Laniakea, our supercluster of galaxies
The sky is huge
|Updated September 17, 2014
It is not only the largest known structures in the universe is ours. The supercluster Laniakea like all superclusters contains hundreds of thousands of galaxies including our own, the Milky Way, which is part of a cluster of galaxies called the Local Group. The supercluster Laniakea, discovered in 2014, lies about 500 million light years and contains about 100,000 times the mass of our galaxy. Superclusters of galaxies are composed of hundreds of clusters of galaxies bound together by their own gravitational attraction. Our huge supercluster is shown here in a computer simulation (see larger image). The area surrounded by orange is Laniakea our supercluster. Laniakea means "huge sky" in Hawaiian.
Galaxies move in groups (fifty galaxies) then in clusters (a few thousand galaxies) then on a massive scale, in superclusters increasingly large (some hundreds of thousands of galaxies) that scientists are trying to identify. Superclusters the closest our, are listed in the table below (Hydra-Centaurus, Perseus-Pisces, Pavo-Indus, Coma, Sculptor, Hercules, Leo,...).
Image: This huge superclusters called Laniakea is shown in this computer simulation in 2014. This superclusters is not only one of the largest known structures in the universe is ours. The green areas are the areas where are focused the galaxies. Galaxies are represented by small white dots while the white lines show the movement of galaxies towards the center of the supercluster. On the enlarged image, the blue dot indicates the location of the Milky Way in the superclusters. Credit image: R. Brent Tully (U. Hawaii) et al., SDvision, DP, CEA/Saclay