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What will happen to the Milky Way in the future?

What will become of the Milky Way Galaxy in the remote future? Will it become unstable or evolve into something different?

On its own, the Milky Way will not become unstable. It will continue to grow by cannibalising small galaxies like the Magellanic Clouds (currently, the Milky Way is swallowing a small dwarf galaxy).

However, the Andromeda galaxy (which is bigger than the Milky Way) is right now headed towards the Milky Way and will tidally interact (or collide) with the Milky after several billion years. Some day, the two galaxies will merge and will probably become an elliptical galaxy (like M87). However, these events will take place only after a VERY LONG time.

May 2002, Jagadheep D. Pandian (more by Jagadheep D. Pandian) (Like this Answer)

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