Excerpt from natureworldnews.com
Meet the Milky Way’s new neighbor, KKs3, a dwarf galaxy located almost seven million light-years away, new research describes.
Kks3 is a “dwarf spheroidal” – or dSph galaxy – unlike our own Milky Way, and despite its isolated existence, astronomers hope this discovery can shed some light on the history of galaxy formation.
The Milky Way is part of a cluster of more than 50 galaxies that make up the “Local Group,” a collection that includes the famous Andromeda galaxy and many other far smaller objects. KKs3 is just one of these many galaxies, located in the southern sky in the direction of the constellation of Hydrus. It lacks features found in our own galaxy, like the Milky Way’s characteristic spiral arms, as well as gas and dust needed for new stars to form. Its stars also have only one ten-thousandth of the mass of the Milky Way.
The team, led by Professor Igor Karachentsev of the Special Astrophysical Observatory in Karachai-Cherkessia, Russia, which found KKs3 in August 2014, suspect that isolated objects like this orphan dwarf galaxy formed differently in comparison to other galaxies, For example, they may have had an early burst of star formation that used up all the available gas resources, which is why KKs3 doesn’t contain any gas or dust.
The results were published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
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