CXC: Galaxies Go on a Deep Dive and Leave Fiery Tail Behind

Find out the latest thinking about our universe.
User avatar
bystander
Apathetic Retiree
Posts: 21584
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 2:06 pm
Location: Oklahoma

CXC: Galaxies Go on a Deep Dive and Leave Fiery Tail Behind

Post by bystander » Tue Jun 06, 2023 6:40 pm

NGC 4839: Galaxies Go on a Deep Dive and Leave Fiery Tail Behind
NASA | MSFC | SAO | Chandra X-ray Observatory | 2023 Jun 06
Click to view full size image 1 or image 2
Data: X-ray: Chandra (purple): NASA/SAO/Univ of Alabama/MS Mirakhor et al;
XMM (blue): ESA/XMM-Newton; Optical: SDSS (RGB); Image Processing: N Wolk

A group of galaxies is plunging into the Coma galaxy cluster and leaving behind an enormous tail of superheated gas. Astronomers have confirmed this is the longest known tail behind a galaxy group and used it to gain a deeper understanding of how galaxy clusters – some of the largest structures in the universe – grow to their enormous sizes.

Astronomers trained NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory on the galaxy group NGC 4839. Galaxy groups are collections of about 50 galaxies or less that are bound together by gravity. Galaxy clusters are even larger and can contain hundreds or thousands of individual galaxies.

Both galaxy clusters and galaxy groups are enveloped by huge amounts of hot gas that are best studied using X-rays. These superheated pools of gas, though extremely thin and diffuse, represent a significant portion of the mass in galaxy groups or clusters and are crucial for understanding these systems. ...

A Deep Dive: Chandra Observations of the NGC 4839 Group
Falling into the Coma Cluster
~ MS Mirakhor, SA Walker, J Runge
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor