I heard of being evicted, but this is extreme.
Image credit: David A. Aguilar (CfA)
M87 (also known as Virgo A or NGC 4486) is a supergiant elliptical galaxy has thrown an entire star cluster out, towards us by the way, at more than two million miles per hour.
Although it is barely visible to us, computers found the cluster (named HVGC-1) and which is now on a fast journey to nowhere. Kicked out with no where to go. Literally, scientist believe that HVGC-1 will just travel around on its own forever.
“Astronomers have found runaway stars before, but this is the first time we’ve found a runaway star cluster,” says Nelson Caldwell of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Caldwell is lead author on the study, which will be published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters and is available online.
The “HVGC” in HVGC-1 stands for hypervelocity globular cluster. Globular clusters are relics of the early universe, that contain thousands of stars crammed into a ball a few dozen light-years across. The Milky Way galaxy is home to about 150 globular clusters, M87 holds thousands.
BTW, the -1 means this is the first one ever found, so congratulations to Nelson Caldwell and his team for opening up a completely new area of science.
I don’t know what this globular did to M87, but remind me not to make a galaxy angry at me.
– Ex astris, scientia –
I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney in Pasadena, California and I am a Rising Star as rated by Super Lawyers Magazine. As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities. Connect with me on Google +