Latest Quasar Stories

Many Quasars Are Light Eaters
2012-06-20 04:20:53

Black holes in the early universe needed a few snacks rather than one giant meal to fuel their quasars and help them grow, according to observations from NASA's Spitzer and Hubble space telescopes. Quasars are the brilliant beacons of light that are powered by black holes feasting on captured material, and in the process, heating some of the matter to millions of degrees. The brightest quasars reside in galaxies distorted by collisions with other galaxies. These encounters send lots of gas...

Baby Galaxies Grew Up Faster Than Previously Believed
2012-05-18 03:53:28

[ Watch the Video ] Baby galaxies from the young Universe more than 12 billion years ago evolved faster than previously thought, shows new research from the Niels Bohr Institute. This means that already in the early history of the Universe, there was potential for planet formation and life. The research results have been published in the scientific journal, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Letters. For several thousand years after the Big Bang 13.7 billion years ago,...

Image 1 - NASA Scientists Hunting Blazars Using WISE Telescope
2012-04-14 04:44:09

The hunt is on for a class of supermassive black holes, as scientists at NASA are using a infrared-wavelength astronomical space telescope in order to hunt-down the compact quasars typically associated with the phenomenon, officials at the US space agency revealed on Thursday. Using data obtained from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), astronomers have discovered more than 200 of these blazing quasi-stellar objects, and the potential is there to find thousands of additional...

Astronomers Find Cosmic Lenses With Feeding Black Holes
2012-03-16 02:50:20

In space, it sometimes happens that two galaxies are aligned in just the right way that the closer galaxy distorts and magnifies the appearance of the one behind it. For astronomers, finding these alignments is like coming across giant, cosmic magnifying glasses. Now, a team of astronomers, including Daniel Stern from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., has found several rare examples of this phenomenon, called gravitational lensing, in which the foreground galaxy hosts...

Image 1 - Astronomers Find Link To Early Universe And Today's Massive Galaxies
2012-01-25 14:35:15

[ Video 1 ] | [ Video 2 ] Astronomers have found the strongest link ever between the most powerful bursts of star formation in the Universe, and the most massive galaxies found today. The galaxies saw the birth of new stars cut short, leaving them as massive galaxies of aging stars today, according to the new research. The astronomers also found that the emergence of supermassive black holes played a role in causing the sudden end to the starburst. Astronomers used the LABOCA...

ALMA Reveals Starving Galaxies
2012-01-11 13:06:43

Astronomers using the partially completed ALMA observatory have found compelling evidence for how star-forming galaxies evolve into 'red and dead' elliptical galaxies, catching a large group of galaxies right in the middle of this change. For years, astronomers have been developing a picture of galaxy evolution in which mergers between spiral galaxies could explain why nearby large elliptical galaxies have so few young stars. The theoretical picture is chaotic and violent: The merging...

Early Black Holes Grew Big Eating Cold, Fast Food
2011-12-13 04:19:10

Largest Cosmological Simulation To-Date Explains How Supermassive Black Holes Came Into Existence Shortly After the Big Bang Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University´s Bruce and Astrid McWilliams Center for Cosmology have discovered what caused the rapid growth of early supermassive black holes — a steady diet of cold, fast food. Computer simulations, completed using supercomputers at the National Institute for Computational Sciences and the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center...

Image 1 - Monster Galaxies Found To Harbor Record Massive Black Holes
2011-12-06 10:40:02

Astronomers from UC Berkeley have discovered the largest black holes to date -- two monstrous abyssal voids with masses equivalent to more than 10 billion suns, threatening to consume everything in its path within a region five times the size of our own solar system. The massive black holes are at the centers of two galaxies more than 300 million light years away. Such holes could be the gravitational foundations of galaxies and clues to the fates of violent quasars, the powerful...

Latest Quasar Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:44

Large-Scale Structure of the Cosmos -- Stars are organised into galaxies which in turn appear to form clusters and superclusters, separated by voids. Prior to 1989 it was commonly assumed that the superclusters were the largest structures in existence, and that they were distributed more-or-less uniformly throughout the universe in every direction. However, in 1989, Margaret Geller and John Huchra discovered the "Great Wall", a sheet of galaxies more than 500 million light years long...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Supermassive Black Hole -- A Supermassive black hole is a black hole with a mass in the range of millions or billions solar masses. A supermassive black hole has some interesting properties differing from his low-mass cousins: -- The average density of a supermassive black hole can be very low, and actually can be lower than water's density. This happens because the black hole diameter increases linearly with mass, and consequently density drops much faster. -- Strong tidal...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Redshift -- Redshift is the phenomenon that the frequency of light when observed, under certain circumstances, can be lower than the frequency of light when it was emitted at the source. This usually occurs when the source moves away from the observer, as in the Doppler effect. More specifically, the term redshift is used for the observation that the spectrum of light emitted by distant galaxies is shifted to lower frequencies (towards the red end of the spectrum, hence the name) when...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Microquasar -- Microquasars are smaller cousins of quasars. They are named after quasars, as they have some common characteristics: strong and variable radio emission often seen as radio jets, and an accretion disk surrounding a black hole. In quasars, the black hole is supermassive (millions of solar masses) as in microquasars, the black hole mass is a few solar masses. In microquasars, the accreted mass comes from a normal star and the accretion disk is very luminous in optical regions...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Gravitational Lens -- A gravitational lens is formed when the light from a very distant, bright object (such as a quasar) is "bent" around a massive object (such as a massive galaxy) between the bright object and the viewer. The process is known as gravitational lensing, and was one of the predictions made by Einstein's general relativity. Description In a gravitational lens, the gravity from the massive object bends light as a lens might. As a result, the path of the light from a...

More Articles (8 articles) »
Word of the Day
  • The ragged surface of a lava-flow.
'Malpais' translates from Spanish as 'bad land.'