Questions tagged [milky-way]

Questions regarding the Milky Way Galaxy, the galaxy that Earth's solar system is in.

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1answer
964 views

Milky Way, view outward or inward?

I have a question about the view of the Milky Way that we can see from earth with the naked eye. I believe this to be light from the stars contained in one of the "arms" of the galaxy. I had always ...
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1answer
174 views

Get visible galactic longitudes in astropy

I would like to know which part of the Milky Way is currently up. Preferably using astropy. The ingredients I have are the current time, and my current position on earth. How would I use these to get ...
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5answers
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Does the Milky Way move through space?

Does our galaxy moves through space? Or does it stay in a single location? If it does move, what causes it to move?
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3answers
9k views

What specific parts of the Milky Way do we see when we look up?

I know we can't see the center. But do we see any of the central bulge? Are we just seeing nearby stars in the Orion Spur where we are? In the Sagittarius Arm? In the other direction, are we ...
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1answer
3k views

What are the chances of a star colliding with another during a galactic collision?

My specific example for the question is the future collision of the galaxies Milky Way (our own galaxy) and Andromeda in a couple billion years. The star in question is obviously the sun in this case. ...
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1answer
762 views

How did the object CO-0.40-0.22 get its name, and how is it distinct from CO-0.40-0.22*?

There seems to be three things described in the recent Nature Astronomy paper Millimetre-wave emission from an intermediate-mass black hole candidate in the Milky Way: Molecular cloud CO–0.40–0.22 ...
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2answers
201 views

If someone was above the galaxy, how much of it can he see?

If someone was far enough above the milky way to see the entire diameter, how much can he actually see with naked eye? I'm aware that on Earth, we only see stars within 1,000 light-years (roughly) by ...
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3answers
3k views

How do I see the milky way?

I've travelled to farms at night, and away from civilation. I don't really know alot about astronomy, but my goal is to see something like this: Stars, lots of them, but that "thick purple cluster of ...
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2answers
551 views

Can Milky Way be seen in South hemisphere only?

I heard something(long time ago) that Milky Way can be seen in South hemisphere only, is it true? If so, what is the reason?
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1answer
257 views

Would our galaxy appear as a spiral when seen from the Andromeda galaxy?

I'm wondering how our galaxy is tilted with respect to the Andromeda galaxy. Seen from the Andromeda galaxy, what would our galaxy look like? Would it appear as a spiral, or would it be seen ...
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1answer
285 views

Do most astronomers think that Andromeda will collide with Milky Way?

Most astronomers say it is likely to happen. Is this true? Are there any scientists that reject this?
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4answers
12k views

What does the milky way look like from earth to the human eye without light pollution?

Cameras are great, they allow us to compress several seconds of light exposure into a single instant. This allows us to take amazing pictures of the night sky, like this one. Of course you can see we ...
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4k views

In which direction does the Milky Way rotate?

We don't have a photo of our Milky Way the whole, all the pictures are artists' interpretations showing a bulge, a central bar, and several spiral arms. The milky way is spinning. I would like to know:...
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Is the Sun prograde or retrograde with respect to the rotation of the Milky Way?

I recently learned about the terms prograde and retrograde. I've seen these terms used to describe the rotations and orbits of moons with respect to their planet, and planets with respect to their ...
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3answers
91 views

Is there any official star gazing location list?

I recall when I was a child (many years ago) my father taking us out to gaze at the starts. I remember being able to see the Milky Way with our naked eyes (North Central New Jersey). Nowadays living ...
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2answers
333 views

The Sun or Our Galaxy revolves around what? [duplicate]

Like every planet they are in orbit of something or another planet like our solar system every planet revolves around the sun, my question is: what's the name of the planet or object which the sun ...
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1answer
247 views

Why do we define the Milky Way's rotation in a left-hand coordinate system?

When we talk about Milky Way kinematics, we define it as rotating clockwise from top. In the rest of physics, rotating objects are defined as rotating counterclockwise from top (following the right-...
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1answer
136 views

What resolution is needed to see a quasar through the galactic center?

The center of the galaxy is densely packed with stars and obscured by a whole lot of dust between us and it. For those reasons, groups that study the motion of stars around the super-massive black-...
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2answers
358 views

Is it possible to figure out your location in the Milky Way if you are suddenly wormholed to a random, distant location in the galaxy?

If you were flying along in your spacecraft somewhere in our solar system and then a large, stable wormhole suddenly opened and you flew into it and were whisked away to some distant location in the ...
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1answer
110 views

Have parameters been determined for the Fourier components of a Milky Way spiral density-potential model?

Spiral arms in galaxies can be modeled by potentials of the form $$\Phi_{\text{spiral}}(R,\theta,z,t)=\sum_mA_m(R,z)\cos(m\theta-m\theta_0-\phi_m(R)-\Omega_pt)$$ where $A_m(R,z)$ is the $m$th-order ...
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1answer
369 views

Opposite Constellation of Sagittarius A*

Suppose an alien race fired a laser beam from the centre of the Milky Way, it went through the Sun and then off further out of the galaxy. What Constellation would the light beam head towards, ...
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2answers
1k views

Why can I see the Andromeda Galaxy despite Milky Way's rotation?

Okay ... so, I woke up from a dream last night wherein I was (apparently) attempting to devise a time-keeping system for interstellar travel (similar to the stardate system used in Star Trek). In the ...
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1answer
933 views

Do we know if we are overtaking or falling behind our arm?

Here's our galaxy as best we know, courtesy of this Wikipedia article: It seems that as best we know, each arm is a compressed or brighter area (rather like a wave). Looking at that image, do we ...
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143 views

What is radio-emitting gas? [closed]

What is radio-emitting gas? (I think it refers to the Magellanic Stream, but I can't be convinced.)
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2answers
332 views

How is a Galaxy formed?

How is a galaxy formed? I know that the center of our galaxy is considered to be Sagittarius A* and it's surrounded by a lot of stars (also a lot of neutron stars). But what makes this happen? I mean,...
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1answer
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Why is the statement “black holes make up 1% of the mass of the Milky Way Galaxy” unknown?

a) We cannot detect all black holes and therefore don't know the percentage of the galaxy's mass they make up. b) We do not know the mass of the Milky Way's central black hole. c) According to our ...
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1answer
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Is the Large Magellanic Cloud contained in the Milky Way?

From a distance of 160,000 light years, the Large Magellanic Cloud looks at first glance like an isolated section of the Milky Way, running across southern Dorado into neighbouring Mensa. Is the ...
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3answers
2k views

Are the stars outside of the galactic plane in the galactic halo?

The majority of the stars we see in the sky, like Pollux, are outside of the galactic plane. That means that all those stars we see are not in the galactic disk, and therefore are in the galactic halo,...
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2answers
6k views

Why don't we see “the milky way” in both directions?

We're (basically) in the middle of an arm of our galaxy. That is to say, we're sitting in the middle of a dense disc of stars. It would seem to me that. You should see: the thick line of the milky way ...
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1answer
2k views

How strong is the force between the Sun and the centre of the Milky Way?

I know the Sun is orbiting around the Milky Way, but how strong is the attractive force between them (e.g. what is the order of magnitude in terms of newtons)?
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277 views

In what parts of the world is it impossible to view the night sky due to light pollution?

Growing up far from any city, I have always been able to view the full night sky. It was just the way how things were. Of course, I knew that light pollution is a thing, and that the sky is a lot less ...
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226 views

Explaining the Drake Equation on a smaller scale

So me and my friend were planning a video to explain the Drake Equation (within a time limit of 5 minutes), and we needed some help. This video is aimed at explaining the concept to an age group ...
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3answers
482 views

How did the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy separate before they began their collision course?

How did the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy separate before they began their collision course? I understand that gravity is pulling together the two galaxies, but what separated them in the first ...
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3answers
4k views

Milky Way position on the sky

I'm looking for some sort of boundary data to be able to render the milky way on a star map, as visible from Earth. Something that looks like this: For that, I need something like a collection of RA ...
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0answers
54 views

How many times has the sun orbited the galaxy? [duplicate]

Even if our solar system is not in a stable orbit around the center of the galaxy (is it?), since the birth of our sun, how far has it traveled relative to the center of the galaxy?
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24k views

Is the Sun in our solar system moving or stationary?

When I was small, I read that Sun is fixed at the center of the solar system and that all the other planets rotate around it. But later I heard that even the Sun is not fixed; it moves. Is this true? ...
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2answers
350 views

Black hole at Galactic Center of the Milky way and Bar of stars?

The Milky Way is a barred spiral galaxy, with a supermassive black hole at its center. Here As it is a barred spiral galaxy, it has a central bar-shaped structure composed of stars.Here So my ...
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Galaxy centre X structure - could this reflect impact of black hole at galactic centre

As reported in this science article X Marks the spot Centre of Milky Way, a X shaped feature is confirmed centered on our galaxy's centre, when looking on from within the plane of the Milky Way. In ...
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1answer
440 views

What is the shape (along the plane, not up-down) of stellar orbits in flat spiral galaxies

What I mean is, with a central mass orbits are relatively simple, but orbits around the galaxy are different, in essence as the star orbits through the dark matter halo, the further it moves away from ...
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1answer
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What is the Galactic Latitude and Galactic Longitude? How is different from the latitude and longitude we use on Earth?

It has to something with the positioning of sun and galactic center of the milky way but I wasn't able to understand how for a given star, its co-ordinates are calculated. Some explanation would be ...
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1answer
1k views

Milky Way mass fraction breakdown review

I'd like to know a breakdown of the mass of the Milky Way, by the major categories. So, something like ...
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2answers
361 views

Difference in energy released in stellar mass black hole merger and supermassive black hole merger

Super massive black holes are usually millions of times more massive than stellar mass black holes. I have read on SE and over internet that 3M☉ worth of energy is released in black hole mergers (not ...
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1answer
165 views

Question regarding the Milky Way when calculating galactic space velocities for galaxies

I have been calculating galaxy space velocities (where proper motions are known) in order to measure their orbits of the Milky Way using the method proposed in the appendix of http://www.aanda.org/...
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1answer
111 views

Sun like star in our milkyway?

Is there any popular star or one which we can see with our naked eyes in our milky way that is atleast 90% sun-like(mass,radius,spectra,luminosity).The important thing is it must not be a binary. Its ...
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1answer
132 views

What is the distribution of organic compounds in the Milky Way Galaxy?

I imagine the answer is unknown for the entire galaxy, but I would appreciate a notion of the scales and locations of regions where astronomers have ventured at least a guess to the distribution of ...
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2answers
123 views

visualisation of galaxy density

If I had a long stick that was millions of light years long, and with a width of about the Sun, and I then swiped it through the center of the milky way galaxy, what would the probability be of me ...
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1answer
306 views

What would be the outcome for life in our galaxy if the merger of the Milky Way and Andromeda creates a Quasar?

If predictions are correct, the Milky Way and Andromeda are set to collide in around 4 billion years. If, when this occurs, a Quasar is formed by matter being accreted to the common galactic center (...
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1answer
797 views

Is our supercluster part of a galaxy filament?

It was discovered recently that the Milky Way galaxy lies inside a supercluster named Laniakea Supercluster. On the other hand, wikipedia says that galaxy filaments are "the largest known structures ...
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2answers
428 views

Number of stars & planets in Milky Way Galaxy?

Is there any specific numbers on stars & planets count on Milky Way Galaxy ?
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Does the quantity of dark matter needed in the Milky Way to give the stars their speed compare with the speed of the Milky Way?

Dark matter was needed to give the stars in a spiral galaxy a cause of their speed. So they proposed there must be some extra dark matter in the Galaxy. The total extra mass of dark mater is quite ...