The old core of the Milky Way lies in the constellation Sagittarius. According to Science News, data from the Gaia spacecraft helped scientists discover the original core of our galaxy. It consists of an ancient star cluster around which the Milky Way formed.
According to Hans-Walter Rix, an astronomer from the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, scientists have long assumed that such a cluster should be at the center of the galaxy. And now, with the help of the Gaia apparatus, it was possible to see it.
The old core is a round protogalaxy that spans 18,000 light-years. Its mass is 100 million times that of the Sun, as well as about 0.2% of the current stellar mass of the Milky Way. Thanks to this study, it was possible to learn more information about the youngest stage of galaxy formation.
So, the stars of the Milky Way have a lot of metals, which appeared in large quantities due to the explosions of previous stars. Therefore, scientists from the Ricks team began to look for stars with a minimum content of metals, they could appear only at the beginning of the formation of the galaxy.
Thanks to these searches, 18 thousand ancient stars were discovered, which represent the old core of the galaxy. Since scientists could not see all the stars due to cosmic dust, it can be assumed that the protogalaxy should be 50-200 million times more massive than the Sun.
The original core of the Milky Way contains stars that are over 12.5 billion years old.