Scientists have captured for the first time a series of images showing what happens when galaxies collide and merge, causing massive explosions and supermassive black holes that unite to create one giant black hole.
In other words, it's probably how it will look when our Milky Way Galaxy eventually collides with the upcoming Andromeda galaxy.
The scientists, led by Eureka researcher Michael Kos, managed to capture the images by looking through the thick, gray walls surrounding the nuclei of the galaxies, leading to the amazing images.
Orange orange "EURGLOW CUREPY"
"Seeing the pairs of nuclear fusion galaxies associated with these huge black holes so close together was quite remarkable," Kos said in a statement. "In our study, we see two nuclei of galaxies just when the images were taken, you can not argue with it, this result" very clean, which does not rely on interpretation. "
The images were taken by the Hubble 3 telescope's broad telescope camera and showed the galaxy NGC 6240. The massive black holes in the center of the colliding galaxies are expanding "as they boast of gas taken from the galaxy's fusion," the statement said.
The statement added that the growth of black holes came from the last 10 to 20 million years of the merged galaxy, and expects that during the next 10 million years, the black holes will merge "to create a more massive black hole."
They obtained the images by searching for visible black holes, and returning through BAT X-ray data.
"The advantage of Swift's BAT is that it looks at high energies," X-ray "hard," said study author Richard Moshotsky in a statement. "These x-rays come through the thick clouds of dust and gas that surround active galaxies, allowing the BAT to see things that are not visible at other wavelengths."
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The inevitable destruction of the Milky Way galaxy
A similar thing is likely to happen when our Milky Way galaxy collides with the nearby Andromeda galaxy, although this is not likely to happen soon, the researchers said.
"The images also show what will happen in a few billion years, when our Milky Way galaxy merges with neighboring Andromeda Galaxy," the statement said. "The two galaxies illuminate supermassive black holes in their center, which eventually will break together and merge into one larger black hole."
Earlier this year, NASA released a video simulation of what is expected to happen when the two galaxies inevitably collide.
"In six billion years, the two galaxies will merge and form one elliptical galaxy," NASA wrote in a statement accompanying the video.
So during a massive, deadly explosion will inevitably cause the destruction of our galaxy, it is not set to occur soon. So you can rest … for now.
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