Galaxy Collision- Vast  Over Million Light-Years

Shock Wave Stretching

Two giant galaxy clusters

 crashing into each other triggered enormous shock waves stretching 1.6 million light-years through space.

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory,

 are helping astronomers better understand the powerful processes at work in collisions between clusters

The majority consists of an immense

 halo of dark matter and a cloud of hot, diffuse gas called the intra-cluster medium that envelops the galaxies in the cluster.

Because the gas is so hot,

 radiating at hundreds of millions of degrees Celsius, it shines brightly in X-rays.

When two clusters

 come into contact, the individual galaxies slide harmlessly past each other

But the gas of the

 intra-cluster medium undergoes a far more energetic encounter, generating vast shock waves.

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