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Random Facts - The Milky Road or The Silver River
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Wednesday, July 20, 2016
In China, the Milky Way is called "The Silver River." The Romans called our galaxy the Milky Road because it reminded them of milk. The Greeks called it the Milky Circle. In fact, the word "galaxy" is from the Greek word for milk.
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Today's Random Fact:
The Milky Way is a galaxy--a huge group of stars, gas, dust, and other matter held together in space by their mutual gravitational pull. The Milky Way is just one of billions of galaxies in the universe.
When a person sees the Milky Way at night, they are seeing only about 0.0000025 percent of the galaxy's hundreds of billions of stars.
The Milky Way galaxy is 100,000 light-years from edge to edge. If a rocket could travel at the speed of light, it would take 100,000 years to cross the galaxy. By comparison, light can go from Earth to the moon in just one second.
If our solar system were the size of a U.S. quarter, the sun would be a microscopic piece of dust and the Milky Way would be about the size of the United States.
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