Eyes in the sky

Eso_potw2117a_1024

eso_potw2117a April 26th, 2021

Credit: ESO/Tubín et al.

Do you ever get the feeling that you're being watched? This friendly-looking object is the result of two galaxies merging into one another, complete with a pair of eyes hiding two growing supermassive black holes and a swirling grin. Such mergers are rare in our galactic neighbourhood; Mrk 739 is close enough (astronomically speaking) to study the event in detail, and thus gain a better understanding of the dramatic processes that take place during these cosmic mergers. By using the MUSE instrument on ESOs Very Large Telescope, the team of astronomers, led by masters student Dusn Tubn at the Pontificia Universidad Catlica de Chile, were able to study the effects of both the merger and the radiation emitted by the growing gigantic black holes. Their study answers questions about the motion of the galaxies, the age of their stars, and the elements they are made up of. They have found that one of these galaxies is much older than its companion, and that their merging process is at an early stage. MUSE is a 3D spectrograph that takes images known as datacubes of the object being observed over thousands of wavelengths. With MUSE, astronomers are therefore able to map in great detail the properties of the objects they study, because each individual pixel contains an impressive amount of information. Obtaining these exciting insights into galaxy merging and evolution with MUSE is enough to make anyone smile.

Provider: European Southern Observatory

Image Source: https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2117a/

Curator: European Southern Observatory, Garching bei München, None, Germany

Image Use Policy: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

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Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
Mrk 739
Subject - Local Universe
Galaxy > Type > Interacting
Eso_potw2117a_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 11h 36m 29.0s
DEC = 21° 35’ 42.1”
Orientation
North is up
Field of View
1.0 x 0.9 arcminutes
Constellation
Leo

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Blue VLT (MUSE) Optical (B) 438.0 nm
Red VLT (MUSE) Optical (r) 625.0 nm
Green VLT (MUSE) Optical (g) 475.0 nm
Spectrum_base
Blue
Red
Green
Eso_potw2117a_1280
×
ID
potw2117a
Subject Category
C.5.1.7  
Subject Name
Mrk 739
Credits
ESO/Tubín et al.
Release Date
2021-04-26T06:00:00
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2117a/
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Distance Notes
Facility
Very Large Telescope, Very Large Telescope, Very Large Telescope
Instrument
MUSE, MUSE, MUSE
Color Assignment
Blue, Red, Green
Band
Optical, Optical, Optical
Bandpass
B, r, g
Central Wavelength
438, 625, 475
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
None, None, None
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
J2000
Reference Value
174.120783591, 21.5950304342
Reference Dimension
882.0, 824.0
Reference Pixel
441.0, 412.0
Scale
-1.85079624376e-05, 1.85079624376e-05
Rotation
-0
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
European Southern Observatory
URL
https://www.eso.org
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2
City
Garching bei München
State/Province
None
Postal Code
D-85748
Country
Germany
Rights
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Publisher
European Southern Observatory
Publisher ID
eso
Resource ID
potw2117a
Metadata Date
2021-03-23T14:41:02+01:00
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.