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More Images of Chandra Archive Collection
1
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X-ray & Infrared Images of B1509
Pareidolia is the psychological phenomenon where people see recognizable shapes in clouds, rock formations, or otherwise unrelated objects or data. When Chandra's image of PSR B1509-58, a spinning neutron star surrounded by a cloud of energetic particles, was released in 2009, it quickly gained attention because many saw a hand-like structure in the X-ray emission. In this new image of the system, X-rays from Chandra in gold are seen along with infrared data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) telescope in red, green, and blue. Pareidolia may strike again in this image as some people report seeing a shape of a face in WISE's infrared data.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO; Infared: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Fast Facts for PSR B1509-58:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO; Infared: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Scale  Image is 46 arcmin on a side (about 230 light years)
Category  Supernovas & Supernova Remnants, Neutron Stars/X-ray Binaries
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 14h 49m 26.90s | Dec -55 34' 48.00"
Constellation  Circinus
Observation Dates  4 pointings between 28 Dec 2004 and 18 Oct 2005
Observation Time  52 hours (2 days 4 hours)
Obs. IDs  5534, 5535, 6116, 6117
Instrument  ACIS
Color Code  X-ray (Gold); Infrared (Red, Blue)
Distance Estimate  About 17,000 light years

2
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X-ray & Infared Images of RCW38
A young star cluster about 5,500 light years from Earth, RCW 38 provides astronomers a chance to closely examine many young, rapidly evolving stars at once. In this composite image, X-rays from Chandra are blue, while infrared data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope are orange and additional infrared data from the 2MASS survey appears white. There are many massive stars in RCW 38 that will likely explode as supernovas. Astronomers studying RCW 38 are hoping to better understand this environment as our Sun was likely born into a similar stellar nursery.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/ESA-ESTEC/E.Winston et al, Near-IR: 2MASS/UMass/IPAC-Caltech/NASA/NSF, Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Fast Facts for RCW 38:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/ESA-ESTEC/E.Winston et al, Near-IR: 2MASS/UMass/IPAC-Caltech/NASA/NSF, Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Scale  Image is 26.5 arcmin across (46 light years)
Category  Normal Stars & Star Clusters
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 08h 59m 19.2s | Dec -47° 30' 22"
Constellation  Vela
Observation Dates  10 Dec 2001
Observation Time  27 hours (1 day 3 hours)
Obs. IDs  2556
Instrument  ACIS
References Winston, E. et al, 2012, ApJ 744, 126; arXiv:1111.4413
Color Code  X-ray (Blue), Near-IR (Red, Green, Blue), Infrared (Orange)
Distance Estimate  About 6,000 light years

3
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X-ray, Optical, Radio Images of Hercules A
Some galaxies have extremely bright cores, suggesting that they contain a supermassive black hole that is pulling in matter at a prodigious rate. Astronomers call these "active galaxies," and Hercules A is one of them. In visible light (colored red, green and blue, with most objects appearing white), Hercules A looks like a typical elliptical galaxy. In X-ray light, however, Chandra detects a giant cloud of multimillion-degree gas (purple). This gas has been heated by energy generated by the infall of matter into a black hole at the center of Hercules A that is over 1,000 times as massive as the one in the middle of the Milky Way. Radio data (blue) show jets of particles streaming away from the black hole. The jets span a length of almost one million light years.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO, Optical: NASA/STScI, Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA)

Fast Facts for Hercules A:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO, Optical: NASA/STScI, Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
Scale  Image is 3.3 arcmin across (about 1.7 million light years)
Category  Quasars & Active Galaxies
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 16h 51m 08.15s | Dec +04 59' 33.32"
Constellation  Hercules
Observation Dates  3 pointings between July 2001 and May 2005
Observation Time  31 hours 57 min (1 day 7 hours 57 min)
Obs. IDs  1625, 5796, 6257
Instrument  ACIS
References Nulsen, P.E.J. et al, 2005, ApJ 625, 9-12; arXiv:astro-ph/0504350
Color Code  X-ray (Pink), Optical (Orange, Blue), Radio (Blue)
Distance Estimate  About 1.9 billion light years

4
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X-ray, Optical, Radio & Infrared Images of Kes73
The supernova remnant Kes 73, located about 28,000 light years away, contains a so-called anomalous X-ray pulsar, or AXP, at its center. Astronomers think that most AXPs are magnetars, which are neutron stars with ultra-high magnetic fields. Surrounding the point-like AXP in the middle, Kes 73 has an expanding shell of debris from the supernova explosion that occurred between about 750 and 2100 years ago, as seen from Earth. The Chandra data (blue) reveal clumpy structures along one side of the remnant, and appear to overlap with infrared data (orange). The X-rays partially fill the shell seen in radio emission (red) by the Very Large Array. Data from the Digitized Sky Survey optical telescope (white) show stars in the field-of-view.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Manitoba/H.Kumar et al, Optical: DSS, Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech, Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA)

Fast Facts for Kes 73:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Manitoba/H.Kumar et al, Optical: DSS, Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech, Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
Scale  Image is 12 arcmin across (about 100 light years)
Category  Supernovas & Supernova Remnants
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 18h 41m 19.00s | Dec -04 56' 14.00"
Constellation  Scutum
Observation Dates  2 pointings on 23 July 2000 and 30 July 2006
Observation Time  15 hours 17 min
Obs. IDs  729, 6732
Instrument  ACIS
References Kumar, H. et al, 2014, ApJ 781, 41; arXiv:1311.6515
Color Code  X-ray (Blue); Optical (Grayscale); Infrared (Orange); Radio (Red)
Distance Estimate  About 28,000 light years

5
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X-ray, Optical & Radio Images of Mrk 573
Markarian 573 is an active galaxy that has two cones of emission streaming away from the supermassive black hole at its center. Several lines of evidence suggest that a torus, or doughnut of cool gas and dust may block some of the radiation produced by matter falling into supermassive black holes, depending on how the torus is oriented toward Earth. Chandra data of Markarian 573 suggest that its torus may not be completely solid, but rather may be clumpy. This composite image shows overlap between X-rays from Chandra (blue), radio emission from the VLA (purple), and optical data from Hubble (gold).
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/A.Paggi et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA)

Fast Facts for Mrk 573:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/A.Paggi et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
Scale  Image is 10 arcsec across (11,000 light years)
Category  Quasars & Active Galaxies
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 01h 43m 57.76s | Dec +02 20' 59.67"
Constellation  Cetus
Observation Dates  4 pointings between November 2006 and September 2010
Observation Time  32 hours 33 min (1 day 8 hours 33 min)
Obs. IDs  7745, 12294, 13124, 13125
Instrument  ACIS
References Paggi, A. et al, 2012, ApJ, 756, 39; arXiv:1203.1279
Color Code  X-ray (Blue); Optical (Yellow); Radio (Magenta)
Distance Estimate  About 240 million light years

6
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X-ray, Infrared & Optical Images of NGC 4736
NGC 4736 (also known as Messier 94) is a spiral galaxy that is unusual because it has two ring structures. This galaxy is classified as containing a "low ionization nuclear emission region," or LINER, in its center, which produces radiation from specific elements such as oxygen and nitrogen. Chandra observations (gold) of NGC 4736, seen in this composite image with infrared data from Spitzer (red) and optical data from Hubble and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (blue), suggest that the X-ray emission comes from a recent burst of star formation. Part of the evidence comes from the large number of point sources near the center of the galaxy, showing that strong star formation has occurred. In other galaxies, evidence points to supermassive black holes being responsible for LINER properties. Chandra's result on NGC 4736 shows LINERs may represent more than one physical phenomenon.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/Universita di Bologna/S.Pellegrini et al, IR: NASA/JPL-Caltech; Optical: SDSS & NASA/STScI)

Fast Facts for NGC 4736:
Credit  X-ray: NASA/CXC/Universita di Bologna/S.Pellegrini et al, IR: NASA/JPL-Caltech; Optical: SDSS & NASA/STScI
Scale  Image is 14.5 arcmin across (80,000 light years)
Category  Normal Galaxies & Starburst Galaxies
Coordinates (J2000)  RA 12h 50m 53.1s | Dec +41 07' 13.7"
Constellation  Canes Venatici
Observation Dates  May 13, 2000
Observation Time  13 hours 50 min
Obs. IDs  808
Instrument  ACIS
References Pellegrini, S. et al, 2002, A&A, 383; arXiv:astro-ph/0111353
Color Code  X-ray (Yellow); Infrared (Red); Optical (Blue)
Distance Estimate  About 19 million light years



7
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Image of Chandra Archives Images
With the passing of Chandra's 15th anniversary, the Chandra Data Archive, which houses all of the mission's data, continues to grow each successive year. These images – that include a wide range of astronomical objects -- combine X-rays from Chandra's archive with data from other telescopes. This technique of creating "multiwavelength" images allows scientists and the public to see how X-rays fit with data of other types of light, such as optical, radio, and infrared.
(Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO)

Return to Chandra Archive Collection (October 21, 2014)