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Recent Podcast
A Tour of The Big, Bad & Beautiful Universe with Chandra
A Tour of The Big, Bad & Beautiful Universe with Chandra
To celebrate the 15th anniversary of NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, we have released four new images of supernova remnants. These show Chandra's ability to study the remains of supernova explosions, using images that are the sharpest available in X-ray astronomy. The images of the Tycho and G292.0+1.8 supernova remnants show how Chandra can trace the expanding debris of an exploded star. The images show shock waves, similar to sonic booms from a supersonic plane, that travel through space at speeds of millions of miles per hour. The images of the Crab Nebula and 3C58 show the effects of very dense, rapidly spinning neutron stars created when a massive star explodes. These neutron stars can create clouds of high-energy particles that glow brightly in X-rays. The image for G292 shows oxygen (yellow and orange), and other elements such as magnesium (green) and silicon and sulfur (blue) that were forged in the star before it exploded. For the other images, the lower energy X-rays are shown in red and green and the highest energy X-rays are shown in blue. (2014-07-22)


M101 in 60 Seconds

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Narrator (Megan Watzke, CXC): This image of the spiral galaxy Messier 101 is a composite of observations from NASA's three Great Observatories: the Chandra X-ray Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope, and the Spitzer Space Telescope. Chandra's view in X-ray light is seen as blue and reveals multi-million-degree gas, exploded stars, and material colliding around black holes. In red, Spitzer's view in infrared light highlights the heat emitted by dust lanes in the galaxy where stars can form. The yellow shows Hubble's data in visible light. Most of this light also comes from stars, and they trace the same spiral structure as the dust lanes. Such multi-wavelength images allow astronomers to see how features in one wavelength match up with those in another, and give everyone a more complete picture of this beautiful galaxy.

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