Galaxies Aplenty | StarDate On-line

In case you ever wish to ponder the vastness of the universe, do that:

Search for right into a darkish, starry evening sky, then maintain out your hand at arm’s size in entrance of your face. Now take a look at the fingernail in your little finger. That tiny space is protecting up hundreds of thousands of galaxies — and maybe tens of hundreds of thousands. But each galaxy is big. It spans 1000’s to hundreds of thousands of light-years, and incorporates hundreds of thousands to trillions of stars.

The variety of galaxies you’re protecting up is unsure as a result of the variety of galaxies within the universe is unsure. There are simply so many, and plenty of of them are so faint, that we will’t rely all of them. As an alternative, astronomers estimate the whole.

Greater than a decade in the past, Hubble House Telescope spent weeks a tiny patch of sky. Based mostly on the variety of galaxies in that patch, astronomers estimated the whole quantity at about 200 billion.

Later, although, one other workforce mentioned there must be 10 occasions extra galaxies — about two trillion in all. However final yr, another examine, primarily based on observations by one other spacecraft, put the quantity again within the tons of of billions. Remember that we’re seeing the most-distant galaxies as they seemed when the universe was a lot youthful. By immediately, they might have merged with different galaxies or disappeared in another method.

Regardless of the quantity, although, there are many galaxies within the universe — so many you could block out hundreds of thousands of them with the tip of your little finger.
 

Script by Damond Benningfield

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