According to astronomers, the night sky will be completely different in 500 thousand years.
Scientists at the ESA Gaia Space Observatory have created a frame-by-frame simulation of the night sky, in which 40 thousand stars are located within 325 light years of the Sun. Stars rush through space, leaving behind a long trail of light. Live Science writes about it.
Each point of light is one real object in the Milky Way, and each shining trail is the predicted movement of that object through the galaxy over the next 400,000 years. The brighter and faster streaks are closer to our solar system, while the duller and slower ones are much farther away.
According to the researchers, the simulation shows an unsurprising pattern: By the end of the animation, most of the stars, clustered on the right side of the screen, while the left side remained relatively empty. This is because the Sun is constantly moving, making the passing stars seem more clustered in the opposite direction.
“If you imagine yourself moving through a crowd of people while standing still, it will seem as if the people in front are “moving apart” to let you pass. And if you turn around at that moment, you will see that everyone behind you is standing closer to each other. This is the effect that occurs during the motion of the Sun relative to the stars,” scientists said.
According to ESA, the new data output contains detailed information on more than 1.8 billion celestial objects, including the exact position, speed and orbital trajectory of more than 330,000 stars within 325 light-years of Earth.