|Expected & Detected
Thousands of supermassive black holes. These black holes are located
in the centers of galaxies and Chandra has shown they exhibit a wide
range of sizes and levels of explosive activity.
Finding a black hole a million times more massive than the Sun in a star-forming
dwarf galaxy is a strong indication that supermassive black holes can form
more quickly than the galaxy they reside in. This has implications for understanding
the formation of galaxies and black holes in the early universe.
A Chandra survey of nine galaxies shows that most of the energy released by
matter falling toward supermassive black holes in these galaxies is in the form of
high-energy jets traveling at near the speed of light away from the black hole.
Chandra images have revealed that many galaxies have jets of high-energy
particles that extend to the outer reaches of the galaxy and affect the appearance
and evolution of these galaxies. These jets are generated by matter falling
toward supermassive black holes in the centers of the galaxies.