Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Chandra's Deep Field

Do you remember Hubble's deep field? Now it's Chandra's turn! Chandra has made an important discovery through its deep-field imaging system. The Chandra X-ray telescope has helped astronomers come to discover the prevalence of black-holes in the early universe. The image (as seen below) was taken over a period of six weeks; taking images of the same piece of the sky, but keep on taking smaller and smaller images within that image until just a small portion is shown.

It allowed astronomers to locate two-hundred galaxies that contained early, black holes as seen below in the second image. (They are circled; not all 200 are shown). "It appears we've found a whole new population of baby black holes," said co-author Kevin Schawinski of Yale University. "We think these babies will grow by a factor of about a hundred or a thousand, eventually becoming like the giant black holes we see today almost 13 billion years later (in the future)" So, Chandra keeps on making new discoveries each day!

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