Hubble pinpoints source of mysterious outburst

The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has pinpointed the source of one of the most puzzling blast of high-energy radiation ever observed. It is at the very center of a small, distant galaxy.

The galaxy appears as a bright blob at the centre of the Hubble picture.

Astronomers say it is likely that a supermassive black hole at the core of the galaxy has gravitationally torn apart and swallowed a bypassing star. As the star’s gas falls onto the black hole, X-ray and gamma radiation is ejected along a narrow beam towards Earth.

If confirmed, this would be the first time this phenomenon has been observed.

Credit:

NASA, ESA and A. Fruchter (STScI)

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Id:ann1108a
Type:Observation
Release date:7 April 2011, 15:00
Related announcements:ann1108
Size:1200 x 900 px

About the Object

Name:GRB 110328A
Type:• Early Universe : Cosmology : Phenomenon : Gamma Ray Burst
• X - Cosmology Images/Videos
Distance:4 billion light years

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
V
606 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFC3

Image Formats

Large JPEG
809.9 KB
Screensize JPEG
500.1 KB

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