Judging by the mind-boggling diameter of our Milky Way galaxy, which measures about 100,000 light-years, you would be tempted to say that 500 light-years practically means nothing. But in the latter distance, dozens of solar systems would fit, which means that you surely cannot ignore the distance.
You also can’t ignore that astronomers found a giant “bubble” of void space in the Milky Way that measures 500 light-years wide, according to Space.com, and they’re not even sure what caused its formation.
A supernova is suspected of having caused the “bubble”
A star’s explosion (aka a supernova) is believed to be the possible cause of the formation of the newfound mysterious “bubble”. More precisely, the void was located between star-forming regions from the Taurus and Perseus constellations.
Shmuel Bialy, the lead author of the study and a postdoctoral researcher from the Harvard Smithsonian Center For Astrophysics’ Institute for Theory and Computation (ITC), declared:
Hundreds of stars are forming or exist already at the surface of this giant bubble,
We have two theories — either one supernova went off at the core of this bubble and pushed gas outward, forming what we now call the ‘Perseus-Taurus Supershell,’ or a series of supernovae occurring over millions of years created it over time.
The Milky Way galaxy is estimated to have between 100 billion and 200 billion stars, including our own. Therefore, you must not believe even for a second that the newfound “bubble” of void is somehow taking too much space in the Galaxy. Furthermore, new stars are born every day throughout the Cosmos. The more stars there are out there, the higher the chances are for finding extraterrestrial life someday. The distances are unfathomably huge, of course, but technology has also become unfathomably more sophisticated in the last decades and it will continue likewise.