Viewing the Violent Universe

Viewing the Violent Universe is a mini-exhibition on the scientific goals and achievements of NASA's Compton Gamma Ray Observatory spacecraft. Located in the National Air and Space Museum's Milestones of Flight gallery, the exhibit was open from February 1996 through October 1996. The exhibit was designed by Lab and Museum staff, and by scientists from the Compton Observatory Space Science Center (  at NASA's Goddard Spaceflight Center.

NASM Exhibit

View the exhibit from the gallery floor...
Gamma rays are a non-visible form of light that is created by the universe's hottest and most cataclysmic events. The Compton Observatory serves as our eyes for viewing the gamma-ray universe. The observatory allows study of such enigmatic phenomena as supernovae-- the explosion of the most massive stars; pulsars and black holes -- bizarre stellar corpses resulting from supernova explosions; quasars -- central regions of galaxies seen at the outer reaches of the universe; and gamma-ray bursts -- mysterious sources of intense energy that may herald unidentified violent events at the far reaches of the universe.


A service of the Laboratory for High Energy Astrophysics at Goddard Space Flight Center

Technical Rep: Jay Norris
Web Curator: J.D. Myers

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Viewing The Violent Universe was created by
Joslyn Schoemer, Stephanie Leitner and Tom Chi.

Questions and comments may be sent to Joslyn Schoemer at