At the heart of M87, the Virgo A galaxy, is one of the biggest black holes ever seen — about 6 billion times more massive than the sun. Scientists working with the Chandra X-ray telescope and the Very Large Array have compiled this nice new image of its insatiable appetite in action.
Size doesn't always matter when it comes to NASA's pretty pictures, but it may certainly make an impression upon visitors at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago. The planetarium has revealed a gigantic Milky Way panorama that stretches 120 feet long and 3 feet wide at the sides. The center of the picture bulges out to 6 feet wide to accommodate the center of the galaxy.
Lost galactic hitchhikers can now rejoice when they visit our corner of the Milky Way. A new sky map created by a NASA spacecraft shows the boundaries of our solar system in comparison to the rest of the interstellar neighborhood.
The boundaries are defined by our sun's heliosphere -- a protective bubble created by the solar wind that travels outward and collides with incoming interstellar radiation. That typically invisible boundary became visible through energetic neutral atoms created in the region that speed toward the sun at velocities ranging up to 2.4 million mph.
The Big Question: Why are galaxies moving toward the same point, as if pulled by an unknown force?
By James Owen WeatherallPosted 10.16.2009 at 9:25 am 13 Comments
As if the universe weren't strange enough, scientists have recently discovered that entire galaxy clusters—the largest known structures in the universe, consisting of thousands of galaxies—are moving toward the same area. And we have no idea what mysterious phenomenon is drawing them along. Whatever it is, it's huge. So far, cosmologists' best guess is that it's the gravitational pull from something beyond the visible universe. NASA scientist Alexander Kashlinsky and a team of researchers discovered the mystery motion, dubbed "dark flow," last year.
Two pinpoints of light represent black holes in the center of this combined X-ray/optical image
Colliding black holes may prove more interesting to scientists than the immovable object versus the unstoppable force. New data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has combined with optical images from Hubble to show off a merging black hole pair in all its glory.
The newly-refurbished Hubble Space Telescope sent back its first breathtaking images after being repaired in September. Here, Nebula NGC 6302 with its butterfly wings of 36,000-degree gas.
We always like to look forward to bigger and better tech, but NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, though it's been around the block, still holds a special place in every geek's heart. Now the freshly repaired and upgraded telescope has resumed churning out enough images of cosmic glory to turn anyone's head.
A newly discovered galaxy turned out 4,000 stars a year, contradicting a long standing theory
By Stuart FoxPosted 07.11.2008 at 11:58 am 4 Comments
Considering the birth rate, astronomers might have named this the Rabbit Galaxy. According to a new paper in today's issue of Astrophysical Journal Letters, researchers have discovered a galaxy that birthed stars 400 times faster than our Milky Way, overturning previously held ideas about the formation of giant galaxies
By Dave ProchnowPosted 12.20.2007 at 8:52 am 0 Comments
For you last minute shoppers, Amazon.com is now showing the ASUS Eee PC 4G-Galaxy Black as in stock. The list price is, well, list price: $399.99. You will have to hustle, though and select One-Day Shipping to have it delivered by December 24.—Dave Prochnow