Chinese researchers, using data from various previous astronomical observations, discovered the presence in cosmic space near the Earth’s tidal tail, because of its appearance received the name of “star snake.”

the researchers ‘ Work is published on the portal of preprints, and briefly about it tells The observed structure can improve our understanding of the formation and evolution of tidal tails.

These weird cosmic objects are believed to be the result of gravitational interactions between galaxies. This is usually a thin elongated region of stars and interstellar gas.

When two galaxies rotating around each other, their tidal forces distort each of them. These distorted areas is then thrown out into intergalactic space and form tidal tails.

In this case, this object was discovered by a team led Hai-Jun tan of the University in Yichang near the Clouds of Orion, one of the most active regions of star formation. The discovery was made on the basis of the analysis of astrometric and photometric data, mainly obtained from the satellite Gaia.

the New structure was quite young, which did not allow astronomers to apply the adopted classification of tidal tails. So they named it quasiplane tail.

According to published data, the length and width of “star serpent” more than 750 light years and its thickness is about 260 light-years. From our planet it is at a distance of about 1000 light-years – very close, by cosmic standards.

the Age composition of the “snake” is estimated only 30-40 million years. This means that she’s much younger than any previously discovered tidal tails. The structure of the “snake” turned out to be atypical for a classical tidal tails, as it only has one tail and consists of two dissolving nuclei in the “head”.

According to the researchers, serpentine form suggests that the parental star cluster has experienced one or more severe damage. However, the question of what the mechanism could stretch the parent cluster in the tail with a size of more than 750 light-years in such a short time, remains open.

In their paper, the researchers write that “the opening of “star serpent” casts doubt on the prevailing theory of the formation and evolution of tidal tails.”