(Image and Text Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO)
The explosion was seen on Earth in 1054 AD. At the center of the nebula is a rapidly spinning neutron star, or pulsar that emits pulses of radiation 30 times a second. The image shows the central pulsar surrounded by tilted rings of high-energy particles that appear to have been flung outward over a distance of more than a light year from the pulsar. Perpendicular to the rings, jet-like structures produced by high-energy particles blast away from the pulsar. The diameter of the inner ring in the image is about a tenth of a light year, more than 200 times the diameter of our solar system. The X rays from the Crab nebula are produced by high-energy particles spiraling around magnetic field lines in the Nebula. The bell-shaped appearance of the Nebula could be due to the interaction of this huge magnetized bubble with clouds of gas and dust in the vicinity. Chandra X-ray Observatory
Click here for jpg version
By Mission |
HEASARC Home | Observatories | Archive | Calibration | Software | Tools | Students/Teachers/Public
Last modified: Thursday, 26-Jun-2003 13:48:44 EDT
HEASARC support for unencrypted FTP access will be ending on September 20, 2019. Please see this notice for details.