about 1.2 billion light-years away in the constellation of Capricornus.
3 million light-years long
The newfound amount of hot gas has a staggering distance: 3 million light-years, as it’s linking two mass clusters of galaxies in the cluster system Abell 2384. Astronomers had been using ESA’s XMM-Newton and NASA’s Chandra X-ray observatories for finding the great structure. Dr. Viral Parekh declared:
Computer simulations indicate that, after such a collision, galaxy clusters oscillate like a pendulum and pass through each other several times before merging to form a larger cluster.
Based on these simulations, astronomers think that the two clusters in this system will eventually merge.
However, there are still far larger known structures in the Universe, the largest one being the Ursa Major Supercluster. This is a spiral-rich galaxy cluster of the Virgo Supercluster, and its maximum dimension is beyond comprehension: 200 million light-years.
Another hugely known structure of the Cosmos is the Virgo Supercluster, which is a mass concentration of galaxies. It contains the Virgo Cluster and Local Group, and in turn, contains the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies. The Virgo Supercluster measures 110 million light-years across.
But things in Cosmos could get much bigger than that. In fact, common sense tells us that it shouldn’t be any limit for how big a structure can be.
The findings of the newfound amount of hot gas were published in the Royal Astronomical Society.