Our home galaxy, the Milky Way, is being pushed across the universe by a large unseen force, according to new research. Although it may not seem like a friendly gesture, the newly discovered Dipole Repeller is actually helping our galaxy on its journey across the expanding universe.
Researchers have known that the galaxy was moving at a relative speed for the past 30 years, but they didn't know why.
"Now we find an emptiness in exactly the opposite direction, which provides a 'push' in the sense of a lack of pull," said Brent Tully, one of the study authors and an astronomer at the Institute for Astronomy in Honolulu. "In a tug-of-war, if there are more people at one end, then the flow will be toward them and away from the weaker side."
What's that? You didn't realize our home galaxy was moving?
Think about it: Everything is moving. Earth is rotating on its axis and orbiting the sun. The sun and the rest of our solar system orbit the center of the Milky Way. The Milky Way, along with other galaxies in the Laniakea Supercluster, is racing through space at about 2 million kilometers per hour.
But this is no aimless journey of motion. Researchers have long believed that our galaxy was attracted to an area rich with dozens of clusters of galaxies 750 million light-years away, called the Shapley Concentration or Shapley Attractor.
Read more at CNN.