Our Milky Way Galaxy might be heading towards a massive destruction. The answer to what might be happening is unclear for now. As we all know that with time our universe is expanding, and everything is moving away from each other or is it?
In 1973 and again in 1978, scientists observed a very peculiar anomaly that deviated from the original theory about the expansion of the universe. The anomaly is created due to gravity because of which a lot of Galaxies (approximately 100,000) including our own is being attracted to something in the far distance. We were unable to see it because of our galactic disk, but as the technology grew and we became more advanced the use of X-Ray Telescopes came in to clear the picture.
With the help of the X-Ray telescopes, we were able to see past the clouds of dust and only to reveal that the mass that was pulling us and the other galaxies is nothing but a collection of thousands of other galaxies called a supercluster.
Scientists got relieved when they found out that we were not pulled in by a black hole but as the time passed, after a few years it was discovered that even the enormous great attractor is also being pulled in by something. The whole mystery got resolved when we found out that all of these anomalies were created by the Shapley Supercluster that lies beyond the Great Attractor and hence is also called the Shapley Attractor. Since the emergence of the great attractor, scientists across the world have been divided between two outcomes.
Death by Collision
Since so many galaxies are hurtling towards a single point, scientists believe that it might be possible that we are in course for a collision. It is speculated that if all the galaxies that are being pulled to the Shapley Supercluster keep moving in one direction then they will eventually collide with each other. If our Milky Way Galaxy is to collide with something it is speculated to most probably be the Andromeda Galaxy which is our galactic neighbors.
If we are to collide with the Andromeda Galaxy then it would certainly be catastrophic but not at the beginning. Since everything will happen so slow from our perspective we won’t even feel any threat coming towards us right away. The problem will occur when the two black holes within each of the galaxy merge to become one. The energy released by the merging of the two black holes would be so much that it will send ripples of energy across the whole universe. The energy release would be so high that we don’t even have a measure for it yet, it might be high enough to end life on our planet.
Although the chances are low, it is a possibility that the expansion of the universe will become so fast that it would nullify the attractive force of the Shapley Attractor. Since everything in our universe is undeniably being ripped due to the expansion of the universe and the Shapley Supercluster is no exception. It might seem very slow because of all the mass in the Shapley Supercluster but the galaxies inside it are being pulled apart from each other. As it continues the pull of gravity will slowly diminish and everything will again begin to move away from each other until the entropy of the universe becomes zero and the last electron of the universe stops moving.
But we are not here to discuss as to how the universe will end, since it is a topic for another blog. Do let me know if you would like to read about the different ways our universe can die.
(Featured Image Source: medium.com)