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Sagittarius A
(Credit: NASA/F. Baganoff (MIT) /G. Garmire (PSU))


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Sagittarius A East
Galactic Center:
Chandra Discovers X-ray Source at the Center of Our Galaxy


Galactic Center
Credit: NASA/MIT/PSU

Chandra X-ray image of the innermost 10 light years at the center of our galaxy. The image has been smoothed to bring out the X-ray emission from an extended cloud of hot gas surrounding the supermassive black-hole candidate Sagittarius A* (larger white dot at the very center of the image- a little to the left and above the smallest white dot). This gas glows in X-ray light because it has been heated to a temperature of millions of degrees by shock waves produced by supernova explosions and perhaps by colliding winds from young massive stars.

Fast Facts for Galactic Center:
Credit  NASA/MIT/PSU
Scale  Image is 1.3 arcmin across.
Category  Black Holes, Milky Way Galaxy
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 17h 45m 40s | Dec -29 00' 28"
Constellation  Sagittarius
Obs. IDs  242
Color Code  Intensity
Instrument  ACIS
Distance Estimate  26,000 light years
Release Date  January 14, 2000