An ancient cluster

was found on the edge of the Milky Way

An ancient cluster

Astronomers from Brazil discovered a cluster of stars that formed at the edge of the Milky Way.

This is unusual, as it was believed that stars usually form closer to the center of our spiral galaxy, and not in its swirling arms, which are located thousands of light years from Earth. These two star clusters, called Camargo 438 and 439, were seen in a cloud on the edge of the galaxy.

Denilso Camargo, an astronomer at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brazil, led the team that analyzed data from the NASA orbital observatory Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). They focused on dense clots of gas, the so-called giant molecular clouds (GMOs), in which, as you know, stars are formed. GMOs are mainly located in the inner part of the galactic disk. New star clusters are about 16,000 light-years from the main disk of the Milky Way galaxy. How were they formed there? Scientists are not yet sure, but Camargo put forward two theories according to which this happened.

According to the first theory, supernovae could reject gas and dust, which later settled in a cloud on the outskirts of the Milky Way. According to the second, the material came to us from outside the galaxy.

"Our work shows that the space around the galaxies is not so empty," said Camargo. "Such clusters of stars are really exotic."

The Camargo team published their findings in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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