Andromeda Galaxy – Our Milky Way’s Closest Neighbor!

Andromeda Galaxy - Our Milky Way's Closest NeighborThe Andromeda Galaxy – Our Milky Way’s Closest Neighbor, is the most distant object in the sky that you can see with your unaided eye — but only on a clear night from a location with a very dark sky.

#1. Andromeda Galaxy – Our Milky Way’s Closest Neighbor: Introduction

Andromeda galaxy (M31) is the nearest galaxy to our galaxy Milky Way. It is a spiral galaxy. It is known also Messier31, M31 and NGC224. Its old name was Great Andromeda Nebula.

German astronomer Simon Marius give first description about Andromeda Galaxy in 15 December 1612 which based on telescopic observation.

In 2010, astronomers confirms that M31 formed due to collide two Smaller Galaxy approximately between 5 to 9 billion years ago.

Andromeda Galaxy - Our Milky Way's Closest Neighbor
 #Andromeda Galaxy

#2. Andromeda Galaxy – Our Milky Way’s Closest Neighbor: Location

Andromeda Galaxy located just to the north of the constellation bearing its name, the Andromeda galaxy appears as a long, hazy patch in the sky. Andromeda contains approximately a trillion stars to the quarter to half a billion in the Milky Way, our galaxy is actually more massive, because it is thought to contain more dark matter.

#Andromeda Galaxy with Moon seen from the Earth

#3. Andromeda Galaxy – Our Milky Way’s Closest Neighbor: Quick Facts

  • It is the largest galaxy in our local group (local group contains our Milky way, Triangulum Galaxy and 44 other smaller galaxies).
  • It is the nearest largest galaxy to our milky way.
  • This galaxy is 2,20,000 light years across.
  • It contains approximately 1 trillion stars.
  • This galaxy is 2.5 million light years away from the earth.
Andromeda Galaxy - Our Milky Way's Closest Neighbor
#This mosaic of M31 merges 330 individual images taken by the Ultraviolet/Optical Telescope aboard NASA’s Swift spacecraft. It is the highest-resolution image of the galaxy ever recorded in the ultraviolet. The image shows a region 200,000 light-years wide and 100,000 light-years high (100 arcminutes by 50 arcminutes).  #Credit: NASA/Swift/Stefan Immler (GSFC) and Erin Grand (UMCP).
  • This galaxy and Milky way galaxy are expected to collide in Giant Elliptical Galaxy  after 3.7 billion years.
  • It is the brightest galaxy in Local Group.
  • This Galaxy is not most massive than Milky Way because Milky Way contains dark matter in massive quantity.
  • It  approaching Milky Way at approximately 100-140 km/sec.
  • Scientists estimated that it contains at least one SMBH (Super Massive Black Hole) at its core.
Andromeda Galaxy - Our Milky Way's Closest Neighbor
#Artist’s conception of the Milkomeda Galaxy a trillion years from now.   #Credit: David A. Aguilar (CfA).

#4. Andromeda will Collide with the Milky Way !

Andromeda is approaching Milky Way at approximately 100-140 km/sec. Astronomers estimate that it will collide with the Milky Way in about 5 billion years. By that time, the sun will have swollen into a red giant and swallowed up the terrestrial planets, so Earth will have other things to worry about.

Galaxy collisions are a normal part of the universe’s evolution. Astronomers believe this dust may have formed when it swallowed an existing galaxy.

It is most distant thing which is visible to naked eye. it appears more than six times wide larger than full can see it by naked eye from mid-northern latitude. You can see it perfect in last September and early October . It shines in your earthen sky in night. For good viewing, you can observe it in winter evening.

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