Milky Way’s edges are host to the galaxy’s most ancient stars. Recently, scientists have identified something quite intriguing yet odd in such a celestial retirement area. They observed a bunch of some new stars.
More intriguingly, though, is that the spectral tests indicate that the latest cosmic features have an extragalactic source. They seemingly developed not from matter from the Milky Way, but from two close dwarf galaxies, dubbed the Magellanic Clouds.
Also, those galaxies are on a crashing way with our own. The finding indicates that a current of gas reaching from the galaxies is almost half as far from collapsing into the Milky Way as earlier believed.
“This is a puny cluster of stars – less than a few thousand in total – but it has big implications beyond its local area of the Milky Way,” detailed Adrian Price-Whelan, from the Flatiron Institute’s Center for Computational Astrophysics. Price-Whelan and his team confer their discoveries on January 8 at the American Astronomical Society conference in Honolulu.
The Milky Way’s Clash With Magellanic Clouds Already Leads to the Formation of New Stars
Discovering groups of stars are challenging because Milky Way is chock-full of the bright orbs. Some stars may happen to be near one from another in the sky, but in reality, they are very far away from Earth.
Others may briefly be next one to another, but they genuinely move on different areas. Defining which stars are fully clustered together needs many accurate examinations over the years.
Price-Whelan began with the most recent data gathered by the Gaia spacecraft, which has examined and defined the distances and actions of 1.7 billion stars. He explored the Gaia information for extreme blue stars, known to be very rare, and discovered a bunch of stars traveling beside them.
The newly identified cluster is almost 117 million years old and is on the farthest edges of the Milky Way. Price-Whelan added: “It’s further than any known young stars in the Milky Way, which are typically in the disk.” Moreover, the cluster resides in an area close to a river of gas called the Magellanic Stream, which makes the outmost part of the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds.