Merging galaxy cluster Abell 520

Esahubble_opo1210a_500

esahubble_opo1210a March 23rd, 2012

Credit: NASA, ESA, CFHT, CXO, M.J. Jee (University of California, Davis), and A. Mahdavi (San Francisco State University)

This composite image shows the distribution of dark matter, galaxies, and hot gas in the core of the merging galaxy cluster Abell 520, formed from a violent collision of massive galaxy clusters. The natural-colour image of the galaxies was taken with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and with the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope in Hawaii. Superimposed on the image are "false-coloured" maps showing the concentration of starlight, hot gas, and dark matter in the cluster. Starlight from galaxies, derived from observations by the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, is coloured orange. The green-tinted regions show hot gas, as detected by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. The gas is evidence that a collision took place. The blue-coloured areas pinpoint the location of most of the mass in the cluster, which is dominated by dark matter. Dark matter is an invisible substance that makes up most of the Universe's mass. The dark-matter map was derived from the Hubble Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 observations by detecting how light from distant objects is distorted by the cluster of galaxies, an effect called gravitational lensing. The blend of blue and green in the centre of the image reveals that a clump of dark matter resides near most of the hot gas, where very few galaxies are found. This finding confirms previous observations of a dark-matter core in the cluster. The result could present a challenge to basic theories of dark matter, which predict that galaxies should be anchored to dark matter, even during the shock of a collision. Abell 520 resides 2.4 billion light-years away.

Image Source: https://www.spacetelescope.org/images/opo1210a/

Curator: ESA/Hubble, Garching bei München, Germany

Image Use Policy: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
Abell 520
Subject - Distant Universe
Galaxy » Grouping » Cluster
Cosmology » Phenomenon » Dark Matter
Esahubble_opo1210a_1280
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ID
opo1210a
Subject Category
D.5.5.3   D.6.2.3  
Subject Name
Abell 520
Credits
NASA, ESA, CFHT, CXO, M.J. Jee (University of California, Davis), and A. Mahdavi (San Francisco State University)
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
https://www.spacetelescope.org/images/opo1210a/
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Distance Notes
Facility
Instrument
Color Assignment
Band
Bandpass
Central Wavelength
Start Time
Integration Time
8.001356000000E+03
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
Equinox
Reference Value
Reference Dimension
2734.0, 1758.0
Reference Pixel
Scale
Rotation
Coordinate System Projection:
Quality
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
ESA/Hubble
URL
http://www.spacetelescope.org/
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2
City
Garching bei München
State/Province
Postal Code
D-85748
Country
Germany
Rights
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Publisher
ESA/Hubble
Publisher ID
esahubble
Resource ID
opo1210a
Metadata Date
2017-03-17T14:25:10.375003
Metadata Version
1.1
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

 

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There is no distance meta data in this image.