Pileup of 14 Distant Galaxies Set to Collide — and Become the Most Massive Structure in the Universe

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It’s a cosmic pileup in the far reaches of the universe and nothing like it has ever been seen before.

Using the most powerful telescopes on Earth, astronomers have spotted 14 burning-hot galaxies hurtling toward each other on an inevitable galactic collision course at the edge of the observable universe.

Computer models show that when these galaxies do collide they will form the core of a colossal galaxy cluster so large it will be the most massive structure known in the cosmos.

This chaotic, energy-filled region, described Wednesday in Nature, is called a protocluster, and researchers say it is more active than any other section of the universe they have ever observed.

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