"This first full-sky map of Sagittarius shows its extensive interaction with the Milky Way," Majewski said. "Both stars and star clusters now in the outer parts of the Milky Way have been 'stolen' from Sagittarius as the gravitational forces of the Milky Way nibbled away at its dwarf companion. This one vivid example shows that the Milky Way grows by eating its smaller neighbors."
The study's map of M giants depicts 2 billion years of Sagittarius stripping by the Milky Way, and suggests that Sagittarius has reached a critical phase in what had been a slow dance of death.
"After slow, continuous gnawing by the Milky Way, Sagittarius has been whittled down to the point that it cannot hold itself together much longer," said 2MASS Science Team member and study co-author Martin Weinberg of the University of Massachusetts. "We are seeing Sagittarius at the very end of its life as an intact system."
Does this mean we are at a unique moment in the life of our galaxy? Yes and no.
"Whenever possible, astronomers appeal to the principle that we are not at a special time or place in the universe," Majewski said. "Because over the 14 billion-year history of the Milky Way it is unlikely that we would just happen to catch a brief event like the death of Sagittarius, we infer that such events must be common in the life of big spiral galaxies like our own. The Milky Way probably dined on a number of dwarf galaxy snacks in the past."
On the other hand, Majewski and his colleagues have been surprised by the Earth's proximity to a portion of the Sagittarius debris.
"For only a few percent of its 240 million-year orbit around the Milky Way galaxy does our Solar System pass through the path of Sagittarius debris," Majewski said. "Remarkably, stars from Sagittarius are now raining down onto our present position in the Milky Way. Stars from an alien galaxy are relatively near us. We have to re-think our assumptions about the Milky Way galaxy to account for this contamination."
The new findings will help astronomers measure the total mass of the Milky Way and Sagittarius galaxies, and probe the quantity and distribution of the invisible dark matter in these systems.
"The shape of the Sagittarius debris trail shows us that the Milky Way's unseen dark matter is in a spherical distribution, a result that is quite unexpected," Weinberg said.
"The observations provide new insights into the nature of the mysterious dark matter," said Princeton's Spergel. "Either our galaxy is unusual or the dark matter has richer properties than postulated by conventional models."
Implications in Global Warming?
It has been postulated that this is the real reason for both global warming since higher energy levels of the Milky Way are almost certain to cause our Sun to burn hotter and emit higher energies. Indeed, temperatures have been seen to rise on virtually all the planets in our system. This seems quite apart from any local phenomenon like greenhouse gases etc.
This grand turning is possibly the root cause for the discontinuation of the Mayan calendar (the most accurate on the planet) because the 'read-point' of the Pleiades star cluster, which many believe the calendar was based upon, can no longer be a constant as we begin to steer away from the earlier predictable movements.
The "marriage" of our birth galaxy with our new adopted Milky Way galaxy is causing energy shifts that are obvious just about everywhere. Here are some changes being watched by scientists:
* A growth of dark spots on Pluto.
* Reporting of auroras on Saturn.
* Reporting of Uranus and Neptune polar shifts (They are magnetically conjugate planets), and the abrupt large-scale growth of Uranus' magnetosphere intensity.
* A change in light intensity and light spot dynamics on Neptune.
* The doubling of the magnetic field intensity on Jupiter (based upon 1992 data), and a series of new states and processes observed on this planet as an aftermath of a series of explosions in July 1994 [caused by "Comet" SL-9]. That is, a relaxation of a plasmoid train which excited the Jovian magnetosphere, thus inducing excessive plasma generation and it's release in the same manner as Solar coronal holes inducing an appearance of radiation belt brightening in decimeter band (13.2 and 36 cm), and the appearance of large auroral anomalies and a change of the Jupiter - Io system of currents.
Update Note: A stream of ionized hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, etc. is being directed to Jupiter from the volcanic areas of Io through a one million amperes flux tube. It is affecting the character of Jupiter's magnetic process and intensifying it's plasma genesis.[Z.I.Vselennaya "Earth and Universe" N3, 1997 plo-9 by NASA data]
* A series of Martian atmosphere transformations increasing its biosphere quality. In particularly, a cloudy growth in the equator area and an unusual growth of ozone concentration.
Update Note: Mars Surveyor Satellite encountered an atmospheric density double that projected by NASA upon entering a Mars orbit. This greater density bent one of the solar array arms beyond the full and open stop. This combination of events has delayed the beginning of the scheduled photo mission for one year.
* A first stage atmosphere generation on the Moon, where a growing natrium atmosphere is detected that reaches 9,000 km in height.
* Significant physical, chemical and optical changes observed on Venus; an inversion of dark and light spots detected for the first time, and a sharp decrease of sulfur-containing gases in its atmosphere.
* A Change in the Quality of Interplanetary Space Towards an Increase in Its Interplanetary and Solar-Planetary Transmitting Properties.
When speaking of new energetic and material qualities of interplanetary space, we must first point out the increase of the interplanetary domains energetic charge, and level of material saturation. This change of the typical mean state of interplanetary space has two main causes:
* The supply/inflow of matter from interstellar space. (Radiation material, ionized elements, and combinations.)
* The after effects of Solar Cycle 22 activity, especially as a result of fast coronal mass ejection's [CME's] of magnetized solar plasmas.
What does it all mean?
We of the overarching Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy have finally come down next to, and even with the massively powerful spiral armed equatorial plane of the Milky Way Galaxy.
In our movement through space, our Earth has now fully begun to respond to the more powerful galactic energies and electro-gravitational bias of the massive Milky Way. We have reached the higher energy equatorial disc region of the massive spiral arm. We have now been "adopted" by a new system, a stronger and more powerful system, and we can expect changes on almost every level of energy.
Whatever these changes are, they are all part of the natural birth, death, rebirth and transformation of the cosmos. As our knowledge of the universe grows, we cannot but understand how much we do not understand.
Here is some interesting facts of our solar system, since we are currently in the months of Virgo:
1. On January 9, 2006, Mario Jurić and others of Princeton University announced that the Sloan Digital Sky Survey of the northern sky found a huge and diffuse structure (spread out across an area around 5,000 times the size of a full moon) within the Milky Way that does not seem to fit within current models. The collection of stars rises close to perpendicular to the plane of the spiral arms of the galaxy. The proposed likely interpretation is that a dwarf galaxy is merging with the Milky Way. This galaxy is tentatively named the Virgo Stellar Stream and is found in the direction of Virgo about 30,000 light-years (9 kpc) away.
2. On November 9, 2010, Doug Finkbeiner of the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics announced that he had detected two gigantic spherical bubbles of energy erupting to the north and the south from the center of the Milky Way, using data of the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. The diameter of each of the bubbles is about 25,000 light-years (7.7 kpc); they stretch up to Grus and to Virgo on the night-sky of the southern hemisphere. Their origin remains unclear, so far.
3. The Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy are a binary system of giant spiral galaxies belonging to a group of 50 closely bound galaxies known as the Local Group, itself being part of the Virgo Supercluster.