These waves became Andromeda's spiral arms. Dr Kafle said the research suggests scientists previously overestimated the amount of dark matter in the Andromeda galaxy. But, galaxy collisions are common in the universe. The Milky Way–Andromeda collision will almost certainly move the Sun outwards from its current position 8,000 parsecs (26,000 light years) away from the Galactic centre. This simulation shows what will happen when the Milky Way and Andromeda get closer together and then collide, and then finally come together once more to merge into an even bigger galaxy. Andromeda and the Milky Way are heading on a collision course that will alter the structure of the two galaxies forever. Such collisions are relatively common, considering galaxies long lifespans. But when the galaxies are similar in size and mass – like the Milky Way and Andromeda – the close encounter destroys the spiral arm structure. Researchers concluded the galaxies would collide, using Hubble to track the motions of stars in Andromeda with unprecedented accuracy. What Happens in a Galaxy Collision? The galaxies are rushing closer … Until 2012, it was not known whether the collision was definitely going to happen or not. In 2012, researchers determined that a collision between the Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy was sure to happen, based on Hubble data that tracked the motions of Andromeda from 2002 to 2010. Following that, another galaxy-altering merger will occur, when the neighboring Andromeda galaxy (currently 2.5 million light-years away) … Astronomers predict that in about four billion years, the Andromeda galaxy will collide with our own galaxy… “The collision generated waves, just like a stone hitting water,” except that the effect is mediated by gravitational attraction rather than by a direct impact, says Loeb. Andromeda Milky Way Collision . 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