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Indian Scientists Discover Supercluster of Galaxies

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Indian scientists have now claimed to have discovered an extremely large supercluster of galaxies. The supercluster of galaxies is as big as 20 million billion suns and named Saraswati by scientists from the Pune-based Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA).

Discovered by four scientists — Shishir Sankhyayan, a PhD student at the Pune-based Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), IUCAA research fellow Pratik Dabhade, Joe Jacob of the Newman College, Kerala and Prakash Sarkar of the Jamshedpur-based National Institute of Technology, Saraswati is 4,000 million light-years away from Earth and roughly more than 10 billion years old. Its mass extends over the scale of 600 million light years.

Their findings were published in the latest issue of The Astrophysical Journal, a research journal of the American Astronomical Society.

“Superclusters are the largest coherent structures in the cosmic web. They are a chain of galaxies and galaxy clusters, bound by gravity, often stretching to several hundred times the size of clusters of galaxies, consisting of tens of thousands of galaxies,” the IUCAA said in a statement.

PTI quoted Sankhyayan as saying that this “newly-discovered Saraswati supercluster” may contain the mass equivalent of over 20 million billion suns. A cluster could roughly have galaxies ranging from 1000 to 10,000. A supercluster could have clusters ranging from 40 to 43, he added.

The IUCAA said that our own Milky Way galaxy is part of a supercluster called the Laniakea supercluster. The work is expected to help better understand matter density clusters that had been formed billions of years ago.


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