You may have heard of the cosmic web, a network of filaments, clusters and voids that describes the three-dimensional distribution of matter in our universe. But have you ever considered the idea of a cosmic velocity web? In a new study led by Daniel Pomarède (IRFU CEA-Saclay, France), a team of scientists has built a detailed 3D view of the flows in our universe, showing in particular motions along filaments and in collapsing knots. In the image above (click for the full view), surfaces of knots (red) are embedded within surfaces of filaments (grey). The rainbow lines show the flow motion, revealing acceleration (redder tones) toward knots and retardation (bluer tones) beyond them. You can learn more about Pomarède and collaborators’ work and see their unusual and intriguing visualizations in the video they produced, below. Check out the original paper for more information.
Daniel Pomarède et al 2017 ApJ 845 55. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aa7f78