• Milky Way

    Milky Way (Triptych, 2023)

    Q: What is the one fact about the universe that blows your mind the most?

    One is just the size and scale of it. I mean, in the piece of the universe we can see there are something like roughly 2 trillion galaxies. We haven‘t counted them all but that’s an estimate based on surveys of the local universe. Two trillion, 2,000 billion galaxies. And each galaxy is, let’s say, around the size of the Milky Way. Some are bigger, some are smaller, but the Milky Way has 400 billion stars in it. It takes light over 100,000 years to cross a galaxy. And there are 2 trillion of them in the piece of the universe we can see. And we are very sure that that piece that we can see is a small bit of what may be an infinite universe beyond; we don’t know actually.

    And I always say, you know, don’t get worried about that, because nobody can picture it. It is impossible to visualize the scale of the universe.

    Astrophysicist Brian Cox