Space is a mysterious place and many people around the world are working to uncover it layer by layer. Yet quite a few mysterious events up there remain inexplicable. Scientists now believe there may be invisible walls in space. However, these walls are nothing like the walls of a room. Instead, they are more like obstacles. Scientists think these walls could have been created by a “fifth force” mediated by a hypothetical new particle called a symmetron. And the existence of this power can help to understand an interesting part of space that astronomers have long frustrated.
Currently, we use the Lambda cold dark matter model as the standard model to understand our universe. This model states that small galaxies should be distributed in messy orbits around larger galaxies. In fact, many small galaxies orbiting larger galaxies are arranged in thin flat planes (disks) that look similar to Saturn’s rings. This arrangement appears as if there are invisible walls in space that cause them to be arranged together in defiance of the Lambda model.
In other words, these small “satellite” galaxies are trapped by the gravitational pull of larger galaxies and are arranged in thin flat planes, while the model suggests that they be distributed in messy orbits around their host galaxies. These small galaxies have been seen in synchronized orbits throughout our own galaxy, the Milky Way, and also in neighboring galaxies. Scientists have suggested several explanations for this “satellite disk problem”.
However, the new study by researchers at the University of Nottingham offered a new explanation. It is available via the preset server arXiv. They call it “the first potential ‘new physics’ explanation. This suggests that symmetrons can generate invisible walls in space.
Yet the study is only a proof of concept. To prove that there are invisible walls in space, scientists will first have to prove that symmetrons exist. This will require the service of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, which should be ready for scientific observation this summer.