Fleet Finding: Speed of Milky Way's companions poses puzzle

10:03am, January 10, 2007

Visible to the naked eye, the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are two of the Milky Way's closest companion galaxies. Scientists have assumed that these groups of stars have been orbiting the Milky Way for billions of years. But new measurements of the speed of these familiar fixtures now put astronomers in unfamiliar territory. Either the two tiny galaxies are just whizzing by or our galaxy is twice as massive as many scientists had estimated.

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