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Galaxy vs. Universe: What's the Difference?

Edited by Huma Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Published on November 22, 2023
Galaxy is a large system of stars, gas, and dust bound by gravity. Universe is the totality of everything that exists, including all galaxies.

Key Differences

Galaxy is a massive, gravitationally bound system consisting of stars, stellar remnants, interstellar gas, dust, and dark matter. However, universe refers to all of space and time, including all forms of energy, matter, and physical laws governing them.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023
A galaxy is just one of the billions of galaxies within the observable universe. While, the universe encompasses everything known and unknown, including all matter and energy.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023
The galaxy we reside in, the Milky Way, is but a tiny part of the universe. Whereas, the universe contains countless galaxies, each with their unique properties and structures.
Huma Saeed
Nov 22, 2023
Galaxies vary in size and shape, including spiral, elliptical, and irregular types. Meanwhile, the universe is the collective expanse that includes these diverse galaxies along with the vast, empty space between them.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 22, 2023
The study of galaxies involves understanding star formation, galactic evolution, and dark matter. Exploring the universe entails studying cosmology, the Big Bang theory, and the fate of the cosmos.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Definition

System of stars and cosmic material
All of space and time, and its contents
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

Scale

Part of the universe
The entirety of everything
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

Composition

Stars, gas, dust, dark matter
Galaxies, energy, matter, laws of physics
Huma Saeed
Nov 22, 2023

Variety

Different types (spiral, elliptical)
Encompasses all varieties of galaxies
Aimie Carlson
Nov 22, 2023

Study Area

Galactic structure, star formation
Cosmology, origin and fate of everything
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023
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Galaxy and Universe Definitions

Galaxy

Cosmic structure.
Galaxies are fundamental structures in the cosmos.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 17, 2023

Universe

Infinite expanse.
The universe may be infinite in size.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 17, 2023

Galaxy

Star system.
Our solar system is part of the Milky Way galaxy.
Janet White
Nov 17, 2023

Universe

Cosmic entirety.
The universe is the sum total of space and time.
Huma Saeed
Nov 17, 2023

Galaxy

Gravitational unit.
A galaxy is held together by gravitational forces.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 17, 2023

Universe

All existence.
The universe encompasses everything we know.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 17, 2023

Galaxy

Star host.
Galaxies contain billions of stars.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 17, 2023

Universe

Physical laws domain.
The laws of physics operate throughout the universe.
Janet White
Nov 17, 2023

Galaxy

Variably sized.
Galaxies range from dwarfs to giants.
Harlon Moss
Nov 17, 2023

Universe

Energy and matter container.
The universe contains all energy and matter.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 17, 2023

Galaxy

Any of numerous large-scale aggregates of stars, gas, and dust that constitute the universe, containing an average of 100 billion (1011) solar masses and ranging in diameter from 1,500 to 300,000 light-years.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

Universe

All spacetime, matter, and energy, including the solar system, all stars and galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space, regarded as a whole.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

Galaxy

Often Galaxy The Milky Way.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

Universe

A hypothetical whole of spacetime, matter, and energy that is purported to exist simultaneously with but to be different from this universe
An alternate universe.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

Galaxy

An assembly of brilliant, glamorous, or distinguished persons or things
A galaxy of theatrical performers.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

Universe

A model or conception of the earth and everything else that exists
“Apart from celestial beings, the aboriginals' universe contained spirits of the land and sea” (Madhusree Mukerjee).
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 16, 2023

FAQs

How many galaxies are in the universe?

There are estimated to be billions of galaxies.
Janet White
Nov 22, 2023

How old is the universe?

The universe is approximately 13.8 billion years old.
Janet White
Nov 22, 2023

What is a galaxy made of?

Galaxies consist of stars, gas, dust, and dark matter.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

Can we see the entire universe?

No, we can only observe a portion of the universe.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 22, 2023

How big is the universe compared to a galaxy?

The universe is immensely larger, containing billions of galaxies.
Huma Saeed
Nov 22, 2023

What's the difference in studying galaxies and the universe?

Galactic studies focus on individual systems, while cosmology studies the universe as a whole.
Janet White
Nov 22, 2023

Is our solar system a galaxy?

No, our solar system is part of the Milky Way galaxy.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 22, 2023

What's the role of dark matter in galaxies?

Dark matter significantly influences the structure and dynamics of galaxies.
Aimie Carlson
Nov 22, 2023

Is the universe expanding?

Yes, the universe is continuously expanding.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

What's the largest galaxy known?

IC 1101 is one of the largest known galaxies.
Janet White
Nov 22, 2023

Can galaxies collide?

Yes, galaxies can and do collide and merge over time.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

How do galaxies form?

Galaxies form from the gravitational collapse of matter in the early universe.
Janet White
Nov 22, 2023

Are new galaxies still being formed?

Galaxy formation is an ongoing process in the universe.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

What lies beyond the universe?

This remains one of the great mysteries of cosmology.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

How do we measure distances in the universe?

Distances are measured using methods like redshift and standard candles.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023

What's at the edge of the universe?

The concept of an 'edge' doesn't apply to the universe as we understand it.
Harlon Moss
Nov 22, 2023

Can we travel to another galaxy?

With current technology, intergalactic travel is not feasible.
Harlon Moss
Nov 22, 2023

Are all galaxies moving away from each other?

Generally, galaxies are moving apart due to the expansion of the universe.
Harlon Moss
Nov 22, 2023

What is the shape of the universe?

The shape of the universe is still a topic of research, often considered flat.
Harlon Moss
Nov 22, 2023

What's the future of the universe?

Theories suggest it could expand indefinitely, collapse, or stabilize.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 22, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.

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