Science and Exploration

Chandra X-ray Image of Perseus A

By Keith Cowing
Status Report
January 17, 2023
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Chandra X-ray Image of Perseus A
Perseus A

The active galaxy NGC 1275 is a well-known radio source (Perseus A) and a strong emitter of X-rays due to the presence of a black hole in the center of the galaxy.

The behemoth also lies at the center of the cluster of galaxies known as the Perseus Cluster. The Chandra data shows the supermassive black hole at the center of Perseus A, seen as a white point. This 2008 image is 350 thousand light years across at the distance of the Perseus cluster.

The hot cluster gas is seen as diffuse emission, and two cavities in the cluster gas are visible on either side of the black hole.

Image credit: NASA/CXC/IoA/A.Fabian et al. Larger image

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.