Gaia is a mission for the European Space Agency (ESA) aim to create The most accurate and complete multidimensional map of the Milky Way. This allows astronomers to reconstruct Earth’s structure and past evolution Our Milky Way is a billion years oldas well as a better understanding of the life cycle of stars and our place in the universe.
In 2020, An early version of Gaia’s third roll of the dicethe full version (DR3) of part three was released this week, which includes Unseen and improved information on the 1.8 billion stars in our galaxy. This catalog contains new information including chemical composition, temperature, color, mass, age, and the speed at which stars are approaching or moving away from us (radial velocity).
This dataset has become the largest catalog of double stars to date.thousands of solar system objects such as planetary asteroids and moons, and millions of galaxies and quasars outside the Milky Way.
One of the most surprising discoveries is that Gaia can detect stellar earthquakes – tiny movements recorded on the star’s surface, causing its shape to change – The observatory wasn’t originally built to do something.
Gaia has previously encountered radial oscillations that cause stars to periodically recede., keeping its spherical shape.But now it detects other vibrations too Can be considered a large-scale tsunami.. These non-radial oscillations change the star’s overall shape, making it harder to spot.
“Starquakes give us a lot of information about stars, Especially about its inner workings. Gaia has opened up a gold mine for asteroseismology of massive stars,” explains Connie Altz, a member of the Gaia collaboration from the University of Kuleuven Belgium.
DNA of the stars
The composition of stars can tell us about their birthplaces and subsequent trajectories, and thus the history of the Milky Way. Using the current data input, Gaia has the largest chemical map of our galaxy, plus 3D motionranging from the vicinity of our sun to the smaller galaxies around us.
Some stars contain more heavy metals than others. During the Big Bang, only light elements (hydrogen and helium) were formedThe heaviest metals are produced inside stars, and when they die, they are released into the gas and dust in the interstellar medium to form new stars. Active formation of stars and their death enable richer environments in metals. Therefore, the chemical composition of stars is equivalent to DNA and gives us important information about their origin.
Binaries, Asteroids and Quasars
Other articles now also published reflect the breadth and depth of Gaia’s discoveries. A new binary catalog shows the mass and evolution of more than 800,000 binary star systemswhile other work on asteroids composed of 156,000 rocky objects has investigated the origins of our solar system.
Gaia also revealed information about 10 million variable stars and mysterious macromolecules between stars, as well as quasars and galaxies that lie outside our own cosmic neighborhood.
“We can’t wait to see how the astronomical community digs into our new data. Learn more about our galaxy and its environment than we ever thought possible,” said Timo Prusti, ESA’s Gaia project scientist.