New M92 stellar stream discovered

A team of astronomers using the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope discovered a new stellar stream emanating from the M92 globular cluster. This new stream suggests that M92 is actively being disrupted by tidal forces caused ...

The spin of the supermassive black hole in the Milky Way

Once a black hole forms, its intense gravitational field produces a surface beyond which even light cannot escape, and it appears black to outsiders. All the details of the complex mix of matter and energy in its past are ...

Hubble sees swirls of forming stars

At around 60 million light-years from Earth, the Great Barred Spiral Galaxy, NGC 1365, is captured beautifully in this image by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Located in the constellation of Fornax (the Furnace), the ...

VLBA makes first direct distance measurement to magnetar

Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) have made the first direct geometric measurement of the distance to a magnetar within our Milky Way Galaxy—a measurement that could help ...

Hubble maps giant halo around Andromeda Galaxy

In a landmark study, scientists using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have mapped the immense envelope of gas, called a halo, surrounding the Andromeda galaxy, our nearest large galactic neighbor. Scientists were surprised ...

Where are stars made? NASA's Spitzer spies a hot spot

The nebula known as W51 is one of the most active star-forming regions in the Milky Way galaxy. First identified in 1958 by radio telescopes, it makes a rich cosmic tapestry in this image from NASA's recently retired Spitzer ...

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Milky Way

The Milky Way, or simply the Galaxy, is the galaxy in which the Solar System is located. It is a barred spiral galaxy that is part of the Local Group of galaxies. It is one of billions of galaxies in the observable universe.

Its name is a translation of the Latin Via Lactea, in turn translated from the Greek Γαλαξίας (Galaxias), referring to the pale band of light formed by the galactic plane as seen from Earth (see etymology of galaxy). Some sources hold that, strictly speaking, the term Milky Way should refer exclusively to the band of light that the galaxy forms in the night sky, while the galaxy should receive the full name Milky Way Galaxy, or alternatively the Galaxy. However, it is unclear how widespread this convention is, and the term Milky Way is routinely used in either context.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA