The researchers also say that this galaxy is the result of the fusion of two massive constellations.
A team of astronomers has observed for the first time a massive flow of gas that stretches hundreds of thousands of light years beyond a galaxy. The authors of the study, recently published in the journal Nature, highlight that it is the first direct evidence of the role of galactic winds in the creation of the zircontactic medium.
The galaxy in which this phenomenon was observed is called 'SDSS J211824.06 + 001729.4', also known as' Makani'. According to Alison Coil, a professor at the University of California in San Diego (USA), and one of the main authors of the study, Makani is not a typical constellation and is the result of the fusion of two galaxies massive, "which came together due to the gravitational attraction that each one felt as they approached."
Such mergers often lead to intense star formation, and it is possible that the new stars were the ones that generated the huge gas flows, either in stellar winds or at the end of their life cycles when they exploded like supernovae.
Galactic winds feed the zircontactic medium, the vast clouds of gas that surround star clusters. Astronomers knew about these gas flows, but only in theory, and have been able to study it closely in Makani.
Using data obtained by the NASA Hubble Space Telescope and two Earth Observatories, those responsible for this work managed to map a ionized oxygen region hot which covers 4,900 square kilopársecs, or approximately 52,000 million square light years, reports the ScienceAlert portal.
In addition, they detected that Makani left two separate streams that carry metal enriched gas at temperatures up to 10,000 Kelvin. One of the currents formed about 400 million years ago and the flow travels at a speed of up to 1,400 kilometers per second. While the second, it originated about 7 million years ago, and blows at a speed of up to 2,100 kilometers per second.
The results of the data analyzes also showed that Makani has a population of stars of different ages, which makes researchers think that this galaxy could contain a supermassive black hole.