From: Yale University
Published September 20, 2017 11:57 AM

Is the Milky Way an 'Outlier' Galaxy? Studying its 'Siblings' for Clues

The most-studied galaxy in the universe — the Milky Way — might not be as “typical” as previously thought, according to a new study.

The Milky Way, which is home to Earth and its solar system, is host to several dozen smaller galaxy satellites. These smaller galaxies orbit around the Milky Way and are useful in understanding the Milky Way itself.

Early results from the Satellites Around Galactic Analogs (SAGA) Survey indicate that the Milky Way’s satellites are much more tranquil than other systems of comparable luminosity and environment. Many satellites of those “sibling” galaxies are actively pumping out new stars, but the Milky Way’s satellites are mostly inert, the researchers found.

This is significant, according to the researchers, because many models for what we know about the universe rely on galaxies behaving in a fashion similar to the Milky Way.

Read more at Yale University

Image: This is a three-color optical image of a Milky Way sibling. (Credit: Sloan Digital Sky Survey)

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