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Chandra's First Year

August 22, 2000 ::

Chandra First Year
Chandra: 1999-2000 Pictorial Overview (quicktime)
On August 12, 2000, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory completed an outstanding first full year of observations. About 450 sources were observed, ranging from Comet LINEAR (1999 S4) in our solar system, to cosmic objects ten billion light years away.

Astronomers were frequently surprised and often confounded by what Chandra revealed. The first flare ever observed from a brown dwarf was imaged, as was a brilliant X-ray jet emanating from a supergiant black hole and extending over half a million light years. Chandra resolved most of the luminous X-ray background glow into individual sources believed to be black holes in the centers of galaxies. Its power and sensitivity captured the image of a small galaxy in the process of being cannibalized by a large one. The observatory located and measured vast clouds of oxygen, calcium and iron in the multi-million degree remains of supernovas, thus shedding light on how these vital elements are produced and dispersed.

collage of early images
A collection of images made by the Chandra X-Ray Observatory.
"It has been a fantastic first year with Chandra. We have met or exceeded all of our goals." - Gordon Garmire, of Penn State Univ., Principal Investigator for ACIS.

As data keeps flooding in and new observations are planned, astronomers and the community at large eagerly await next year's revelations.

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