Astronomers detect a gigantic ‘barrier’ in the center of the Milky Way

A trio of researchers from the Purple Mountain Observatory at the Chinese Academy of Sciences analyzed a gamma-ray map – produced by radioactive elements and violent astrophysical phenomena – and discovered that something near the center of the Milky Way protects it from a bombardment by cosmics rays from other sectors of the universe.

In the same study, published in the journal Nature Communications, it was revealed that there is a kind of “particle accelerator” at the speed of light capable of expelling energy. However, an “invisible barrier” prevents the entry of foreign cosmic rays into the Milky Way.

Cosmic rays cannot be seen directly, but using maps of gamma rays experts see where that kind of energy has collided with other kinds of matter. This is possible by using data, for example, from the Fermi Large Area Telescope.

Although the origin of this “barrier” is not clear, the researchers speculate that it is related to a tangle of magnetic fields around the dense core of the galaxy.. As a consequence, cosmic rays fall at the edges of the galactic center with a weakened force.

That said, the clouds of dust and gas would also play their role after collapsing in on themselves compressing the magnetic fields. Another possibility is that the stellar winds are pushing all the energy that comes from outside, according to the article. However, for now the truth about this phenomenon remains obscure.

Regarding the brutal energy ejections, the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, Sagittarius A *, some 26,000 light years from Earth, is believed to be the main emitter of accelerating protons and neutrons traveling into space. intergalactic.

With a mass equivalent to 4.5 million soles, Sagittarius A * It was discovered in 1974 by astronomers Bruce Balick and Robert Brown of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.

The remnants of ancient supernovae and stars close together in the center of the galaxy could also contribute to these strange events in the universe.