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The earth is at the center of a cosmic bubble 1,000 light-years in diameter

Although, according to Copernicus, the earth has no special place in space, scientists have discovered that the earth is at the center of a bubble 1,000 light-years across. Formed by supernova explosions. A bubble that could be one of the countless holes in the universe's Swiss cheese. Researchers have long wondered what created this "superbubble." A new study now shows that at least 15 powerful stellar explosions formed the cosmic bubble. Astronomers first identified this giant empty space, known as the Local Bubble, in Discovered in the early 1970s; When they realized that no stars had formed inside the bubble for about 14 million years. They are passing through it. The sun is also one of these passing stars.

This arrangement showed that several supernovae are actually responsible for this vacuum. According to the researchers, these stellar explosions send the material needed to build new stars, such as hydrogen gas, to the edge of a vast region in space, leaving a local bubble trapped by a wave of stellar production.

bubble to calculate the rate at which the bubble expanded. This allowed scientists to study exactly how many supernovae are needed to build this vast empty space and to better understand how stellar regions are created in the Milky Way.

"Catherine Zucker" "By tracking the position and motion of young stars in recent millennia, we have reconstructed the history of our galactic neighborhood," said a senior researcher at NASA's Space Telescope. NASA is developing a new interstellar spacecraft by 2030

Expanding bubble

The local bubble is not a uniform sphere because it was not formed by an explosion. Rather, it is more like a wavy bubble created by multiple supernovae. "Powerful supernova explosions triggered an expanding shock wave, displacing interstellar gas and dust clouds into the dense crust that now forms the surface of the local bubble," Zucker said. A shock wave that continues to cause the bubble to expand. Researchers use data from the European Space Agency's Gaia Space Observatory to create a three-dimensional map of the local bubble surface and calculate the path of the seven main star-forming regions that make up the bubble shell. , Used. According to them, the observations also allowed researchers to study the rate of expansion of cosmic void space, which is estimated at 6.4 kilometers per second.

Zucker added: There is a local expanding bubble on the surface, and compare it to the amount of motion that must have been injected by supernovae to enhance its expansion. We find that given the current acceleration of the crust, 15 supernovae are needed to power the expansion, which is consistent with previous estimates made by similar studies. "These supernovae probably originated from two separate star clusters over millions of years."

BingMag.com The <b>earth</b> is at the <b>center</b> of a <b>cosmic</b> <b>bubble</b> <b>1,000</b> <b>light-years</b> in diameter Graphic design of a stellar explosion or supernova
Credit: Shutterstock

Swiss cheese bubbles

These findings It helps us to better understand how to create star-forming regions. "Astronomers have been theorizing for decades that supernovae can transport gas to dense clouds that eventually form new stars, but our work to date provides the strongest observational evidence to support this theory," Zucker said.

According to him, the earth is right now at the heart of the local bubble, but that is not what makes this place special. When the bubble first formed, the sun was about 1,000 light-years away. "It's a coincidence that the sun is at the center of this bubble," Zucker stressed. No, the position of our planet inside the local bubble indicates that superbubbles are likely to be very common throughout the Milky Way galaxy. "We think these bubbles are interacting, and the star-forming regions are at the intersection of the bubbles," Zucker added.

"Like Swiss cheese, which has many holes, supernova explosions also create holes, and new stars can form in the cheese around holes made by dying stars."

  • Supernovae probably bombarded earth millions of years ago

bubble Passage

. "The sun should be out of the bubble in about 8 million years, but then there may be no more bubbles," Zucker said. "The local bubble is believed to be declining and will eventually disappear once it reaches its maximum size." Will not continue. In fact, it is now at a high level in terms of its expansion velocity, and eventually, the expansion velocity decreases to the extent that it merges with the surrounding ambient gas.

Cover Photo: Graphic design of a local bubble and solar system in Its center
Credit: Leah Hustak (STScI)


Source: Live Science

Tags: earth, center, cosmic, bubble, 1,000, light-years, diameter

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