21 Facts About the Milky Way

We have all studied about the Milky Way during our school days and we know that its a huge galaxy. But, did you know of the myths and legends attached to it or have you actually seen the Milky way or Andromeda galaxy in the sky?

21 Facts About the Milky Way

  1. Ancient people have different names for the cloud-like structure of a galaxy which we call the Milky Way. The modern version comes from the Greek myth about the infant Hercules and the goddess Hera.
  1.  It is not known how many stars are there in the Milky Way as they vary in size, and we can only estimate their number. So far the European space agency’s Gaia satellite has located 1 billion stars in the Milky Way and is believed to be just one percent of the total.
  1. Nobody knows how much The Milky Way weighs. At 85% of the Milky Way, mass is in the form of dark matter to observe. The Milky Way’s mass is estimated to be 900 billion times the mass of the Sun according to astronomer Ekta Patel (University of Arizona Tucson).
  1. Small galaxies orbit The Milky Way and sometimes crash into it.
  1.  The Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan and his crew were the first to report circular clusters of stars in the sky. These clusters are small galaxies orbiting a Milky Way similar to the solar system. These clusters have been named small and large Magellanic clouds and these smaller galaxies are eaten by the massive Milky Way.
  1. Mysterious bubbles arise out of the Milky Way, and they stretch for 25,000  Light years above and below the Galaxy. They are named after the telescope as “Fermi bubbles”. These bubbles are linked to a frenzy of star death and the formation around the Sagittarius A*.
  1. A Galaxy is being bombarded with bizarre energy pulses from the other side of the universe.
  1. It lies 30,000 light-years from the galaxy’s center light-years Galaxies plane. It is almost like sailing sideways through the Galaxy.
  1. Thought that the stars in the universe contained in the Milky Way until Edwin Hubble discovered the “Cepheid variable”. This helps to measure distance and that Nebulas are separate galaxies.
  1. The Milky Way is mostly flat or warped. Our solar system is embedded within this flat disc in a covering arm of gas and dust.
  1. Monster black holes are present in the middle of the galaxy. The black hole is called Sagittarius A* and is more than 4 million times the mass of the Sun. It is hidden behind thick clouds of dust and gas.
  1. In about four billion years, The Milky Way will collide with its nearest neighbor “Andromeda Galaxy”.
  1. Our sun is one star among several hundred billion stars present in the mass of the Milky Way.
  1. The Milky Way is embedded after, so we are surrounded by a dark halo.
  1. The Milky Way was born 12.5 billion years ago and has been growing ever since.
  1. Every year, 7 new stars are born in the Galaxy.
  1. The Chinese called the Silver River based on the myth Silver River was put by the Gods to separate a herdsman in love with the weaver women who used to weave them clothes.
  1. The Milky Way is known as “Aakash Ganga” or “Ganga of heaven” in India.
  1. Ancient Greeks looked upon the Milky Way as a road to Mount Olympus.
  1. Another Greek myth says that it is a trail of ruins left behind by the Chariot of Helios (The Sun God).
  1. The pictures you see are either an artist or images of other galaxies. This is because the pictures can be only taken from inside the galaxy.

In conclusion, the Milky Way, our vast galaxy, is a marvel of cosmic proportions, containing billions of stars, planets, and celestial wonders. Its spiral arms dance with stellar activity, shaping the fabric of our galactic neighborhood. As we continue to explore its mysteries, the Milky Way stands as a testament to the beauty and complexity of the universe. Its story unfolds, inspiring awe and wonder in those who gaze upon its celestial tapestry.

Read also15 Interesting Facts about Tea

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