An unknown object "massive and dense" has a huge & # 39; bullet hole & # 39; perforated in the longest flow of our galaxy, GD-1, says Ana Bonaca, a researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (US), who presented her findings at the recent American Physical Society conference in Denver.
Star streams are star lines that move together through galaxies. Under normal circumstances they have an almost uniform density, but the scientist discovered "a likely site of disturbance" in one of these structures. "Morphology in the air suggests a recent and near encounter with a huge and dense disturber," says Bonaca in a summary of his work.
What has pierced the gap?
However, it is not clear what exactly caused the gap. "We can't tell [el impactador] for a luminous object that we have observed, "the astrophysicist told LiveScience.
First, the object is "much heavier" than a star, "something like that a million times the mass of the sun"Bonaca explains, adding that" there are simply no stars of that mass, "so this hypothesis can be excluded.
On the other hand, if it were a black hole, "it would be a super-solid black hole of the kind that we find in the center of our own galaxy," the scientist continues. Because there are no signs of a super-heavy black hole nearby, Bonaca points to a ball of dark matter as a "plausible candidate."
If it were true, it would be an exciting discovery for scientists because it would give them the opportunity to study the elusive dark matter. However, the researcher admits that it is still too early to exclude another possibility.
"It may be a luminous object that has disappeared somewhere and is hiding somewhere in the galaxy," says Bonaca, concluding that "it is a closed bullet of something".