Latest Centaurus A Stories

2010-08-12 10:35:00

Curling around itself like a question mark, the unusual looking galaxy NGC 4696 itself begs many questions. Why is it such a strange shape? What are the odd, capillary-like filaments that stretch out of it? And what is the role of a large black hole in explaining its decidedly odd appearance? This picture, taken by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys, is not just a beautiful snapshot of NGC 4696, the largest galaxy in the Centaurus Cluster (galaxy cluster Abell 3526). It is also an...

2010-04-01 15:40:00

If our eyes could see radio waves, the nearby galaxy Centaurus A (Cen A) would be one of the biggest and brightest objects in the sky, nearly 20 times the apparent size of a full moon. What we can't see when looking at the galaxy in visible light is that it lies nestled between a pair of giant radio-emitting gas plumes ejected by its supersized black hole. Each plume is nearly a million light-years long. NASA's Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope maps gamma rays, radiation that typically packs...

2010-03-29 13:00:00

A new image from NASA's Chandra and Spitzer space telescopes shows the dusty remains of a collapsed star. The dust is flying past and engulfing a nearby family of stars. "Scientists think the stars in the image are part of a stellar cluster in which a supernova exploded," said Tea Temim of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Mass., who led the study. "The material ejected in the explosion is now blowing past these stars at high velocities." The composite image of...

2009-11-20 09:28:03

A new technique using near-infrared images, obtained with ESO's 3.58-metre New Technology Telescope (NTT), allows astronomers to see through the opaque dust lanes of the giant cannibal galaxy Centaurus A, unveiling its "last meal" in unprecedented detail "” a smaller spiral galaxy, currently twisted and warped. This amazing image also shows thousands of star clusters, strewn like glittering gems, churning inside Centaurus A. Centaurus A (NGC 5128) is the nearest giant, elliptical...

2009-10-13 08:50:00

A recent NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image captures what appears to be one very bright and bizarre galaxy, but is actually the result of a pair of spiral galaxies that resemble our own Milky Way smashing together at breakneck speeds. The product of this dramatic collision, called NGC 2623, or Arp 243, is about 250 million light-years away in the constellation of Cancer (the Crab). Not surprisingly, interacting galaxies have a dramatic effect on each other. Studies have revealed that as...

2009-07-10 10:45:00

Europe's Herschel space observatory has had incredible results with its first test observation using three of its instruments, which proves it is on its way to becoming one of the most dynamic tools ever created to study the cosmic roots of the world as we know it. While their set-up is not quite complete, the "first light" data demonstrates amazing ability. The telescope first targeted galaxies, star-forming regions and dying stars. They gathered amazing data on the first try, finding...

2009-04-29 15:20:00

An extremely deep Chandra X-ray Observatory image of a region near the center of our galaxy has resolved a long-standing mystery about an X-ray glow along the plane of the galaxy. The glow in the region covered by the Chandra image was discovered to be caused by hundreds of point-like X-ray sources, implying that the glow along the plane of the galaxy is due to millions of such sources. This image shows an infrared view from the Spitzer Space Telescope of the central region of the Milky Way,...

2009-04-22 09:20:00

A survey by the Chandra X-ray observatory has revealed in detail, for the first time, the effects of a shock wave blasted through a galaxy by powerful jets of plasma emanating from a supermassive black hole at the galactic core. The observations of Centaurus A, the nearest galaxy that contains these jets, have enabled astronomers to revise dramatically their picture of how jets affect the galaxies in which they live. The results will be presented on Wednesday 22nd April at the European Week...

2009-04-14 09:40:00

A flare-up in a jet of matter blasting from a monster black hole is giving astronomers an incredible light show. The outburst is coming from a blob of matter, called HST-1, embedded in the jet, a powerful narrow beam of hot gas produced by a supermassive black hole residing in the core of the giant elliptical galaxy M87. HST-1 is so bright that it is outshining even M87's brilliant core, whose monster black hole is one of the most massive yet discovered. The glowing gas clump has taken...

2009-02-10 10:58:36

The U.S. space agency is planning a special exhibit to celebrate Galileo's 445th birthday and 2009's designation as the International Year of Astronomy. In conjunction with Galileo's birthday next Sunday, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration is releasing images from its Great Observatories -- the Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes and the Chandra X-ray Observatory -- to more than 100 U.S. planetariums, museums, nature centers and schools. The selected sites will unveil a large...

Latest Centaurus A Reference Libraries

2010-09-13 16:39:39

The Centaurus A/M83, divided into subgroup Cen A and M83, is a complex group of galaxies located within Hydra, Centaurus, and Virgo constellations. The Cen A Subgroup, at a distance of 11.9 Mly (3.66 Mpc), is centered around Centaurus A, a nearby radio galaxy. The M83 Subgroup, at a distance of 14.9 Mly (4.56 Mpc), is centered around the Messier 83 (M83), a face-on spiral galaxy. Due to the physical closeness of both subgroups they are sometimes identified as two groups sometimes as one....

2010-09-07 17:44:03

Within the Hydra, Centaurus, and Virgo constellations a complex group of galaxies resides called Centaurus A/M83. There are two subgroups within Centaurus A/M83. The first is Cen A, at a distance of 11.9 Million Light Years, is centered around Centaurus A, a close by radio galaxy. The other subgroup, M83, is at a distance of 14.9 Million Light Years and is centered around the Messier 83. Since there are two subgroups Centaurus is sometimes identified as one group and sometimes two, it will be...

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Word of the Day
  • A rich embroidered or brocaded silk fabric woven originally with a warp of gold thread.
'Baudekin' seems to be an alternative form of 'baldachin,' from the Italian 'Baldacco,' Baghdad, the city where the material was made.