(Submitted June 14, 1997)
What is the structure of the Universe?
The structure of the local Universe has been mapped recently
by Margaret Geller and her colleagues. Their results show that matter
is distributed with large clusters of galaxies describing nearly flat
sheets, with voids in between, almost like water is distributed in soap
bubbles. One result of their work is a "portrait" of the structure of
the local Universe referred to as the "stick man".
Many astronomy textbooks include a diagram of it, for example
Astronomy Today (Eric Chaisson and Steve McMillan, Prentice Hall).
The "stick man" is only clearly evident in the first slice of the survey
(Figure 26.23 of the book). Other textbooks usually include the image
in a chapter on galaxies.
for the Ask an Astrophysicist