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Jul 22, 2019

Astronomers map vast void in our cosmic neighborhood

Posted by in category: space

An astronomer from the University of Hawaiʻi Institute for Astronomy (IfA) and an international team published a new study that reveals more of the vast cosmic structure surrounding our Milky Way galaxy.

The universe is a tapestry of galaxy congregations and vast voids. In a new study being reported in The Astrophysical Journal, Brent Tully’s team applies the same tools from an earlier study to map the size and shape of an extensive empty region they called the Local Void that borders the Milky Way galaxy. Using the observations of galaxy motions, they infer the distribution of mass responsible for that , and construct three-dimensional maps of our local Universe.

Galaxies not only move with the overall expansion of the universe, they also respond to the gravitational tug of their neighbors and regions with a lot of mass. As a consequence, they are moving towards the densest areas and away from regions with little mass—the voids.

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