Blazing Cosmic Rays Rain Down On Earth And The Cause Is Unexpected

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Astronomers have just discovered a distant galaxy that seems to be blowing bubbles towards us.

Well, these are not quite bubbles, they’re more like massive galactic balloons which are filled with gas.

They are stretching “a few thousand light-years across and appear to be crackling with charged particles 100 times more energetic than any found on Earth,” according to LiveScience.

The bubbles are jiggling near a newly-discovered galaxy 

Using information obtained from the Hubble Space Telescope and NASA’s Chandra X-Ray Observatory, scientists have detected the bubbles “jiggling” near the center of a galaxy.

The galaxy is called NGC 3079, and it’s located about 67 million light-years away from Earth.

Such bubbles are known as “superbubbles” because they’re huge.

According to the team’s study which has been published in the February 28 issue of The Astrophysical Journal, one of the newly discovered bubbles measures 4,900 light-years across, and the other is 3,600 light-years across.

It’s also interesting to know that these form when some really powerful shock waves are shoving the gases released by stars far into space. They leave a sort of cavity behind which is shaped like a bubble.

It seems that scientists don’t understand completely how the large gas cavities form.

Massive shock waves through space

The bubbles are definitely highly energetic objects, or at least their edges are. When the outer regions of the bubbles collide with the surrounding gases, there will be massive shock waves that resound through space.

LiveScience notes that “the bubbles may serve as cosmic particle accelerators, potentially helping particles reach energies 100 times stronger than those generated by CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. These high-speed, high-energy particles could be one source of the blazing cosmic rays that perpetually rain down on Earth.”

The online publication reports that more research is required in order to find out more about all this.

Rada Mateescu

I have been blogging and posting articles for over eight years, but my passion for writing dates back in 2000. I am especially enthusiastic about technology, science, and health-related issues. When I’m not researching and writing the latest news, I’m either watching sci-fi and horror movies or checking out places worth visiting and building deep memories for later in life. I believe in empathy and continually improving myself.