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Astronomers are struggling with our cosmic neighborhood


An astronomer from the University of Hawaii Astronomy Institute and an international team released a new study revealing 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 reported in the Astrophysical magazine, the Brent Tully team applies the same tools of a previous study to the size and shape of a wide empty area which they called the premises Void that bordered the Milky Way Galaxy. Using the observations of galaxy motions, they carry the mass distribution that is responsible for the movement, and build three-dimensional maps of our local universe.

Not only do the galaxies move with the overall expansion of the universe, they also respond to the gravitational pull of their neighbors and regions with a lot of mass. As a consequence, relative to the overall expansion they are moving towards the densest areas and away from small-area regions – the voids.

Although we live in a cosmic metropolis, in 1987, Julie and Richard Fisher noticed that our Milky Way galaxy was also at the edge of a wide empty area, which they called the Local Void. The existence of the local void has been widely accepted, but it has remained poorly learned because it lies behind the center of our galaxy and is therefore heavily obscured by our view.

Now Tully and his team have measured the 18,000 galaxies in the Cosmic Flows-3 Compendium of Galaxy Distances, constructing a cosmic map that highlights the boundary between the matter of matter and the absence of matter that defines the edge of the local void. . They used the same technique in 2014 to identify the full measure of our home supercluster of over one hundred thousand galaxies, giving it the name Laniakea, meaning "mighty heaven" in Hawaiian.

Astronomers have, over 30 years, tried to identify why the movement of the Milky Way, our nearest large galaxy, Andromeda, and their smaller neighbors deviate from the overall expansion of the universe by over 600 km / s (1.3 million MPH). . The new study showed that approximately half of the movement was "locally" derived from the combination of a massive nearby Virgo Cluster and our local void expansion as it is becoming ever more ambitious.

An 11-minute video demonstrating the form and extension of the cosmic structures available online at https://vimeo.com/326346346

Interactive visualizations that allow users to rotate, pan, and zoom out mass distribution on

This paper was published in the Astrophysical magazine July 22, 2019 and is available at https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/ab2597.

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