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Hyperfast Star Booted from Milky Way
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Hyperfast Star Booted from Milky Way

July 23, 2010
In this illustration, the hot, blue star HE 0437-5439 has been tossed out of the center of our Milky Way galaxy with enough speed to escape the galaxy's gravitational clutches. The stellar outcast is rocketing through the Milky Way's distant outskirts at 1.6 million miles an hour, high above the galaxy's disk, about 200,000 light-years from the center. The star is destined to roam intergalactic space.

Illustration Credit: NASA, ESA, and G. Bacon (STScI)

Science Credit: NASA, ESA, O. Gnedin (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor), and W. Brown (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Mass.)