Andromeda

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Andromeda Galaxy, also known as Messier 31, M31, or NGC 224, is a spiral galaxy approximately 780 kiloparsecs (2.5 million light-years) from Earth, and the nearest major galaxy to the Milky Way. Its name stems from the area of the sky in which it appears, the constellation of Andromeda.

The 2006 observations by the Spitzer Space Telescope revealed that the Andromeda Galaxy contains approximately one trillion stars, more than twice the number of the Milky Way’s estimated 200 to 400 billion stars. The Andromeda Galaxy, spanning approximately 220,000 light-years, is the largest galaxy in our Local Group, which is also home to the Triangulum Galaxy and other minor galaxies. The Andromeda Galaxy’s mass is estimated to be around 1.76 times that of the Milky Way Galaxy (~0.8-1.5×1012 solar masses vs the Milky Way’s 8.5×1011 solar masses).

The Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies are expected to collide in ~4.5 billion years, merging to form a giant elliptical galaxy or a large disc galaxy. With an apparent magnitude of 3.4, the Andromeda Galaxy is among the brightest of the Messier objects — making it visible to the naked eye on moonless nights, even when viewed from areas with moderate light pollution. — Wikipedia

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Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.

  • Galactic 'wind' stifling star formation is most...
    on September 6, 2018 at 6:00 pm

    For the first time, a powerful "wind" of molecules has been detected in a galaxy located 12 billion light-years away. Probing a time when the universe was less than 10 percent of its current age, University of Texas at Austin astronomer Justin Spilker's research sheds light on how the earliest galaxies regulated the birth of stars to keep from blowing themselves apart. The research will appear in the Sept. 7 issue of the journal Science. […]

  • Stars memorize rebirth of our home galaxy
    on August 22, 2018 at 11:20 am

    The Milky Way galaxy has died once before, and we are now in what is considered its second life. Calculations by Masafumi Noguchi (Tohoku University) have revealed previously unknown details about the Milky Way. These were published in the July 26 edition of Nature. […]

  • Swift's telescope reveals births, deaths and...
    on August 21, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    Imagine if the color camera had never been invented and all our images were in black and white. The world would still look beautiful, but incomplete. For thousands of years, that was how humans saw the universe. On Earth, we can only see part of the light that stars emit. […]

  • Researchers investigate stellar populations in...
    on August 6, 2018 at 1:10 pm

    German astronomers have conducted a study of the central bulge of the Andromeda galaxy and analyzed its stellar populations. The research could improve our understanding of the bulge's structure and formation history. Results of the study are presented in a paper published July 24 on the arXiv pre-print repository. […]

  • The Milky Way's long-lost sibling finally found
    on July 23, 2018 at 3:00 pm

    Scientists at the University of Michigan have deduced that the Andromeda galaxy, our closest large galactic neighbor, shredded and cannibalized a massive galaxy two billion years ago. […]