Andromeda Galaxy was created recently 'Star Accident'

Andromeda Galaxy was created recently 'Star Accident'

Andromeda Galaxy was created recently 'Star Accident'

Researchers from Australia, affiliated to the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR), offered a new estimate for the mass of Andromeda, putting it at about a third of its previous estimate, and consequently in the same range as the mass of the Milky Way - about 800 billion solar masses. The team released the estimates of 470 ± 40 km/s as escape speed of the Andromeda Galaxy.

To measure the dynamical mass of the galaxy, the astronomers measured the rotation curve, velocity dispersion, dynamical model, and the tidal stream orbit modeling of the Andromeda.The Andromeda shines 25 percent brighter and has twice as many stars as the Milky Way.

However, with the latest data fed onto simulators prepared by ICRAR, the Milky Way, and the Andromeda Galaxy are supposed to collide and bind together and not being engulfed by the latter.

The two galaxies are part of larger "local group" of some 30 galaxies covering 10 million light years and this find gives scientists new insights into that collection.

This finding puts the two galaxies, separated by a distance of about 2.5 million light-years, about on a par in terms of size.

Astronomers believe the Andromeda and the Milky Way galaxies will collide in 4 billion years and become one forever.

'When a rocket is launched into space, it is thrown out with a speed of 11km/s to overcome the Earth's gravitational pull, ' he said. Our home galaxy, the Milky Way, is over a trillion times heavier than our tiny planet Earth so to escape its gravitational pull we have to launch with a speed of 550 kilometers per second.

"We had thought there was one biggest galaxy and our own Milky Way was slightly smaller but that scenario has now completely changed", says Dr Kafle.

"By examining the orbits of high-speed stars, we discovered that this galaxy has far less dark matter than previously thought, and only a third of that uncovered in previous observations".

That technique uses observations of fast moving stars within the galaxy to determine the speed at which an object needs to be traveling to escape it (called escape velocity), which is in turn used to calculate the galaxy's mass.

"It's really exciting that we've been able to come up with a new method and suddenly 50 years of collective understanding of the local group has been turned on its head", said Kafle.

Video of the simulation shows the two galaxies passing each other a few times, ripping stars away, before finally merging.

'We used this technique to tie down the mass of Andromeda'. In the past, it was said that due to its size, Andromeda would devour and make a cosmic snack out of the Milky Way.