It’s hard to visualise what our little corner of the Universe looks like, what with galaxies being so spread out and our own one blocking quite a lot of the distant sky from us. Well, now there’s a map, of sorts. To wit:
…using large-scale galaxy motions to infer what massive objects must be gravitating in the nearby universe, the featured map, spanning over 600 million light years on a side, shows that our Milky Way Galaxy is on the edge of the Virgo Cluster of Galaxies, which is connected to the Great Attractor — an even larger grouping of galaxies. Also nearby are the massive Coma Cluster and the extensive Perseus-Pisces Supercluster. Conversely, we are also on the edge of huge region nearly empty of galaxies known as the Local Void. The repulsive push by the Local Void combined with the gravitational pull toward the elevated galaxy density on the other side of the sky explains part of the mysteriously high speed our Galaxy has relative to the cosmic microwave background — but not all.