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X-ray Mosaic of Galactic Center: Chandra Takes In the Bright Lights, Big City of the Milky Way

Description: This spectacular mosaic of Chandra images reveals hundreds of white dwarf stars, neutron stars, and black holes bathed in an incandescent fog of multimillion degree gas. A supermassive black hole residing at the center of our Galaxy is located inside the bright white patch near the middle of the mosaic. The colors indicate X-ray energy bands – red (low), green (medium), and blue (high). The mosaic gives a new perspective on how turbulent the Galactic Center is, and how the region affects the evolution of our Galaxy as a whole.

Creator/Photographer: Chandra X-ray Observatory

NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, which was launched and deployed by Space Shuttle Columbia on July 23, 1999, is the most sophisticated X-ray observatory built to date. The mirrors on Chandra are the largest, most precisely shaped and aligned, and smoothest mirrors ever constructed. Chandra is helping scientists better understand the hot, turbulent regions of space and answer fundamental questions about origin, evolution, and destiny of the Universe. The images Chandra makes are twenty-five times sharper than the best previous X-ray telescope. NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., manages the Chandra program for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory controls Chandra science and flight operations from the Chandra X-ray Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Medium: Chandra telescope x-ray

Date: 2001

Persistent URL: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2009/gcenter/

Repository: Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory

Collection: Normal Galaxies and Starburst Galaxies Collection

Gift line: NASA/UMass/D.Wang et al.

Accession number: Gcenter_xray_rgb

5 comments to X-ray Mosaic of Galactic Center: Chandra Takes In the Bright Lights, Big City of the Milky Way

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