A nigu structure found in the Milky Way

Des observations incroyablement sensibles ont fait apparaître une structure jusqu’alors inconnue en bordure de la Voie lactée. © Alexandr Mitiuc, Adobe Stock

Astronomers need many tools and hundreds of hours of observation to confirm this. A large structure lurks in the interstellar medium that fills the Milky Way. A thick disk of “black” molecular gas located at the tip of our galaxy.

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[EN VIDÉO] Dark matter lurks under the influence of the Milky Way
Astronomers from Harvard University (United States) have mapped the outflow of our Milky Way. Opportunity to determine the presence of dark matter, this invisible object is a large part of the mass of our universe. Their simulation shows two areas of high density in light blue. The small structure that appears on the map corresponds to the remnants of the area of ​​the Large Magellanic Cloud, our own satellite galaxy. © NASA / JPL-Caltech / NSF / R. Injured / n. Garvito-Camargo, g. Besla

It’s a story as much as we love them. Of what Fireside can tell. No, not scary kids. But among those who amaze them and perhaps lead them to science one day. This story is the story of these grateful researchers Green Bank Telescope (GBT), with a little help from fate, now found and hidden Eyes All rights reserved The Milky Way, A large structure.

Note that the interstellar medium is filled with dihydrogen (H)2). This gas usually remains invisible Astronomers. To map this out, they rely on “tracers”, signals from others Molecules Mixes with them, but in small quantities. Among the classic plotters, the Carbon monoxide (CO).

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But in 2012, an astronomer at Johns Hopkins University in the United States unexpectedly discovered an unrelated job. Issue From OH molecules that do not emit CO. Or OH is also a visible molecule Clouds H2 Since Interstellar medium. Suppose there is a large portion of dehydrogen that cannot be detected by CO. A type of molecular gas CO-dark.

All observations confirm it

This is where BGT comes in. In 2015, he enabled a team of astronomers, and OH finds this element very well. CO-dark You h2. After exposure time, researchers have shown that this molecular gas is an important component of the structure of the Milky Way.

But the story does not end there. Astronomers noticed a bump that stood out from their observations. They initially believed that it corresponds to the end of A. The arm of the Milky Way. Observations confirmed the existence of a vapor structure, but permeated the entire view of the BGT. Astronomers thought of an outcome Telescope Yourself. Like background noise. However, after a hundred hours of observation, the Green Bank Observatory’s 20-meter telescope – an older device than the BGT – also found a suspicious structure.

Finally, in 2019, a new series of observations came to confirm the finding. A previously unknown but large, ubiquitous structure on the Milky Way disk fits the shape of other components of our galaxy. A discovery that has implications for star formation theories, but also for those interested in structure and structure. Mass Of interstellar media.

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