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NASA: Massive Gas Cloud Is Coming Toward Us At 700,000 Miles Per Hour

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posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 09:47 AM
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A massive cloud of hydrogen is hurtling toward the Milky Way at close to 700,000 miles per hour, according to new research published in a recent edition of the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

The Smith Cloud was discovered in the early 1960s by doctoral astronomy student Gail Smith, who detected the radio waves emitted by its hydrogen.

Hubble Space Telescope observations suggest that the cloud emanated from the outer edge of the Milky Way some 70 million years ago.

The cloud is on a return collision course and is expected to plow into the Milky Way’s disk in about 30 million years, according to NASA scientists. When it does, astronomers believe it will ignite a spectacular burst of star formation, perhaps providing enough gas to make 2 million suns.

Andrew Fox, with the Space Telescope Science Institute, said, “The cloud is an example of how the galaxy is changing with time. It’s telling us that the Milky Way is a bubbling, very active place where gas can be thrown out of one part of the disk and then return back down into another."

Though invisible, false-color images of the cloud have been rendered by the space agency, showing the cloud's trajectory over time and size relative to Earth's moon when full.


I thought this is very cool and interesting to share. ENJOY!


Massive Gas Cloud
edit on th47Mon, 24 Apr 2017 09:47:43 -0500K201744330am4 by SirKonstantin because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 09:53 AM
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So, when is this big fart supposed to arrive? Within the next five hundred years?



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 09:55 AM
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a reply to: rickymouse

30 million years, according to the article



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 09:56 AM
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a reply to: SirKonstantin

We're screwed! Hump for your lives!




posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 10:08 AM
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God farted.



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 10:22 AM
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So scientists can tell us what will happen 30 million years from now but cannot predict the weather...yeah...ok....



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 10:32 AM
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I wonder how many frequent flyer miles the Smith CLoud has racked up.

Every person on the planet could travel for free for centuries



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 10:39 AM
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a reply to: matafuchs




So scientists can tell us what will happen 30 million years from now but cannot predict the weather...yeah...ok....


This isn't a weather prediction?



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 11:04 AM
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a reply to: SirKonstantin

Awww gas clouds are so cute, if only I could live another twenty billion years so I could see them have their own babies.



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 11:14 AM
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Is this gas cloud from Uranus, NASA did say they found somthing huge coming from Uranus last week.



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 11:39 AM
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A bit of a click bait title there..



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 11:40 AM
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a reply to: matafuchs

Thermodynamics isn't nearly as finite as celestial mechanics.



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 11:48 AM
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a reply to: SirKonstantin

So the entire Milky Way is toast in 30 million years. God wiping the slate clean and starting over.




Hubble Space Telescope observations suggest that the cloud emanated from the outer edge of the Milky Way some 70 million years ago.


This baffles my mind. How do scientists know how old something is that's sooooooooooo far away???? I know on earth they use carbon dating but when they don't have anything to look at under a microscope they have to use something to get an approximate age.



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 12:17 PM
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originally posted by: WeRpeons

This baffles my mind. How do scientists know how old something is that's sooooooooooo far away???? I know on earth they use carbon dating but when they don't have anything to look at under a microscope they have to use something to get an approximate age.



They did not directly discern the age of the Smith Cloud (or "Smith's Cloud") as much as they determined what its past trajectory was to see where it came from. That trajectory tells us that it seems to have been part of the Milky way 70 million years ago. the question then becomes did it come from the Milky Way, or did it come from elsewhere and happen to pass through 70 million years ago.

According to this study, it seems that it did originate in our galaxy, going by some clues, such as total metallicity:

On the Metallicity of the Smith High-Velocity Cloud

The finding that the SC [Smith Cloud] is metal-enriched lends support to scenarios where it represents recycled Galactic material, rather than the remnant of a dwarf galaxy or accreting intergalactic gas. The metallicity and trajectory of the Cloud are both indicative of an origin in the outer disk. However, its large mass and prograde kinematics remain to be fully explained.



By the way, this is a bit of an old story. Here is an article from 2008 discussing the upcoming collision with the Smith Cloud:

Huge gas cloud will hit Milky Way (2008 article)


edit on 2017/4/24 by Box of Rain because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 02:12 PM
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It was sarcasm...geesh...



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 05:02 PM
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a reply to: SirKonstantin
Interesting indeed, thx 2 million suns, wowzie! This stuff may be likened to fertilizer for celestial propagation. The inner link inside your article is more detailed.

Astronomers have measured this comet-shaped region of gas to be 11,000 light-years long and 2,500 light-years across. If the cloud could be seen in visible light, it would span the sky with an apparent diameter 30 times greater than the size of the full moon.
n particular, they looked for sulfur in the cloud, which can absorb ultraviolet light. “By measuring sulfur, you can learn how enriched in sulfur atoms the cloud is compared to the sun,” Fox explained. Sulfur is a good gauge of how many heavier elements reside in the cloud.

That is pretty vast, with lot's of sulphur in it too…cosmic flatulence.



originally posted by: IgnoranceIsntBlisss
a reply to: SirKonstantin
We're screwed! Hump for your lives!

haha, that's funny man, and should be the founding responsive statement for any doom porn.
Would make a good T-shirt logo me thinks, ha
edit on 24-4-2017 by waftist because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 24 2017 @ 05:18 PM
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The cloud is on a return collision course and is expected to plow into the Milky Way’s disk in about 30 million years, according to NASA scientists. When it does, astronomers believe it will ignite a spectacular burst of star formation, perhaps providing enough gas to make 2 million suns.


Oh wow, so it's relevant too!





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