TOP 10 mysteries of space, that were solved recently - VIDEO PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 09 December 2014 16:29

Открытия астрономов, как правило, приводят к появлению большого количества вопросов, на которые у нас пока нет ответов. Однако за последний год ученым удалось решить десять космических загадок, которые морочили нам голову многие годы.

1. Что это за странный объект в центре нашей галактики?

Долгое время астрономы пытались выяснить природу G2, необъяснимого тела в центре нашей галактики. Сначала они думали, что G2 — это облако водорода, которое движется по направлению к огромной черной дыре в центре нашего Млечного Пути. Но попав в гравитационное поле черной дыры, G2 повело себя не как облако водорода. Если бы это было облако, G2 взорвалось бы массивным фейерверком, который серьезно изменил бы черную дыру. Вместо этого, G2 осталось на орбите, практически не изменившись.

Команда астрономов из Калифорнийского университета, наконец, решила загадку с помощью современной обсерватории им. Кека на Гавайях. Благодаря адаптивной оптике, телескопы обсерватории смогли компенсировать искажения атмосферы Земли, сформировав четкое представление о пространстве в окрестностях черной дыры.

Астрономы выяснили, что G2 — это гигантская звезда, окруженная газом и пылью, которая, вероятнее всего, получилась в результате слияния пары бинарных звезд. К этому слиянию G2 привела гравитация черной дыры и, возможно, также сформировала целый ряд слившихся бинарных звезд звезд, похожих на G2, недалеко от черной дыры. В течение миллиона лет такие звезды будут расширяться, прежде чем успокоятся в конечном итоге.

Expansion G2 is also called "Spaghettification" extension, which occurs when a large object is close to the black hole.

2. Of what are the next dwarf galaxies?

Milky Way - is the largest galaxy in the group of galaxies combined gravity. Our nearest neighboring galaxy known as the dwarf spheroidal galaxies. Astronomers wondered if these dwarf galaxies nearest conditions for the formation of stars that we see in dwarf irregular galaxies 1,000 light-years from the edge of the Milky Way (and are not related to our galaxy gravity). These distant dwarf galaxies contain a lot of neutral hydrogen that feeds the formation of stars.

Using sensitive radio telescopes, astronomers found that dwarf galaxies that orbit within certain limits around the Milky Way, do not have hydrogen to form stars. To blame the Milky Way, but rather a halo of hot plasma of hydrogen surrounding our galaxy. When the next dwarf galaxies orbiting the Milky Way, the pressure of the speed of their orbits cleans neutral hydrogen gas. Therefore, these galaxies can not form stars.

3. How many really dark matter?

According to the model Lambda-CDM (theory lambda cold dark matter), which describes the formation of galaxies, we have to see with the naked eye a few large satellite galaxies around our Milky Way galaxy. But we do not see.

Therefore, an astrophysicist Prayval Kafle from the University of Western Australia decided to find out why so by measuring the amount of dark matter in the Milky Way. "The stars, dust, you and I, all that we see is only 4% of the entire Universe - he said. - Approximately 25% is dark matter, and the rest - dark energy. "Using the procedure in 1915 (before was discovered dark matter), Kafle measure the amount of dark matter in our galaxy, an extensive study of the speed of stars in the Milky Way. He even looked at the edges of our galaxy.

His new dimension revealed that our galaxy 50% less dark energy than astronomers thought. Using new measurements Kafle theory Lambda-CDM should predict that we should observe just three satellite galaxies around the Milky Way. This is consistent with the fact that astronomers see: the Small Magellanic Cloud, the Large Magellanic Cloud and Sagittarius dwarf galaxy. Kafle solve the mystery over which astronomers have struggled for 15 years.

The scientists also measured the speed necessary to leave the gravitational field of our galaxy - 550 kilometers per second. This is 50 times greater than necessary rocket to leave the surface of the Earth.

4. What happens inside an exploding star?

Using radio interferometry (a combination of data from several telescopes to obtain a clear picture), astronomers in December 2013 were able to see how the star becomes new - an exploding star. This made it possible to reveal the secret of creating the gamma-ray bursts of high-energy electromagnetic radiation. Explains Tim O'Brien of the University of Manchester, "a new occurs when the gas companion star falls onto the surface of a dying white dwarf in a binary system (a system of two stars that orbit each other)."

This causes a thermonuclear explosion on the surface of the star, who throws gas into space at speeds of millions of kilometers per hour. "Sometimes new creates a new star, but the explosion is difficult to predict. The ejected material is moving outwards along the orbital plane of the star. After some time, even faster outer stream of particles of a white dwarf is facing a slow-moving matter. This leads to a high speed shock which generates gamma rays.

5. Why does the opposite side of the Moon is no "person"?

C 1959, when the Soviet spacecraft "Luna-3" for the first time has allowed us to look at the side of the Moon, astronomers scratching their heads over the next problem. No one can explain why the far side so different from the side facing the Earth. The far side is a hodgepodge of craters and mountains, but it has almost no seas (dark areas of flat seas basalt), we see from our perspective.

It is thanks to the seas, it seems to us that the Moon has a face. Penn State astrophysicists think that they were able to solve the puzzle. Lack of seas on the far side of the Moon shows the thick crust with large accumulations of aluminum and calcium. One theory suggests that an object the size of Mars collided with the Earth once. Together with the outer layers of the Earth, he was thrown into space and subsequently formed the Moon.

But tidal locking between the Earth and the Moon keeps one side of the Moon always faces the Earth. In the early stages of the formation of satellites, this side remained hot, while the far side gradually cooled. This led to the formation of a thick crust. Penn State astrophysicists believe that this thick crust prevented from entering basalt magma to the surface. It is also believed that meteoroids struck thin crust of the Moon facing the Earth, and let out basaltic lava that formed sea.

However, MIT academics say the new information obtained during the mission GRAIL, shows that the face of the man on the Moon could not be formed due to the fall of asteroids, but due to the accumulation of large amounts of magma inside the Moon. But this theory is unlikely to be confirmed without directly visiting the Moon.

6. What is the light in space?

If you look at the clear night sky, you will see many stars. With a small telescope you can see the planets, nebulae and galaxies. But if you take an X-ray detector, you will see the X-ray glow in the sky, which is known as the diffuse X-ray background. Source glow remained a mystery for about 50 years. There are three options. It may be beyond our solar system, it can be in the "local hot bubble" of gas or be in our system.

X-rays are also emitted from inside our solar system where the solar wind is emitted in the form of charged particles the Sun collides with a neutral hydrogen and helium. Astronomers did not understand what kind of glow, while Massimiliano Galleatsi from the University of Miami are not summed up: "It's like to travel at night and see the light, not knowing he was born within 10 meters or 1,000 kilometers." Now we know it's a little bit of that and that.
7. What is the distance to the "Seven Sisters"?

The Pleiades, also known as the "Seven Sisters" - a well-known star cluster in the constellation Taurus. Astronomers believe her space laboratory of the hundreds of young stars that formed about 100 million years ago. The scientists used the Pleiades to understand how to create star clusters. It is also a useful measuring tool to determine distances to other star clusters. Astronomers have agreed that the Pleiades are within 430 light years from Earth.

But then Hipparcos, a European satellite that was supposed to more accurately measure the distance to the thoUSAnds of stars, defined the distance to the Pleiades, 390 light years away. "Perhaps this difference may not seem so big, but taking into account the physical characteristics of the Pleiades, it calls into question our general understanding of how stars are formed and developed," - explains Carl Mellis from the University of California.

Using a network of radio telescopes, astronomers measured the distance to the Pleiades, using the technique of parallax and look at them from different parts of the Earth's orbit around the Sun. New measurement showed 443 light-years, the measurement accuracy within 99%. This means that the "Hipparchus" was wrong, that raises new questions about the accuracy of the distance to the other 118,000 stars.

8. How big is our galactic neighborhood?

Using sensitive telescopes to determine the boundaries of superclusters of galaxies, astronomers discovered that the Milky Way galaxy belongs to the recent giant supercluster called Laniakea («big sky" in Hawaiian).

The name was chosen in honor of the Polynesian navigators who sailed the Pacific, guided by the stars. Sverhklaster Laniakeya contains 100,000 galaxies, stretches for 500 million light-years away and has a mass of 100 million billion Suns. The Milky Way is located on the outskirts of Laniakei. Astronomers have also received a lot of information about the Great Attractor, coordination center of gravity in the region of intergalactic space, which pulls galaxies of the local group and affect the movement of other galaxy clusters.

"We finally established the contours that define the supercluster of galaxies, which we can call home - says Brent Tully of the University of Hawaii. - It's like finding out that your hometown is actually part of a much larger country, which borders with other states. "

Astronomers are engaged in, among other things, the celestial archeology: exploring the ruins of the planets after their parent stars die. This made it possible to know what the ominous fate awaits the Earth. It all started with a mission: to find out how the atmosphere of the white dwarf becomes contaminated. The atmosphere of a white dwarf, which should consist of pure hydrogen or pure helium, is often contaminated with heavy elements like carbon, iron and silicon.

Initially, scientists believed that the elements are pushed to the surface of the incredible radiation inside stars. However, using a powerful telescope, astronomers were able to see the prints of elements like carbon, phosphorus, silicon and sulfur in the atmosphere of the white dwarf. stars with atmospheric pollution showed a higher ratio of sulfur to carbon than is usually seen in stars. In fact, the same relationship is found in rocky planets.

"Riddle of these stars we tried to solve more than 20 years - said Professor Martin Barst from the University of Leicester. - Then we learned that they absorb the remnants of planetary systems may have as our own. "

Here's a sinister fate awaits the Earth. Through billions of years of our home planet will be just a rocky pollution dying remnants of the Sun.

9. What is waiting for the end of our galaxy?

Solving the riddle of galaxies, scientists also develop a deeper understanding of the way and our Milky Way galaxy. They learned that the evolution of some galaxies depends on the supermassive black hole at the galactic center, as in our Milky Way. These black holes expel nearly all cold gas from nearby galaxies. Without the cold gas, these galaxies can not form new stars. Although the outflow of molecular hydrogen in the form of gas has become an accepted part of the theory of the evolution of galaxies, scientists have been puzzled by the fact that the outflow of gas is accelerated.

Using advanced telescopes to study the neighboring galaxy IC5063, researchers found that high-energy electron fluxes emitted from the central black hole, accelerate the outflow of molecular hydrogen gas. It also points to the fact that our Milky Way galaxy, most likely, will face Andromeda galaxy in five billion years. When two galaxies collide, the gas accumulates in the center of the system to power a supermassive black hole. This leads to the formation of electron fluxes and completely makes all the gas in the galaxy. Thereafter galaxy can not form new star.

10. All of this - an illusion?

We think that more and more we learn about our Universe. But scientists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are working on a project laser analysis Holometer, to check for whether we live, by chance, in the hologram. This will mean that our three-dimensional world is just an illusion, and all encoded in a tiny two-dimensional packages. Roughly the same television show characters think they live in a three-dimensional world, but in fact trapped in the two-dimensional screen. Scientists believe that our Universe of information may be packaged into packets in the same way as the pixels on the TV screen contains data points.

When you stand close to the TV, you can distinguish individual pixels. But when you leave on, all pixels are merged into a coherent picture. Perhaps our world is organized in a similar way, and one "pixel" space is equal to the area of 10 trillion trillion times smaller than an atom.

"We want to find out whether the space-time of a quantum system, like matter, - says Craig Hogan of Fermilab. - If we see something, it will completely change our perception of space, which we followed for thoUSAnds of years. "

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