INTEGRAL AGN volume density
Credit: R. Krivonos et al. (INTEGRAL team, Space Research Institute, Russia; MPA, Germany)

Where's the Matter?

Astronomers spend a lot of time wondering what the real structure of the Universe is. It's a tricky job since this framework of matter changes with time and the fact that it's an invisible framework, made of dark matter, doesn't make it any eaiser. No wonder astronomers need to use every tool in the box. The image above shows a map of the volume density of active galactic nuclei over the entire sky as a way of measuring the structure of matter in the nearby Universe. This map was obtained from observations of hard X-ray emission from the INTEGRAL Gamma-ray observatory. The colors represent the numbers of active galaxies in a given volume in space at each location in the sky. Large numbers of AGN are associated with the positions of highest mass concentrations in the nearby Universe, as marked in the image. The green contours represent numbers of bright infrared galaxies, which correlate well with the hard X-ray emitting active galaxies seen by INTEGRAL.

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Each week the HEASARC brings you new, exciting and beautiful images from X-ray and Gamma ray astronomy. Check back each week and be sure to check out the HEAPOW archive!

Page Author: Dr. Michael F. Corcoran
Last modified Friday, 20-Apr-2012 15:23:12 EDT

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