(CNN)According to a recent paper, the Earth is caught directly in the crosshairs of a cosmic hurricane. A swarm of nearly 100 stars, accompanied by an even greater amount of dark matter, is aimed directly at our stellar neighborhood and there’s nothing we can do to stop it; in fact, the vanguard is already upon us. This sounds like a perfect summer blockbuster movie, starring The Rock and Chris Pratt, or maybe Scarlett Johansson and Charlize Theron.
Except this is for real. But is it a danger? Well, actually, no. Not at all. But it’s potentially incredibly fascinating, with lots of interesting scientific interconnections. So, what is really going on?
The story starts last April, when the Gaia satellite announced the locations and trajectories of 2 billion stars in the vicinity of the Milky Way surrounding our sun. They released the data to the public.