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Astronomers discover South Pole Wall spanning 1.4 billion light-years
Even though many astronomers have discovered what seems to be thousands of cosmic entities over the years, there is still so much more to find in the universe. One example of which was observed by astronomers, a massive space object that is millions of light-years long.
The team of astronomers led by Daniel Pomerade of France’s Paris-Saclay University discovered what is referred to as the South Pole Wall. With the use of a galaxy database called Cosmicflow-3, they found that this celestial object spans 1.4 billion light-years across space. The South Pole Wall is also referred to by researchers as a cosmic filament or a thread-like formation made up of galaxies that are connected by each other’s gravity.
The researchers found this cosmic filament 500 million light-years beyond the Milky Way galaxy. Their study on this subject was published in The Astrophysical Journal, and they noted that this was the largest cosmic object found that was close by. The South Pole Wall is similar in size to the Sloan Great Wall filament, which measures 1.38 billion light-years across space. The biggest entity that is similar to these “walls” is the Hercules-Corona Borealis Great Wall that measures around 9.7 billion light-years across.
According to the researchers, “We will not be certain of its full extent, nor whether it is unusual until we map the Universe on a significantly grander scale,” noting that they have yet to determine the entire length of the South Pole Wall.
Meanwhile, NASA and ESA’s Hubble Space Telescope was able to capture a young star formation 1,400 light-years from Earth. The star formation is referred to as NGC 672, but astronomers noticed something unusual about the space object, as there appeared to be a strange, bat-like shadow looming over it while it feeds on a cloud of gas and dust.
The wings of the “bat shadow” also make it look like it was flapping, making it an interesting sight to see.
“The star is called NGC 672 and the shadow feature was nicknamed the “Bat Shadow” because it resembles a pair of wings. The nickname turned out to be unexpectedly appropriate because now the wings appear to be flapping!” said NASA of the discovery.