Galaxy cluster MS 0735

This is a composite image of galaxy cluster MS0735.6+7421, located about 2.6 billion light-years away in the constellation Camelopardalis. The image represents three views of the region that astronomers have combined into one photograph. The optical view of the galaxy cluster, taken by the Hubble Space Telescope's Advanced Camera for Surveys in February 2006, shows dozens of galaxies bound together by gravity. Diffuse, hot gas with a temperature of nearly 50 million degrees permeates the space between the galaxies. The gas emits X-rays, seen as blue in the image taken with the Chandra X-ray Observatory in November 2003. The X-ray portion of the image shows enormous holes or cavities in the gas, each roughly 640,000 light-years in diameter - nearly seven times the diameter of the Milky Way. The cavities are filled with charged particles gyrating around magnetic field lines and emitting radio waves shown in the red portion of image taken with the Very Large Array telescope in New Mexico in October 2004. The cavities were created by jets of charged particles ejected at nearly light speed from a supermassive black hole weighing nearly a billion times the mass of our Sun lurking in the nucleus of the bright central galaxy. The jets displaced more than one trillion solar masses worth of gas. The power required to displace the gas exceeded the power output of the Sun by nearly ten trillion times in the past 100 million years.


Hubble and Chandra: NASA, ESA, CXC, STScI, and B. McNamara (University of Waterloo)

Very Large Array Telescope Image Credit: NRAO, and L. Birzan and team (Ohio University)

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Release date:2 November 2006, 19:00
Size:3000 x 2400 px

About the Object

Name:MS 0735.6+742
Type:Early Universe : Galaxy : Grouping : Cluster
Distance:z=0.216 (redshift)

Image Formats

Large JPEG
581.5 KB
Screensize JPEG
152.7 KB

Colours & filters

X-ray Chandra
Optical Hubble Space Telescope
InfraredSpitzer Space Telescope

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