Astronomy Picture of the Day

The Sagittarius Dwarf Tidal Stream

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The Sagittarius Dwarf Tidal Stream

Is our Milky Way Galaxy out to lunch?

Recent wide field images and analyses now indicate that our
home galaxy
is actually still in the process of devouring one of its closer
satellite neighbors.

This unfortunate
neighbor, the
Sagittarius Dwarf galaxy, is now seen to be part of a larger
Sagittarius Tidal Stream,
a loose filament of stars, gas, and possibly dark matter
that entangles the Milky Way.

An artist's depiction of the stream is shown above.

Speculation also holds that the
Sagittarius Dwarf was once pulled through the
Milky Way disk very close to our
Sun's current location.

An important resulting realization is that
contain a jumble of clumps and
filaments of both dim and
dark matter.

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