Hello halo

Published: Wednesday 31 December 1997

A vast halo of gamma rays surrounds the Milky Way galaxy, say scientists. Gamma rays are particles of light that contain highest levels of energy of all forms of radiation. Dave Dixon and his colleagues at the University of California-Riverside, USA, say that the presence of gamma rays indicates that some high-energy process is taking place in the region. The halo may be thousands of light-years thick. A light year is nearly six trillion miles. The phenomenon has been mapped by Compton Gamma Ray Observatory of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, USA. Gamma rays are being studied to find clues about the most violent events in the Universe such as the birth of galaxies or death of stars.

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