Welcome to our home supercluster, Laniakea
“Measurable heaven.” That’s the name of our home supercluster, Laniakea, in Hawaiian.
The Milky Way itself is part of larger portion of the universe known as a supercluster, the largest known structures in the universe.
Nature explains how scientists determined these mega-neighborhoods existed and how they define the boundaries between our cluster and the next.
Discounting cosmic expansion, their map shows flow lines down which galaxies creep under the effect of gravity in their local region (see video). Based on this, the team defines the edge of a supercluster as the boundary at which these flow lines diverge. On one side of the line, galaxies flow towards one gravitational centre; beyond it, they flow towards another. “It’s like water dividing at a watershed, where it flows either to the left or right of a height of land,” says [University of Hawaii astronomer Brent] Tully.
Space ‘hoods.Posted by Kate Rinsema