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Radio Waves Help Discover Hundreds of New Galaxies

Update Date: Feb 12, 2016 11:30 AM EST
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In a latest study published in Astronomical Journal on Tuesday, researchers from various countries feature their reports and findings that the galaxies can help in understanding the enigmatic marvel called the Great Attractor, says The Washington Post.

Due to Milky Way and its sheer size, it becomes difficult for the researchers to know what else exists in this space. According to the scientists, this area is called as the Zone of Avoidance. However, with the help of radio waves used to observe the outer space from Parkes telescope, researchers were able to see beyond thus zone and could detect as many as 883 galaxies. While most of these galaxies have already been recorded, at least a third of them have never been spotted in the past, said the article in The Washington Post. This new discovery can be useful in explaining why this region outside of Milky Way attracts all the galaxies in its vicinity, thereby getting the name the Great Attractor.

"We don't actually understand what's causing this gravitational acceleration on the Milky Way or where it's coming from," lead author Lister Staveley-Smith of the University of Western Australia said in a statement. "We know that in this region there are a few very large collections of galaxies we call clusters or superclusters, and our whole Milky Way is moving towards them at more than two million kilometres per hour," reports KSL.com

"An average galaxy contains 100 billion stars, so finding hundreds of new galaxies hidden behind the Milky Way points to a lot of mass we didn't know about until now," said co-author Renée Kraan-Korteweg of the University of Cape Town. The presence of enormous galaxy can shed some light on where the pull is coming from, according to Smithsonian Magazine. Researchers believe that some of these galaxies discovered recently may be huge enough to wield enough gravitational force that can explain the Great Attractor.

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