Gravitational Wave Kicks Monster Black Hole Out Of Galactic Core

Stsci_2017-12_1024

stsci_2017-12 March 23rd, 2017

Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Chiaberge (STScI and JHU)

Runaway black hole is the most massive ever detected far from its central home

Normally, hefty black holes anchor the centers of galaxies. So researchers were surprised to discover a supermassive black hole speeding through the galactic suburbs. Black holes cannot be observed directly, but they are the energy source at the heart of quasars intense, compact gushers of radiation that can outshine an entire galaxy. NASA's Hubble Space Telescope made the discovery by finding a bright quasar located far from the center of the host galaxy.

Researchers estimate that it took the equivalent energy of 100 million supernovas exploding simultaneously to jettison the black hole. What could pry this giant monster from its central home? The most plausible explanation for this propulsive energy is that the monster object was given a kick by gravitational waves unleashed by the merger of two black holes as a result of a collision between two galaxies. First predicted by Albert Einstein, gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space that are created when two massive objects collide.

Provider: Hubble Space Telescope | STScI

Image Source: http://hubblesite.org/news_release/news/2017-12

Curator: STScI, Baltimore, MD, USA

Image Use Policy: http://hubblesite.org/copyright/

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
3C 186
Subject - Distant Universe
Galaxy > Component > Central Black Hole

Distance

Universescale3
8,000,000,000 light years
Stsci_2017-12_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 7h 44m 18.2s
DEC = 37° 53’ 9.0”
Orientation
North is 46.9° CCW
Field of View
2.7 x 2.9 arcminutes
Constellation
Lynx

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Cyan Hubble (WFC3/UVIS) Optical (V) 606.0 nm
Orange Hubble (WFC3/IR) Infrared (JH) 1.4 µm
Spectrum_base
Cyan
Orange
Stsci_2017-12_1280
×
ID
2017-12
Subject Category
D.5.4.6  
Subject Name
3C 186
Credits
NASA, ESA, and M. Chiaberge (STScI and JHU)
Release Date
2017-03-23
Lightyears
8,000,000,000
Redshift
8,000,000,000
Reference Url
http://hubblesite.org/news_release/news/2017-12
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Facility
Hubble, Hubble
Instrument
WFC3/UVIS, WFC3/IR
Color Assignment
Cyan, Orange
Band
Optical, Infrared
Bandpass
V, JH
Central Wavelength
606, 1400
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
2000.0
Reference Value
116.0759154879545, 37.88582745518723
Reference Dimension
4130, 4446
Reference Pixel
2065, 2223
Scale
-1.10048109339055e-05, 1.10048115541745e-05
Rotation
46.866134773153
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
STScI
URL
http://hubblesite.org
Name
Space Telescope Science Institute Office of Public Outreach
Email
outreach@stsci.edu
Telephone
410-338-4444
Address
3700 San Martin Drive
City
Baltimore
State/Province
MD
Postal Code
21218
Country
USA
Rights
http://hubblesite.org/copyright/
Publisher
STScI
Publisher ID
stsci
Resource ID
STScI-H-p1712a-f-800x600.tif
Metadata Date
2018-04-11
Metadata Version
1.2
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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Universescalefull
8,000,000,000 light years