3C321: A radio galaxy 1.4 billion light years from Earth.
Caption: 3C321 is a so-called radio galaxy
because it belongs to a class of galaxies
known to have strong radio emission.
Many radio galaxies have powerful jets
blasting out of their cores. When
astronomers looked at this object, however,
they saw something very unusual.
They found that the jet from 3C321
appears to be striking another galaxy
only about 21,000 light years away. At
this distance, less than that between the
Earth and the center of the Milky Way,
the galaxy being blasted could be experiencing
significant disruptions. By combining
data from Chandra, Hubble, and
the Very Large Array, astronomers are
examining the effects of this violent
eruption from one galaxy to another.
Scale: Image is 27 x 19 arcsec high.
Chandra X-ray Observatory ACIS Image