Looking "underneath" the quasar HE0450-2958

This image shows the quasar HE0450-2958 after advanced image processing known as MCS-deconvolution. Thanks to this technique, it is possible to remove the brilliant glare from the quasar itself.

The most interesting feature in the image is the nearly total absence of starlight from a host galaxy. The processing also reveal an interesting smaller cloud of gas about 2,500 light-years wide, which the scientist call "the blob", just next to the quasar. VLT observations show this cloud to be glowing because it is bathed in the intense radiation coming from the quasar. Most likely, it is the gas from this "blob" that feeds the super massive black hole, thereby allowing it to shine as a quasar.


NASA/ESA, ESO, Frédéric Courbin (Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Switzerland) & Pierre Magain (Universite de Liège, Belgium)

About the Image

Release date:14 September 2005, 19:00
Related releases:heic0511
Size:781 x 781 px

About the Object

Name:HE 0450-2958, QSO B0450-299
Type:Early Universe : Galaxy : Activity : AGN : Quasar
Distance:z=0.246 (redshift)
Category:Quasars and Black Holes

Image Formats

Large JPEG
86.2 KB
Screensize JPEG
97.5 KB


Colours & filters

Hubble Space Telescope

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