Source: ESA News
ESA’s Herschel infrared space observatory has detected raging winds of molecular gas streaming away from galaxies. Suspected for years, these outflows may have the power to strip galaxies of gas and halt star formation in its tracks.
The winds that Herschel has detected are extraordinary. The fastest is blowing at a speed of more than 1000 km/s, or about 10 000 times faster than the wind in a terrestrial hurricane.
This is the first time that such molecular gas outflows have been unequivocally observed in a sample of galaxies. This is an important discovery because stars form from molecular gas, and these outflows are robbing the galaxy of the raw material it needs to make new stars. If the outflows are powerful enough, they could even halt star formation altogether. (read more)