Are you an Intergalactic Traveller?

Do you fancy walking on the moon? I should be saying hopping as the gravity on the moon is significantly less than on Earth. How about an intergalactic trip, far beyond the reach of our Solar System? Most of us have this sense of wonder at the possibilities of going beyond. Most of us will never actually get to realize the dream given the challenges involved, given current technology. What if I told you though, that you are already an intergalactic traveler. In fact, you have traveled through several galaxies to be who you are. Confused? Let me explain.

We are all made of matter. Atoms. The molecules that make us who we are originated as an outcome of the Big Bang from the Singularity. The matter then traveled through the Universe to form galaxies. Elements such as carbon and hydrogen were made from these particles. These then went on to make the single cell and then multiple cell organisms. You would presume that the cells that made you came from your galaxy, the Milky Way or even closer home, the Solar System. Just the Milky Way consists of billions of stars so surely there is enough material to go around. There are only some seven billion of us after all. In fact, can matter even travel across a galaxy on its own?

Astrophysicist, Daniel Angles-Alcazar built a simulation that produced a 3D model of galaxies. The simulation showed that supernova explosions create galactic winds which form the transport systems for atoms to travel between galaxies. The particles showed a tendency to move from smaller to larger galaxies, at least in the simulations. If the simulation is to be believed it means a significant amount of the stuff in our Milky Way came from somewhere else; which means a large part of you was at one point an intergalactic traveler. Were you going to settle for just a trip to Peru?


Ritesh is a born again health enthusiast and holds a Certificate in Physiology from Harvard Medical School and a Certificate in Nutrition from Tufts University.