Credit: NASA/CXC/MIT/F.K.Baganoff et al.
Where the Wild Things Are
The centers of spiral galaxies, like our own Milky Way, are host to some of the
most energetic creatures in the astrophysical zoo. For some reason celestial
monsters like black holes (of a wide variety of masses), neutron stars, and
groups of extremely massive stars can be found there in large numbers. Probably
view of the center of a spiral galaxy is shown above. This image is from a
deep pointing made by the Chandra X-ray
Observatory, and shows many point sources (most of which are some type of
compact object) as well as the unusual object Sgr
A*, thought to represent the Milky Way's "inactive" supermassive black hole.
Also visible in the image are two lobes of hot gas being blown off the disk of
the galaxy by processes yet to be fully identified.
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Page Author: Dr. Michael F. Corcoran
Last modified Mon May 05 07:15:22 EDT 2003