Recent studies by scientists prove that our galaxy “stole” some of the stars from other galaxies with which it had collided.
After a collision with another galaxy, the disk of the Milky Way galaxy became thicker. The incident occurred about 10 billion years ago. It is reported by Nature.
Stars on the outskirts of our galaxy were “aliens”. Amina Helmi, a specialist from the University of Groningen, and colleagues concluded that a significant part of the inner halo of the Milky Way galaxy had been formed after a collision with a smaller galaxy.
The findings of scientists are based on the analysis of the chemical composition, age, a trajectory of the stars and their number in certain areas. These data astronomers obtained using a Gaia telescope. Scientists also created a computer model of a possible collision.
Earlier, the Gaia telescope helped scientists find traces of a rapprochement of the Milky Way with another galaxy about 300-900 million years ago. After this event, millions of stars still spiral along: it resembles the ripples in the water that an abandoned stone causes.
Scientists are confident that the Milky Way galaxy was formed as a result of many collisions with other galaxies. But how many were there and when these clashes occurred is unknown.