The universe is vast and mysterious, filled with enigmatic phenomena that continue to intrigue scientists and researchers. One such mystery lies in the peculiar motion of our own Milky Way galaxy as it is drawn towards an unseen force, known as the Great Attractor. The YouTube channel SEA dives deep into this cosmic conundrum, shedding light on the factors at play and how recent discoveries are helping us understand the immense forces that shape our universe.
Unveiling the Great Attractor
The Great Attractor, first discovered in the 1970s, is an area in the Centaurus constellation where the Milky Way, along with thousands of other galaxies, is being pulled towards at a staggering 630 kilometers per second. SEA’s video explains the observations and theories that led to this discovery, including the role of the cosmic microwave background radiation and the Doppler Effect.
Galactic Flows and Superclusters
The video delves into the concept of galactic flows, the movement of galaxies influenced by gravity, and how they cluster together to form colossal structures called superclusters. The discovery of the Laniakea Supercluster, of which our Milky Way is a part, and its relationship with the Great Attractor is discussed, showcasing the astonishing scale of these cosmic gatherings.
The Dipole Repeller and the Role of Gravity
The Great Attractor was initially thought to be repelling galaxies from a certain region of space, but SEA’s video clarifies that this phenomenon, known as the Dipole Repeller, is in fact a consequence of gravity acting on galaxies, pulling them towards the more massive clusters and creating voids in the process.
Unmasking the True Culprits
The Shapley and Vela Superclusters: As technology advanced, new discoveries were made that challenged previous theories about the Great Attractor. The video highlights the discovery of the Shapley Supercluster and the lesser-known Vela Supercluster, which are now believed to be the primary factors responsible for the peculiar velocity of our galaxy. These immense superclusters exert a far greater gravitational influence than the Great Attractor, pulling not just our galaxy, but the entire Laniakea Supercluster towards them.
The Ultimate Fate of the Milky Way and the Great Attractor
With all these forces at play, what does the future hold for our galaxy and the Great Attractor? The video concludes by explaining how dark energy, responsible for the expansion of the universe, will ultimately prevail over the gravitational forces of the superclusters, causing them to disperse into their constituent galaxies and leaving us to drift alone in the void.