Silk’s superpowers
Springing forward
Treating peanut allergy bit by bit
Living in the Desert
Insects Take a Breather
Mouse Songs
Slumber by the numbers
Longer lives for wild elephants
When Darwin got sick of feathers
Carnivorous Birds
Chemistry and Materials
Sticky Silky Feet
Meteorites may have sparked life on Earth
Pencil Thin
Batteries built by Viruses
The hungry blob at the edge of the universe
Graphene's superstrength
Dinosaurs and Fossils
A Really Big (but Extinct) Rodent
Middle school science adventures
Early Birds Ready to Rumble
E Learning Jamaica
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Giving Sharks Safe Homes
Greener Diet
Earth's Lowly Rumble
Antarctica warms, which threatens penguins
Ready, unplug, drive
Blooming Jellies
Finding the Past
Chicken of the Sea
A Long Trek to Asia
Settling the Americas
Flashlight Fishes
Food and Nutrition
A Pepper Part that Burns Fat
A Taste for Cheese
Food for Life
GSAT English Rules
Capitalization Rules
Subject and Verb Agreement
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
Scotiabank Jamaica Foundation Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) Scholarships
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
GSAT Practice Papers | GSAT Mathematics | Maths
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
GSAT Practice Papers | GSAT Mathematics | Maths
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
GSAT Mathematics
Losing with Heads or Tails
It's a Math World for Animals
Setting a Prime Number Record
Human Body
Workouts: Does Stretching Help?
Don't Eat That Sandwich!
A Sour Taste in Your Mouth
Camel Spiders
Daddy Long Legs
African Wildedbeest
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
How children learn
Road Bumps
IceCube Science
The Mirror Universe of Antimatter
A Change in Leaf Color
White fuzzy mold not as friendly as it looks
Hungry bug seeks hot meal
Boa Constrictors
Box Turtles
Space and Astronomy
Wrong-way planets do gymnastics
Chaos Among the Planets
Sounds of Titan
Technology and Engineering
Reach for the Sky
Machine Copy
Supersuits for Superheroes
The Parts of Speech
What is a Verb?
What is a Noun
Adjectives and Adverbs
Morphing a Wing to Save Fuel
Tinkering With the Basic Bike
Are Propellers Fin-ished?
Science loses out when ice caps melt
Weekend Weather Really Is Different
Earth's Poles in Peril
Add your Article

Galaxies on the go

Scientists have a mystery of cosmic proportions on their hands. Recently astronomers noticed something strange. It seems that millions of stars are racing at high speeds toward a single spot in the sky. Huge collections of stars, gas and dust are called galaxies. Some galaxies congregate into groups of hundreds or thousands, called galaxy clusters. These clusters can be observed by the X-rays they give off. Scientists are excited about the racing clusters because the cause of their movement can't be explained by any known means. The discovery came about when scientists studied a group of 700 racing clusters. These clusters were carefully mapped in the early 1990s using data collected by an orbiting telescope. The telescope recorded X-rays created by electrons located in the hot core of a galaxy cluster. The researchers then looked at the same 700 clusters on a map of what’s called the cosmic microwave background, or CMB. The CMB is radiation, a form of energy, leftover from the Big Bang. Scientists believe that the Big Bang marks the beginning of the universe, billions of years ago. The CMB provides a picture of how the early universe looked soon after the Big Bang. By comparing information from the CMB to the map of galaxy clusters, scientists could measure the movement of the clusters. This is possible because a cluster’s movement causes a change in how bright the CMB appears. As a galaxy cluster moves across the sky, the electrons from its hot core interact with radiation from the CMB. This interaction creates a change in the radiation’s frequency, or how often an event occurs in a certain amount of time. Scientists can then measure the frequencies to detect movement. As a galaxy cluster moves toward Earth, the radiation frequency goes up. As a cluster moves away from Earth, the frequency goes down. This shift in the frequencies creates an effect similar to the Doppler effect. The Doppler effect is commonly used to measure the speed of moving objects, such as cars. Scientists can use this method to measure the speed and direction of moving galaxies by looking at changes in the radiation frequencies. What the scientists found surprised them. Though the frequency shifts were small, the clusters were moving across the sky at a high speed — about 1,000 kilometers per second. Even more surprising, the clusters were all moving in the same direction toward a single point in the sky. Researchers don’t know what’s pulling this matter across the sky, but they are calling the source “dark flow.” Whatever it is, scientists say the source likely lies outside the visible universe. That means it can’t be detected by ordinary means, such as telescopes. One thing is certain. Dark flow has shown that we don’t understand everything we see in the universe and that there are still discoveries to be made.

Galaxies on the go
Galaxies on the go

Designed and Powered by™