APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

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APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by APOD Robot » Thu Jan 26, 2023 5:05 am

Image Active Galaxy NGC 1275

Explanation: Active galaxy NGC 1275 is the central, dominant member of the large and relatively nearby Perseus Cluster of Galaxies. Wild-looking at visible wavelengths, the active galaxy is also a prodigious source of x-rays and radio emission. NGC 1275 accretes matter as entire galaxies fall into it, ultimately feeding a supermassive black hole at the galaxy's core. This color composite image made from Hubble Space Telescope data recorded during 2006. It highlights the resulting galactic debris and filaments of glowing gas, some up to 20,000 light-years long. The filaments persist in NGC 1275, even though the turmoil of galactic collisions should destroy them. What keeps the filaments together? Observations indicate that the structures, pushed out from the galaxy's center by the black hole's activity, are held together by magnetic fields. Also known as Perseus A, NGC 1275 spans over 100,000 light years and lies about 230 million light years away.

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by MarkBour » Thu Jan 26, 2023 6:17 am

Intuitively, bigger, stronger, more violent, should be somehow more terrifying. This "active galaxy" is so far beyond that, the mental image of it does not connect to my emotions. And yet I wonder. In its past, it has perhaps extinguished entire civilizations, even some that could have been space-faring on a scale we can scarcely conceive.
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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by Ann » Thu Jan 26, 2023 7:52 am

MarkBour wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 6:17 am Intuitively, bigger, stronger, more violent, should be somehow more terrifying. This "active galaxy" is so far beyond that, the mental image of it does not connect to my emotions. And yet I wonder. In its past, it has perhaps extinguished entire civilizations, even some that could have been space-faring on a scale we can scarcely conceive.
Unlike you, Mark, I do find NGC 1275 impressive.


I'm intrigued by the filamentary nature of the debris of the merger process of NGC 1275.
Hubblesite.org wrote about NGC 1275:

Long gaseous filaments stretch out beyond the galaxy, into the multimillion-degree, X-ray-emitting gas that fills the cluster.

These filaments are the only visible-light manifestation of the intricate relationship between the central black hole and the surrounding cluster gas. They provide important clues about how giant black holes affect their surrounding environment...

The amount of gas contained in a typical thread is around one million times the mass of our own Sun. They are only 200 light-years wide, are often very straight, and extend for up to 20,000 light-years. The filaments are formed when cold gas from the core of the galaxy is dragged out in the wake of the rising bubbles blown by the black hole.

It has been a challenge for astronomers to understand how the delicate structures withstood the hostile, high-energy environment of the galaxy cluster for over 100 million years. They should have heated up, dispersed, and evaporated by now, or collapsed under their own gravity to form stars.

A new study published in the August 21 Nature magazine proposes that magnetic fields hold the charged gas in place and resist the forces that would distort the filaments. This skeletal structure is strong enough to resist gravitational collapse.

It is interesting to compare NGC 1275, at some 230 million light years, with Centaurus A, which is another example of a galaxy merger, but at a distance of only some 10-16 million light-years.


I find it interesting that Cen A displays a very strong jet in X-rays, but no jet can be seen in NGC 1275. The blue filament seen near the center of NGC 1275 is not a jet, but the distorted remnants of the hapless spiral galaxy that collided with the large elliptical galaxy of NGC 1275. However, both Cen A and NGC 1275 display large "Fermi bubbles", huge X-ray bubbles, on opposite sides of the central black hole.

Admittedly, in NGC 1275 the "Fermi bubbles" look more like cavities blown in the surrounding X-ray ambiance.

Finally, let's hear NGC 1275 sing to us (at 57 octaves below middle C)! :D

Click to play embedded YouTube video.

Ann
Last edited by Ann on Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by De58te » Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:04 am

So if this is called an active galaxy because "entire galaxies fall into it", I wonder what would happen if a second nearby active galaxy would fall into the first? Would it be like two neutron stars colliding? Which one eats the other?

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by VictorBorun » Thu Jan 26, 2023 11:55 am

De58te wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:04 am So if this is called an active galaxy because "entire galaxies fall into it", I wonder what would happen if a second nearby active galaxy would fall into the first? Would it be like two neutron stars colliding? Which one eats the other?
the proof of the superior galactic activity is eating

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by orin stepanek » Thu Jan 26, 2023 12:39 pm

Will there be anything left if the black holes finish eating?
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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by Chris Peterson » Thu Jan 26, 2023 2:32 pm

De58te wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:04 am So if this is called an active galaxy because "entire galaxies fall into it", I wonder what would happen if a second nearby active galaxy would fall into the first? Would it be like two neutron stars colliding? Which one eats the other?
Galaxies don't eat each other, they merge, producing a new galaxy. Neither survives in its original form (excepting, perhaps, if one of them is just atiny dwarf galaxy). And only the tiniest fraction of material ends up in either central black hole. It doesn't matter whether galaxies are in an active phase or not when they collide, the result is about the same. And if they truly merge, their central black holes will eventually merge, as well.
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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by johnnydeep » Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:35 pm

In case it isn't clear, as it wasn't to me, there are two main galaxies being talked about here, along with "filaments". NGC 1275 I take it is the elliptical galaxy with the active galactic nucleus - the yellow in my screengrab below - and the large spiral galaxy "falling into it" is the one with the dusty arms that I first though were just much nearer obscuring dust in our own galaxy) - the green in my image. And the filaments are the red stringy (and also dusty looking!) tendrils - the red in my pic:

ngc1275 and colliding spiral galaxy.png
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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by AVAO » Thu Jan 26, 2023 10:34 pm

johnnydeep wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:35 pm In case it isn't clear, as it wasn't to me, there are two main galaxies being talked about here, along with "filaments". NGC 1275 I take it is the elliptical galaxy with the active galactic nucleus - the yellow in my screengrab below - and the large spiral galaxy "falling into it" is the one with the dusty arms that I first though were just much nearer obscuring dust in our own galaxy) - the green in my image. And the filaments are the red stringy (and also dusty looking!) tendrils - the red in my pic:

ngc1275 and colliding spiral galaxy.png
I'm a little unsure if this scenario of the galaxy torn apart is really true. For me it could also just be the plasma arm of the cluster core galaxy, which reaches in our direction. However, the cluster core galaxy NGC 1275 is huge if you also take into account its hot gas in the X-ray from Chandra (purple above white below).

Click to view full size image 1 or image 2
Image
jac berne (flickr)

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by Ann » Fri Jan 27, 2023 4:57 am

johnnydeep wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 8:35 pm In case it isn't clear, as it wasn't to me, there are two main galaxies being talked about here, along with "filaments". NGC 1275 I take it is the elliptical galaxy with the active galactic nucleus - the yellow in my screengrab below - and the large spiral galaxy "falling into it" is the one with the dusty arms that I first though were just much nearer obscuring dust in our own galaxy) - the green in my image. And the filaments are the red stringy (and also dusty looking!) tendrils - the red in my pic:

Excellent illustration, Johnny! :D

So, let's see. NGC 1274 is the entire merger product of a galaxy, not just the elliptical component.

Similarly, the designation NGC 5128 or Centaurus A refers to the entire merger product of a galaxy:


We can clearly see that two galaxies are merging in Centaurus A. We can see the thick and fractured dust lane of a spiral galaxy, and we can see the featureless elliptical galaxy behind it. But we haven't given the two components separate names.

Similarly, although we can see the dust and spiral arm of a hapless (and smallish) spiral that is being torn apart by the much more massive elliptical component of NGC 1275, we haven't given the two components separate names.

In the same way, the filaments are very interesting features of NGC 1275. They clearly belong to NGC 1275, just like the red outflows of M82 are obvious parts of that galaxy.


But thank you, once again, for that excellent illustration of the different parts of NGC 1275! You are quite right, there is a clear difference between the dusty remnants of the spiral galaxy and the "seemingly all gas" of the red filaments.


The dusty "skeleton" of the small spiral galaxy that is merging with a large elliptical galaxy is very obvious in this image. The red hydrogen filaments are much harder to see here, but you can make out a few of them.


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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by AVAO » Fri Jan 27, 2023 6:15 am

Ann wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 7:52 am ...
It is interesting to compare NGC 1275, at some 230 million light years, with Centaurus A, which is another example of a galaxy merger, but at a distance of only some 10-16 million light-years.


I find it interesting that Cen A displays a very strong jet in X-rays, but no jet can be seen in NGC 1275. The blue filament seen near the center of NGC 1275 is not a jet, but the distorted remnants of the hapless spiral galaxy that collided with the large elliptical galaxy of NGC 1275. However, both Cen A and NGC 1275 display large "Fermi bubbles", huge X-ray bubbles, on opposite sides of the central black hole.

Admittedly, in NGC 1275 the "Fermi bubbles" look more like cavities blown in the surrounding X-ray ambiance.

Finally, let's hear NGC 1275 sing to us (at 57 octaves below middle C)! :D

Click to play embedded YouTube video.

Ann
ThanX Ann for these fascinating explanations. The comparison of NGC 1275 with Cen A is remarkable for two reasons. First, both galaxies are visible at ALL wavelengths, and second, their appearances are very different at each wavelength range.

However, Cen A is not a center galaxy of an entire galaxy cluster. It's like a different category for me. In this respect, I would like the comparison with NGC 4696 even better. Here, too, you can see how the plasma arm, which is directed towards us, appears dark because it is backlit by the galaxy core lying behind it.

Image

"What's happening at the center of elliptical galaxy NGC 4696? There, long tendrils of gas and dust have been imaged in great detail as shown by this recently released image from theHubble Space Telescope. These filaments appear to connect to the central region of the galaxy, a region thought occupied by a supermassive black hole. Speculation holds that this black hole pumps out energy that heats surrounding gas, pushes out cooler filaments of gas and dust, and shuts down star formation. Balanced by magnetic fields, these filaments then appear to spiral back in toward and eventually circle the central black hole. NGC 4696 is the largest galaxy in the Centaurus Cluster of Galaxies, located about 150 million light years from Earth. The featured image shows a region about 45,000 light years across."

https://science.nasa.gov/ngc-4696-filam ... black-hole

Image

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by AVAO » Fri Jan 27, 2023 6:30 am

MarkBour wrote: Thu Jan 26, 2023 6:17 am Intuitively, bigger, stronger, more violent, should be somehow more terrifying. This "active galaxy" is so far beyond that, the mental image of it does not connect to my emotions. And yet I wonder. In its past, it has perhaps extinguished entire civilizations, even some that could have been space-faring on a scale we can scarcely conceive.
I find NGC 1275 quite terrifying at the right wavelength. But maybe these type of monsters also exist in the heart of our own galaxy :evil:
...only much smaller.

Image

Image
Credit: A. Angelich (NRAO/AUI/NSF); NASA/JPL-Caltech/ESA/CXC/STScI

"The center of our Milky Way Galaxy is anchored by a black hole that is nearly 5 million times the mass of our Sun. Surrounding it is a chaotic city of stars, gas, and dust that we call Sagittarius A. We stacked false-color X-ray, infrared, and radio images into this single picture to show you the different structures hidden inside the core of our Galaxy. X-rays (purple) radiate from the super-hot gas trapped in the black hole’s grasp. The surrounding dust is heated by friction as it chaotically orbits around the black hole and then glows in infrared light (gold). And the enormous pools and three-armed rivers of gas shine in radio light (oranges and reds) to trace the complexity of magnetic fields in this violent neighborhood."

https://public.nrao.edu/gallery/sagittarius-a-2/

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by Ann » Fri Jan 27, 2023 10:41 am

AVAO wrote: Fri Jan 27, 2023 6:15 am
The comparison of NGC 1275 with Cen A is remarkable for two reasons. First, both galaxies are visible at ALL wavelengths, and second, their appearances are very different at each wavelength range.

However, Cen A is not a center galaxy of an entire galaxy cluster. It's like a different category for me. In this respect, I would like the comparison with NGC 4696 even better. Here, too, you can see how the plasma arm, which is directed towards us, appears dark because it is backlit by the galaxy core lying behind it.

Image

"What's happening at the center of elliptical galaxy NGC 4696? There, long tendrils of gas and dust have been imaged in great detail as shown by this recently released image from theHubble Space Telescope. These filaments appear to connect to the central region of the galaxy, a region thought occupied by a supermassive black hole. Speculation holds that this black hole pumps out energy that heats surrounding gas, pushes out cooler filaments of gas and dust, and shuts down star formation. Balanced by magnetic fields, these filaments then appear to spiral back in toward and eventually circle the central black hole. NGC 4696 is the largest galaxy in the Centaurus Cluster of Galaxies, located about 150 million light years from Earth. The featured image shows a region about 45,000 light years across."

https://science.nasa.gov/ngc-4696-filam ... black-hole

Image
Thanks, AVAO, that's an almost picture perfect comparison! :shock: :D

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Re: APOD: Active Galaxy NGC 1275 (2023 Jan 26)

Post by Fred the Cat » Fri Jan 27, 2023 4:27 pm

Considering the similarities between the cosmic web and our neuronal network, it seems likely there is some corollary. If a 4th dimension is defined as every point in the 3rd dimension having accessibility anywhere within the fourth, there is an eerie similarity to quantum entanglement. Perhaps the two have a relationship to dark matter.

That life on Earth developed with similarities embedded in the universe, it bodes well to other planetary bodies having similar outcomes. Too bad we can’t Cat Scat the universe to find the road leading us along the right path.

Though we don’t know much about dark matter, has a discussion about its function in the universe ever been investigated :?:
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