According to a new study, the galactic collision of the Milky Way with its largest neighbor, the star Andromeda, will occur earlier than previously assumed. The collision will take place within the next 3.9 billion years.
Previously, it was suggested that the collision will take about 4.5 billion years from now. But the new data from the European Space Agency's Gaia spacecraft suggests vital insights into how galaxies evolve and interact.
Roeland van der Marel of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, USA, said: "We needed to study the galaxies in 3D to uncover how they have grown and developed and what creates and affects their properties and behavior. this by means of the second package of high quality data published by Gaia. "
A few weeks ago, another study report suggested that the Milky Way would collide with the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) within the next 2.5 billion years, 1.4 billion years before the estimated collision with Andromeda. The milk path is more than 1.00.000 light years, while the LMC is only 14,000 light years wide. As the collision happens, the Milky Way will extinguish the LMC without any kind of goodness.
Timo Prusti, ESA Gaia Project Scientist said, "This finding is crucial to our understanding of how galaxies evolve and interact."
"We see unusual features in both M31 and M33, such as distorted streams and tails of gas and stars. If the galaxies have not come together before, these may not have been created by the forces that felt during a merger. they formed through interactions with other galaxies, or by gas dynamics in the galaxies themselves. "
"Gaia was primarily designed for mapping stars within the Growth Path – but this new study shows that the satellite exceeds expectations and can provide unparalleled insight into the structure and dynamics of galaxies beyond our own realm. The longer Gaia sees the small movements of these galaxies across the sky, the more accurate our measurements become. "