What happens when two galaxies merge into one another?



The galaxy in which we live i.e; the Milky Way may someday merge into another galaxy. You never know when!

Einstein's theory of relativity clearly explained how galaxies are at a relative motion with each other. The Universe is expanding.  Galaxies are moving away from each other. The Dark energy present in the empty space is forcing galaxies move away from each other.

However there is a chance that in this random motion of galaxies some galaxies may move towards each other...

We know that most of the galaxies have a supermassive black hole at their center. These black holes are so massive that they gravitationally hold stars like sun that are thousands of light years away. Stars revolve around these black holes.

There have been several collisions between galaxies in the past. In fact galaxies grow in size by colliding with other galaxies.

When galaxies collide the interaction between them is the result of the interaction between their supermassive black holes that are of billions of solar masses (mass of sun). Such massive objects when approach close to each other pull each other very strongly. These black holes collide. Each black hole has a greed to swallow more mass and each of the two tries to win the battle. The winner of the two can be any. The final result is combination of black holes which has lower mass than the sum of the two masses earlier. The lost mass is given to the gravitational waves !

These events of black holes or the galaxy are the most disastrous events in the history of universe. The light emitted is enormous. The noise produced in these interactions is in the form of gravitational waves.

Gravitational waves are waves that are emitted when matter interacts with matter. These waves have been detected recently as predicted in the Einstein's theory of relativity. 

The planets and stars in the galaxy are hugely affected. There are collisions between huge bodies of one galaxy with that of other. There is a chance that some stars get swallowed into black hole. If the black hole is too large it may even swallow more and more stars.

Ever wondered if Our galaxy The Milky way will face such a fate?

The answer is YES!

Milky way is a huge galaxy with 300billion stars. Its one of the galaxies in its locality is a very large galaxy- The Andromeda containing 1trillion illion stars.

Astronomers found out a blue shift in the objects from Andromeda galaxy. This galaxy is moving towards us. The collision between the two will happen after billions of years. The interaction between these two huge galaxies may push our solar system several distance apart relative to its current position. The chaos created may probably end up life on Earth. Such events have been most destructive in the history as said before!


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