X-Ray Telescope Cracks Open Archives, Comes Up With Gassy Black Hole Gem

Article written: 22 Oct , 2014
Updated: 23 Dec , 2015

What a gem! This huge black hole in the middle of Hercules A is making gas around it super-heated to millions of degrees, making it shine brightly in X-Rays. The Chandra X-Ray Telescope captured the scene and in a new data release this week, telescope officials cracked open the archives to give us gems such as this.

The release comes as a part of American Archives Month, where every year Chandra officials go through the archives and pull out old Chandra data, combining it with the work of other telescopes to get as much information as possible about the objects being studied.

Chandra is one of three NASA “Great Observatories” still active, with the other two being the Hubble Space Telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope. It’s been in operation now for more than 15 years.

You can see the six new pictures below. To read more about each of these objects, head on over to this link.

Six photos released from the Chandra X-Ray Observatory's archive in October 2014. Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO

Six photos released from the Chandra X-Ray Observatory’s archive in October 2014. Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO

3 Responses

  1. Member
    Gozlemci says

    Hi Elizabeth;
    you better explain in your next article how the Black Hole ejects the heated gas from its two sides. Remembering the “new idea” that argue: “Black Holes might not be exist”, this isue is really getting “hot”…!

    • Denver says

      The key being “might not”.

      The mechanism seems to be known. The accretion disks exist and have been directly imaged, IIRC. In that regard it really doesn’t matter whether the disk is created by a singularity, a (completely hypothetical) quark star or a “big ball of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey… stuff”*

      General Relativity being what it is: SOMETHING happens very close to very massive bodies; the escape velocity from those masses, exceeds C in a vacuum.

      *The Tenth Doctor

      • Ignoramus says

        How the “maybe yes, maybe no existing” black hole create the “collimated jets”, is what needs explaining.

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