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CosmosUp | October 28, 2021

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8 Mind-Blowing Facts About Space

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Our Solar System is Flat Because…

 When the solar system was born it was a dense cloud of gas and dust swirling in all directions orbiting the new star. As the clouds particles crashed into each other the momentum they carried cancelled out. The direction with the most momentum managed to keep going. Over time this caused the cloud to flatten out into a disk through which the planets formed. Interestingly though Pluto actually angled at around 20 degrees offset. This could possibly be due to its distance from the Sun or its mass.


Black Holes Are Aligned

 European astronomers using ESO’s Very Large Telescope have found that the rotation axes of quasars are parallel to each other over very long distances and tend to be aligned with the so-called large-scale structures in which the quasars reside. Quasars are galaxies with very active supermassive black holes at their centers. These black holes are surrounded by spinning discs of extremely hot material that is often spewed out in long jets along their axes of rotation. When astronomers look at the distribution of galaxies on scales of billions of light-years they find that the galaxies form a cosmic web of filaments and clumps. This intriguing arrangement of material is known as large-scale structure.


Super Earth

 A super-Earth is an classification given to any extrasolar planet with mass higher than Earth’s, but substantially below the mass of the Solar System’s smaller gas giants Uranus and Neptune, which are 15 and 17 Earth masses respectively. The term super-Earth refers only to the mass of the planet, and does not imply anything about the surface conditions or habitability.


Andromeda’s Vengeance

Analysis of data taken from studies into Andromeda’s red-shift (the term referring to the devolution of light as it carries over time, warping its frequency/color) states that Andromeda is heading right for us. The Milky Way and Andromeda will one day collide with one another and the supermassive black holes at their cores will merge. The collision will burst billions of stars into existence and force supernovae onto millions of others. Due to the relative position of the Earth in the Milky Way at that point, probably nothing will happen or it’s going to be armageddon. It’s likely that the Earth and Sun won’t be around by this point anyway. The event sits right on the cusp of when we expect the Sun to be dying. In either case, there’s still going to be a ‘collision’.


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