Astronomers discovered the most lonely galaxy in the universe

Astronomers discovered the most lonely galaxy in the universe

The Universe has a structure of long filaments of dark matter intertwined with galaxies and clusters of galaxies, as well as huge voids. These voids lack a rich collection of stars scattered around a three-dimensional network of matter. But as the last observation made by the Hubble Space Telescope shows, these voids are not completely empty.

This stunning spiral, which was captured by the Hubble advanced telescope survey camera, has the unromantic designation “MCG + 01-02-015”. But this image inspired the European Space Agency to designate it as a “lonely galaxy” - a galaxy that was stuck inside the famous emptiness Bootes.

How this galaxy appeared there is still unknown. Perhaps she originated there? Had she been able to find enough gas in this void? Or some gravitational shocks billions of years ago threw the MCG + 01-02-015 into the void?

As it turned out, MCG + 01-02-015 is not alone in the emptiness of Bootes. A small handful of other isolated galaxies inhabit there. Some theories suggest that these galaxies may be one of the most intact examples of galaxy evolution, being formed in isolation from the gravitational shocks of other galaxies, forming from the soup of primary intergalactic gases. And, looking at MCG + 01-02-015, you can imagine a fabulous spiral galaxy. In this image, you can also see 3 background stars that belong to our own galaxy. But these are only individual stars that have come into view of Hubble. All other points are background galaxies that contain billions of stars, some even have elegant spiral structures.

Interestingly, according to the statement of ESA (European Space Agency): "This galaxy is so isolated that if the Milky Way were located in the same way, we would not know about the coexistence of other galaxies before the 1960s." It is hard to imagine how isolated MCG + 01-02-015 is, because our galaxy is located in a thriving galactic megalopolis compared to it.

With the help of powerful telescopes such as the Hubble Space Telescope, humankind not only got used to countless billions of galaxies, but also built a 3-D picture of the “cosmic web” of galaxies held together by an invisible force called dark matter. But this web consists not only of giant threads of matter, but also of monstrous voids, in which scientists discovered MCG + 01-02-015 - a galaxy alone.

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