Sunday, October 20, 2013

NGC 1433: New Observations on Powerful Supermassive Black Hole Jets

I would like to interrupt your day to gaze in wonder at this exquisitely detailed image of galaxy NGC 1433, brought to us by the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA for short) and the Hubble Space Telescope. This composite image has two parts: the background blue image with the central dust lines in black (visible light is obscured by dust) by the Hubble, and the colored structures in the inner region, are made by the amazing power of ALMA.

As a lot of us know, there are two types of black holes: stellar mass black holes and supermassive black holes (SMBH for short). Supermassive black holes dominate the center of galaxy formations, including our own (called Sagittarius A in our own Milky Way). These cosmic gravitational behemoths can be up to several BILLION times the mass of our already seemingly large sun. In the infancy of the universe, supermassive black holes gobbled up copious amounts of matter from interstellar gas, growing to gigantic proportions, and sending powerful particle jets of matter at relativistic speeds outwards, emanating from the central regions around the event horizon.

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